Welcome to the Great Convergence -- The Developing World is Converging to Developed Country GDP Per Capita Levels -- The Alternative Would Be Worse(1)
This is an election season, so all hope of intelligent policy discourse has been abandoned in favor of the partisan soundbite. One side, uniquely brilliant, will magically solve our nation's problems (all caused, of course, by the incompetent opposing candidate/party). An example is Professor Niall Ferguson's recent article "Hit The Road, Barack":
"The failures of leadership on economic and fiscal policy over the past four years have had geopolitical consequences. The World Bank expects the U.S. to grow by just 2 percent in 2012. China will grow four times faster than that; ... By 2017, the International Monetary Fund predicts, the GDP of China will overtake that of the United States.(2)"
Professor Ferguson ascribes China's growing, at a rate four times faster than the US, to a "failure of leadership" by the Obama administration. Clearly, a case of Romnesia (the inability to remember facts which ruin the Romney narrative). Under President George W. Bush (Bush II), China's economy grew over five times faster than that of the U.S. (Source: World Bank; China's real GDP growth rate for 2001-2008 was 10.7 percent vs 2.0 percent for the U.S.). In fact, China's out-performance of the U.S. over the past 30 years has been bipartisan (see Chart 1).