What price U.S. world power?

Many commentators think U.S. power is declining, largely due to long-term trends, but speeded up by Donald Trump.

I think that’s true.  How much should we the American people worry about this?

Paul Street wrote a savage but accurate article for Truthdig about reasons why the world in general would welcome the downfall of U.S. power.   The enumeration of the death and destruction caused by U.S. military interventions, acts of war, covert action and economic sanctions makes is painful reading for an American.

And what benefit have we, the American people, gotten from it?  Little or nothing, that I can see.  In fact, the welfare of Americans has been sacrificed to maintaining American military power.  We can’t afford to maintain decent public services, but cost is no consideration when it comes to the military.

That doesn’t mean that loss of American global power would be painless.  We would have to find new ways to employ the millions of people employed by the U.S. military, the covert action agencies and their many contractors and suppliers.

Having a large number of unemployed, some highly qualified in the use of lethal force and others in covert political action, would be no small problem.  Neither would being a pariah among nations, as the Germans were for a time after their defeat in World War Two.

The British and French people were better off in the long run after they lost their overseas empires.  The German and Japanese people were better off in the long run after their defeats in World War Two.  We Americans will be better off in the long run if we give up the quest for world domination.

LINK

The World Will Not Mourn the Decline of U.S. Hegemony by Paul Street for Truthdig.

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5 Responses to “What price U.S. world power?”

  1. williambearcat Says:

    Should be required reading

    Like

  2. whungerford Says:

    I don’t object to a decline in US hegemony near as much as I fear that a reckless Federal government, current or future, might embrace militarism.

    Like

    • philebersole Says:

      The danger of empires in decline is that they sometimes start wars to regain their power and recapture a sense of national unity.

      Like

      • whungerford Says:

        At first I couldn’t think of an example. Then, I thought of the Second Gulf War.

        Like

      • philebersole Says:

        I was thinking more of the histories of other empires—for example, the Russian Empire and the Russo-Japanese War, which was intended to unify Russia but instead revealed the empire’s weakness. The Second Gulf War indeed fits that pattern.

        Like

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