The future of globalization on its present course doesn't favor the United States. That's a fact. Yet the outcome of globalization is by no means determined and there are specific actions which the government could be taking to give our children and grand-children a fighting chance. A reasonable government, even a reasonably conservative one, could have taken a multi-pronged approach to globalization of investing in education (especially science,) increasing conservation and energy independence, reducing the deficit, and shoring up Medicare and Social Security. Even partially meeting these goals would have given Americans a buffer during the difficult period of adjusting to new global realities which lies ahead. Unfortunately for future generations, the President during the crucial years of 2000-2008 was George W. Bush, a man so blindingly incompetent, so numbingly corrupt, and so unimaginably powerful that he single-handedly brought America from prosperity to the brink of economic and fiscal disaster within the span of eight years. Historians will find it difficult to exaggerate the depth of the damage inflicted by the Bush administration. This government has effectively taken a wrecking ball to the political and economic infrastructure of this country, no surprise since it was only the traditions of American democracy and prosperity which stood in the way of the right-wing takeover they craved.
Instead of acting to solve America's problems, the Bush administration and its allies saw those problems as an opportunity to effectively plunder the nation's resources. It hasn't been a government so much as a looting spree. Everyone has gotten a share at the trough - politicians, journalists, lobbyists, corporate executives, defense contractors. No one low enough to betray their country has been left out. In the last five years they have cleanly stolen a good chunk of America's future - the one that our grandparents, parents, and ourselves worked quite hard to secure. Which one hurts the most? The wholesale liquidation of natural resources such as the nation's air, water, and forests? The tax cuts which have imposed serfdom on the next generation? The boondoggle of a trillion dollar missile defense system which is not even claimed to actually work? Or could it be the utterly pointless war which has now killed and maimed tens of thousands in Iraq and elsewhere? From my very rudimentary knowledge of history, let me offer a word of advice to George W. Bush: every empire in history has sunk under the weight of pointless, unpopular, bankrupting wars. It's the worst thing a nation can possibly do to itself. It is suicide. The nine billion dollars which disappeared in Iraq could just as effectively have been burned to keep the homeless warm. That's my hard work, and everyone else's, and it's never coming back. That's my future that's just been stolen by the most craven, morally bankrupt, utterly godless gang of thieves this continent has ever seen in power.