How Will America Pay for the Paradigm Shift Currently Happening in the Arab World?
We will pay out of our pockets, particularly for gasoline. As uncomfortable it is to admit, a landscape of long-standing monarchies and dictatorships in oil rich nations is/was economically beneficial for the United States, the world’s top oil importer.
There is a paradigm shift occurring on our planet. Technology is now spurring and catalyzing revolutions around the world. Long-standing monarchies and dictatorships are falling to the mass populace that is demanding democracy and a free-market economy with ample opportunity. The world has flattened, and information and intellectual capital now move across the planet at light speed.
Americans like to complain and ire over “surging gas prices”, but compared to the rest of the developed world, America pays less for gas than anyone else on earth. That is because the vast majority of America’s imported oil, refined or otherwise, come from regions of the planet that are incredibly instable. It is much easier to control and pay off a group of oligarchs and dictators, than it is to compete in a natural market that is subject to competition and other market making and breaking mechanisms.
Egypt, Libya, and Algeria. All three are global leaders in oil exportation, and all three are now undergoing, with no hyperbole or exaggeration, populace revolt against the governing institution. That means chaos. That means worry in the markets, which translates to spikes in the price of oil, which eventually hits home at the pump, the grocery store, and pretty much anywhere else where goods are being consumed that have to be shipped.
But is that price worth paying for more stability in the Middle East and Northern Africa? Can Americans, facing the aftermath of one of the worst economic crises in the country’s history, suck it up and pay higher prices for gas and everyday goods as a consequence of democratic revolution in the Arab world?
Well, since we like to so brazenly export our own version of democracy through military force, I’m sure we can all agree that paying a little bit more at the pump is worth another step towards a more democratic and open global society.