Essay: Protect & Enable America, U.S. Foreign Policy Introduction
Introduction: Part 1
By James A. George, American Political System Essay
Premise: The U.S. Government has three primary purposes: 1) Protect, 2) Enable, and 3) Backup. This essay focuses on the role of foreign policy and the associated mechanisms in government in protecting and enabling America in the context of U.S. Constitution-defined responsibilities.
In one definition of “foreign policy,”[i] the discussion begins by describing it as a means for interacting with other nations and entities in the world. I propose that a better place to start is within the context of the nation with focus on how it contributes to national security and enabling economic development. Foreign policy is a foundation for interacting with others in the world: 1) allies, 2) enemies, 3) other developing entities for which classification is to be determined or influenced.
The notion of foreign policy is highly complex in part because 1) it is the product of legacy national behavior, 2) it is dynamic in the short term influenced by events on the ground throughout the world, 3) it is based upon the notion of “strategic interest,” 4) it is managed and directed in the short term by individuals with short incumbencies, and 5) it is enabled by professionals inside the U.S. State Department, U.S. Department of Defense, and executive apparatus of National Security all enveloped by the three branches of the U.S. Government.
“American interests are enduring. They are:
••The security of the United States, its citizens, and U.S. allies and partners;
••A strong, innovative, and growing U.S. economy in an open international economic system that promotes opportunity and prosperity;
••Respect for universal values at home and around the world; and
••An international order advanced by U.S. leadership that promotes peace, security, and opportunity through stronger cooperation to meet global challenges.[ii]”
“Globalization” has been with the nation since its founding. Success as a nation is based on its ability to collaborate with allies and partners in a global context. One difference today is that citizens are experiencing the limits of Earth’s resources to sustain the global population. That reality is input into our own planning and influences economic strategy for the nation.
While the current statement of American interests contains the term “growing U.S. economy,” and “open international economic system” and recognizes that everyone in the world shares that pursuit, in this essay, I want to focus on the notion of economic growth.
Main idea: Sustainability: optimal economic performance versus growth
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