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During the 1890s, what international developments led some American opinion leaders to believe that…?

Question by Arthur Q: During the 1890s, what international developments led some American opinion leaders to believe that…?
the US must become more active in world affairs? What domestic problems in the 1890s made foreign expansion seem like a safety valve? Describe in a few sentences each 3 religious, historical, economic, or scientific arguments voiced in favor of expansion.

Best answer:

Answer by Joseph
The 1890s in America were desperate times. Economic depression caused bank and business failures and forced millions of men and women from their jobs.

In the years leading up to the Spanish American War, the United States experienced a growth in ethnocentrism, a belief in manifest destiny and Anglo-Saxonism. It was this combination of views that provided the moral impetus allowing for the U.S. public to support the efforts to make the country into an imperial power. The ongoing debate over these views shaped American policy for years.

The Discussion:

Throughout the 19th century, Americans discussed and debated issues connected to expansion. Westward acquisitions began with the Louisiana Purchase and continued through the mid-century period with the land gained through the war with Mexico. By the Civil War, the territory that today composes the “lower 48” was owned by the United States, and our northern and southern borders were stabilized through treaty negotiations with Canada and Mexico.

From the early years of the century until the Civil War, policy debates centered on extending our North American borders. Each episode of expansion created an intellectual friction between those that supported territorial growth and those in opposition. Debate varied in their particulars, however. The purchase of the Louisiana Territory, for instance, raised important constitutional issues concerning the legality of land purchase. In the ensuing years, geographic growth would be examined in the context of moral, economic and political issues. Regardless of the historical event, an underlying belief in manifest destiny, our nation’s fate and duty to settle our North American lands coast to coast, underscored each territorial acquisition. It seems certain most Americans believed in a special manifest destiny for the nation, and this philosophical foundation enabled the United States to spread westward with confidence and moral assuredness.


Background for US expansion during the “Age of Imperialism”

Post Spanish-American War U.S. political cartoon from 1898: “Ten Thousand Miles From Tip to Tip” meaning the extension of U.S. domination (symbolized by a bald eagle) from ‘Puerto Rico’ to the Philippines. The cartoon contrasts this with a map of the smaller United States in 1798.A variety of factors coincided during this period to bring about an accelerated pace of U.S. expansion:

Wars such as the Spanish-American War that led to liberation and acquisition of former colonies of foreign states
The industry and agriculture of the United States had grown beyond its need for consumption. Powerful business and political figures such as James G. Blaine believed that foreign markets were essential to further economic growth, promoting a more aggressive foreign policy.
The prevalence of racism, notably Ernst Haeckel’s “biogenic law,” John Fiske’s conception of Anglo-Saxon racial superiority, and Josiah Strong’s call to “civilize and Christianize” – all manifestations of a growing Social Darwinism and racism in some schools of American political thought.[citation needed]
The development of Frederick Jackson Turner’s “Frontier Thesis,” which stated that the American frontier was the wellspring of its creativity and virility as a civilization. As the Western United States was gradually becoming less of a frontier and more of a part of America, many believed that overseas expansion was vital to maintaining the American spirit.
The publication of Alfred T. Mahan’s The Influence of Sea Power upon History in 1890, which advocated three factors crucial to The United States’ ascension to the position of “world power”: the construction of a canal in South America (later influencing the decision for the construction of the Panama Canal), expansion of the U.S. naval power, and the establishment of a trade/military post in the Pacific, so as to stimulate trade with China. This publication had a strong influence on the idea that a strong navy stimulated trade, and influenced policy makers such as Theodore Roosevelt and other proponents of a large navy…..Vikpedia

What do you think? Answer below!

