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How old is the American Empire?

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posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 01:58 AM
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Hi guys,

I was just wondering this morning how old the American Empire is? I would imagine that it began after WW2?? Whats the average age of Empires? The British Empire only lasted roughly 60 yrs or something, the Romans a lot longer of course. It seems that history tells us that every Empire falls eventually...so I was just wondering. Thanks.




posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 02:45 AM
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I think you have got your words mixed up, the U.S.A isn't really an empire it's the most powerful country in the world today.
When the British empire was at it's height it was said that the sun never set upon it.
It ranged from Australia, India and North America something like a third of the globe!
Whereas the United States is the most powerful country in the world it's got a long way to go to beat the British at it's height.



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 02:47 AM
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I dont think the u.s is even an empire, where did you get this idea anyways????





[edit on 11-2-2006 by noobius0ne]



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 02:49 AM
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US military dominance is reaching the level at which there is no perturbing the world wide strike capabilities of new and exciting militaristic proponents. space guidance, energonic armaments on hyper efficient robotic craft, and nano composite fortified armor. US based corperations will bid over the dispersal of wealth pertaining to these advancements in technological efficiency through out the world, gearing for dun dun dun a new world order.



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 02:54 AM
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Originally posted by sturod84
US military dominance is reaching the level at which there is no perturbing the world wide strike capabilities of new and exciting militaristic proponents. space guidance, energonic armaments on hyper efficient robotic craft, and nano composite fortified armor. US based corperations will bid over the dispersal of wealth pertaining to these advancements in technological efficiency through out the world, gearing for dun dun dun a new world order.

Yeah but you still do not have an empire!
You have the technology but alas no empire.



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 03:14 AM
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I understand that the actual definition of empire does not include the USA. However, the basic principle of 'Empire' does apply I think. Global domination! Whether it be through Macdonalds or Military Might positioned all over the world ready to strike and take out any country it wants...I think the essence of Empire applies. remember this is also not a serious thread, i was just pondering on how long the USA 'presence' will last?



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 08:30 AM
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America may not technically be called an empire, but it sure does have alot of imperialistic policies and outlook towards the rest of the world.

The length of the British Empire lasted far longer than 60 years, though. It went from 1588, with the defeat of the Spanish in the Spanish Armada, straight throught until about the beginning of the last century. It's height was probably under Queen Victoria, who ruled for 60 years.

I would say America has had imperialistic policies since at least 1947, when the National Security Act became law and we became a national security state. You can Google the NSA act to learn more about it. An excellent book to read about American history is Howard Zinn's "The People's History of America".

-Forestlady



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 09:12 AM
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yeah the british empire lasted for HUNDREDS of years!! (from the 15th century until the 2nd world war) - at the end of the 1st world war the british empire was at its strongest.

but after the 2nd world war, britain was very much a war torn country (as to many other countrys) - but the british empire went out at what it always did best 'victory'


america is not an empire nor will there be another empire again in the 21st centry (or beyond)!! america is a 'superpower' but not an 'empire'.

an EMPIRE means you own countrys, (they are apart of your empire that you have conquered). if america or any other country started doing that today, it would be WW3 instantly.

and thats a scary thought due to 'nuclear weapons' and the 'atomic bomb'.



[edit on 11-2-2006 by st3ve_o]



posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 10:23 PM
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Whether America qualifies as an empire depends on how narrow your definition of empire is, which in turn depends on whether or not you WANT to regard America as an empire. Or, perhaps, on what your purpose is in asking the question.

An empire requires a dominant nation and one or more (usually more) subordinate nations.

If it also requires that the subordinate nations be directly, overtly, and officially governed by the dominant nation, as India was governed by Britain, then America has only a very small empire.

If nothing beyond the dom/sub relationship is required, then America has a huge empire, beyond question the largest in history. It includes most of the Middle East, sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia, and oceania. It's easier to state what the American empire does not include than what it does. Russia, China, western Europe, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, North Korea, Vietnam, Cuba, and India are not part of the American empire, either because they are too prosperous, populous, and powerful for us to dominate, or because they are hostile to us. I may have missed a few more. But the greater part of the world is under U.S. dominion.

Almost all of the American empire fits only the looser definition. We rule this empire not the way Britain ruled India, but the way the Soviet Union ruled Poland: officially, we don't, but everyone involved knows we do.

