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Joseph Nye Wants a Smarter Superpower

"We live in an age of anxiety. People everywhere fear the next terrorist attack. Meanwhile, we slowly grow numb to Iraq’s endless string of kidnappings and suicide bombings. Between bird flu, tsunamis, and loose nukes, our list of fears is getting longer." explains Foreign Policy and lets 21 leading thinkers present solutions "that would make the world a better place."
One of those thinkers, Joseph S. Nye, would like to see a "smarter Superpower," because "
America needs to combine hard and soft power into 'smart' power, as it did during the Cold War." Unfortunately only the first few paragraphs are online for free.

There is even a blog on the subject of smart power run by a colloquia at the University of Southern California.


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bob on :

It is hard to argue, when one considers recent history, that America needs to do a better job combining public diplomacy with coercive and punitive measures--but "smart power", come on. "Soft power" sounded stupid enough. Then Walter Russell Mead created "sticky power". Don't these people have secretaries who like them? I propose the following test: if your son would not name his high school band after your doctrine, keep trying.

JW-Atlantic Review on :

Sticky Power? Never heard of it. I googled and found this: "As Walter Russell Mead has argued, “economic power is sticky power; it seduces as much as it compels.” There’s no doubt that a successful economy is an important source of attraction. Sometimes in real-world situations, it is difficult to distinguish what part of an economic relationship is comprised of hard and soft power." [url][/url] It does not sound cool at all. "I propose the following test: if your son would not name his high school band after your doctrine, keep trying." I like that test! We need a Nirvana doctrine ;-)

Don S on :

'Soft Power' has similarities to 'limp power'. Or perhaps 'flaccid power'. 'Sticky power' has similar intonations I think. Not good. We need good, upstanding, upright symbols with a point to them. Prick Power perhaps? That might describe Cheney... ;)

Don S on :

OK. What do we call the doctrine whereby if the US is for something some people in Europe (and elsewhere) are automaticlly against it. Consider the disdain in some circles for Hollywood & Levis for an example. Sour Power?! I like it!

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