Cool International Development Policy images

Some cool International development policy images:

Sharing Risk in a World of Dangers and Opportunities
International development policy
Image by CSIS: Center for Strategic & International Studies
The changing nature of international development has created a growing interest in the use of development finance instruments. As the availability of soft grant money decreases and acceptance of private-sector-led growth increases, development policy is shifting away from official development assistance to focus more on investment and trade. In this context, the U.S. government must use its development finance instruments more effectively. For more go to csis.org/event/sharing-risk-world-dangers-and-opportuniti…

Sharing Risk in a World of Dangers and Opportunities
International development policy
Image by CSIS: Center for Strategic & International Studies
The changing nature of international development has created a growing interest in the use of development finance instruments. As the availability of soft grant money decreases and acceptance of private-sector-led growth increases, development policy is shifting away from official development assistance to focus more on investment and trade. In this context, the U.S. government must use its development finance instruments more effectively. For more go to csis.org/event/sharing-risk-world-dangers-and-opportuniti…

Cloud Services Clarification Act Decisively Approved by Idaho Legislators

Cloud Services Clarification Act Decisively Approved by Idaho Legislators

BOISE, Idaho (PRWEB) April 10, 2013

House Bill 243, the Cloud Services Clarification Act, was decisively approved by Idaho legislators and was signed into law by Governor Otter yesterday. A critical piece of legislation for Idaho’s technology community, the approval of House Bill 243 has far reaching implications for Idaho’s tech industry.

Idaho government leaders asserted that the passage of House Bill 243 would support the growth of existing technology companies and build Idaho’s reputation as a business friendly state. “Idaho policymakers understand the importance of fostering our state’s tech industry. The passage of House Bill 243 sends a strong message to the national and international business communities that Idaho is open for business,” said Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter.

House Bill 243 clarifies that Idaho cloud based services are not taxable transactions. This legislation was drafted by members of the Idaho Technology Council (ITC) in response to last October’s ruling by the Idaho Tax Commission, which stated that cloud based services were subject to taxation. The taxation of cloud services has been an issue many states are grappling with and Idaho’s decision about taxing cloud services attracted national attention from publications like the Wall Street Journal.

As services are not taxable in Idaho, ITC members asserted that exempting cloud based services was a ruling consistent with existing Idaho Tax Code. Members of the Idaho Technology Council were also concerned that taxing cloud based services would severely harm the growth of Idaho’s budding technology sector. Because the Idaho Tax Commission audits more Idaho companies compared to companies selling cloud based services in Idaho, it placed Idaho tech companies at an inherent disadvantage. ITC members testified to legislators that the tax on cloud based services would harm Idaho’s economy by making it difficult to start new Idaho tech companies and by encouraging existing tech companies to relocate to other states.

“If you do things that increase the tax rate and difficulty of doing business for a tech business, they can move employees somewhere else, hire somewhere else, they can grow somewhere else and not grow here in the state of Idaho,” said Michael Boren, COO of Clearwater Analytics, which provides investment portfolio reporting and analytics.

Throughout the legislative process, members of the ITC asserted that the cost of losing cloud computing businesses in Idaho would be greater than the revenue that could be gained from such a policy. “Idaho tech companies employ numerous people in high-wage positions and the economic impact cannot be understated. Idaho policymakers made a smart decision to consistently apply state tax policy for services provided by Cloud Computing businesses,” said Rich Stuppy, Vice President of product strategy at Kount, which provides protection services from online fraud.

Representative Mike Moyle, Senator Jim Rice, and Senator Russ Fulcher sponsored House Bill 243 as it passed through the House and Senate. Widespread support was generated from the private sector and key stakeholders, including the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce and the Idaho Commerce. Throughout the legislative process, House Bill 243 was strongly supported by Idaho lawmakers. It passed the House and Senate Taxation Committees unanimously, passed the House by a 65-2 vote, and passed the Idaho Senate unanimously with a 34 – 0 vote.

“The legislature acted responsively and responsibly. They worked hard to understand the complexity of the issue, with both the tax implications and the technology in question,” says Matt Rissell, CEO of Tsheets. “In the end, it’s a win-win all the way around. It will ultimately open the doors to other businesses making Idaho their home.”


ABOUT THE IDAHO TECHNOLOGY COUNCIL (http://www.idahotechcouncil.org) The Idaho Technology Council’s mission is to foster the development of technology companies in Idaho, primarily in the areas of information technology, agriscience, and energy. The ITC provides a valuable forum for industry, research, educators, investors and government throughout the state. The ITC represents all aspects of technology – from research to commercialization to capitalization and talent recruitment. The integration of high technology into all aspects of the economy means that the ITC will remain entirely member-driven to deliver objective expertise broadly applicable to Idaho policy-makers. Members gain access to industry-shaping discussions and information geared to enacting results. ITC conducts regular events, including peer-to-peer forums, CEO roundtables, and opportunities to meet with civic leaders and nationally-recognized analysts. In addition, members participate in the ITC’s planning process on a multi-year road map to drive measurable results in areas such as attracting talent, increasing available funding from government and private investors, and developing and protecting intellectual property.

