Thursday, March 03, 2005

End of the Empire

Gee, that was a quick century. Remember the beginning of the Bush presidency, when the talk of American political circles was how best to manage America's overweening global superiority--our 'hyperpower,' in the words of the French foreign minister? That sense of near-omnipitance, fueling and fueled by neo-con dreams of weilding unilateral power wherever necessary to secure a new American century, is being drowned these days in the tides of red ink and blood resulting from the Bush administration's fiscal and foreign policies. TomDispatch features a good essay on the topic by Jonathan Schell, with links to others as well. See in particular the essay by the Lefty historian Kirkpatrick Sale, author of The Conquest of Paradise, and Rebels Against the Future (about the Luddites).

Decades from now historians of American power will look back at the turn into the 21st century and see an almost farcical waste of resources and global influence. It will be the jumping-off point for ruminations on the world that might have resulted from a more responsible use of American power.

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