Friday, May 18, 2007The National Journal has a piece discussing the possibility that the U.S. is going into decline. What's odd about the piece is that it dwells almost exclusively on U.S. foreign policy influence. Frankly I'm much more concerned with the decline of the U.S. economic position vis a vis the rest of the world, with the attendant pressure on the middle class. I'm concerned about massive public, corporate, and individual debt. I'm concerned about the decline of the global environment because of global warming and mass extinction. I'm concerned with the active suborning of our democracy by a reactionary political faction. I'm concerned that a third of our citizenry appears to delusional. But the de facto American Empire? Not so much.
Look, being #1 is nice and all, but do we really expect it to last forever. The sooner the U.S. wakes up and realizes that it is in our long-term interest to build a structure of international relations that is committed to peace, democracy, environmental stability, and shared prosperity, rather than preserving U.S. hegemony for its own sake, the better off we'll be. Power is judged not by its existence, but by its use.