STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Terminology of the Day: Competitive 'Megapolitan'
By Staff News & Analysis - November 30, 2011

Megapolitan areas compete globally … Michael Crow, president of Arizona State University outside of Phoenix, last month ventured into potentially hostile territory 120 miles south in Tucson, home of the University of Arizona, to address 600 civic and business leaders … His message was jaw-dropping: Put aside the rivalry between the universities and the metropolitan areas and join forces to form one giant urban powerhouse to compete globally with an economy larger than that of the United Arab Emirates. "Competitiveness between two communities gets us nowhere," Crow says. "We've been asleep at the switch too long." … The long-struggling U.S. economy has made once-competing municipalities more receptive to that message. They're reaching across county lines and even state borders and aligning themselves as one economic bloc. It's the birth of a new geography: "megapolitans," regions that encompass cities and counties linked through man-made and natural connections such as shared transportation networks, labor markets or water supplies. – USA Today

Dominant Social Theme: Megapolitan! We can hardly wait to watch this portmanteau concept "compete." And when it falls apart, we'll find another one …

Free-Market Analysis: A new one on us. We hate made-up words because the English language has lots of words to choose from. But the powers-that-be will continue to make up new ones in the hopes that the novelty will disguise the authoritarianism lurking behind.

It's always the same dominant social theme, too: As localities expand, the world becomes more global. After a while, one gets the feeling that ANY activity one does, from eating to sleeping to walking in circles, is contributing to the elite's "globalization" meme.

Yes, indeed. The powers-that-be have "globalization" on the mind. The great central banking families (yes, we believe they exist) and their enablers and associates are constantly coming up with new arguments (via proxies) for why bigger and bigger entities ought to be created from smaller ones.

That suits THEM, as they apparently expect to be in charge of the whole world sooner or later, but we're not so sure it's the right solution for the rest of us … Of course, that won't slow 'em down. Nope. If it's not the merger of currencies in South America and Africa, then it's the combining of 2,000-year-old regions into one European superstate. Here's some more from this article (excerpted above):

A new book details this urban geography. It predicts that by 2040, there will be 10 distinct clusters composed of 23 megapolitan areas in the contiguous 48 states. The Phoenix-Tucson area, for example, is in the Sun Corridor megapolitan area, part of the Southwest megapolitan cluster that includes Las Vegas and Southern California.

"The threat of global competition has made these regions seek each other out for competitive advantage," says Robert Lang, co-author of Megapolitan America. "There are a lot of cities that don't like each other. Tucson and Phoenix have been at each other's throats, but when it comes to industries like solar or optics … from a global perspective, this is the same region."

He and co-author Arthur C. Nelson say the sooner the nation recognizes that it is made up of a series of densely populated economic engines, the better off it will be because public policy and economic development will target where people live, not where they don't.

"These regions are now merging, and that's the geography by which America accesses the global economy," says Lang, urban sociologist at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

Crow says economic competition is less about the USA vs. China than megapolitan areas here competing with Shanghai or Hong Kong.

Citizens and governments in 16 counties in three states (Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia) affected by the new plant are working together to prepare the region for everything from transportation to housing needs. "We all rely on the same labor pool, the same interstate system, the same supply of drinking water," Marston says. "In many ways, our fates are intertwined."

Hoo-boy, see that? Bet you didn't know your fate was "intertwined" not only with the world, but also with your neighbor three states away! Isn't is possible that things are going the OTHER way? Maybe people are spinning OUT of orbit? Not a chance. Not if you're part of the US educational-industrial complex anyway. You're entirely global-centric.

What is it with these people? Have they learned nothing from the Soviet Union's collapse (as questionable as that might have been) when it comes to organizing large, quasi-governmental enterprises that are suppose to "compete" with other ones? Don't they know that bigger is NOT better and that government-private partnerships aren't likely worth a bucket of warm spit? They work about as well as central banks in our view.

After Thoughts

We don't buy the "bigger is better" theme. We don't think that "communities" compete with each other or that the US "competes" with China. It's a kind of zero-sum approach to capitalism, that there has to be a winner and a loser. In a REAL free-market everyone can win. But that wouldn't occur to someone who's spent his whole life in an insane asylum – oops, we meant a US University of Higher Learning.

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