The Imperial Economy

8 days ago
5 Min Read
952 Words

Hey Jessimperialists

As I tend to these days is creep around peoples posts on the platform and engage with them, learn about their side of the world, and what it's like for others, I had a brief chat with @metzli. She mentioned something that even I in the deep dark of Africa am pretty familiar with, the saying:

If the US sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold

I know many of us non-US based citizens may not believe it, realise it or acknowledge it because well there's only so much American exceptionalism we can take and only some much fo the Kardashians we can stomach. Still, it doesn't make it any less true.

The fact that friends from Europe and myself who have NEVER been to the US can name cities, places, cultural phenomenons, slang, companies, and more is a testament to how engrained their ideals have become in our global village.

While the TV shows, YouTube's and the Hollywoods tend to be the popular exports along with Micky D's the single greatest export us that of the almighty dollar.


When Americans feel rich we all get a piece

America's Gini coefficient, while not as bad as say, South Africa is still pretty and due to the purchasing power of the dollar and the nominal disparity. I read a stat the other day that US dollar Millionaires and Billionaires combined own 79% of the countries wealth and in the world its something like 50%. While I cannot vouch for the accuracy of these studies, I think we can agree the overall trend does skew this way or people wouldn't be rioting in the streets and needing bailouts.

As fewer Americans have a share of the wealth, only a few get to deploy it, meaning the fewer Americans with access to capital and spending the fewer leaves the country for us to use.

Dollar-denominated debt

The world runs on debt; it's not only the US borrowing up to their tits and beyond, countries all over the world mirror what the US does. Since we don't have the privilege of printing our own bank reserves, the rest need to borrow from various creditors and then pay it back with interest.

When US citizens don't spend, there's a dollar shortage, and the rest of the world needs to spend more of their currency to get dollars to pay back their international creditors.

The US might only be 25% of the worlds GDP, but the dollar settles 80% of the world's transactions. So 50% of all trade the counterparty of it is the dollar.

This provides the US with a massive leg up on any country, and why if they do something, they take the rest of us along for the ride.

The dollar desperation

Ask anyone in the tourism industry in South Africa, ask anyone in the call centre industry in the Philippines and India, ask any manufactures in China. Ask the UK why they told the EU to jog on and would prefer a sweetheart deal with the Yankees, the world needs dollars.

If it's not leaving the US at a certain speed, it disrupts so many people downstream you wouldn't even realise it how far-reaching the effects are of this co-dependence we have with our imperial economic overlords.

The dollar billy club

Lol, see what I did there? That was a good pun! Anyway, back to my point, the Dollar can also be used to maintain order and keep countries in line as well as punishing them for not doing what the US wants. Ask Iran, ask Venezuela, once the US cuts you off, you pretty much collapse. Many of us would rather submit then take that dollar billy club to the head.

Broad strokes

Yes, I am generalising not all American's are sitting around having grapes fed to them and being fan'd while chilling in a kimono or toga imported from somewhere, they're having a tough time of it too. I've spoken to many non-US peeps, and they don't understand this concept of free money because our governments can't afford things like this due to the way the economy is set up.

However, if the free money doesn't continue, it dries up downstream too, and the rest of us wither and die.

From the ground up

As long as nothing changes the US is the source of the world of liquidity, but it won't last forever, they can pick favourites; they can choose winners and losers in this game and negotiate sweetheart deals in the process.

The dollar is a privilege, but its also being abused abroad, This is why I feel it's so important for anyone in a developing nation like my own to hedge against this madness with Bitcoin.

Perhaps its time we do break up with the US, start seeing other people, and maybe they'll realise that we are cute, funny and worth the effort.

I probably won't ever get my country to agree even as they pass the US dollar debt to GDP ratio of 80% and beyond, but I can at lease secure my own balance sheet.

Have your say

What do you good people of HIVE think?

So have at it my Jessies! If you don't have something to comment, comment "I am a Jessie."

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