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United States has become preoccupied with the internal affairs at the expense of the foreign affairs after the civil war. It started interfering in overseas conflicts and interacting with the World after the diplomatic inactivity from Latin America and Spain to the China and Philippines. This interaction made the America to become a major World power.
The first conflict of America was with the Hawaii in Pacific which was governed by Queen Liliuokalani. American investors were attracted to the sugarcane industry. A treaty gave Hawaiian sugar a duty-free import to America until the McKinley tariff of 1890. The sugar planters revolted and the United States was en-route to annex Hawaii until President Cleveland withdrew the offer. America bought Alaska from Russia and established an informal protectorate in the Samoan islands and this has increased the America's pacific influence.
America's industrial economy produced a surplus of products hoping to expand its overseas presence. Due to this expansion it has gained momentum. America started to expand its navy to compete with the other countries. Battleships were built and many bases are established in strategic locations. To prevent the European countries from domination and blocking America out of the Chinese market, U.S. Secretary of State John Hay sent them an open door note to establish a policy of Open Trade. However in the "Gentlemen's Agreement" Japan agreed to limit immigration to America (Erickson 2006).
Rise of the United States to the position of Global Empire:
Hay (2004) states that German economist Moritz Julius Bonn said United States have been the cradle of modern Anti-imperialism and at the same time founding of a mighty empire. In 20th century, the Second World War captured the tensions in American policy and public disclosure which made the country to experience an uneasy position. America's role as guarantor of global stability raises the question whether an empire can operate effectively under anti-imperial premises. America is facing different challenges from great power rivalry which derives from disorder along the periphery of the developed World.
In 1990s, the war on terrorism provided a rationale and the phenomenon of "failed states" and the conflicts are engendered, revived interest in liberal imperialism. Ferguson sees the United States as Britain's natural heir in exercising benevolent imperial rule and he urges Americans to consciously underwrite the liberal empire necessary to sustain globalization. He poses the fundamental question to America whether an empire can operate effectively while denying the scale of its responsibilities and trying to avoid long-term commitments of the money and time which a nation building requires. As "an empire in denial," the United States trying to shift or share burdens more than taking up new ones and focuses on exit strategies rather than permanence. Public culture and History imposes certain constraints on American power that advocates of empire must address to present an effective case.
Niall Ferguson has explored the United States hegemony in foreign affairs and its future role in the world in his book Colossus: The Rise and fall of the American Empire. His most valuable contribution lies in his efforts to define empire in a historically sophisticated manner. He says empire does not mean direct rule or imply the possession of colonies which carry an association for many Americans with backwardness, squalor and exploitation. He proposes empire as a synonym for primacy, hegemony or global leadership.
In the 19th century, most Americans believed in Thomas Jefferson's phrase "an empire of liberty" which involves continental expansion and conquest of the frontier. Keeping in mind those thirteen colonies as the metropole of a settlement empire across North America provides a different perspective on both imperialism and American history than typically given by the literature on the frontier and settlement of the American west.
America has emerged as a global power in the next century as contingent events shaped the direction of American power. Policymakers either sought to avoid the need for a response or responded to challenges as there was no grand strategy for global mastery.
Ferguson rightly points out that the United States is unlikely to be an effective liberal empire without some profound changes in its economic structure, its political culture and its social make up. It remains unclear how or when such changes might be accomplished or what domestic constituency will promote them. United States is taking up Ferguson's project of liberal empire. Leveraging power through diplomacy and alliances, along with the judicious direct exercise of power, provides the best solution to sustaining global order.
The government of United States mainly uses monetary and fiscal policies to manage the economy and to stabilize it. Policymakers are helping the economic growth by making effective and efficient economic development policies such as tariff policy, industrial policy, balance of trade (difference between the value of what Americans buy and what they sell overseas), regulatory policies and international economic policies etc. The national economic development policies are closely associated with the government's tariff policies. Tariff is the tax collected for importing goods from another country. This is collected to protect the growing industries in United States from the foreign competitors. Industrial policy is also one of the important strategies used to restructure the nation's economy.
Globalization is the idea of expanding the social interrelations and human activity with other countries rather that at the local, regional or national levels to enjoy more benefits. To gain benefits, when George H.W. Bush was a president, U.S. government has introduced a policy of free trade by North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to abolish the tariffs and other trade barriers and to encourage exchange of goods and services freely, but since there were lot of controversies about the policy's advantages and disadvantages the policy was withdrawn later.
Government can use tax incentives to promote its economy. Tax incentives are monetary benefits given to the people for investing or spending their money in a way that promotes economic growth. Eg: the home-building industry in United States has benefited largely by a tax law which allows Americans to deduct their home mortgage interest costs from their personal income taxes (Gitelson, Dudley and Dubnick, 2011).
Innovation and entrepreneurship plays important role in the growth of economic development. So the government should take measures in innovating new products, new processes and new sources of supply and development of new ways to organize its business (Szirmai, Naude and Goedhuys, 2011)
The political development of any country is dependent on the economic development. It is generally argued that technological innovation, globalization and industrialization have more effect on the political system of the country. Though there were lots of controversies, the three approaches identified the relationship between political development and economic development. They are "Statism," "dependency theory" and "modernization theory."
Republican Party and Democratic Party are dominating the American Politics since the American Civil war among all other parties. Democratic Party supports an American Liberalism platform and positions itself as left-of-center. The Republican Party supports an American conservatism platform and positions itself as right-of-center.
In any country the democracy can be achieved if the nation has political and economic freedom. The United States is a federal constitutional republic where the President of the United States, Judiciary and Congress share powers related to the national government. The federal government shares sovereignty with the state governments. The president heads the executive branch in the government. Legislative powers are handled by the Senate and the House of Representatives. The judiciary functions like interpreting the United States constitution and federal laws and regulations are handled by Supreme Court and lower federal courts. These courts will resolve the disputes between the legislative branches and executives too and the government must always be answerable to citizens for all the steps taken for the growth of the country as they are the ones who elect representatives for the government (Ishiyama, 2011).
United States is now enjoying the technological superiority. It is the largest manufacturing and industrial economy in the world throughout the 20th century. United States has an extraordinary capacity in innovating new industrial sectors like telecommunications, computers and aerospace. Each of these has given United States a new competitive edge in the world markets from several decades. Though it has achieved good market for its many of the products in the world, it is does not have a stable market for its industrial sectors like automobiles, consumer electronics and steel.
United States government should try to maintain and enhance America's technological superiority with respect to developing new economic sectors that will be leaders in global markets. This encourages the traditional bases of United States. They are university system where numerous engineers and scientists are taking part in innovating new technology and researches in the education system, the free market system where numerous entrepreneurs and innovators are finding ways to expand their business by implementing new ideas and the education of the general public. Many economists argue that only scientists and engineers are necessary for the economic productivity and international competitiveness, not the…[continue]
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