Globalization: America’s Biggest Bipartisan Mistake

| Mar 31, 2022

In 2007, a Swiss newspaper asked former Federal Reserve chair Alan Greenspan whom he predicted would be elected president the following year. He dismissed the question out of hand: “It hardly makes any difference who will be the next president. The world is governed by market forces.”

It was an odd remark coming from a man appointed by the president of the United States. And yet it contained a remarkable truth.

For more than two decades, a bipartisan collection of politicians, academics, business leaders and policy “experts”—call them the “Uniparty”—devoted much of its energy to fighting for, and later defending, an unquestioning commitment to the free flow of people, goods and capital around the world. So closely synced were the bipartisan coconspirators that their arguments and talking points were virtually indistinguishable. On trading freely and ignoring borders, there was no daylight between Democrats and Republicans, no debate. It hardly mattered who would be president; both nominees desired a world governed by markets, not the people.

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Wells King is the research director at American Compass.