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ITIF Report: Feeding the Planet in a Warming World

ITIF Report: Feeding the Planet in a Warming World

Washington, DC (PRWEB) April 08, 2013

The ever widening effect of climate change on the planet requires the development of comprehensive adaptation strategies that can transform our socio-economic systems to meet this reality. Nowhere is this truer than in agriculture. The world requires game-changing innovation and next generation technologies to address the impacts of climate change, and our exploding population, on global food production.

Feeding the Planet in a Warming World, a new report by The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) and the London School of Economics (LSE), argues that nations must focus on advancing the research and development of plant and animal genetics and new agricultural practices to address this challenge. The authors recommend policy reforms designed to dramatically increase government investment in agricultural research, development and deployment, while also transforming the regulatory framework for and increasing the use of genetically modified (GM) foods.

To view the full report, visit http://www2.itif.org/2013-feeding-planet-warming-world.pdf.

“Climate change is a fact, and we need to focus public policy on adaptation strategies that can mitigate the impacts on systems such as agriculture,” says Matthew Stepp, Senior Policy Analyst with ITIF.

“Our international agricultural innovation infrastructure is grossly underfunded and too focused on near-term challenges and current technologies,” adds Val Giddings, Senior Fellow with ITIF. “The system as it is today will not deliver the agricultural technologies necessary to address the severe climate impacts we will face.”

The report calls for a tripling of global investment in agricultural research and advocates for increased use of genetic research to develop new crop varieties with improved yields and resilience. In addition, governments must strengthen international institutions to serve as renewed hubs for agricultural innovation and dissemination.

“The world requires more productive crops that have built-in means for withstanding extreme heat, cold, rain and drought, as well as better mechanisms to quickly disseminate these technologies across the globe,” notes Mark Caine, Research Fellow with the London School of Economics. “Our policy recommendations will assist in creating the robust, well-funded global innovation infrastructure that is central to achieving this goal.”

The authors also argue the global regulatory framework for agriculture, particularly for genetically modified foods, must be reformed. Many countries ban all uses of GM foods and many more, such as the United States, require unjustified testing and oversight of GM products which increases production costs and delays market access. The authors call for the creation of regulatory standards that focus on the safety and nutritional value of the product—not how it was produced.

“GM foods have been a central factor in increasing food production and decreasing costs over the last three decades, and are as safe as any other type of food,” Giddings says. “By transforming the regulatory framework to meet this reality we can more rapidly develop new agricultural advances and broaden their use globally.”

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Vocus, PRWeb, and Publicity Wire are trademarks or registered trademarks of Vocus, Inc. or Vocus PRW Holdings, LLC.


Some cool International development policy images:

International development policy
Image by Wilson Center – ECSP
The African Institute for Development Policy (AFIDEP) recently conducted a study in collaboration with Population Action International to analyze the challenges and opportunities for incorporating population considerations into climate change and development interventions in sub-Saharan Africa. The results, presented at the Wilson Center, highlight policy and program implications in Kenya and Malawi and will help guide responses to climate change that include population dynamics and work towards sustainable development.

Giles Norman, Director of the Canadian International Centre for the Arctic Region
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Image by Polish Institute of International Affairs


On 1 March 2011 Embassy of Embassy of Canada to Poland and the Polish Institute of International Affairs organized a conference devoted to Arctic region.
“This half-day conference brought together Polish and Canadian Arctic experts and decision
makers to support and consider the emerging discussion in Poland on this important region.

Poland has been a distinguished member of the Arctic research community and a prominent
Observer State of the Arctic Council since its inception. While to Canadians the Arctic is home,
and to Polish researchers it is a challenging but familiar workplace, to much of the international
community and indeed Polish society it remains relatively unknown or misunderstood. Far from
being a ‘wild west’ frontier as it is sometimes portrayed, the Arctic is a well-governed and
thriving homeland to numerous indigenous communities with enormous development potential.

