This year's overarching theme at Davos -- the "shifting power equation" -- apparently means many things to the throngs gathered here. For some, it crystallized a growing concern that established institutions are losing power. Rogue states and nonstate actors threaten disorder on the global stage, which could take the form of weapons proliferation, terrorism or the spread of AIDS and other deadly diseases. These threats "create an environment in which the things we treasure cannot prosper," Richard N. Haas, the president of the Council on Foreign Relations, said in a panel Wednesday called "The Shifting Power Equation: Geopolitics."
For others at this year's World Economic Forum, the theme sparked a debate about whether the United States faces a slow but inevitable decline. Will its dominance be sapped by challenges to its Iraq policy and by the rapid rise of China? Pei Minxin, a senior associate and director of the China program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, sharply disputed this notion.
-- DealBook on HuffPo For the first time in my life (and I'm well over 40) I feel that this country has been so broken by the last 6 years that it cannot be fixed.
- China holds our debt, the highest in history.
- Countries are now banking on the Euro instead of the US dollar. Remember when the Euro was a joke's punchline? But more over does the average US citizen undrerstand what this means to our economy, interests rates and inflation? Shouldn't someone in the media be explaining this to them, instead of letting it sit as a two paragraph news story on the bottom of page 17?
- We are no longer looked at as a beacon to the rest of the world.
- One half of our own citizenry fear their government, a fear that we were warned about by Thomas Jefferson.
- Our government has shredded the constitution. The very document that made us a great nation.
- The middle class is fighting for it's life.
- The new robber barrons, aristocracy without check, have the poor scared, unprotected and feeling more and more like pawns. Whatever happened to protecting the weak, the poor and the down trodden?
- NOLA has been allowed to die.
- Big business seems to have a freer hand to abuse its workers. Ever remember a time in the last 20 years when we've have so many mining accidents?
- We have had no oversight for years, just a rubber stamp congress for whatever the president wills (until 1/2007).
- Now in a cynical move the president is firing prosecutors to put in operatives which will further erode the since of equal justice the people of this nation USED to have, or atleast have the hope would prevail.
- We have abandoned science and rights in favor of one religion and have a brain drain because of it. Other nations will take the lead on scientific, technological, medical, etc. advances.
- We have lost all credibility abroad.
- We are a mess at home.
- We are divided and maybe irreversibly so. These wounds are deep, for those on the left have been called Un-American and an "Enemy of the State" for 6 years just because they disagree with the president over the Iraq war, and the disappearance of rights at home. If one listens to the Republican talking heads call you every foul name in the book, it's very hard on the left to feel a sense of charity to those on the right. For those on the right that have subscribed and still subscribe to these divisive diatribes, even those the right to dissent - even in a time of war- is patriotic, they may feel no charity toward the half of the population they view as traitors. Our divisions run so deep now and may not be able to be healed. Lincoln's warning about "a house divided" may come to pass.
As sorry as I am to say it, or even think it, for the first time Davos may be right.