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I received my prize copy of The World is Flat yesterday (thanks again, MT). As I started reading the book this morning, I remembered having read another of Friedman's books, From Beirut to Jerusalem, about fifteen years ago. Although that book is now somewhat dated in light of the dynamic nature of the Middle East, it really gives a unique insight into the world of middle east politics. You should definitely check it out!

Mark's picture

Think of this: the most terrible war in America happened with the capitals of Richmond and Washington only 90 miles apart. It defined the 19th century for America.

The 21st century may well be defined (conflict-wise) by the two "capitals" in the middle east only 160 miles apart.

Mark

Anonymous's picture

I just ordered my copy of the book online and I was thinking that you guys ought to have book purchase links on the forums to pick up a couple of bucks from the referral.

Mark's picture

There's a COLOSSAL "OOPS/AHA!" for us. We loved having the links on the other site, but never migrated them. I don't know what the bulletin board software will allow Mike to do, but I'll ask him.

Thanks for the GREAT suggestion!

Mark

RayShan's picture

I just started listening to the audio book version, and it's long overdue. The book is absolutely amazing!

jpb's picture

I just finished this book while traveling in China. I downloaded the audio book to my ipod and listened to it while traveling from factory to factory. It was strange and exciting to learn from the book while seeing some of the effects of the flat world first hand.
one of the best reads in a while. thanks for the recommendation.

Justin's picture

Fantastic book! I've enjoyed all of it so far. About 1/4 of the way through it so far and it has been a cognitive pleasure thinking of the different flatteners and those to come.

I'm thinking of getting that quote about the gazelle and the lion put on my wall.

A must read in my book.

Gareth's picture

Hi all

Can i just confim that [url=http://www.amazon.co.uk/World-Flat-Globalized-Twenty-first-Century/dp/01... is the book in question please.

Also is this the book one of your fine podcasts mention the McDonlads that when ordering your talking to someone some distance away. Driving to work at the time so was unable to note it down.

Thanks
Gareth

Justin's picture

Hrmm, I'm not sure, because the one I am reading is:

The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century

http://www.amazon.co.uk/World-Flat-History-Twenty-First-Century/dp/03742...

The one you have a link to seems like a newer work perhaps? Or I could be completely wrong. Perhaps it is the same book in paperback and titled for a different market or something along those lines.

Regardless, it is probably still a fantastic read.

Gareth's picture

[quote="Justin"]Perhaps it is the same book in paperback and titled for a different market or something along those lines.[/quote]

Hi Justin, thanks for the reply.

I've been looking around at this and found [url=http://www.amazon.co.uk/World-Flat-History-Twenty-First-Century/dp/03742..., does this look similar to the version you are reading?

Thanks
Gareth

Mark's picture

There is a newer, second edition, in which Friedman expands upon his thoughts on education and a couple of other areas. The first edition is FINE, and since in paperback, a better value.

Mark

pneuhardt's picture

I picked up the book in the Chicago airport on Thursday on my way to Idaho to visit my father. I finished it last night as the plane was on it's final approach in New Hampshire on the trip home. I will start it again on the plane to Nashville in the morning because I want to read it again to see what I missed the first time. (Folks, if you travel a lot for God's sake bring books on the plane with you!).

And after a trip to amazon.com a few minutes ago, I now have either all or part of my Christmas shopping done for my boss, her boss, his boss, my father the salesman, my sister the Manhattan attorney, my mother the retired journalist and MAJOR Friedman fan, and finally my girlfriend the small business owner. If my kids were teenagers and not just 9 and 11, I would get it for them too.

I can't really afford to be buying books for my boss' boss' boss, but I like the guy and some of the stuff he has been saying since I joined the company 4 months ago resonates with what Friendman has said in that book. It's part suck-up (not a bad thing if done right) and part "Hey man, here are some ideas that are similar to yours and maybe some things you didn't think of yet." I'm looking at it as an investment in my career. And yes, according to his admin, who checked with his wife, he doesn't have the book yet. Always check with the admin. It's amazing what they either know or can find out and are willing to share.

I also recommend "Longitudes And Attitudes: Exploring The World After September 11" by Friedman. It is a collection of selected Friedman columns before and after the terrorist attack. It is not only a fascinating read from a guy who has been there on the ground in the Middle East, but it offers some very interesting glimpses in to the moods in the area and dovetails with some of the things he has said in "The World Is Flat."

