I recently had a chance to speak at a conference where Dr. Ian Bremmer spoke after me. I was very impressed with his thought process and asked him to give me an outline of his speech to share with you for this week's Outside the Box. It's a shorter version of his powerhouse book, Every Nation for Itself: Winners and Losers in a G-Zero World. I highly recommend it.
And what, you're asking, is a "G-Zero world"? In a word, it's a leaderless world. A world in which, as Bremmer says, "Not so long ago, America, Western Europe and Japan were the world's powerhouses. Today, they're struggling to recover their dynamism…. But nor are rising powers like China, India, Brazil, Turkey, the Gulf Arabs and others ready to take up the slack…. If not the West, the rest, or the institutions where they come together, who will lead? The answer is, no one."
And that means the world's big problems won't get addressed as effectively as they should, as long as the leadership vacuum persists. Talk about Muddling Through!
This book by Bremmer is going to make a difference, and I'm not the only one who thinks so –
"Ian Bremmer combines shrewd analysis with colorful storytelling to reveal the risks and opportunities in a world without leadership. This is a fascinating and important book." –FAREED ZAKARIA
"Every Nation for Itself is a provocative and important book about what comes next. Ian Bremmer has again turned conventional wisdom on its head." –NOURIEL ROUBINI
Tonight I am in Chicago, where I spoke at the CFA conference this morning. It went well. I will try to get a link for you later. It hasn't been all work, either. David Rosenberg, Barry Ritholtz, and I all had dinner gigs, but we met up at the bar and just hung out for about three hours. Got to love O'Doul's NA beer. Not quite the same as a good chardonnay but healthier for me.
I will hit the send button as I have to get up for a breakfast meeting with Sam Zell. We have never met and I am looking forward to it. He is quite the legend. I will give you an update on the conference next weekend. The reviews are coming in quite strong. It was interesting to see the European elections after the analysis we were given. There is so much that seems up in the air. You can almost feel the changes coming. I feel like the kid in the back of the car on a long road trip: "Are we there yet?"
Your holding out for a world that works analyst,
John Mauldin, Editor
Outside the BoxJohnMauldin@2000wave.com
Every Nation for Itself: Winners and Losers in a G-Zero World
One beautiful fall evening in October 2011, I gave a speech on international politics to a group of Canadian business executives in Napa Valley, California. As part of the introduction, I included a few thoughts on the G20, the forum in which 19 countries plus the European Union bargain over solutions to pressing international problems. I made my case for why I believe the G20 is a dysfunctional institution that will create as many problems as it solves. The speech complete, I joined members of the audience for dinner on a beautiful terrace overlooking a vineyard. Our host, spotting an opportunity for lively conversation, seated me next to a distinguished looking gentleman I'd never met—former Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin. This is the man who created the G20.
As Canada's finance minister (1993-2002), then prime minister (2003-2006), Martin warned that Western dominance of international financial institutions couldn't last and that the world needed a new bargaining table, one that welcomed leading emerging powers as full partners. Martin's argument fell on deaf ears in America, Europe, and Japan—until the 2008 financial crisis made his point for him.
To Read More CLICK HERE