Influence Of American Imperialism

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Courtney Hamby HIS 122 N2 The Dangerous Precipice Today as the USA continues to function as the world's kindly “Dutch Uncle” dispensing advice, food, weapons and funds, it sits in a comparable position as England at the end of the 19th century and early in 20th century. America certainly is not able to follow the economic theory and policies of mercantilism that was influential in Europe from the 16th to 18th century which called for government government regulation of a nation's economy in order to increase its power at the expense of rival nations. The wealth of a nation depended primarily on the possession of precious metals such as gold and silver. This type of system cannot be maintained forever, because the global economy would…show more content…
Hollis) lead to an economic domination of the countries as well as economic development faster than would have happened on its own. A famous British economist, J. A. Hobson and following him, Lenin, attributed these colonial expansions of these years to new economic forces at work in the most industrialized nations of western and central Europe. This economic explanation of the urge to imperialism is usually taken to mean that the basic motives were also the basest motives and that, whatever political, religious, or more idealistic excuses might be made, the real impulse was always one of capitalistic greed for raw materials, advantageous markets, good investments, and fresh fields of exploitation. The argument or what Hobson called “the economic taproot of imperialism” was excessive capital in search of investment, and that this excessive capital came from over saving made possible by the unequal distribution of wealth. (The New Imperialism/The Latin Library, Thompson) The remedy, he maintained, was internal social reform and a more equal distribution of wealth. (New Imperialism Lecture Notes, J. Hollis & Western Heritage, pg 828). Meanwhile, Lenin and other Marxists believed imperialism resulted in the demise of capitalism. As wealth concentrates in fewer hands, the ability for investment at home is reduced resulting in foreign investments and exploit weaker nations. As time passed however, both Hobson's and Lenin's fears were proved groundless. The Europeans invested more in the new world nations and that many of their colonies were fundamentally economically useless. However, in a few cases there were some economic advantages to some of the colonies. The British got gold, copper, and rare minerals from South Africa. The Belgians made efforts to exploit the mineral resources of the Congo, but there was no doubt that most of the new colonies cost more than they
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