They say the Internet is global, and in the purely technological sense, it is. But all those way-cool cyberspace visionaries who wax ecstatic about the supposed "end of nationalism" and the coming global village are completely missing the growing national diversity of form, content, and expression now developing on the Internet. .
True, the rapid spread of digital technology is forging powerful economic and social links across nations and regions. But this globalization process, rather than eliminating nationalism, is ironically also giving rise to a new era of national economic and political competitions. The Digital Revolution may plow through national boundaries like a tornado, but wherever it touches down it rapidly develops indigenous characteristics and local (i.e., national) competitive power. .
Indeed, globalization notwithstanding, each nation's individual competitive strength in world markets is what most strongly determines the quality of life and living standards of its citizens - and this will likely continue to be the case for generations to come. Even a casual look at global employment patterns, for example, shows that these remain overwhelmingly national and regional in character and are still influenced primarily by national political and economic policies. The competitiveness of various nations' manufacturing and trading infrastructures still largely determines where the best high-value-added jobs are found. .
Interest rates, though certainly sensitive to global pressures, are still set by each nation's central bankers, based on their own national agendas. Budget deficits and government policy still determine how much capital is left over for private-sector investments in each nation. And the nationality of ownership of any particular business still largely determines where the bulk of the profits from its operations will ultimately flow and how they will be reinvested.