Tag Archives: american exceptionalism

SOME THOUGHTS AND IDEAS ON “AMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISM” Are Americans Really Different?

Dr. V.E.”Bill” Haloulakos is an AIAA National Distinguished Lecturer and a contibutor to The Business Thinker

Americans are indeed exceptional people, i.e. they deviate from the “norm” and act quite differently from all other people in the world. They have a long tradition of doing so, from the early colonial days, through the American Revolution, the Civil War, WWII, and the Cold War and all the way to that fateful day of September 11, 2001. The fact that our President in Strasbourg, in April 2009, chose to answer a question about our “exceptionalism” by saying that “I believe in American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism” does not alter the situation. In fact, he failed to take notice of the most recent “exceptional” American event, his election!

COLONIAL DAYS AND THE REVOLUTION

Whether Americans are indeed “exceptional” people, i.e. different from others, can be established by examining their actions and general behavior throughout their history, especially during its most critical periods.

From the very beginning of the colonial days settlers in the American Continent had to provide for themselves, conquer the wilderness, and also find ways to interface with the native inhabitants, sometimes peacefully and cordially and sometimes not. But in any event, without attempting here to analyze and discuss the morality of the situation, the settlers had to actively pursue their interests on their own and in the process they developed a work ethic and a sense of total personal responsibility for their own survival and advancement. If they did not do something, it simply did not happen!

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AN AMERICAN SYNERGISTIC TRILOGY: The Space Program, The Free-Market Economy And Philanthropy

Dr. V.E.”Bill” Haloulakos is an AIAA National Distinguished Lecturer and a contibutor to The Business Thinker

The Space Program, The Free-Market Economy and Philanthropy, form the earth-shaking and world-shaping triumvirate of American Exceptionalism. The most important part of this “trinity” is The FreMarket Economy, for it is the beating heart that feeds everything else. Because of the aspects and practices of the free-market economy the space program was such a spectacular success and along with the numerous other attributes of the American System, to be enumerated later, vast wealth and prosperity were created that allowed an expandedphilanthropic activities, although they of themselves are the core of the greatest philanthropy known to man which is “Modern-Day Responsible Capitalism”.

A WORD ON SYNERGY 

Synergy is a mathematical concept, which specifies that one plus one is not always equal to two. Sometimes it is more in which case we say, “The total is greater than the sum of its parts”. This is known as positive synergism and there’s also negative synergism when the “total is less than the sum of its parts”.  The mathematical concept of one plus one is always equal to two is called “the principle of superposition”, i.e. putting one thing on the top of the other, so they just “pile up”. According to the principle of synergism, what the sum of one plus one is equal to depends on the particulars of the case, e.g. when one buys auto insurance as a bundle for two or more cars he saves money as compared to buying them separately. So, one can say that one plus one, synergistically, are less than two because of the lower cost or that it is more than two, because for a given amount of money one effectively buys more insurance. We have and we shall enumerate a multiplicity of items and activities within the American Exceptional System where positive synergism is at work and “like an invisible hand”, to quote Adam Smith, creates a multiplication factor that improves things and situations far and beyond any “normal” (whatever normal is) expectations.

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