“The United States is morally bankrupt and spiritually broken. The problem is not that we have strayed from our founding principles, but that we are still operating on those principles – delusional notions about manifest destiny, American exceptionalism, the right to take more than our share of the world’s resources by whatever means necessary. As the United States grew in wealth and power, bounty for the chosen came at the cost of misery for the many.
After World War II, as the United States became the central character not just in the Americas but on the world stage, the principles didn’t change. US foreign policy sought to deepen and extend US power around the world, especially in the energy-rich and strategically crucial Middle East; always with an eye on derailing any Third World societies’ attempts to pursue a course of independent development outside the US sphere; and containing the possibility of challenges to US dominance from other powerful states.
Empires rarely learn in time, because power tends to dull people’s capacity for critical self-reflection. While ascending to power, empires believe themselves to be invincible. While declining in power, they cling desperately to old myths of remembered glory.”