As to how long our empire will last, that's a good question. I don't believe that empire and democracy are compatible. Empire is maintained at the expense of the common people in taxes and lives both, but it benefits only a powerful elite. Britain's loss of empire coincided with her adoption of democracy, and reduction of both monarchy and aristocracy to fictions. Since America was a democracy before taking on the task of empire, it's no wonder we find ourselves uneasy at it. For that reason, I don't expect it to last very long.



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 06:04 PM
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You people are just insufferable. Never, EVER, in world history has a country wielded so much power and done so little with it.

America has done more to relieve human suffering in the last 100 years than and other country in recorded history.

You euros are a study in ingratitude.



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 10:14 AM
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Originally posted by ElTiante
You people are just insufferable. Never, EVER, in world history has a country wielded so much power and done so little with it.

America has done more to relieve human suffering in the last 100 years than and other country in recorded history.

You euros are a study in ingratitude.


1. I'm not a Euro. I was born in Texas. I live in California.

2. It is not true that the U.S. does little with the power we have. We support some governments, overthrow others, invade other countries on a pretext, dominate world markets, get resources cheap, get other countries to supply our manufacturers with cheap slave-labor on their own land, get extraterritoriality and special U.S.-run courts for troops at our bases to let them get away with rape, etc. In short, we behave pretty much like an empire. There've been worse, certainly. As empires go, we're not that bad. But bad enough, on an absolute scale.

3. The U.S. has done somewhat to relieve human suffering from some causes, but on balance, our imperial policies cause more suffering than they relieve.



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 10:38 AM
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Originally posted by eoyn
Hi guys,

I was just wondering this morning how old the American Empire is? I would imagine that it began after WW2?? Whats the average age of Empires? The British Empire only lasted rough

Why? Because it occupied japan and germany???

The american empire experience was with the vestiges of the spanish empire, cuba, porto rico, the phillipines, etc. Unless one wants to consider the expansion beyond the appalachians to be imperial also.


It seems that history tells us that every Empire falls eventually

Rome was a Republic for 700 Years, and then an Empire in the west for at least another 700. The eastern Empire didn't fall until the late 1400's.

So looks like, if American is an empire, we can expect it to 'fall' sometime around 3496 AD.



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 11:13 AM
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Originally posted by eoyn
The British Empire only lasted roughly 60 yrs or something




it lasted alot longer than that...
don't you remember your history lessons?

US was never an Empire..



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 02:16 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan
The american empire experience was with the vestiges of the spanish empire, cuba, porto rico, the phillipines, etc. Unless one wants to consider the expansion beyond the appalachians to be imperial also.


Again, that goes back to the question of what "empire" means. Does a subject nation have to fly the dominant country's flag, and be directly governed by officials sent from the dominant country, for the situation to be considered an empire? I don't think that's a very useful way to look at things.

What you are describing is the official American empire, not the de facto empire. When our government dictates terms to the government of another country, for all intents and purposes that country is part of our empire, whether or not it flies our flag or is governed directly by our officials.



Rome was a Republic for 700 Years, and then an Empire in the west for at least another 700. The eastern Empire didn't fall until the late 1400's.

So looks like, if American is an empire, we can expect it to 'fall' sometime around 3496 AD.


On the other hand, the Soviet empire lasted only 44 years, from 1945 to 1989. Is our empire more like Rome's, or more like the USSR's?

Too, we should consider what happened to Rome during the course of its rise to power. Rome was a Republic for 700 years, true. But because of the acquisition of an empire, and the flood of wealth from that empire to its ruling class, and the bureaucratic inefficiencies and class struggle that resulted from these things, Rome required a change of government. The Republic didn't work well for its final century. A series of strongmen (Marius, Sulla, Pompey, Caesar) had to step outside the constitution and provide dictatorial government more and more often to keep things from completely falling apart, until, after Caesar's assassination, the final power struggle resulted in the Imperium established by Augustus.

Do we wish a similar fate for America? Even if it allows our empire to continue?



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 02:52 PM
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Originally posted by Two Steps Forward
Again, that goes back to the question of what "empire" means.

Indeed, its a tricky subject and in the end its a subjective matter, not an objective one. Was, for example, the Roman Republic at the end really all that less imperial than the same state under Augustus?

Minimally I'd think that an empire has direct military occuptation and colonization and economic exploitation of regions around it, and those regions have to be relatively large to really class as an empire, along with the government ruling all of it, or at least the occupied region, being non-liberal/democratic.

Therefore we could probably safely say that america going to war with spain and conquering places like the phillipines and porto rico as imperial moments. But I don't think that we can call post WWII japan and germany 'provinces' in the "american empire". Nor even Occupied Iraq; its just not 'run' in the way provinces are run (post bremmer), nor is anyone planning on colonizing it. Certainly, if 50 years from now there are still american troops there and some little american cities spreading around the bases, then we're looking at an imperial experience.


Does a subject nation have to fly the dominant country's flag, and be directly governed by officials sent from the dominant country, for the situation to be considered an empire? I don't think that's a very useful way to look at things.

But if we just say that an Empire is a strong and influential country, then its meaningless and useless. Modern Isreal becomes an Empire. The kurds are gross imperialists. Cuba is run by an imperialist, etc.




On the other hand, the Soviet empire lasted only 44 years, from 1945 to 1989. Is our empire more like Rome's, or more like the USSR's?

The Soviet "evil" Empire was an anomoly as far as empires go. Look at the Khanate. Or the Empire of China. The Spanish Empire lasted hundreds of years, control vast portions of the planet. The British Empire also lasted hundreds of years, controled a quarter of the globe, heck it only 'ended' because the british gave it up, it wasn't defeated by an external source, like spain, or colllapsed, like roman and the USSR.
So IF america is an 'empire', then minimally its going to last hundres of years, and potentially a thousand; as an empire, neverminding that it might go on long after that as some sort of isolated republic.


But because of the acquisition of an empire, and the flood of wealth from that empire to its ruling class, and the bureaucratic inefficiencies and class struggle that resulted from these things, Rome required a change of government.

Thats debateable though. The republic was torn apart because the elite class, the senators, were able to have private armies, and individuals who built up enough raw military and populist support simply installed themselves as dictators. No provinces, no need for large permanent and even private armies, I agree. But then again it was in the Empire that all of that was settled, it was in the republic that it was a problem.


Do we wish a similar fate for America? Even if it allows our empire to continue?

The problem here is, you are usign such a loose definition of empire that it really means anyone with the ability and tendency to act uniltarally on the large scale; ie a nation that isn't being exploited terribly by someone else.
So whats it matter? In that system, either the US is exploited or acts as the exploitor. Perhaps a better question is, by whom would the world prefer to be ruled, America, the old USSR, the Euros, China, India, pan-arabia, etc etc??

Besides, I don't see the same fate of the romans happening to the US. The US doesn't need a centralized 'strongman' to prevent factions within it from causing civil military strife. The Romans instituted the Empire (or at least accepted Augustus' rule) because they didn't want any more civil wars. There's nothing like that going on right now, nor is there, honestly, likely to be so in the future.

I mean, anything can happen of course.

The truly odd thing here is that, in the past, most empires have 'fallen' because they couldn't withstand something from the outside, even if it was a symptom of decay from with in, (exceptions being rome, the USSR, and the British Empire). There was allways some outside force that could build up and become bigger and more powerful than 'your' empire. For the Parthians it was the arabs. For the arabs the turks. For the Chinese it was the mongols. For the Sultan and Khan it was europe. For the european empires, like spain and france, it was each other. But for the US? The US has the ability to become the first global empire, ie, permantently un-opposed empire, no mongols or germanic hordes to invade them.



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 03:57 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

Originally posted by Two Steps Forward
Again, that goes back to the question of what "empire" means.

Indeed, its a tricky subject and in the end its a subjective matter, not an objective one.


No, it's not subjective. No matter how we define the word, we are discussing objective facts. Whether those facts fit the word "empire" is a matter of definition, and that is a function of will and choice, not subjective perception.

It is a fact that the U.S. exerts great power in the world for the benefit of its ruling elite, and often at the expense of those dominated. It is a fact that, since World War II, the U.S. has maintained the strongest military force in the world, far, far stronger than would be justified by any reasonable defensive calculations. It is a fact that the U.S. has proven itself willing to use that military power aggressively, although the government has always been careful to provide a veneer of defensive justification, however spurious. It is a fact that the U.S. has proven willing to overthrow governments, both elected democratic governments and nonelected authoritarian ones, to serve its own interests, either by covert operations or by overt military force.

These are the facts that those who speak of the "American Empire" describe with that phrase. If you believe these facts would be better described by a different phrase, that does not alter the facts themselves. When I refer to the "American Empire" on this thread, please understand that I am referring to the above-described sphere of domination. If you would prefer to substitute another phrase in your own mind and your own posts, that's fine, so long as we understand the facts.



Was, for example, the Roman Republic at the end really all that less imperial than the same state under Augustus?


The Roman Republic was an empire. It was an empire governed by a republic, whereas after Augustus it became an empire governed by a constitutional monarch, but the imperial nature of Rome did not change when its government did. Even by your definition, restricted to outright occupation and official provinces, most of the Roman Empire was conquered under the Republic, not the Imperium.



Minimally I'd think that an empire has direct military occuptation and colonization and economic exploitation of regions around it . . . Therefore we could probably safely say that america going to war with spain and conquering places like the phillipines and porto rico as imperial moments. But I don't think that we can call post WWII japan and germany 'provinces' in the "american empire".


I agree that Germany and Japan are not part of our empire, but not for the reason you've suggested. Military occupation isn't necessary as long as the threat of military invasion is understood, and compliance with U.S. policy mandatory due to that threat. Also, as Germany and Japan demonstrate, military occupation (which we still maintain in both countries) isn't sufficient, either. Germany and Japan are not part of the American empire because they have sufficient economic and diplomatic clout to escape domination. However, that is not true of most of Latin America, most of Southeast Asia, most of the Middle East, most of sub-Saharan Africa, and some parts of Europe.



Nor even Occupied Iraq; its just not 'run' in the way provinces are run (post bremmer), nor is anyone planning on colonizing it. Certainly, if 50 years from now there are still american troops there and some little american cities spreading around the bases, then we're looking at an imperial experience.


Colonization isn't a feature of most imperial domination, even when it's official. The British colonized America and South Africa because those were relatively empty places, especially America. The British did not colonize India, yet India was certainly part of the British Empire. But it was also full of Indians. (Actually, at this point it would be more accurate to say that India has partially colonized Britain. But I digress.) The Romans did not colonize the more civilized parts of their empire, either. There were Roman towns that sprang up in Gaul, Spain, and North Africa, but not in Greece, Egypt, or Syria.

Iraq is part of the American Empire because it is occupied by American troops, its resources exploited for the benefit of American corporations, and its territory used as a base of operations for the U.S. military. If we are not there 50 years from now, which we probably won't be, then 50 years from now Iraq will not be part of the American Empire. But that's then, this is now. Cuba is not part of the American Empire. But 50 years ago, it was.



But if we just say that an Empire is a strong and influential country, then its meaningless and useless. Modern Isreal becomes an Empire. The kurds are gross imperialists. Cuba is run by an imperialist, etc.


"Strong and influential country" is far, far weaker than what I described in an earlier post. An empire is a relationship among nations in which a dominant country dictates policy to weaker ones. We "influence" Russian, Chinese, German, and Indian policies, but we do not dictate them, and these countries are too strong for us to dominate. They are not part of our empire. On the other hand, we do dictate policy in most of Latin America (and believe we have the right to do so, witness the reaction to Venezuela's Chavez, who is rebelling against the Empire). That puts most of Latin America in our empire.

To call Israel an empire requires that we see her as dictating policy to weaker countries. I don't see Israel doing that, do you?



The Soviet "evil" Empire was an anomoly as far as empires go. Look at the Khanate. Or the Empire of China. The Spanish Empire lasted hundreds of years, control vast portions of the planet. The British Empire also lasted hundreds of years, controled a quarter of the globe, heck it only 'ended' because the british gave it up, it wasn't defeated by an external source, like spain, or colllapsed, like roman and the USSR.


Actually the Roman Empire was also defeated from without. But I see your point. It's possible the American Empire might prove as long-lived as the British Empire. We're a good deal more like Great Britain than we are like the Soviet Union, which was practically a case study of inefficient government.



The republic was torn apart because the elite class, the senators, were able to have private armies, and individuals who built up enough raw military and populist support simply installed themselves as dictators.


Excuse me, I need to dissect this at some length. It's a favorite period of history with me, and I've studied it extensively.

Senators were not allowed to have private armies. That is not true. Also, only two men in the entire history of the Republic ever marched on Rome and made themselves dictator: Lucius Cornelius Sulla and Gaius Julius Caesar. Both men did so under extreme provocation and without prior intent, and these actions were the tip of an iceberg of social unrest, class struggle, and government ineptitude. The process goes back a good deal further, at least to the time of the Brothers Gracchi.

The Senators had always been among Rome's richest men, of course, but when the Republic was founded the variance in wealth among the citizens was much less extreme than it later became. With the acquisition of provinces came a flood of wealth into Rome, and by the nature of such things almost all of that wealth settled into the hands of those already wealthy and powerful, magnifying their power. Over time, greedy Senators and businessmen manipulated things so as to put more and more farmland into fewer and fewer hands, driving the class of smallhold farmers (from whom Roman soldiers traditionally had come) virtually out of existence. The brothers Tiberius Sempronius Gracchus and Gaius Sempronius Gracchus attempted to reverse this process by taking the "public land" (officially owned by the state, but in practice leased to large landholders for a pittance) and giving it to Rome's urban poor. They failed. They were bitterly opposed by the entrenched Senatorial class, Tiberius was murdered, and Gaius driven to commit suicide.

Rome's government, adequate to manage the city state that it was when the kings were overthrown, was wholly inadequate to manage an empire. One area where this inadequacy showed up repeatedly was in military leadership. Traditionally, the elected consuls had the right to serve as generals, comparable to having G.W. Bush over in Iraq directing the war himself. To make matters worse, the consuls were, with rare exceptions, always elected from the ranks of the Famous Families, and served for only one year, and could not be reelected until ten years after their term had ended. So there was a lot of circulation in the office, and plenty of military incompetents (as well as incompetents in other areas) with full authority to lead Rome's armies -- often with disastrous results.

Around 100 BCE, Rome was faced with a military crisis in the form of an invasion of migrating Germans. Rome possessed one demonstrated military genius at that time, Gaius Marius. Because he was the only one believed capable of defeating the Germans, and because the consul of the year would always be tempted to set Marius aside and lead the armies himself (the more so because Marius was not from an aristocratic family himself and was looked down upon for that reason), the constitution was set aside and Marius served as consul for five years in a row. Also, in order to get the troops he needed to defeat the Germans, Marius himself set aside certain other traditions. He recruited legions from the urban poor, rather than the small farmers. This was militarily necessary, but it also created a class of professional soldiers, which Rome had never possessed before.

A few more decades, and Rome faced another crisis, brought on by pure governmental stupidity and mismanagement in the attitude of superiority and exclusivity that refused to grant the people of Italy the Roman citizenship. The Italian allies rose in revolt. Again the military ineptitude of the Republic showed itself, and several aristocratic nincompoops had to go down in defeat before the natural brilliance of Sulla won the war. Then to make matters worse, Mithridates of Pontus decided to invade Rome's eastern provinces. Sulla was elected consul and was ready to take an army and go wallop Mithridates, but Marius maneuvered things politically to take his command off Sulla and give it to himself (probably a disastrous move, as Marius was ill and not the man he once was). That was when Sulla marched on Rome. After a lot more chaos, he eventually became Dictator (which was an actual office of the Republic) for some 2 1/2 years before he resigned. His constitution attempted to freeze Roman government into a highly conservative mode and prevent further decay. It probably did delay the Republic's final collapse, but certainly did not prevent it.

What happened later between Caesar and his enemies was not due entirely to Caesar's having control over his armies. It was also due to his opponents being able to manipulate the Senate and the courts to force him into trial on trumped-up charges and send him into permanent exile, and to the fact that they were willing to do this because they were on one side of the class struggle and Caesar on the other. Exile is what would have happened to Caesar if he hadn't marched. Everything in Caesar's life, except the crossing of the Rubicon itself, indicates that he was dedicated to the idea of the Republic and had no intention of destroying it, but destroy it he did. Why? Because he had no choice. The Republic was completely incapable of governing the Roman empire well, but Caesar, as an autocrat, could. So either he ruled as an autocrat, or he saw his country collapse. In an ironic way, Caesar was actually more deadly to the Republic than Sulla had been precisely because he was such a good, fair, and immensely capable ruler. People became resigned to the idea of despotic government because the despot was benign. Unfortunately, the Romans forgot that he was mortal and that the likes of Caligula and Nero were all too likely to follow. But in any case, a much stronger government -- and a non-democratic one -- was necessary to keep the empire running. Caesar had no choice, and neither did Rome. Empire and liberty do not mix, because empire in itself is a denial of liberty.



But then again it was in the Empire that all of that was settled, it was in the republic that it was a problem.


My point exactly. The Imperium, crafted by Augustus, was a disguised monarchy. Under it, the Roman Empire found a government that, most of the time, worked reasonably well. It also abandoned any pretense of democracy. This is not a coincidence.



The problem here is, you are usign such a loose definition of empire that it really means anyone with the ability and tendency to act uniltarally on the large scale; ie a nation that isn't being exploited terribly by someone else.


No. There are many countries in the world that are not empires, nor being dominated by the United States (which is the only empire remaining now that the Soviet Union is gone). What is required is not only that one country be stronger than another, but also that the difference in strength be so massive that the stronger country is able to dominate and exploit the weaker one, and also that the stronger country be willing to do this (doing it always involves a sacrifice by the ordinary people of the strong nation, so essentially it requires a highly imbalanced distribution of power internally to the strong nation). We cannot dominate and exploit India, say, the way we do Guatemala. We are stronger than India, but not enough stronger that India can't hold her own, or at least not without a greater sacrifice than we are willing to make.



Perhaps a better question is, by whom would the world prefer to be ruled, America, the old USSR, the Euros, China, India, pan-arabia, etc etc??


That is indeed the question. But then, it seems to me an analogous question to the one that might have been asked in medieval France: by which great noble house would the people prefer to be ruled and dominated? Ultimately, France came up with an answer that the old nobles might have found shocking.



Besides, I don't see the same fate of the romans happening to the US. The US doesn't need a centralized 'strongman' to prevent factions within it from causing civil military strife.


No, but we have other problems. Look at what has happened since the end of World War II. The Constitution gives Congress the authority over whether or not we go to war, but in practice, that authority has moved to the White House. The Founding Fathers warned against entangling alliances and standing armies, but we now maintain massive versions of both. We are supposed to be a country that cherishes and protects civil liberties and the rights of the people, but increasingly we are setting those rights aside in the name of national security. And now we have the so-called "war on terror." In times of war, freedom is always compromised, but war against a concrete enemy (a foreign nation, say) has a finite time-scale. It begins, it sees victory or defeat, peace is negotiated, it ends. But the "war on terror" is a war, not against a concrete enemy but against a military tactic, one that has always existed and always will exist. It is, therefore, a war that can never be won or lost, and so can never end, and it means a permanent surrender of freedom.

There are many reasons why our empire is a bad thing and should disappear. The corruption of American ideals is perhaps a subtler one than some of the others. But to me, at least, it is a very important one.

[edit on 18-2-2006 by Two Steps Forward]



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 05:25 PM
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I think a good argument could be made for the PNAC trying to revive the Roman Empire using "america" and it's Roman diety "jesus" as it's current namesake.



posted on Feb, 18 2006 @ 10:20 PM
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WHAT a surprise! And a very pleasant one at that. TwoStepsForward, thank you very much for your clear-eyed and scholarly posts, which have entertained and informed me.

It seems to me that the US has been an empire for well over a hundred years now. I don't know if you've read Mark Twain on the subjugation of the Philippines, but it's very apposite to what's going on today - some of the self-justifying rhetoric that Twain railed against has changed very little.

But when the empire is largely covert, as the US' is, I think that one more defining characteristic emerges. There are those countries which the US exploits economically - the bulk of which are south of Texas - and then there are those countries which the US exploits strategically. Here I'm thinking of places like Ireland, which was threatened with economic extinction unless the use of Shannon airport was permitted as a staging-post for the invasion of Iraq. Strategic use can be economically neutral, as in that instance, or it can require injections of funds, as in the Eastern European countries that are being co-opted in the ongoing consolidation of the US position in the middle East.

And an earlier poster suggested that the British Empire lasted until World War II. This is true, but it didn't just 'disappear': it was dismembered by the US. Trading agreements between the UK and the commonwealth were dismantled during the negotiations for Marshall Plan aid, giving the US the chance to sweep up those portions of Central America and the Caribbean that had been under British control.



posted on Feb, 23 2006 @ 02:52 PM
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The term empire is defined as "A political unit, often made up of a number of territories or nations, ruled by a single supreme authority."- Webster's II New College Dictionary Riverside University, Houghton Mifflin Company:

I really hope that satisfies the MODS requirements for citing outside sources. If not you won't here from me for a couple of days.

Here's the link to dictionary.com

empire

As far as the US being an empire itself. It doesn't fit the classical definition IMO but we should not confuse not being an empire with not having Imperial aspirations. Such as Manifest Destiny. Now we conquered the west but incorporated the newly conquered lands directly into our republic. Just like Rome did. