This article originally appeared in the July 2011 issue of INTERNET TELEPHONY
Fear of the unknown continues to plague the minds of many in the United States today. Some live in fear of 2012, the Mayan calendar prophesies and the supposed end of the world. Although a cataclysmic event for the entire Earth is not totally out of the question (on a limited basis just ask the people in Fukushima, Japan), there is something more probably realistic that will end and that is the end of a way of life.
Americans of the current and most recent generation have lived in a bubble of being the leader of the world as a superpower their entire lives and do not know what it is like to live any other way. Most have forgotten what it took to get the country to where it is as if it is all just boring history now. What the investment was back then is what we live off of now. We have reached a peak, and it is time to invest again. We should not be afraid of action, only inaction. To know the future just study the past. What investments were made by countries over the course of numerous years to create true world leaders?
There are four main components that apply to all great nations.
1. Currency – the strength and acceptance of a nation’s currency in the world gives that country stability and power. The United States has been the reserve currency of the world for decades. This is being challenged every day and is on the brink of changing as it faces the new economic power and model of China and the Yuan.
2. Military – the size, and more so the technological capability, of a nation’s military and its ability to defend its own country as well as those of its allies and trading partners has made certain nations in history world leaders. The United Kingdom, Russia, Germany, France, Spain, Italy (the Romans) and many more countries before them have held this position in the past, with the United States currently in the lead, but soon to be challenged by China for the top spot.
3. Transportation & Utilities – an absolute essential component of any great society and nation are its transportation and utilities systems. Everything that comprises transportation including roads, waterways, rail, and airlines as well as electrical power, water and natural gas all exist to support the gross domestic product. The economic output of a nation is hinged on its ability to conduct business like a well-oiled machine.
4. Communications and Technology – having the best communications and technology infrastructure has always been a strategic differentiator. In times of war and peace a well run communications operation is paramount to success. The United States enjoyed the top spot in the world for several decades due to its first-class telephone system (the PSTN) given the size and population of the country.
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The author, Hunter Newby, is the Founder and CEO of Allied Fiber