Saturday, March 03, 2012
A little-noted fact these days is that the Anglosphere is still far and away the world’s largest economic bloc. Overall, it accounts for more than one-quarter of the world’s GDP—more than $18 trillion....Long-run trends in the developing world also point to the expansion of the English language....Al also compares the oil/gas reserves known in the Anglosphere and finds them a strong base for growth. I comment that the existence of these reseves is the effect not a cause of our advantage
Much has been made of the aging of the West, but the English-speaking countries are not graying as rapidly as their historical European rivals are—notably, Germany and Italy—or as Russia and many East Asian countries are. Between 1980 and 2010, the U.S., Canada, and Australia saw big population surges: the U.S.’s expanded by 75 million, to more than 300 million; Canada’s nearly doubled, from 18 million to 34 million; and Australia’s increased from 13 million to 22 million. By contrast, in some European countries, such as Germany, population has remained stagnant, while Russia and Japan have watched their populations begin to shrink.
The U.S. now has 20 people aged 65 or older for every 100 of working age—only a slight change from 1985, when there were 18 for every 100. By 2030, the U.S. will have 33 seniors per 100 working Americans. But consider the numbers elsewhere. In the world’s fourth-largest economy, Germany already has 33 elderly people for every 100 of working age—up from only 21 in 1985. By 2030, this figure will rise to 48, meaning that there will be barely two working Germans per retiree. The numbers are even worse in Japan, which currently has 35 seniors per 100 working-age people, a dramatic change from 1985, when the country had just 15. By 2030, the ratio is expected to rise to 53 per 100.
I suspect us sitting on the energy reserves is overstating it. It is because we best combine technological advance with rule of law that these gas reserves have been looked for and therefore found here. It may well be that they are similarly distributed everywhere. It is certainly the case that nuclear power is usable everywhere.The cuturasl achievements of English speaking countries should not be underestimated. It is not unreasonable to suspect that this is because of a cultural tradition imbued with that language.In Malaysia people queue for buses. In neighbouring and historically linked Indonesia it is every passenger for themselves. Malaysia was ruled by Britain and indonesia by the Netherlands.
A further advantage for the Anglospher is tha, in the age of the internet, we are all connected. China may get some of this critical mass advantage too.
A downside is that most of the lunacies of the ecofascist movement also first became prominent here. To quote the same source on this massive self inflicted would on our society
All healthy, modern industrial economies require abundant supplies of energy. Any organisation or institution which obstructs the supply of energy to a modern nation is the deadly enemy of that society and those people. Today, the huge, well-funded green-industrial complex is exposing itself as opposed to all reliable and affordable forms of energy. This means that there is a war, of sorts, taking place in modern industrial nations, between the pro-prosperity forces and the energy-starvation force