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“The Accidental Superpower” (Superpower) is a surprisingly interesting and powerful analysis about the geopolitical state of the world. The author, Peter Zeihan, uses regional histories, geographic topographies, demographic trends, and economic data to make predictions about the conditions of specific countries between 2015 and 2030. The big winners are Mexico and the United States. The big losers are Russia and China. However, its Zeihan’s culmination of the data that makes his hypotheses so compelling.
Zeihan, who also expertly reads the book, does not stray far from the data when making predictions about the world’s future. “Superpower” opens with the author discussing his love and obsession with maps. Zeihan suggest that a county’s financial and military success can be strongly correlated to its native topography. The author posits that the United States is the supreme superpower due to its numerous internal rivers that result in the cheap transport of goods, large costal oceans that provide a natural defensive border from hostile nations, and fertile farmlands that can feed the masses. No other country or superpower comes close to having the topographical advantages inherent to the United States.
Although Zeihan predicts the United States will continue its dominant superpower status for the foreseeable future, there will be bumps along the way as the country moves toward a more isolationist political policy. The shift toward isolationism is in part a result of achieving energy independence through increased petroleum production due to the Shale revolution. Simply put, the United States will have minimum incentive to protect oceanic trading corridors when energy independence is achieved. This sets the occasion for global disorder through regional conflicts and wars as the United States loses interest in policing water corridors across the world.
Readers of nonfiction and geopolitics will very much enjoy “Superpower”. I provided a very small taste of what this powerful and interesting book has to offer readers.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
First half is really good. The analysis of the geopolitical present and predicted future using geography logistics and demography are elements I have not thought of before. Helps me see more ingredients that contribute to the whole geoP picture. But the smoking gun that implies that this book may be propaganda is that there is never any explanation, let alone even a mention of monetary policy or what central banks role is or will be. I also sensed subtle manipulative writing techniques. Kind of a bait and switch technique to possibly get one to believe things that they normally wouldn't. It seems like the first and last halves were written by two different people. The first had a more matter of fact tone and didn't seem manipulative. The last is where I picked up the manipulative techniques and it had an "US eminent domain" tone. Obviously written by a very intelligent person(s).
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Highly interesting, intelligent and nonconformist view on the geopolitical and economic developments ahead of us. Well worth listening to!