Globalization: An Unavoidable Reality In Today’s World

Will 2013 Be The Year Of Deglobalization?
After years of vibrant trade across borders, many nations may begin to pull back – either as a result of direct policy or as a consequence of the economic crises.

“For years, the world economy has been wildly lopsided: China and some other  countries ran big trade surpluses; the U.S. was perennially in massive deficit.  Similar imbalances existed in Europe. Now, slumps have dampened the U.S. and European appetite for imports,” writes Robert Samuelson.

World Events (Inevitably) Will Impact The US Economy
Throughout the 2012 presidential campaign, both campaigns seized on the opportunity to rhetorically rant against China, pledge to reduce foreign aid and to adopt a foreign policy stance of non-intervention. However, as Neil Irwin notes in The Washington Post, it is not so easy to simply step off the world stage.

“Yet again and again in recent years, international surprises that have had an outsized impact on the U.S. economy–the Eurozone crisis, for example, and this year’s slowdown in Chinese growth. Beyond America’s borders, there remains peril in all directions—though of a variety that is hard to measure and predict,” says Irwin.

Will America Regain Its Will To Lead In 2013?
This is the question posed by an editorial in London’s Telegraph newspaper, but is left largely unanswered. The challenge in 2013, the editorial contends, will be for Obama and Republicans to “discover whether they have the collective resolve to secure America’s pre-eminence.”

The Telegraph sees the glass as half full, noting that even if the fiscal cliff is not averted and the “spectacle of a superpower preparing publicly to shoot itself in the foot may be unprecedented, the good news is that Congress and the White House are unlikely to stay on the road to self-destruction for long.”

One Man’s Quest To Improve Medical Care In Africa
While the African continent is massive in terms of land mass and population, there is a frightening deficit of doctors able to deliver health care to its citizens.

For example, in Sierra Leone, which has a population of six million, there are nine surgeons practicing in the country. And this deficit is not uncommon notes The Atlantic magazine.

“The deficit is equally dire elsewhere in Africa. Kenya and Uganda, with two of the continent’s strongest medical education systems, have 355 and 100    surgeons respectively, meeting 19 percent and 7.4 percent of need based on WHO projections. Rwanda has 35.”

But through his Pan African Academy of Christian Surgeons, David Thompson is hoping to affect change – and his work is bearing results.

“In 2011, Thompson’s organization, the Pan African Academy of Christian Surgeons (PAACS), was training 43 residents at 10 hospitals across the continent. It has 28 graduates, all of whom remain in Africa, working for underserved populations. The organization’s operating budget for 2011 was $550,000,” writes Brian Till.

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