During the Elizabethan era, Queen Elizabeth II and Sir Walter Raleigh recognized the vast wealth of natural resources in America, such as lumber, coal, oil and many other commodities. As space and natural resources were not endless in Europe, Queen Elizabeth II and Sir Walter Raleigh saw America as the future and that shining city on the hill. They were right as America became the sole superpower after the collapse of the USSR in 1990. The dollar became the standard for the world. We are now in the 21st Century, which will not be the American Century as the 20th century was.
In pursuit of their dream, America was, so to speak, a virtual fountain of wealth which could prove to be a great asset to Queen Elizabeth II and Sir Walter Raleigh. America was true to their dream. Sir Walter Raleigh and Queen Elizabeth II were not the first to hit the shores of America. Historically, the Viking Leif Ericson, a Norse explorer, is regarded as the first European to land in North America (excluding Greenland), nearly 500 years before Christopher Columbus.
However, Raleigh sailed to America in 1578 with his half-brother, Sir Humphrey Gilbert. It is thought this voyage sparked-off his plan to found a colony in the present day states of North Carolina and Virginia. In 1585, he put his plan into action at Roanoke Island, but it failed, as did a second attempt in 1587, as they just did not have the amount of funding needed to run a colony of this type. In 1587, England was at war with Spain and all English ships were seized to use in the English fleet, meaning supplies could not be sent to the colony until 1590 when it was found the colony had been wiped out, either by starvation or by an attack from a native tribe.
However, Sir Walter Raleigh made history when he discovered “The Lost Colony.” For here and nowhere else, Sir Walter Raleigh made initial attempts to colonize the New World under Queen Elizabeth II. Truly this hallowed site is the birthplace of America.
It is with great regret that I, as many others, must point out that America may not be considered the sole superpower. Unlike the 20th century, the 21st century will not be the American Century. Although the dollar is still the currency of the World and has been for the last 40 or so years, it could be in the last stages of its power if historical trends mean anything. It appears, looking back at recent history, the monetary standard changes every 40 years, i.e., the dollar is right at the 40th year and is being questioned. While before the dollar was the standard, gold was the standard only lasting 40 years.
One cannot overlook the fact that America is $16 trillion in debt and is approaching $2 billion a day on the interest alone. There will come a time, if it already isn’t here, where America will not be able to pay these huge interest payments and if it can, it will be suffocating America. Moreover, our defense capability and the education of our children are in serious jeopardy as a result of the “sequentation” which resulted from mandatory agreements between Republicans and Democrats which provided that if the Simpson- Bowles Committee – made up of six Republicans and six Democrats – could not reach an agreement, predetermined cuts in defense and domestic cuts were agreed to. Now, Republicans and Democrats squirm to try to undo what they did in Simpson- Bowles as the cuts provided for by that Committee are to go into effect January 2013.
To compound the problems that America and all of us Americans face as a result of Bush financing two wars and cutting taxes and Barack Obama increasing our debt in 3.5 years by $9 trillion, this week, the Non-Alignment Movement (NAM) met to discuss their global concerns. NAM has the membership of approximately 130 countries with China, Russia, Venezuela, and many other countries supporting its purpose to stop America from taking over the World.
So, from the great visions of Queen Elizabeth II and Sir Walter Raleigh – who saw America as a shining city on the hill; to the manifestation of that vision as America becoming the sole superpower; to what appears to be a loss of respect for America and a weakening of its powers due to what some would call the “bully on the block” to an over-extended country which may be approaching a financial tsunami, we must recognize our decline.
America is an “exceptional” country and its people are among the most determined, charitable people on earth. America is the most powerful military country on earth. Although it would be unrealistic not to recognize the challenges which face America and Americans, recognizing the potential danger calls for a solution which is within our grasp. Although there is much debate on how to save America, this writer thinks a number of issues must be addressed. Somewhere in the equation we must reduce the amount of spending so we can gradually get out of debt and cast off the $2 billion per day that goes to other countries. America must now compete with China and India for technology superiority. Yes, America has arguably the greatest technology in the world. Our battleships, Air Force, Army, Marines, and Special Forces leave no doubt that at this time a head-on confrontation with America by countries that hate us would back-fire on those countries and result in their destruction. However, the strength of our military does little, if anything, to combat our country from sinking into a sea of debt and, as such, becoming just another country trying to stay afloat.
By D. Lindley Young