Canada’s vision for the Arctic is that of a stable region with clearly defined boundaries, dynamic
economic growth and trade, vibrant Northern communities, and healthy and productive
ecosystems. The Arctic Council is for Canada the well-established and principal forum for
international cooperation in these areas. Poland’s vision of the Arctic is similar, as an observer
in the Arctic Council, which convenes and supports sustained dialogue and cooperation.

Canada, like Poland, has made a strong commitment to Arctic science—the foundation for sound
policy- and decision-making on the environment. Canada was the single largest financial
contributor to International Polar Year research activities and has announced the construction
of a state of the art international High Arctic research facility in Cambridge Bay, and Poland
maintains a world-class scientific research base in Spitsbergen. New opportunities and
challenges are emerging across the Arctic, in part as a result of climate change and the pursuit
of resources. While this may well support social and economic development, it may also bring
new environmental threats, search and rescue incidents, civil emergencies and, potentially
even illegal activity*”.

*Quote from conference’s agenda

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Q&A: IMF: How are Technical Assistance, Surveillance & the PSI different?

Question by superseiyan: IMF: How are Technical Assistance, Surveillance & the PSI different?
What is the difference in the above three? (PSI = Policy Support Instrument). If a country is receiving technical assistance AND surveillance, and it is also participating in the PSI, isn’t that redundant? Seems like two of the three should be done away with all together.

Best answer:

