November 3rd, 2014
05:11 PM ET

What I'm reading: The single-engine global economy

By Fareed Zakaria

“The global economy is like a jetliner that needs all of its engines operational to take off and steer clear of clouds and storms. Unfortunately, only one of its four engines is functioning properly: the Anglosphere (the United States and its close cousin, the United Kingdom),” writes Nouriel Roubini for Project Syndicate.

“The second engine – the eurozone – has now stalled after an anemic post-2008 restart. Indeed, Europe is one shock away from outright deflation and another bout of recession. Likewise, the third engine, Japan, is running out of fuel after a year of fiscal and monetary stimulus. And emerging markets (the fourth engine) are slowing sharply as decade-long global tailwinds – rapid Chinese growth, zero policy rates and quantitative easing by the US Federal Reserve, and a commodity super-cycle – become headwinds.

“So the question is whether and for how long the global economy can remain aloft on a single engine.”


“We will never be free of epidemics. We will always be at risk from newly discovered and emergent diseases such as Nipah and Hendra, as well as those dating back into antiquity, such as cholera, malaria, and influenza. It’s been estimated that there are on the order of 320,000 undiscovered mammalian viruses lurking out there. Some, certainly, will cause disease in humans,” writes Tara Smith for Slate.

“In many ways, we're about as limited in our options as our ancestors were when they had to deal with yellow fever, smallpox, or bubonic plague. Despite our success with medications, vaccination, and sanitation, the current Ebola outbreak shows that we are woefully unprepared for new infectious diseases. When they hit us at our most vulnerable, we resort to centuries-old practices to contain them: isolation, quarantine, and methods that rely on the most difficult challenge of all, modifying human behavior.”


“The price of oil has dictated Venezuela’s politics for decades,” writes Girish Gupta for the New Yorker. “In the nineteen-seventies, when prices trembled in response to the Arab–Israeli war, wealthy Venezuelans would make shopping trips to Miami, where they became known for the phrase ‘Dame dos.’ (‘Give me two.’) By the mid-eighties, a major global oil glut had emerged, crippling the country’s economy. Authorities imposed austerity measures that sparked major unrest. In 1989, violent protests in Caracas known as the Caracazo led to hundreds of deaths. The austerity measures also pushed a young Chávez to lead a coup attempt three years later. Though he was unsuccessful, it made him a household name and helped to launch him to the Presidency, in a landslide election victory in 1998.”

“Chávez understood that this revolution would depend heavily on high oil prices.”


soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. It's just an opinion

    The world runs on integrity and as this profound characteristic finds itself missing from the halls of corporations, governments and those responsible for the safe handling of the financial sytems so goes civilizations. If we make a world so interconnective it fails on major frauds as in 2008 and makes no real changes to prevent it in the future the end can be seen on the horizon. All the rest of the conversation is smoke and mirrors.

    November 3, 2014 at 5:46 pm |
    • Idiocracy


      November 3, 2014 at 6:22 pm |
    • Serengeti

      Indeed. Let us take the example of a fast failing nation India. For India to maintain its current rate of poverty, which has resulted in famine and social ills like terrorism, raypes/women bashing, it needs a breakeven GDP of 15%. India will never get there !! Agreed? Therefore, India is lagging behind about 17% GDP !!!! Looking at GDP only, we will never be able to alleviate poverty in India...EVER !!! Source: Wharton Econometrics.

      November 4, 2014 at 3:07 am |
      • Philip

        One in 5 American children go hungry each day. That, with a nationwide obesity epidemic on our hands.

        November 4, 2014 at 7:45 am |
      • Crockett

        Americans go hungry so they can feed starving hindus in India. Say Thank You.

        November 4, 2014 at 12:21 pm |
  2. Philip

    Money is the grease on the axle of life. Slight amounts of crude oil keep the axle spinning, with most crude being used for making petrochemicals called "pharmacy products".
    International borders fell for profit long ago, and remain standing to keep peoples separated. So they might not like each other and join together vs. crooked and greedy governments.
    And everyone should know by now that all of the world's federal reserves/central banks are branch banks controlled by one single bank in Basel Switzerland. (Privately held banks are currently embroiled in the largest conspiracy to ever face mankind: The multi-trillion dollar LIBOR fixing scandal that Justice Department officials have already proven to have been going on for over 6 years, involving at least 17 of the world's largest banks)
    Integrity is a myth. Not a bastion of civilization.

