My comments reflect changes in U.S. policy since 9/11 and are organized around two topics that are closely related politically, though analytically distinct. One is American primacy, and the other is Anti-Americanism.
American primacy consists of three dimensions: economic, military, and political. Individually they describe different types of power. Collectively they refer to American primacy.
In the 1990s, the American economy could do no wrong. Only in the last four years has it become apparent that not everything is going well. The U.S. has experienced the sharpest increase in unemployment since 1973–75, and the most sustained loss in jobs since Herbert Hoover. We appear to be at the beginning of what parts of Europe have coped with for the last decade—jobless growth. The number of long-term unemployed has increased to two million. And we have no reliable figures to track those who have left the labor market altogether, and those who are no longer counted as belonging to the ranks of the unemployed. Early in 2004, many economists estimated that this unreported number would add another 2 percent to the official unemployment statistic of
5.6 percent. If you add a significant portion of the two million who are incarcerated, a number unparalleled in the advanced industrial world, you come to an unemployment rate that is quite comparable to the European double-digit figures.