The United States fell two places, to fourth position, out of 139 nations ranked by the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2010-2011 released last week. Of the twelve pillars used as indicators for computation of the rankings, categorized into mutually exclusive subindexes – Basic Requirements, Efficiency Enhancers, and Innovation and Sophistication Factors – Americans are justified with concerns about Public Institutions in the United States lacking the Basic Requirements needed for global competitiveness.1
Current surveys in the United States report that along with economic issues, Americans are most concerned about government corruption, a claim supported by evidence cited in the World Economic Forum. In the variable “Public Trust of Politicians,” the United States was ranked 54th, as opposed to Rwanda, ranked among the top ten nations within the same variable. Rwanda and Uruguay – which wasn’t able to restore a civilian government until 1985, following violence from a Marxist insurgency – ranked 27th and 32nd, respectively, in the variable entitled “Irregular Payments and Bribes,” that ranked the United States in 40th-place overall. 2
The Public Institutions variables “Favoritism in Decisions by Government Officials” and “Organized Crime,” the latter asking what extent organized crime (mafia-oriented racketeering, extortion) imposes costs on businesses in a country, ranked the United States 55th and 86th, respectively, out of the 139 countries. The American rankings are in contrast to Tajikistan – a Central Asian country with a repressive government and Islamic militants linked to the Taliban that’s also major source of humans trafficked globally for slavery and commercial sexual exploitation – which ranked 56th in “Favoritism in Decisions by Government Officials” and twenty four places above the United States in “Organized Crime.” 3
In light of the United States struggling with a weak economy under Obama’s administration, the government corruption concerning Americans and cited by the World Economic Forum provides a useful lens that warrants further consideration of federal testimony by a witness who alleges that Barack Obama organized criminal activity.4
1. Richard Elliott, “United States Falls in Competitiveness Rankings,” World Economic Forum, September 9, 2010, http://www.weforum.org/en/media/Latest%20News%20Releases/NR_GCR10. Jeffrey M. Jones, “Americans Give GOP Edge on Most Election Issues,” Gallup, September 1, 2010, http://www.gallup.com/poll/142730/Americans-Give-GOP-Edge-Election-Issues.aspx.
2. Ibid. The World FactBook, “Uruguay,” Central Intelligence Agency, https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/uy.html.
3. Ahmed Rashid, Jihad: The Rise of Militant Islam in Central Asia (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002), x. Olivier Roy, The Foreign Policy of the Central Asian Islamic Renaissance Party (New York: Council on Foreign Relations, 2000). The World FactBook, “Tajikistan,” Central Intelligence Agency, https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ti.html.
3. Douglas Belkin, “Witness Claims Blagojevich Role,” The Wall Street Journal, June 30, 2010, U.S. News.