If the declinists are to be believed, it’s a question of “when” not “if” Asia’s growing population, red-hot economies and superior work ethic combine to upend the world system and push a hapless America out of the top spot. Alas, recent developments have exposed some flaws in this theory. Among other things, China’s own housing bubble, India’s financial panic, and the Asian periphery’s headlong rush into America’s comforting security embrace do not inspire confidence in the prospects for a “post American” new Asia.But this latest news from New York Times makes it official: Asia’s decline has begun. Asia’s biggest companies are sending their brightest executives to American style MBA programs.
Fueled by an appetite for growth, corporations in China, India and other markets in Asia are sending an army of managers and executives to Western business schools to groom future leaders. U.S. and European business schools, meanwhile, are cashing in on the growing roster of clients from cash-rich companies and strengthening ties with the markets and people driving the world economy.
The rise of business schools in America led to greedy CEOs milking their companies for multimillion dollar benefit packages, to weird financial market transactions that took down some of the biggest names in American business, and to one destructive management fad after another that left dozens of American companies as hollowed out shells. Business school grads also pioneered exotic new tax dodges that helped bulk up the federal deficit, to say nothing of the kind of corporate ruthlessness that hollowed out the US industrial base in record time.With Asia now looking to follow this path, Americans can relax: Asia won’t be eating our lunch anytime soon.The next step? We need to sell them on the need to build law schools. Lots of them.