November 11th, 2013
10:17 PM ET

What I'm reading: U.S. needs to get house in order

By Fareed Zakaria

“America’s economic problem is not China but getting its own policy house in order; similarly, China’s future depends not on issues with respect to the United States but on meeting its own challenges,” writes Robert Rubin in the Washington Post. “The United States has enormous long-term strengths, including a dynamic and entrepreneurial culture, the rule of law, flexible labor and capital markets, vast natural resources and favorable demographics. But to realize our potential, we need a sound fiscal regime; robust public investment in infrastructure, basic research and so much else; and reform in economically vital areas, such as immigration and K-12 education. (A deficit-reduction program should be enacted now, but with deferral for a limited period and a moderate upfront stimulus to help our fragile economic recovery.)”

“Mangalyaan’s mission to Mars cost India $73 million. For comparison, Boeing prices its least expensive commercial airplane at $76 million,” notes Samanth Subramanian in the New Yorker. “And by India’s profligate standards of public expenditure, the Mars Orbiter Mission has come cheap: an eight-lane bridge in Mumbai that opened in 2010 spans three miles and cost $340 million; a proposed statue of a long-dead Indian politician—designed to stand twice as tall as the Statue of Liberty—will $300 million."


soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. ✠RZ✠

    Yes, if you took the trillion dollars a year from the MIC and DOD, then another trillion dollars a year from the rest of the world's spending on defence against who ? (Ourselves I guess.), and put it together along with all the intelligence, resources, science, and manpower the world's military and technology has to offer, I'd bet within a couple of years or so a bunch of us could be having a cold beverage at a bar..... IN A MASSIVE LUXURY SPACE STATION COMPLEX ON THE MOON WAITING FOR THE NEXT FLIGHT TO MARS!!

    November 11, 2013 at 11:03 pm | Reply
    • Felix Unger

      Better yet RZ, that money could be spent on medical research against AIDS, ALS, Alzheimer's disease, cancer, MS and a host of other devastating diseases instead of on enemies we don't have in the first place. Then again, we could put all those trillions of dollars back in our economy! Enough said.

      November 12, 2013 at 8:56 am | Reply
  2. Mike

    The United States has enormous long-term strengths, including a dynamic and entrepreneurial culture, the rule of law, flexible labor and capital markets, vast natural resources and favorable demographics. But to realize our potential we need stop collaborating with S.Korea because they are no valueable partner – and neither in EU or NATO. And we should not underestimate other nations, because they have bigger corporations and are stronger than USA.

    November 12, 2013 at 4:49 am | Reply
  3. Joseph McCarthy

    In order to put our house in order, we Americans need to vote all these right-wing, war loving fanatics, not least of all John McCain and Lindsey Graham, out of office and replace them with more responsible officials who care about this country and the people living in it! Then take most of the money appropriated for the D.O.D. and put it back in our economy and medical research since today we have no enemy to threaten us except for the phantom ones concocted by the right-wingers themselves!

    November 12, 2013 at 8:35 am | Reply
    • Steven

      But first, we need to kick out of our country all these war making j.a.p.a.ne.s marines mazda suzuki toyota ...

      November 14, 2013 at 3:57 am | Reply
  4. The GOP Solution

    The GOP Solution: Turn all the Old, Sick, Poor, Non-white, Non-christian, Women, and Gay people into slaves. Then whip them until they are Young, Healthy, Rich, White, Christian, Male, and Straight. Or until they are dead. Then turn them into Soylent Green to feed the military during the next "unfunded/off-the-books" war. And don't forget the GOP all time favorite.........TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH!!!

    November 12, 2013 at 9:40 am | Reply
    • Felix Unger

      Well stated, The GOP Solution. How true that is!

      November 12, 2013 at 11:54 am | Reply
  5. Claudia

    Do not worry about China – they are larger more powerful country. USA needs to invest heavily into NATO alliance to make America one success again.

    November 14, 2013 at 6:52 am | Reply

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