    November 3, 2014 at 6:35 pm |
  3. Blue Saffron

    What an incredibly stupid heading and a more idiotic analogy. I am shaking my head in total disbelief that CNN would publish this crap. Fareed is a bigger clown than I had figured. And then just read the comments. Equally bizarre and psychotic. Outta here.

    November 3, 2014 at 6:43 pm |
    • Serengeti

      No need to take Fareed seriously. He should be making smoothies in 7-11s.

      November 4, 2014 at 3:34 am |
  4. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    All I have to say here is that this is a horrific idea! Globalization will drag the world into one great depression with no way out.

    November 3, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
    • Philip

      Exactly, JIF. Only Great Tribulation, not Great Depression. With but one way out, and it's not money.

      November 4, 2014 at 8:04 am |
  5. Thomas

    Money , Corruption , who cares about the environmental condition of the planet , only the top 1% can afford space tourism.

    As long as I get mine and yours !
    Drill Baby Drill , how much for you child ?

    November 3, 2014 at 6:48 pm |
    • George patton

      Well said, Thomas.

      November 3, 2014 at 8:01 pm |
  6. Blue Saffron

    Roubini is a contrarian. When the world was in recession 2008 onwards he thought we were in nirvana. Can't take him seriously.

    November 3, 2014 at 7:02 pm |
    • banasy©

      I am glad you realized that it wasn't FZ who wrote the analogy, even though now you're lambasting him for reading, now.

      November 3, 2014 at 7:20 pm |
      • Blue Saffron

        Not sure what you mean by "..., for reading..,,." . This is Fareed's space. So whoever he quotes he patronizes. Unless stated otherwise. Seems he agrees with Roubini nonsense.

        November 3, 2014 at 7:44 pm |
      • banasy©

        Ok. It didn't appear that way to me; but I agree Roubini's analogy was....simplistic.
        If I quoted you, do you think I'm patronizing you?

        November 3, 2014 at 7:50 pm |
  7. Blue Saffron

    Roubini's economic paradigm is flawed. Global Economy is not akin to a mechanical contraption. If that was the case mechanics like Roubini could fix it.

    November 3, 2014 at 8:26 pm |
  8. Blue Saffron

    J apan is not a major factor in global economics it once was. The third world is non existent so to speak, China is a force to reckon with though.

    The effect of steroids are wearing off on the west. Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria are all deflections. So is Fareed Zakaria and his propaganda. USA is trying to use geopolitics to solve/divert attention from economic malaise. Also to keep ME and South Asia lagging behind.

    November 3, 2014 at 8:54 pm |
    • Philip

      Chinese industrialists pay about $28 for a barrel of Caspian Basin crude oil flowing through conquered Afghan pipelines. We pay about $100 here in the USA. Do you not understand what this means?

      November 4, 2014 at 7:48 am |
      • Peter


        November 4, 2014 at 11:04 am |
      • Philip

        Hogwash what @ Peter? How much did you think China pays for Caspian Basin oil that flows through Afghanistan's conquered pipelines?

        November 4, 2014 at 11:11 am |
      • Crockett

        Shut up Philip. You speak out of your a zz

        November 4, 2014 at 12:22 pm |
      • Philip

        How much did you think.China pays for oil that flows through Afghanistan now that the previous pipeline operators are all dead or in GITMO prison, Crochet?

        November 4, 2014 at 2:14 pm |
  9. 31 year old New Jersey diabetic chick with heart murmur and glaucoma

    I liked the story.

    November 3, 2014 at 11:35 pm |
    • George patton

      Another idiotic comment from another mindless Tea Partier!!! Enough is enough!

      November 4, 2014 at 8:27 am |
  10. Serengeti

    The Indian Debacle has overshadowed the European crisis. GDP that has dropped off the cliff (-2% est), budget deficits, collapse of Indian rupiah, rampant poverty, unemployment, FDI reversal, companies leaving town are some of the disastrous events that are threatening the Indian state.

    The downward spiralling is so severe that the Indian government has been ulable to control it. Even the Americans have been unable to help and several trips by the treasury secretary were not helpful.

    This also has security repercussions for India and US defense secretary and secretary of state, among others, have flown in to counsel India on how to protect its borders with the help of Israel/IDF. Rumors have it that the breakup of India along the lines of Soviet Union is a very plausible scenario that I am sure intelligence agencies all over the world are factoring in their geopolitical stress tests.

    November 4, 2014 at 3:03 am |
  11. Serengeti

    An economy with none of the engines running:

    Comparing the economic progress of China with India always amazes me. About same number of people but different results. Chinese raise their kids to be entrepreneurs while Indian hindus as t hugs. Just a cultural difference I suppose. Different DNA.

