Sign in  |  Register

The New Criterion

Quite simply, the best cultural review in the world
- John O’Sullivan

Features

January 2012

America's uncertain prospects

by John O'Sullivan

On the two roads that lie open to the United States.

A sympathetic Englishman who inquires into the question of America’s decline inevitably does so in a melancholy spirit. Britain has been fitfully declining since Queen Victoria’s 1867 Jubilee. Anyone born in the country between that year and, say, 1979 witnessed the gradual erosion of his nation’s military strength, economic power, and imperial sway. This decline did not take place along a simple line of extrapolation, and its long-term indicators were disguised by great historical events. In the forefront, the country stood alone against Hitler for a crucial year, won two world wars, and played a creditable part in winning the Cold War. In the background, the British economy failed to modernize, British government failed to reform it, and British strategy became a long retreat which British diplomacy celebrated as a triumph of liberalism.

Unlike the expansion of empire, however, this retreat did not occur in a &ld ...

This article is available to subscribers and for individual purchase

Subscribe to TNC (Print and Online editions)

Subscribe to TNC (Online only)

Purchase article credit and clip this article

If you already have an account login first

John O'Sullivan is an editor at large at National Review.


more from this author

This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 30 January 2012, on page 40

Copyright © 2014 The New Criterion | www.newcriterion.com

http://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/America-s-uncertain-prospects-7253

E-mail to friend


The New Criterion

By the author

Serving to win

by John O'Sullivan

Margaret Thatcher constantly pursued policies that reflected either joint U.S.–U.K. interests or wider alliance interests

Prague: spring in winter

by John O'Sullivan

On the fortieth anniversary of the Prague Spring.

You might also enjoy

The second assassin

by Edward Jay Epstein

Was JFK killed because America planned to assassinate Castro?

Team players

by Denis Donoghue

On Shakespeare's collaborations with other writers

All in the family

by Bruce Bawer

On the life and work of Marianne Moore

Most popular

view more >

Subscribe to our newsletter!

* indicates required

Webcasts

Introduction to The Kennedy Phenomenon
Roger Kimball introduces The Kennedy Phenomenon, a conference presented by The New Criterion on Tuesday, November 19.


The Kennedy Phenomenon: "Watching the Kennedy Train-Wreck"
Roger Kimball reads Peter Collier’s paper on oft-overlooked unsavory details of the Kennedys' lives. Much of the paper is drawn from Collier’s book, coauthored with David Horowitz, The Kennedys: An American Drama.


The Kennedy Phenomenon: "The Many Misjudgments of Richard Hofstadter"
Fred Siegel discusses his new book The Revolt against the Masses and the myriad oversights of the historian Richard Hofstadter.