Answer by senekon
If a country is receiving technical assistance AND surveillance, and it is also participating in the PSI, it may appear redundant. In actuality, there are essential differences. PSI dioes not involve surviellance, does not involve lending by IMF and does not involve technical assistance for human resource and institutional capabilty for economic policy formulation and implementaion. The PSI program is purely on the spot expert advice in planning policies – macro-economic, fiscal and exchange rate policies.
The IMF, established to promote international monetary cooperation, exchange stability, and orderly exchange arrangements; to foster economic growth and high levels of employment; and to provide temporary financial assistance to countries to help ease balance of payments adjustment, has developmed its operations— surveillance, financial assistance, and technical assistance, to meet the changing needs of its member countries in an evolving world economy. The three basic operations are different. Surveillance is essentially monitoring economic performance, review of problems and prospects of member nations is more of economic research and policy recommendations.IMF To promote global economic stability through multilateral cooperation, the IMF has been given the mandate of overseeing the international monetary system and monitoring the economic and financial policies of its 185 member countries. IMF surveillance provides an expert assessment of economic and financial developments, both globally and in individual countries. It and advises on risks to stability and growth and if policy adjustments are warranted. In this way, the IMF helps the international monetary system serve its essential purpose of providing a framework that facilitates the exchange of goods, services, and capital among countries and sustains sound economic growth. In today’s globalized economy, where the economic and financial policies of one country may spill over to affect many other countries, international cooperation on a global scale to monitor and influence economic developments is essential. With its nearly universal membership of 185 countries, IMF surveillance provides the mechanism for this cooperation. Effective surveillance contributes to a stable international monetary system that sustains sound economic growth through the following mutually-reinforcing processes: multilateral surveillance, or oversight of the world economy; and bilateral surveillance which comprises appraisal of and advice on the policies of each individual member country to promote external and domestic stability (including growth); analysis of cross country spillovers; and sharing of the aggregate experience of 185 members.
A core responsibility of the IMF is to provide loans to countries experiencing balance of payments problems. This financial assistance enables countries to rebuild their international reserves; stabilize their currencies; continue paying for imports; and restore conditions for strong economic growth. Unlike development banks, the IMF does not lend for specific projects.
A member country may request IMF financial assistance if it has a balance of payments need—that is, if it cannot find sufficient financing on affordable terms to meet its net international payments. An IMF loan eases the adjustment policies and reforms that a country must make to correct its balance of payments problem and restore conditions for strong economic growth.
IMF technical assistance supports the development of the productive resources of member countries by helping them to effectively manage their economic policy and financial affairs. The IMF helps these countries to strengthen their capacity in both human and institutional resources, and to design appropriate macroeconomic, financial, and structural policies. Technical assistance is one of the benefits of IMF membership. It is generally provided free of charge to any requesting member country, within IMF resource constraints. About 90 percent of IMF technical assistance goes to low and lower-middle income countries. Post-conflict countries are also major beneficiaries. Apart from the immediate benefit to recipient countries, by helping individual countries reduce weaknesses and vulnerabilities, technical assistance also contributes to a more robust and stable global economy. Further, technical assistance provided to emerging and industrialized economies in select cutting-edge areas helps provide traction to IMF policy advice, and keeps the institution up-to-date on innovations and risks to the international economy. Technical assistance contributes to the effectiveness of the IMF’s surveillance and lending programs, and is an important complement to these other core IMF functions. Specialized technical assistance from the IMF helps build capacity in countries for effective policymaking, including in support of surveillance or lending operations. Conversely, surveillance and lending work results in policy and other experiences that further inform and strengthen the IMF’s technical assistance program according to international best practices. In view of these linkages, achieving greater integration between technical assistance, surveillance, and lending operations is a key priority for the IMF.
PSI is a special program that may not involve lending/ financial assistance at all..It is of course in the nature of Technical assistance, but the latter is more concerned with human and institutional capacity building assistance by IMF experts. The sine qua non of the Policy Support Instrument is that a country does not have to borrow from the IMF in order to receive many of the benefits that the IMF—the board, the management, the staff—gives to a country as part of a regular IMF program. These benefits include providing expert on-the-ground advice on monetary, fiscal, banking, and exchange rate issues, setting realistic benchmarks and timelines for achieving results, and validating the policy through IMF Board approval of the program and benchmark reviews. Simply put, the Policy Support Instrument is an IMF program without the borrowing, and for that reason it is sometimes called a “non-borrowing program.” Unlike the broad technical assistance programs that involve capacity building in better economy management and policy making, the emphasis in PSI programs is on providing on the spot expert advice and review support. There are many advantages of the new non-borrowing program:
• For a heavily indebted poor country seeking an IMF program, the main advantage of a Policy Support Instrument is that the poor country’s debt does not need to increase in order to get the benefits of the program. Indeed, a series of requests for this type of program from the finance ministers of heavily indebted poor countries was what first put this idea on the reform agenda, and there appears to be a pent up demand for the program from such countries.
• A greater degree of country ownership of the macroeconomic policy program is another advantage of the Policy Support Instrument. Without IMF money on the table, it will be clearer that the country has developed its program on its own without the appearance of being under the pressure of the International Monetary Fund. In many countries and in many circumstances this demonstrated ownership of the policy can be politically very useful.
• For countries that are not heavily indebted and do not need IMF loans, the Policy Support Instrument can provide a signal to the international financial markets that their macro policy is strong.
• Because it is easier to develop a borrowing program if a country already has a non-borrowing program, the Policy Support Instrument will also be a way for a country to move gradually off IMF support after a crisis and a series of IMF loans, and to be better prepared for a crisis if that is a concern.
• Another advantage is that, with the Policy Support Instrument available, there is no reason for the IMF management and shareholders to get into a position where they really have no choice but to make loans when in reality the loans are not needed for balance of payments purposes. In the past this situation has occurred, for example, where donors to a country need the IMF program to validate the fiscal and monetary policies of the country, but where the country does not have a balance of payment problems in the usual sense. Without the Policy Support Instrument, IMF loans were being made to countries and then being rolled over because they were the only way to provide the important seal of approval to donors and/or the multilateral development banks. In other words the existence of the Policy Support Instrument will make it easier for IMF management and shareholders to follow in practice the key principle that IMF loan support be given when there is a clear balance of payments need.
• A very important advantage is that the Policy Support Instrument will enable the IMF to assist more poor countries in core IMF areas of expertise, including those that do not have the need for IMF borrowing.
• The Policy Support Instrument will make it easier to follow the principle of the division of labor between the IMF and World Bank in which longer term development loans and grants come in from the World Bank, and shorter term balance of payments loan come from the IMF.
Concerns about Non-Borrowing Programs
As originally proposed and as it is now being implemented, the Policy Support Instrument is voluntary. That it is voluntary avoids disadvantages that some had worried about in such a program. If indeed there is an actual need for borrowing for a balance of payments crisis, then a conventional IMF program can be used.

Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments!