Saturday, 11 August 2012

Saving Vice President Ryan

When Mitt Romney announced his running partner in the upcoming Presidential Elections he claimed that Paul Ryan would be the next President of the United States.  This caused some confusion in the UK media, not alive to the nuances of American politics.  It is simply that Mitt doesn’t really “do” autocue.

Errors apart, when Ryan emerged from a hatch on the USS “Wisconsin”, laid up at the US Norfolk Navy base nautical museum he was improperly dressed.  My Chief Petty Officer uncle would have had him doubling back to put on a tie as well as looking forward to some unwelcome fatigues.

The event was replete with irony.  Doubtless, as Ryan is a Wisconsin man, it might have seemed a nice idea.  However, to emerge from a vessel that has spent time bombarding Japan, Korea and sailing the South China Seas to assert American power, let alone its more recent role in the Gulf War is a tad tactless.

More to the point is that the Nauticus Maritime Centre at which it is based has a good deal to say about Pirates and their intimate connection with US history, one way or another. 

With the questions about Mitt’s money and where it is becoming a major issue that a great deal of is claimed to be located in former pirate locations and bases it almost invites derision from some quarters.  But there is a greater problem that that.

A major economic concern in the US is the current trade deficit, but it may not be just a question of the actual movements of imports and exports, it is a lot more complicated than that. 

In this item, hat tip to Tax Research, it is argued that the way money is shifted in theoretical payments and pricing may now create a fundamental continuing deficit in the balance of US trade that could be impossible to correct.  If this applies also to the UK, then we are in worse trouble than we think.

Again, in this we are back to many of the former pirate locations.  Many of them are part of the UK network of financial centres.  Necessarily, the Democrats are very likely to make this a prime target of their campaigning, so if President Obama were re-elected this could invite more hostility to London as a financial centre.

The trade deficit debate is inextricably part of the issues raised by the relocation and outsourcing of so many jobs across US industry and commerce.  Again, the same applies both in the UK and Europe.  This is not going to go away.

We are winding up to a grim contest in the US, just at a time when Europe is in increasing disarray and in the UK the government is weak and divided.  Between them all is the hope of putting things off in the hope of some economic upturn.

Also Paul Ryan is apparently a follower of the guru Ayn Rand, whose ideas are said to lie behind much of the present debacle.  This is not good news for those who are looking for a US leadership with both clear economic and practical policies for the future.

With too many problems stacking up too quickly and other crises pending if things go wrong a US Election between an Administration of patchwork policy and opponents looking back to a non-existent past is not going to deliver the men we need.

No comments:

Post a Comment