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Globalization Essay

948 words - 4 pages

Whether globalization is a force of good or evil has become a highly contested issue throughout the world. The proliferation of economic globalization has been advocated for with the claim that a greater socioeconomic integration and collaboration among countries will increase the living standards of both the rich and the poor. However, as Stiglitz indicates in the book Making Globalization Work, while it is true that globalization has enormous potential to make the world a better place, what is problematic is the amalgam between politics and economics that has shaped globalization resulting many losers and few winners. This paper will aim to show that on the one hand economic and corporate globalization are not the great evil portrayed by Wayne Ellwood in The No-Nonsense Guide to Gobalization, but neither can globalization and free trade be equated with increased living standards for all. Instead, the potential of globalization must be acknowledged, though one must take into account the negative impact it has had on the world and look for ways in which it can be improved as argued by Joseph Stiglitz.
On the one hand, Philippe Legrain claims in the book Open World: The Truth About Globalization that globalization is not just about the increased ease of transportation of resources and capital, but rather about increasing knowledge and technology, lowering costs, increasing trade, and bringing new opportunities and jobs to both the developed and developing world. Nevertheless, with the United States as the hegemonic power of the past century, it has often implicated what Stiglitz calls American Unilateralism, which claims to be spreading ideas of democracy and the American Dream, while imposing policies that undermine it. The United States has created a culture that claims that through free markets, deregulation, and limited role of government everyone can achieve wealth. In reality, they are promoting material wealth as the ultimate goal of society. For globalization to be a positive force, it must acknowledge that economic wealth although important, is not the only aspect to be considered when measuring poverty and living standards.
Ellwood argues that globalization almost always moves from an innocent process of cultural exchange to “a scramble of wealth and power”. For modern society, this began with the rise of Regan in the US and Thatcher in England, they advocated for reduction in the role of the state, where companies must be free to minimize costs (Ellwood). Legrain attempts to use the Tiger economies as a exemplification of how globalization also helps the poor; however, he fails to acknowledge that as a result of pressure from the IMF and the World Bank, these nations opened their financial markets resulting in a hemorrhage of funds from Asian economies, making finance a very destabilizing force (Ellwood).
An important issue with the IMF, and the World Bank is that they have been created in such way as to place...

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