Isolationism – A Dangerous Response to Economic and Emotional Depression
December 3, 2009 Leave a comment
Isolationism – A Dangerous Response to Economic and Emotional Depression.
Note: This article was written by Douglas Castle for THE INTERNATIONALIST PAGE (http://TheInternationalistPage). The author is a Featured Columnist for THE NATIONAL NETWORKER Newsletter (a free subscription can be obtained at http://twitlik.com/IN). This article may not be reprinted, reproduced, republished or otherwise transmitted unless it appears in its entirety, with all attribution intact, and all hyperlinks live.
The article cited below this brief commentary appeared c/o Yahoo News! and was carried by Associated Press (AP). It is a sad treatise in predictable human behavior. Isolationism breeds incestuous reaffirmation of ill-conceived and inbred ideas; increasing fear of change; decreasing flexibility and adaptability; reduced trading opportunities for economic stimulus; reduced opportunities to find new friends and allies for personal and professional growth in the individuals; suspicion and resentment amongst those who surround us in the Global Community but whom we cease to associate with or be concerned about; a culture of conformity, defensiveness and stagnation; and, a prolonged and deepened sense of loss in all quarters.
The isolationist road is a dangerous one for governments to take. Increased insularity amongst the population of a hurting nation, an apathy when it comes to affairs that are not in the immediate geographical locus and occuring only in the present moment (or in the anticipated tragedies of the near-term), and a dissociation from the greater world and potential future is tantamount to a return to feudalism. It is anti-evoluationry from the standpoint of beneficial individual and societal advancement.
Philosophically, the seeds of great change lie within us, to be found introspectively…but there exists an undeniable universe of greater possibilities in external exploration. We must employ both processes, and ignore neither.
As an Internationalist, as a Global Futurist, and as an ardent advocate of unlimited human potential, I am very fearful of the retreat and regression the invariably follows disappointment, or a loss of faith.
The channels of communication must be kept open. Curiosity and conversation must be encouraged. Sharing of greater amounts of information amongst a greater number of receptive minds (as in the collaborative aspect of the GICBC – The Global Interworked Cooperative Business Community) brings us closer to the "cerebral critical mass" needed to achieve breakthroughs for the improvement of the quality of life throughout all peoples of this world.
Let’s not isolate. We must collaborate.
Douglas Castle [ http://aboutDouglasCastle.blogspot.com ]
Poll: Isolationism soars among Americans
By BARRY SCHWEID, AP Diplomatic Writer
WASHINGTON – Americans are turning away from the world, showing a tendency toward isolationism in foreign affairs that has risen to the highest level in four decades, a poll out Thursday found.
Almost half, 49 percent, told the polling organization that the United States should "mind its own business" internationally and let other countries get along the best they can on their own, the Pew Research Center survey found. That’s up from 30 percent who said that in December 2002.
Results of the survey appear to conflict with President Barack Obama‘s activist foreign policy, including a newly announced buildup of 30,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan to fight Taliban and al-Qaida extremists.
"Isolationist Sentiment Surges to Four-Decade High," the nonpartisan research center headlined its report on the poll about America’s role in the world.
Only 32 percent of the poll respondents favored increasing U.S. troops in Afghanistan, while 40 percent favored decreasing them. And fewer than half, or 46 percent, of those polled said it was somewhat or very likely that Afghanistan would be able to withstand the radicals’ threat.
Forty-one percent of those surveyed said the United States plays a less important and powerful role as a world leader than it did a decade ago, up from 25 percent who said that just before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the report said.
Pew Research Center President Andrew Kohut said in an interview that the "very bad economy" appeared most responsible for the growth of isolationist sentiment. He said the public was also "displeased with the two wars we are waging, in Iraq and Afghanistan."
While isolationism and unilateralism reached four-decade highs among the public, the stature of China increased.
Among Americans polled, 44 percent said China was the world’s leading economic power compared with 27 percent who named the United States. In February 2008, 41 percent said the U.S. was the leading economic power, while 30 percent said China.
A majority of Americans surveyed, or 53 percent, see China’s emerging power as a threat to the United States.
The United States is seen by a comfortable majority, 63 percent, as the world’s leading military power.
Concerning the Middle East, about half, or 51 percent, of respondents said they were more sympathetic toward Israel than to the Palestinians, who drew 12 percent. Fourteen percent supported neither side, while 19 percent offered no opinion.
The findings come from two surveys. The first poll, of 2,000 adults, was conducted by telephone Oct. 28 to Nov. 8 and had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points. A subsequent poll of 1,003 people conducted from Nov. 12-15 had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
On the Net:
The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press: http://people-press.org