The United States dominates the world not because of the strength of its economy but because the US Dollar is the world’s reserve currency, used in almost all major international transactions. This position is primarily maintained by the world’s practice of buying and selling oil in dollars. It means that the US economy doesn’t have to earn its wealth, it can simply print more money knowing the almost every other country in the world will buy those dollars so that they in turn can buy oil.
Ultimately, however, this is unsustainable. An unholy alliance between Russia and China to trade in ruble and yuan, and the emergence of the BRICS group (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) means that the petrodollar will shrink in importance. The writing is on the wall, and it says that the era of US world dominance is coming to an end.
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I am a retired physicist and hold a B.S. in Ch. E. as well. I have been an environmental activist since the early 1970s. I was a founding member of the Save Barton Creek Association in Austin, TX. In 2006 I was a member of a select committee (more...)