In its current form, globalization cannot be sustained. Democratic societies will not support it. Authoritarian leaders will fear to impose it.
For globalization to work for America, it must work for working people. We should measure the success of our economy by the breadth of our middle class, and the scope of opportunity offered to the poorest child to climb into that middle class.
A core part of the global market is what might be called the 'Nike Economy' - footloose companies that play countries against one another while seeking subcontractors with the lowest wages and cheapest conditions.
After World War II, American leaders were, in Dean Acheson's words, 'present at the creation' of a global order. Now at the end of the cold war, we desperately need that same vision, that leadership, that creativity to be applied to the governance of the global marketplace.
Henry Ford was right. A prosperous economy requires that workers be able to buy the products that they produce. This is as true in a global economy as a national one.
Our task is not to make societies safe for globalization, but to make the global system safe for decent societies.
In the 'Nike Economy,' there are no standards, no borders and no rules. Clearly, the global economy isn't working for workers in China and Indonesia and Burma any more than it is for workers here in the United States.
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