Want to be tempted? From his column of June 12, 2002: "Quick quiz: Which Muslim Middle East country held held spontaneous candelight vigils in sympath with Americans after September 11? Kuwait? No. Saudi Arabia? No. Iran? Yes." The rest of the column speaks not of the leaders of Iran, but of the mood of the people there and how the leaders there are beginning to listen.

He wrote that column in a hotel room in Tehran. This guys knows of which he speaks, and he has three Pulitzer Prizes to prove it, including one for the columns in that book.

rthibode's picture

Hi folks,

Fans of The World is Flat (I'm STILL waiting for my Amazon order!) may like to check out his lectures. I found these from the wikipedia entry about the book.

http://www.cceia.org/resources/audio/data/000004
http://mitworld.mit.edu/video/266/

debbie_mcclure's picture

Thanks for the MIT link. Made my day! I loved the book when it came out and had an 8th grade daughter who loved science. I made her listen to the portions on girls and science. She now is looking into focussing on science for her college degree.

jeffgagne's picture

All:

Please resist the urge to jump on the Flat bandwagon! This is a very complex problem and dererves far more critical thinking than what Friedman has written here.

For example, Atlantic Monthly published a response to Friedman's thesis, titled, "The World is Spikey," and can be found at:

http://www.creativeclass.org/acrobat/TheWorldIsSpiky.pdf

terrih's picture

Thanks for the recommendation... I blogged on this book here: [url]http://sensawunda.wordpress.com/2007/05/06/hello-flat-world/[/url].

Please note my blog has a certain focus, and my comments are limited to that focus.

As for not jumping on the "Flat" bandwagon... you gotta read the book first before you can truly participate in debate. It's a heckuva read in any case.

--Terri

jeffgagne's picture

[quote="terrih"]Thanks for the recommendation... I blogged on this book here: [url]http://sensawunda.wordpress.com/2007/05/06/hello-flat-world/[/url].

Please note my blog has a certain focus, and my comments are limited to that focus.

As for not jumping on the "Flat" bandwagon... you gotta read the book first before you can truly participate in debate. It's a heckuva read in any case.

--Terri[/quote]

Hey Terri,

I have the book and will be honest and say I read maybe 75% of it and later attended a book discussion around it. What I am saying is that for the world to be truly flat all else must also be equal or at least balance and they don't! A great example is the recent issues with Chinese food where the advancement of the Chinese economy will eventually hit a point where it's inattention to safety and the environment and reverse. The idea that a kid, no matter how well educated in India, has even a 30% of the opportunity a kid educated in the US has, doesn't know India outside of Banglagore. Given women are excluded from any meaningful participation is a large portion of the middle east and you have a world that is FAR FAR from flat. IMHO!

wendii's picture

Jeff,

The participation of women is an issue in every culture, not just those in the middle east. In fact, progress in the business world in the US is going backwards:

http://www.catalyst.org/pressroom/press_releases/2006_Census_Release.pdf

Turns out the world is flat: If you are female you have less opportunity, less pay and less prospects wherever you live.

I'll stop now, before I get on the soap box!

Wendii

bflynn's picture

The world being flat isn't meant to apply to individuals. There will always be some kind of inequity between two individuals.

The book is talking about the flattening of the business world and even there, flat does not imply complete equality. Local conditions, such as culture, customs, wage levels, rule of law, etc will always dictate advantages to certain regions, even within a country.

Perhaps "The World is Being Flattened" didn't have the same ring to it.

Brian

terrih's picture

Ah, see, if you had finished the book you would have gotten to the chapter titled "The World is NOT Flat" where he writes about those very inequities holding back the flattening of the world.

He also writes about things that could stop and even reverse flattening, such as further terrorist attacks on the scale of 9/11.

--Terri

jeffgagne's picture

[quote="terrih"]Ah, see, if you had finished the book you would have gotten to the chapter titled "The World is NOT Flat" where he writes about those very inequities holding back the flattening of the world.

He also writes about things that could stop and even reverse flattening, such as further terrorist attacks on the scale of 9/11.

--Terri[/quote]

Well..that's comforting. I'm supposed to read a book called "The World is Flat" only to wait until the end to be told, "Whoa, wait a minute, it's really not and here's why..." where tjhe author states all the things I've been thinking as I read the book? Blah... No thanks. Besides, isn't that chapter only in the second edition after people pointed out these issues?

terrih's picture

[quote]Besides, isn't that chapter only in the second edition after people pointed out these issues?[/quote]

No.

Look, if you don't wanna read it, don't read it, K? :?

