The most recent survey of the world’s most competitive economies shows that the United States has slipped even further in the rankings. The U.S. tumbled this year to the number five spot after holding the number one spot only three years ago.
The survey came from the World Economic Forum, who has been conducting the survey for over 30 years. Switzerland took the top spot, with the survey touting the country’s strong performance in innovation, and even-handed regulation, among other strengths. Singapore, Sweden and Finland occupied the next three spots, with the United States rounding out the top five.
The United States’ ranking reflected the country’s “productivity, highly sophisticated and innovative companies, excellent universities and flexible labor market.” But the survey also cited concerns about “escalating weaknesses” in our country, including a lack of faith in political leaders and corporate ethics along with rising government debt.
The concerns about a lack of faith in political leaders and corporate ethics really stick out as signs of a deeper problem in the U.S. The condition of our government debt is largely a result of these two things. The unethical actions of financial companies led to the financial crisis that brought on the Great Recession, and the Great Recession has been responsible for the need to take on much of the debt the country is now burdened with. Our lawmakers’ concessions to the financial industry (where much of their campaign money comes from) laid the path for the kind of unethical behavior that took place.
Our lawmakers have also been ineffective in curbing the flow of jobs out of this country. While most Americans oppose NAFTA-like free trade agreements, and recognize the fact that they destroy jobs here, most of our politicians tend to support these very same agreements. This week for instance, the eighth round of meetings for the Trans-Pacific Partnership is taking place in Chicago. If this deal were to come to fruition it would mean even more American jobs sent overseas to countries like Vietnam and Malaysia.
With these kinds of actions, it is no wonder the public has lost faith in their elected officials. These kinds of deals could easily lead to the loss of some of the positive factors the survey saw, especially our innovative companies. Without major changes, the U.S. could easily continue to fall down the rankings.Tags: Bing, money