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... which has now grown to be almost identical to the World's Economy ... has gone through a number of hegemonic transitions, but only one since rising to the status of the dominant economic center of the world, the transition from the British to the US.

However, hegemonic transitions are not mechanical processes, and while in most cases one hegemon has been supplanted by another, in the case of the first World War, the Napoleonic Wars, Britain "succeeded itself" as hegemon (which is not to say world dictator but rather first among equals in the peculiar balance of power politics that has characterized the Atlantic Economy).

The US has a needle that could be threaded to succeed itself as hegemon, involving abandoning the peculiar base-network empire and its peculiar presumption that the purpose of empire is to create a place to dump production rather than as a source of tribute and giving up fruitless adventures in Southwest Asia in favor of building up genuine win-win international political economy in the South Atlantic.

Its an unlikely prospect, but then the fact that a hegemon has only succeeded itself the once suggests that its always an unlikely prospect.

The other plausible candidates for hegemon are China and the EU, with China the more likely because Europe as the center of the world as a whole rather than fighting each other for who will be the center of the world is a rather novel concept, while to say that China as the center of the world is a well established concept is putting it extremely mildly.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Mon Aug 23rd, 2010 at 12:32:15 AM EST

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