Decline by Design – Will We Lose Our Nation through Attrition?
An individual, a business or a nation has to reach beyond what is perceived as achievable or even possible in order to realize innovation and prosperity. The mindset that a nation can go beyond perceived barriers and access limitless undiscovered and untapped wealth is the mindset that powers a nation’s future. In contrast, the present day United States and much of the world are moving into the future with a mindset of limits, scarcity and creative poverty. Many future publications, including the Global 2025 report, have predicted a future with the United States in decline and thus being eclipsed by China and other projected rising nations.
This Global 2025 document was prepared by The National Intelligence Council (NIC). The National Intelligence Council is the Intelligence Community’s center for midterm and long-term strategic thinking. If all of our up and coming policy makers are crafting policy relative to the premise of our nation’s inevitable decline, we are evermore likely to experience this decline as a self fulfilling prophecy. Where is the companion document “US Blue Print for sustained global pre-eminence for the next century”? When there seems to be a consensus for an undesirable outcome, how can we hope to overcome that outcome without implementing a counter plan and call to action.Our largest obstacle to sustained national achievement is that too many of us have come to accept the premise of inevitable national decline. This endemic attitude, both individual and collective, is undermining our will to strive for excellence. This attitude encourages us to adopt wealth redistribution rather then wealth creation. The nation and its people borrow and spend rather then create and produce. We buy our energy from other nations while refusing to develop a robust energy program at home. No longer worth protecting, we cede our sovereignty at our borders. With a diminished view of our future, we no longer quest for scientific and technological leadership.
Public sector spending, as a percentage of GDP, is in excess of 40 percent. In the last one hundred years this percentage was only eclipsed by the spending during the WWII years and that spending rapidly declined after the end of the war. In contrast, many projections see our current public sector spending skyrocketing into the future. The US national debt is at almost 15 trillion and escalating. Some economists predict that our debt will be equal to one hundred percent of our economy in as little as ten more years.
We choose to import our energy from other countries, many who are hostile towards the US and our way of life, even though we have massive energy reserves at home. The US has claim to the world’s largest, untapped oil reserves estimated at about 2.3 trillion barrels. That is almost three times more than the reserves held by the OPEC nations. These oil reserves would power the US for 300 years at present day demand. The US has the largest coal reserves on the planet. Estimated at 275 billion tons, this is enough coal to power the US for more then 250 years at present day consumption levels. In spite of our massive energy reserves, 57% of all oil consumed in the U.S. is imported.
We have allowed our southern border to become extremely porous, no longer entering into the process of choosing who and how many immigrants will be grated entry into the United States. There are an estimated eleven million illegal immigrants residing in the United States. Over 70% of the United States annual population growth results from illegal immigration, at a cost of nearly $68,000,000,000.00 annually.”
As we all know, by simply watching the evening news, these kinds of grim economic statistics could fill several pages with disheartening text.
The United States, by way of policy, is now surrendering our leadership in science and Technology. One example of this trend was the demise of the 20 TeV, Superconducting Supercollider (SSC) which was being built in Texas. The SSC was intended to address some of the most fundamental questions of physics. One of the great scientific questions to be addressed by the SSC was whether or not the higgs boson (dubbed the God particle) could be detected in the supercollider laboratories. But in 1993 after investing over $2 billion dollars into the project, President Clinton and Congress cancelled the project entirely. Now the leading group for this kind of research is the European Organization for Nuclear Research, known as CERN. CERN operates the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), located beneath the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva, Switzerland. The LHC is the world’s largest and highest-energy particle accelerator. Very recently (reported in September 2011) the scientist at CERN have reported that they may have evidence of an exotic particle (the neutrino) traveling faster then the speed of light, possible shaking one of the theoretical backbones of modern physics.
This trend of leadership surrender was once again demonstrated just last year when President Obama cancelled the NASA Constellation program. The Constellation program was to produce a family of Spacecraft that would replace the aging Space Shuttle fleet and provide a transportation system that would be able to man and resupply the international space station, return astronauts to the moon and bring the first human beings to Mars. Cancelling the Constellation program, without, extending the shuttle program, means the United States can no longer bring our astronauts to the international space station or anywhere else in earth’s orbit and beyond. The United States now has to pay Russia to take our astronauts to the ISS aboard a Soyuz space capsule at a cost of $51 million per seat. In 2013 the cost goes up to $55.9 million, and in 2014 it rises to $62.7 million. This tragic loss of manned space capability is yet another retreat from national leadership by way of policy decisions.
The United States is not being forced out of a position of supremacy by external factors; we are simply giving up on our quest for excellence and global leadership. Our nation’s leaders, our academic institutions, and our mass media organizations have lulled the collective soul of the United States into a state of indifference and complacency. We are in a state of decline because we are surrendering our role as the international leader. If we won’t reach for the stars, we’ll never get off the ground. If we choose to reach for he starts, there is no limit to heights we can achieve.