Meanwhile, is there anyone out there who HAS read it who would like to discuss it?

Terri

Mark's picture

Terri-

Sure, I will! It's the best business book of the past 5 years, in my opinion, as I have said a hundred times, and every time (over a hundred) I have given the book away as a gift.

Jeff - no offense, but sounds like you oughta read it. Reflexiveness isn't warranted on this one.

Mark

jeffgagne's picture

[quote="terrih"]

Look, if you don't wanna read it, don't read it, K? :?

Meanwhile, is there anyone out there who HAS read it who would like to discuss it?

Terri[/quote]

Yikes! Sorry if my sarcastic tone upset you.

Don't you think it's relevant to discuss why someone stopped reading the book? If you think I'm wrong tell me how don't simply say " go read the book". Are you truly looking to explore the issues the book raises or just talk about how great the book is. I don't need to read the book to speak to international competitiveness and business. It's what I do.

Besides, don't you think it's valid, for the purposes of discussion, point out issues I had that moved me to stop reading it? In my opinion I found the book to be too simplistic, and for me, simply a regurgitation, compilation, and packaging, of what different studies have been saying for years.

I was an international relations/history major before I switched to business and the things I read were much, if not exactly, the things that were said when the airplane was invented, or the phone, the TV, the modem, the internet, etc., etc., etc. Yes, the world is getting smaller, but just as NAFTA hasn't change Mexico, it's not getting much flatter. in my view we're leveling not flattening.

For example China! As long as China has a culture where a company thinks they can force a 1000 kids as slaves making bricks, produces poisoned pet food and toothpaste, or limits access by its citizens and researchers access to the internet, they will be an also ran. Never mind that the competitive advantage in workforce labor is at the expense of their environment where people wear masks in a nation with 16 of the 20 most polluted cities in the world. China is where it is today because the world is not flat but it is leveling the playing field by allowing cheap labor in unsafe conditions with little or no regulation or enforcement on pollution controls.

Look at the craziness of what's going on in Dubai. Think Gary IN, in 20 years. What about Venezuela? Build here, invest, then we'll take it over and nationalize it.

All I'm saying is that to point to Sep 11th or terrorism is also far too simplistic and easy when viewing the world's lack of flattening. I simply think it's all far more complicated than the lens this book seemed to be using.

So, given that I will grab the book and read the rest of it on my flight to Ireland later this week. Maybe you're both are right and my opinion of the book will change!

-Jeff

terrih's picture

Mark - LOL, I knew you would!!

Jeff - I wouldn't call it upset; how about frustrated? :wink:

Sure we can discuss why you stopped reading... and, tone is important to a discussion. I was only trying to persuade you that some of your concerns had been addressed in a section you didn't read.

[quote]All I'm saying is that to point to Sep 11th or terrorism is also far too simplistic and easy when viewing the world's lack of flattening.[/quote]

When I pointed to those, I used the phrase "such as" to imply there's more in the chapter than those two things.

This is what makes it hard to discuss a book with someone who hasn't finished it... I try to tell you what it says, but I can't tell you ALL it says in a forum post. And my points get slapped down anyway. So I realized that I'm not so good at explaining what the book says and I'd be better off discussing it with someone who already knows what it says.

I'm glad you've decided to read it! It does sound like you could bring something to the discussion. I have been participating in the flattening without being conscious of how revolutionary it is. Ten years ago I just thought it was kind of cool that, as an aspiring fiction writer, I could get short story critiques from writers in Scotland and Australia.

I appreciate your worldwide perspective and I'm also trying to just see how the flattening (however flat it really is) will impact my employment. Will my job function get outsourced? Hmmm... Could I create a company doing what I'm doing as an employee and get other companies to outsource to me?

Interestingly, I've heard of one airline that WAS outsourcing but has decided to bring their tech pubs inhouse. There are advantages and disadvantages.

Enough from me... I'd better go do some of the stuff I get paid for. :D

Terri

jeffgagne's picture

[quote]

Jeff - I wouldn't call it upset; how about frustrated? :wink:
[/quote]

Point taken!

