The article discusses the idea of US hegemony and its potential perils. The United States became a hegemonic power after entering World War II at the right time when the world’s dominant powers were destroyed, and it created systems and organizations to ensure its control. The US dollar became the world’s default currency, and it could print dollars to fund its wars and other initiatives. The Great Society Program aimed to eradicate poverty and racial injustice. The US also benefited from its role in the Ukraine war, which helped get rid of two of its biggest rivals: Russia and the European Union.
Now, Silicon Valley start-ups are investing in military technology, with US venture capital firms approving over 200 defense and space deals worth almost $17 billion in the first five months of 2023. US venture investment in defense start-ups has grown from under $16 billion in 2019 to $33 billion in 2022, and investors pumped a record $14.5 billion into these start-ups in Q1 2023.
However, some worry about the potential consequences of US hegemony, including the fear of a populist revolution targeting wealth seen as too large, undeserved, or unproductive. The number of billionaires and their wealth worldwide has risen sharply in the past two decades, with billionaires owning more financial assets than millionaires.
Governments have been pouring money into their economies since 2000, fueling the financial market rally, which has largely benefited billionaires. The article argues that this wealth concentration creates disparity and could have a negative impact on the stability of the economy and social justice. The article asks whether the US can save itself from itself and the potential consequences of unchecked expansion.