The ticking gets louder … the time bomb grows bigger … the explosive fuel goes global … and 2020 is dead ahead.
Recently the tick-tick-ticking became louder in “The Middle-Class Revolution,” a Wall Street Journal feature by the conservative Stanford University political scientist Francis Fukuyama, author of 1992’s “The End of History and the Last Man”: “All over the world,” he writes in the Journal, “today’s political turmoil has a common theme: the failure of governments to meet the rising expectations of the newly prosperous and educated.”
Failure of government? Since when is it the government’s job to “meet the rising expectations” of the middle class? What happened to capitalism? Isn’t this the America where free-market capitalism is the engine of economic growth and prosperity? A new age where government is, at best, a tool helping capitalism to thrive? And, at worst, an anchor slowing capitalists?
The ‘Pentagon 2020’ battle plan
Yes, there is a “middle-class revolution.” Yes, it is spreading worldwide, putting in place a network of ticking time bombs. But not only is government failing. Not only is capitalism failing. But Fukuyama is ignoring the real bomb, buried deep inside this new global revolution, the new age of global warfare that the Bush Pentagon warned of a decade ago:
“By 2020 there is little doubt something drastic is happening. … As the planet’s carrying capacity shrinks, an ancient pattern of desperate, all-out wars over food, water, and energy supplies would emerge … warfare is defining human life.”
Fukuyama does a great job of analyzing “the theme that connects recent events in Turkey and Brazil to each other, as well as to the 2011 Arab Spring and continuing protests in China, is the rise of a new global middle class. Everywhere it has emerged, a modern middle class causes political ferment.”
The middle-class revolutionaries
But the protests have “been led not by the poor” as in many revolutions throughout history, “but by young people with higher-than-average levels of education and income,” states Fukuyama. “They are technology-savvy and use social media like Facebook and Twitter.” Even in countries that “hold regular democratic elections,” he continues, “they feel alienated from the ruling political elite.”
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