[quote]
Interestingly, I've heard of one airline that WAS outsourcing but has decided to bring their tech pubs inhouse. There are advantages and disadvantages.
[/quote]

Yes, Dell recently moved it's customer service team back into the US from India due to a drop in customer satisfaction. The issue, more often than not, is simply cost. For example, studies have shown that a software engineer in the US, on average, produces much more efficient code with fewer bugs than their counterparts in Russia or India. However companies moved jobs there anyway with a 70% on average savings in salary. Many of these same companies found later that the savings were eaten by increased QA expenses, more frequent bug releases, and loss of customer confidence. Add to that there has been a sharp increase in professional labor costs in both Russia and India, nothing like the US, but it has made relocating some positions overseas less attractive and the upward trend is continuing. This, to me, actually is a sign of flattening and points to the fact that these issues are not isolated to the US but all nations as this evolution takes place. The very things that make other nations attractive to US businesses are being eroded by the very nature of transferring the work. The fact that it took Dell only two years to pull the operations out shows this reversal of fortune need not take decades.

[quote]
Enough from me... I'd better go do some of the stuff I get paid for.
[/quote]

I'm taking a few days off before my trip. Humm...maybe I'll sit by the pool and start reading now. :lol:

Have a good day!

thaGUma's picture

gareth justin

both books are the same; retitled for US and UK audience. I base this on the fact that the reviews are the same for both book covers.

Chris

jeffgagne's picture
cwcollin's picture

.....is in the news these days, I don't think they are close to the face of the knowledge economy that best exemplifies what "the world is flat" is talking about ( despite the fact that Friedman uses them as an example so much ). Their economy is still very rooted in "natural" resources ( labor being one of them ).

Instead, look at Ireland and Taiwan as more shining examples of how econmies can grow [b]very rapidly[/b] now that the world is flat.

ebn305's picture

I really really loved The World Is Flat and I've also just finished "The Long Tail" by Chris Anderson and would strongly recommend it to MT regulars.

It neatly picks up where Friedman left off and gives a brief update of how the flat world has gifted us with unlimited choice and reshaped the economics of scarcity.

I liked it.

jhack's picture

The World Is Flat is more than the sum of its parts. And a forum posting can’t do justice to the quantity of research it embodies nor the breadth of its ideas.

I just finished reading V3.0 and recommend you get this edition rather the already out of date earlier versions. (He points out that the world is changing fast and he is responding to ideas generated around the book. Nothing wrong with that).

Yes, many of the facts and analyses are not new. I knew about Netscape and Al Qaeda and YouTube before I read the book. I too have studied technology, economics, business, politics, etc for a long time.

What makes this book unique is the framework he assembles for these and other issues, and what they imply for how we work and how we must organize the production of goods and services.

Yes, China’s been in the news. I’ve found his analysis and framework very useful for understanding the articles I’ve been reading. An op-ed piece in the New York Times argued that this won’t be the China Century – China will not overtake the US. In short, Friedman’s analysis basically implies that this is irrelevant. What’s important is the economic reordering that will affect supply chains and how each of us does our job.

So if you manage people or processes, or if you are contributor to a process, you need to understand how production of goods and services is changing. I got a lot out of this book.

Jeff, Mexico is specifically addressed in the book. Let us know if you think his analysis of why Mexico has not benefited from NAFTA makes sense.

While I’m pro-globalization, I think Friedman is a bit starry eyed about some of this. The disruptions to people’s lives and careers can be devastating. He glosses over the downside. Some of his political agenda items, while commendable, strike me as a bit naïve.

Finally, I’m not sure what you read when the “the modem…was invented” but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t what Friedman wrote. As for the internet, no one said much when it was invented, but they’ve been saying a lot the last 15 years or so. And the internet is very very different from almost anything that came before. Only time will tell, but I’ll stick my neck out right now and say its impact on human society and productivity will be far beyond TV, cars, the airplane, and most other inventions you could list. It’s up there with fire, electricity, and agriculture.

John

jeffgagne's picture

http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/asiapcf/10/23/pip.china.pollution/index.html

Another great China story! Here we have Cancer Town where a state iron ore mine is killing the people downstream.

Again , I will say that the world is NOT flat until all countries play by the same rules and as long as China, and to some extent Mexico, abide by the same rules we do then in fact it is not flat and they will have the advantage.

Already Japanese auto manufactures, unsaddled with the American notion of pensions, are killing us price wise.

For the word to be flat, or even an even playing field, we'll need to roll back environmental protection in this country to the 1950s and worker standards of safety back to the days of Upton Sinclair.

As far as NAFTA and Mexico while I haven't looked into it, NAFTA hasn't stopped the flood of illegal immigration looking for a better life. So I suspect the few Ford Assembly plants haven't made too much of a dent there.

jhack's picture

Jeff,

Not sure what your point is. Flat doesn't mean identical. Japan is beating us with environmental protections and strong worker safety standards, so there's more to success than an Upton Sinclair model of industry.