    China 10% GDP...... India 2%
    China 38 Gold medals.... India 0 (2012 olympics)

    November 4, 2014 at 3:37 am |
    • Sunderbans

      Here is a comparison militarily. Just sayin.

      1962 INDIA-CHINA WAR

      111,383 killed
      11,047 wounded
      11,696 missing
      123,968 captured
      131,544 ran away to Bhutan and still are hiding scared from Chinese.

      November 4, 2014 at 3:39 am |
  12. Farragut

    Messrs Serengeti and Sunderbans Roubini consider your aforementioned country as inconsequential. It is exhaust pipe perhaps, if you will.

    November 4, 2014 at 6:21 am |
    • Xavier O

      Do you mean in terms of carbon footprint or analogous to being an a zzhole.

      November 4, 2014 at 6:24 am |
  13. Philip

    The world's federal reserve/central banking system is like a supercharger on an engine, or like a rev limiter/retarder. This is the one engine driving (read "fixing") economies worldwide.
    No president of any nation has ever ordered the fed be audited, and not even this can get you overly pharmicated people to raise an eyebrow.

    November 4, 2014 at 7:52 am |
  14. Haggis

    Raype is the super charged engine that drives India's economy.

    November 4, 2014 at 8:21 am |
    • Appolonia

      These Indians raype 80 year old women as well as 2 month old babies like there is no tomorrow. Hare Krishna Hare Ram.

      November 4, 2014 at 8:37 am |
    • Appolonia

      The global political model has failed alongwith the economic model. The military model is in shambles following retreat from Afghanistan.

      November 4, 2014 at 8:41 am |
    • Philip

      Get a clue. Americans raype over 200,000 men, women and children every single year. You are the pot calling the kettle black.

      November 4, 2014 at 10:07 am |
      • Peter

        Hindus raype 2 million a year. Must do you proud.

        November 4, 2014 at 11:07 am |
      • Philip

        Odd you have India's raype stats memorized. Are you from India, Peter?

        November 4, 2014 at 11:22 am |
  15. Appolonia

    If we let China emerge as manager of India alongwith being the new superpower we may have a chance.

    November 4, 2014 at 8:42 am |
  16. palintwit

    Sarah Palin would make a perfect stand-in for Wile E. Coyote on the old Roadrunner cartoon. Drop a few 'Acme' safes on her head and she wouldn't even have to act ! Meep-meep !

    November 4, 2014 at 10:18 am |
  17. Peter

    Lakshmi Maa came in my dreams last night. Banged the hell out of her.

    November 4, 2014 at 10:20 am |
  18. chri§§y

    Dont forget to vote today people!!!! Now is the time to show Congress we are not going to endure any more of their shenanigans! And their free loading days are over!

    November 4, 2014 at 10:36 am |
    • palintwit

      Speaking of free loading, did you know that of all the millions of $ donated to SarahPAC by the ignorant teabaggers, only about 5 or 6 % is actually used for what it is intended. The rest is spent by the Palin family on clothing, cars, homes, trips, meals etc.

      November 4, 2014 at 10:49 am |
    • Philip

      Which lesser of two evils will you vote for this go round?

      November 4, 2014 at 11:02 am |
  19. chri§§y

    And i totally agree @ Joey in black!!! But also as @ Philip stated and as ive often audit of the Federal Reserve must be done! And the only Presidential candidate who wanted to make this a priority was Ron Paul. And his party dumped him as soon as he made it clear that this was intention. So....and you can pretty much bank on it, this will never happen!

    November 4, 2014 at 10:45 am |
    • Philip

      Exactly, Chrissy. If everyone knew that one single bank determines the actions of the world's federal reserves and central banks, everyone would lose faith in the almighty dollar.
      Of course, if everyone knew that pro sports from NBA games to NASCAR races were fixed, would stop betting on sports too, so...

      November 4, 2014 at 10:58 am |
  20. Philip

    Voters are the minority with non-voters being the clear majority. And since this is a democracy, non-voters rule. 🙂

    November 4, 2014 at 11:06 am |
    • banasy©

      Lazy people who don't vote forfeit the right to complain about how the country is run. It's hypocrisy at its finest.

      November 4, 2014 at 11:13 am |
      • Philip

        Voters who produce nothing are worthless.

