Germany vs. America: A Contrast in Economies
Once a nation has reached the capacity to feed, clothe, shelter and guard the welfare of its citizenry within a balanced budget, it is in a prime position to use resources that are excess to meeting these needs to then make and sell things to other nations and profit from their sale.
There was a time when America did this in a big way. So big that it became the world’s largest exporter of food and many manufactured goods.
Something changed in this equation about 30 years prior to the end of the 20th century. It all had to do with human nature.
By 1980, certain assumptions that postwar economists grew up with were starting to be challenged. British economist Peter Jay made an interesting observation about tendencies within the global economic system at that point.
Delivering the fifth Copeland Memorial Address at the Great Hall, National Gallery of Victoria, Australia, on Nov. 20, 1980, Jay more than hinted at the prospect of the global economic system breaking down.
Referring to the time we had reached by the 1970s when we could no longer enjoy “things that we indeed take for granted in the 1950s and 1960s … full employment or high employment, our ability to keep price movements either stable or at least within certain fairly modest bounds,” Jay declared that “the time has come to ask ourselves whether there is not, indeed, something going profoundly wrong with the system.”
As a prime culprit for the failure of the system, in essence Peter Jay pointed to a profound tendency of human nature—greed.
Jay pointed to the time when, following the successful years of rapid reconstruction after World War ii, labor within the Anglo-Saxon nations began to price itself out of the market. “Almost everybody,” he observed, “in one way or another is in the business of, and is in a position to, post a price for his labor at a level which he specifies.”
Whether it be via trade unions, professional associations, deliberate rigging of markets, the exclusion of competition to maintain prices at artificial levels, etc., Jay maintained that if it is the case that the asking price for labor exceeds the price the market can afford to pay, unemployment will result. “If the gap between those two prices is substantial, there will be very substantial unemployment.”
To use an extreme case, take Greece for example. The onerous conditions imposed by Germany on Greece’s economy have resulted in the market being constrained to offer rewards for labor far below the expectations that Greeks have for receiving a reward in return for their work. The same applies in Spain and Portugal. The result is massively increasing unemployment in those countries.
One other major result of labor pricing itself above the market clearing price is that capital will seek other climes offering cheaper labor for the production of goods. This is what has largely destroyed America’s once thriving manufacturing industry. The repatriation of industry from America to Asia in particular—most essentially China—turned the United States into a net importer of goods almost overnight. Considering that massive God-given potential for America to not only sustain itself by exploiting its own resources, but also profit by exporting its excess of goods and services, this is a massive indictment on the American people and their leadership, especially over the past two decades.
America simply got too used to a comfortable ride home on the pig’s back and has become fat and lazy as a result, rapidly sliding down the slippery slope to national penury. On balance, the nation has simply exported its ability to produce for itself.
Such a state of affairs would be economically concerning in times of peace. It is downright dangerous in today’s climate of global disorder such as that we are presently experiencing.
The God who gave America its unmatched national blessings declares of that nation in its increasing state of decadence today, “But Jeshurun waxed fat, and kicked: thou art waxen fat, thou art grown thick, thou art covered with fatness; then he forsook God which made him, and lightly esteemed the Rock of his salvation” (Deuteronomy 32:15).
Jeshurun is another name for Israel. To understand the true import of this prophecy you need to study our book The United States and Britain in Prophecy. In fact, the term refers significantly to the Anglo-Saxon nations of today and hence, most particularly, the leading Anglo-Saxon nation on today’s world scene, the United States of America.
When one considers the state of the American economy today, having been the prime victor in a world war fought on two massive fronts—the North Atlantic and the Pacific—just 70 years ago, and compares it with today’s economic condition of the nation vanquished in the North Atlantic campaign of World War ii—Germany—the difference is stark.
Germany today has the strongest manufacturing economy on the globe. It is Europe’s prime exporting nation—the leading nation by far in a European Union which is the largest trading bloc on the planet. Its national exports rank second only to China in scope.
How has Germany achieved this?
It’s simple. As a nation the German people have simply adhered to those same principles which made America—now dropped from top to fourth on the list of exporting countries directly under Germany—a once great nation.
Don Lee reported recently in the Los Angeles Times:
Germany, with its manufacturing base and export prowess, is the America of yesteryear, an economic power unlike any of its European neighbors. As the world’s fourth-largest economy, it has thrived on principles that the United States seems to have gradually lost.
It has tightly managed its budget and adopted reforms …. And few countries can match Germany’s capabilities for producing and exporting machinery and other equipment, or its infrastructure for research, apprenticeships and financing that support manufacturing.
Having contained its labor costs to within a level that the market can afford to pay, Germany has not only regenerated its postwar industrial economy largely from scratch following World War ii, it has protected its resultant huge manufacturing base while America shipped its own capacity for industry largely offshore. German industry has become a model for the rest of the world.
Lee makes a deeply concerning summation of the comparison between the America and Germany of today: “Germany’s economy looks like that of the U.S. a generation ago” (ibid).
To protect an industrial powerhouse such as Germany has become needs a strong defensive posture. Already Germany manufactures a wide range of armaments for export. It would take little effort for its industrialists to channel their energy into arming the nation to the teeth in response to any rising aggression from an enemy nation. Prophecy shows that Iran’s continued saber rattling will be the catalyst for this. The trouble is that history shows that when the German nation sets out to deal with any perceived enemy, it does not know when to stop.
As Peter Jay said of the world economy over 30 years ago, “Something’s wrong with the system.” Herbert Armstrong warned that when the global economic system failed, that would catalyze the rise of a powerful military machine in Europe, just as it did fully 70 years ago—with devastating results!
Is history bound to repeat itself?
Find out for yourself by reading our booklet Daniel Unlocks Revelation.