And what is a Japanese or American car? Is a Honda made in Ohio less American than a Ford made in Mexico or a Mercedes made in Alabama?

And for the record, the US has Love Canal, Times Beach, Ringwood Mines, etc...we're not an ecological Eden.

I highly recommend you read the book.

John

US41's picture

I'll provide a contrarian viewpoint. I did not enjoy the book The World is Flat. I thought the first half was fairly obvious and common knowledge. Maybe that is because I work in IT and so jobs shipping off to India was not exactly news to me, nor was the context for it. The idea that anyone can work anywhere is pretty obvious to those of us who have been working from anywhere for over a decade.

I felt the second half of the book espoused a politically biased viewpoint that I personally did not agree with or find much validity in.

Overall, I rate The World is Flat as not really being very useful to my ability as a manager.

I am currently reading other books on the MT reading list. Most of them have been very powerful reads. But not TWIF.

garyslinger's picture

[quote="US41"]Overall, I rate The World is Flat as not really being very useful to my ability as a manager.[/quote]
Consider though that it's a book that a lot of your peers, directs, own chain of command, etc., will have read. Best to at least know what they're reading and possibly thinking as a result, no?

G.

US41's picture

[quote="garyslinger"][quote="US41"]Overall, I rate The World is Flat as not really being very useful to my ability as a manager.[/quote]
Consider though that it's a book that a lot of your peers, directs, own chain of command, etc., will have read. Best to at least know what they're reading and possibly thinking as a result, no?

G.[/quote]

I would have to say that would be the only redeeming characteristic of the book if anyone I knew had read it.

I'd have to say that while that may be a benefit, considering the time spent and the plethora of other books available, reading almost anything else on the reading list probably yields more ROI.

jhack's picture

Yes, Friedman is a liberal and a pollyanna. And he rubs you the wrong way. I found him a bit fatuous at points, too. Not to mention long winded.

I make it a point, though, not to read or recommend only those with whom I agree.

The book is about much more than "jobs shipping off to India." It is about global, realtime supply chains. Fungible labor (when historically only capital could move across borders). The transformation of Economic Comparative Advantage. Transnational/non-national political and economic organizations. Interrelationships between global economic interests and national political interests.

And the economic and personal opportunities and challenges presented by these dynamics.

Kudos to those who know all this already. Few managers are actually building realtime global production systems, and treating the entire world as their local environment.

John

US41's picture

[quote]
The book is about much more than "jobs shipping off to India." It is about global, realtime supply chains. Fungible labor (when historically only capital could move across borders). The transformation of Economic Comparative Advantage. Transnational/non-national political and economic organizations. Interrelationships between global economic interests and national political interests.

And the economic and personal opportunities and challenges presented by these dynamics. [/quote]

Like I said... jobs shipping off to India. :)

jhack's picture

Walmart's extraordinary supplier managed replenishment systems and Dell's negative working capital are strong competitive advantages that are enabled by the dynamics identified in "The World is Flat". They have nothing to do with shipping jobs to India.

:wink:

John

rwwh's picture

[quote="US41"]Like I said... jobs shipping off to India. :)[/quote]

And how to be prepared if yours goes.

jeffgagne's picture

Here is another file fine article by Mr. Friedman!

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/08/opinion/08friedman.html?em

A little backpedaling going on I see!

All I was saying more than a year ago here was that China was tied to us and there was no way China was going to be anything, the way it was going, without a strong US buying their "stuff". 

They have polluted their land, exploited their workers, censored decent, restricted freedoms, poisoned their people and many that bought their junk, all the while keeping a HUGE portion of their population in poverty, and all so they could sell us cheap goods.

Well guess what folks!  Just as I said back then, if we stop buying from them, China collapses!  They have no middle-class to speak of, their workers can't even afford to buy the cheap goods they produce!  

China, and the rest of the world, have been players in the biggest Ponzi scheme ever and Friedman was either blind to it or just ignored it to jump on the "China is great and US is loosing".  

World is Flat My - - -, it was all smoke and mirrors, and now it's time for China to pay the piper and Friedman to go find another line of work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

jhack's picture

Friedman's by no means perfect.  Nor is the current state of the economy, in the US or in China.  His thesis (admittedly he rambles a bit) is that national economies are a thing of the past, and that the economy is global and we compete on a global scale.  

China's challenges are real, yes.  How does that disprove the interconnectedness of the global economy?  