        November 4, 2014 at 11:34 am |
      • Philip

        Lazy? Small business owner and founding member of the National Federation of Independent Businessmen and you call me lazy. Over 20 years spent drilling all over the world so you could have your petrochemical pharmacy drugs and a little gasoline for your car. And you call me lazy.
        What do you do for a living, @banazi. Assist your hubby watching Desperate Housewives of New Jersey on TV? Blog all day to keep out of his hair? (If any)

        November 4, 2014 at 11:41 am |
      • banasy©

        Yes. Lazy. Laziness comes in many forms, such as lazily not voting, then spending copious amounts of time (while hypocritically berating others for blogging) bemoaning the state of our leaders while not living a finger to do anything about it.


        Your screed attacking me is nothing more than you projecting your family's tv viewing habits and your follically-challenged reflection into me and my family.

        You're quite transparent, Philip.

        Get a clue.

        November 4, 2014 at 12:51 pm |
      • Philip

        I've never bothered with owning a TV. So much for your stupid theory.
        And laziness is not why I refuse to exercise my free will / civil liberties and NOT vote. You go ahead and keep voting scoundrels into office, @banazi. That's how the Workers Party (NAZI political party) came into power. Blind flag wavers thinking they had to vote for someone. And of course voted for Hitler, the most popular candidate. Carry on with your tradition of voting blindly. We'll see what the next scoundrel you elect does.
        Still waiting on president Obama to legalize sodomy in the military like he promised to do over 6 years ago. Wonder what the holdup is.

        November 4, 2014 at 2:26 pm |
      • banasy©

        Notice I said nothing about you personally owning a tv. So your argument from lack of reading comprehension is a non-sequiter.

        You care not one iota for our military, as you have posted prolifically about your disgust with them, and the country they represent. Their sex lives are wholly none of your business, as is anyone else's you continuously "chat" about.

        You detest this country while taking advantage of the rights the US affords you. You, and that, are hypocritical.

        November 4, 2014 at 2:58 pm |
  21. Peter

    Modi must be impeached and sent to trial in The Hague. Modi is the "democratically" selected keader of India, a rapist, murderer and woman basher.

    November 4, 2014 at 11:10 am |
    • Philip

      Same could be said for the womanizer Bill Clinton and rapist Geo. "Dubya" Bush.
      RIP Margie Shoedinger. And, lose some weight, Monica.

      November 4, 2014 at 11:33 am |
      • palintwit

        More U.S. presidents than not had secret girlfriends while in office. There are stories of tunnels under Penn. Ave. just for that purpose.

        November 4, 2014 at 11:39 am |
      • palintwit

        And if Sarah Palin had ever made it into the W.H. she would have turned it into a brothel with her daughters in charge.

        November 4, 2014 at 11:42 am |
      • Philip

        True. Thomas Jefferson's real wife was a young slave girl. The other lady was just acting like the First Lady. Even FDR's "wife" wasn't his true love. In fact, Eleanor Roosevelt was bi-sezxual. Her short fat significant other smoked cigars and had a bedroom in the White House.
        But still, dozens of wrongs don't make it right to keep voting these scoundrels into office.

        November 4, 2014 at 11:48 am |
      • Philip

        Lmao about Sarah Palin. Who would pay to sleep with that water buffalo woman anyway?

        November 4, 2014 at 11:52 am |
      • palintwit

        A blind and dysfunctional tea party patriot.

        November 4, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
    • Crockett

      Modi is a disgrace. Drag that muther f ukker to ICJ for trial.

      November 4, 2014 at 12:26 pm |
  22. Crockett

    Raype is the engine driver behind India's growth (hair between the legs!).

    November 4, 2014 at 12:24 pm |
    • Philip

      Then that would make extra and pre-marital se x slash legalized abortions the engine that runs our economy, @Cokette?

      November 4, 2014 at 2:17 pm |
  23. Philip

    The global economy is like a funnel. 97% of everyone pour their hard earned money into the wide part of the funnel, and 3% receive it at the other end. (Except in Mexico where it's 99:1)

    November 4, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
    • Philip

      ...well, the upper crust 3%. Then you have the half of U.S. who don't work and so live off of taxpayers.

      November 4, 2014 at 2:32 pm |
      • banasy©

        Gonna need a citation that says 50% of the citizens of working age are unemployed. Calling bull on this one.

        November 4, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
  24. FREE voter info

    Keep on mind that it does not matter if it's a big mean Elephant with a smallish Donkey head or if it's a big fat Donkey with an Elephant head. It's still the same retarded 12 year old Ritalin junky carrying a loaded shotgun. With a plastic badge made in China emblazoned "World Police" pinned to either his right or left feet made fat from eating hormones.

    November 4, 2014 at 2:41 pm |

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