Globalization is not a new concept; globalization has to some degree existed in the earliest of cultures through diffusion and trade. However, in the past 500-600 years globalization has taken off and is a force that is changing our world for better or worse. Some would say globalization is good for all people. That eventually the whole world will experience economic stability. Others say it is moving out of control and leaving many behind in economic despair. Below are some beliefs of both sides of the globalization debate.
The Pro-globalization Stance
- Globalization is logical expression of capitalism
- All nations will benefit through the increasing wealth from the trickledown effect
- Every country/region should seek its economic niche
- Committed advocates believe sweatshops are good as the alternatives are worse
- Strongly support multinational organizations
What are some problems with this stance? Not all countries or cultures want to practice capitalism, and that’s ok. The trickledown effect doesn’t always happen or work. Just because there are worse alternatives to sweatshops that doesn’t mean it’s a suitable option to expand progress. No country or corporation should get rich by sacrificing their citizens.
Critics of Globalization
- It is not a natural process but an economic policy promoted by core countries
- Creates greater inequalities
- Promotes free-market, export-oriented economies
- Free-market economic model is not the one that today’s developed countries used for their own development
- Promotes a bubble economy (a speculatively inflated economy that cannot be sustained)
Globalization does seem natural. Most people and groups want goods and they want to know what’s going on outside their own little world. It is promoted by core countries but only as a result of the natural desire for more, and not just money or goods but also knowledge and ideas. Free market economies may not have been used for early development of core countries but it did lend to a more rapid growth. Promotes a bubble economy? Not necessarily, but it does lend itself to greed which can inflate economies as governments and corporations fulfill their desires for more.
A Middle Position?
- Those in the middle position advocate:
- Strong, efficient governments
- Strengthened and reformed international institutions
- Globalized networks of environmental, labor and human rights groups
- Both pro and antiglobalization stances may be exaggerated
What do I think? I take a middle position. I think globalization can be good…but like all things…in moderation. When used for greed it can be a nightmare for developing worlds and bring down economies of strong, developed countries.