If anything, the current crisis is proof  of how supply chains weave through many countries.  If Americans buy fewer sneakers and refrigerators, that will affect economies in China, Thailand and elsewhere.  How does that deny the theses Friedman developed in "The World is Flat"?  

Jeff, you never responded to the questions posed back in October of 2007.  Those questions are still relevant. Have you read the book?  

John

 

 

JorrianGelink's picture

I partially agree with John; however, I can't fully agree because I haven't finished the book yet! (started three days ago, halfway done what coincidence this gets a post from 2007 to 2009)

When I read the book, I look at our economy today, and I do agree with John that there is not only a failure in China, but worldwide due to how effectively we are tied into the rest of the world. I'll participate more when I'm finished the book!

Anyone else have any thoughts?

Jorrian Gelink

http://www.jorrian.com

AManagerTool's picture

Jeff,

I too fail to see your point leading me to believe that you haven't read the book.  I think someone's been watching a bit too much Fox network news.

scotrail's picture

Great book and so true. But what are we doing to protect our jobs? On one hand it is fine to be efficient and have files completed overnight at a low cost but there are so many people unemployed here. let's drive to place a few hips and valleys in the landscape,re-train our people, take back those jobs, be competitive, get buy in from the government, unions, schools and industry. I am sure we went through this scenario about seven years ago and seven before that and so on. Will we never learn? Get committed to turning the economy around by reversing the trend outlined in this book. Of course we can do this! It is time for action, not rhetoric.

Another great book is "The World Without Us" a few more lessons for us.

scotrail's picture

error

jhack's picture

Scotrail,

You say:  <cite>Get committed to turning the economy around by reversing the trend outlined in this book. </cite>

I respectfully disagree.  First, it's not realistic to reverse globalization.  This is a long-term trend, going back to Marco Polo and earlier, accelerated by naval and navigational technology in the 1600's, and acheiving an entirely new level with the advent of modern network and information technology.  You can only reverse globalization if you reverse those technologies - that's certainly unlikely, and undesireable.  

Second, globalization is good.  Americans are more than capable of competing with the best.  In many ways, American history is a history of continuous transformation.  We all benefit from global trade:  bananas, textiles, manganese, oil and thousands of other products and services make our lives better.  Without globalization, we don't have these things.  

So the challenge is to compete, not to reverse.  That means being effective, innovative and efficient.  We're good at that.      

John Hack

US41's picture

It is possible to reverse globalization. Modifications to tax and tarriff policy could put a stop to that trend pretty darned fast. But it will never happen. Countries carry so much foreign debt... I'm surprised my country's credit cards have not been canceled... that tariffs cannot be implemented without retaliation and any attempt to modify tax policy to any extreme is met by powerful lobbies from creditor nations and purchasers of imports.

I do not see the current economic trends revealing anything about globalization. There is no data pointing to changes in international commerce which then tie to economic downturns or upswings. The fact that nations fall as one or rise as one has always been true. Imports and exports have always existed since villages started trading in stone age times.

I think a collapsing housing market due to inflationary prices, major rises in gas prices and changes in consumer behavior last Fall, collapsing banks due to write-offs on bad debt, and subsequent loss of consumer confidence pretty much explains everything we have seen during the last 9 months.

And I still think Friedman's book is little more than a political rant written around his amazement that we techies can use the internet and phone lines to ship jobs off to India buried in a macroeconomics 101 course. 

US41

jhack's picture

That's my point:  It will never happen.  Like it or not.   And regardless of what Thomas Friedman might write or do...

And I agree that  the recent economic trends are not due to globalization.  

Globalization is real, and it's not going away.  Our appropriate response is to be realistic, innovative, hard working, and competitive.  

John Hack

Mark's picture

... but neither is anything else but pure perfect love, unfortunately in genuinely short supply.

There are lots of first world inhabitants decrying the dangers of globalization.  They have all kinds of reasons.  But before (and since) they called it globalization, the single greatest force for lifting people in third world countries out of desperate, life-shortening poverty (seriously - you have NO idea how crippling it is) is free trade and the economic benefits of it.

 

thaGUma's picture

I have avoided reading The World is Flat because of comments that it is US-centric. The recent responses to the world economic issues shows the various goverments are more amenable to working together. I might just buy it.

I have an extra-strong rose-tint on my glasses (eBay from Mr DeLorean) and I am optimistic about the future and Globalisation as the next logical step from Industrialisation through Digitalisation and the advent of the Web. *sits back waiting for techno-bods to explain advances past the ZX-81*

Chris

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