A Future Perfect is the first comprehensive examination of the most important revolution of our time—globalization—and how it will continue to change our lives. Do businesses benefit from going global? Are we creating winner-take-all societies? Will globalization seal the triumph of junk culture? What will happen to individual careers? Gathering evidence worldwide, from the shantytowns of São Paolo to the boardrooms of General Electric, from the troubled Russia-Estonia border to the booming San Fernando Valley sex industry, John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge deliver an illuminating tour of the global economy and a fascinating assessment of its potential impact.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of Business & Economics eBook: A Future Perfect: The Challenge and Promise of Globalization|
|Release Date: 12-10-2008|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Random House, Inc.|
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|Parent title||A Future Perfect:...|
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A Future Perfect: The Challenge and Promise of Globalization
The Fall and Rise of Globalization
In March 1906, a twenty-two-year-old Englishman who was to become one of the titans of the twentieth century took his first foreign holiday unencumbered by his parents. The trip was spent largely in Italy, a country whose food he praised but whose youth he regarded, perhaps hypocritically, as “physically repulsive.” For the young traveler, the journey was a revelation of the joys of globalization. He needed no passport to visit foreign countries, and his gold sovereigns were universally convertible into local currencies at fixed rates of exchange. He found that the world was knit together by railways and steamships and that he could find comfortable hotels wherever he wanted to stay and post offices whenever he wanted to get a message back home.
At the time, Great Britain occupied much the same position in the world that the United States occupies today: that of commercial leviathan, military giant, and cultural arbiter. British goods dominated the world’s markets. British money irrigated the world’s businesses. British military might protected the world’s trading routes. British culture was so powerful that foreigners even took to playing that most idiosyncratic of games, cricket. And most of the world accepted the British gospel of free trade and globalization.
There was no sterner defender of this creed than the young traveler, John Maynard Keynes, one of the most gilded members of one of the most gilded generations in English history. The son of a noted university administrator, he had won scholarships first to Eton and then to King’s College, Cambridge. He had tried, rather precoci