Feld contends that, given appropriate leadership in some EU member states, more and more citizens may begin to realize the advantages that flow from an effective combined effort, including a common currency capable of bringing extensive economic and social benefits to the EU population. As Feld maintains, the shape of future developments will depend on the number of added EU members and their economic and sociological histories. A work of value to students and researchers involved with the political and economic integration of Europe.
"The election happened," remembers Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, then deputy secretary of the Department of Energy. "And then there was radio silence." Across all departments, similar stories were playing out: Trump appointees were few and far between; those that did show up were shockingly uninformed about the functions of their new workplace. Some even threw away the briefing books that had been prepared for them.
Michael Lewis’s brilliant narrative takes us into the engine rooms of a government under attack by its own leaders. In Agriculture the funding of vital programs like food stamps and school lunches is being slashed. The Commerce Department may not have enough staff to conduct the 2020 Census properly. Over at Energy, where international nuclear risk is managed, it’s not clear there will be enough inspectors to track and locate black market uranium before terrorists do.
Willful ignorance plays a role in these looming disasters. If your ambition is to maximize short-term gains without regard to the long-term cost, you are better off not knowing those costs. If you want to preserve your personal immunity to the hard problems, it’s better never to really understand those problems. There is upside to ignorance, and downside to knowledge. Knowledge makes life messier. It makes it a bit more difficult for a person who wishes to shrink the world to a worldview.
If there are dangerous fools in this book, there are also heroes, unsung, of course. They are the linchpins of the system—those public servants whose knowledge, dedication, and proactivity keep the machinery running. Michael Lewis finds them, and he asks them what keeps them up at night.
This monograph is comprised of 15 chapters and opens with an analysis of clusters of variables that form linked patterns within each international region, paying particular attention to the developmental issues that appear to be posed in the various regions of world politics. The following chapters focus on social-psychological factors in regional politics; regional patterns of economic cooperation; political change in regional systems; patterns of transregional relations; and interactions between regional organizations in various parts of the world and the global system that may affect either the operation of the latter or influence actions and functions of the former. The final chapter examines the problems and pitfalls of regional integration theories, along with their inability to "scientifically" predict the pathways of regional development.
This text is designed to assist students, professionals, and the general public interested in international relations.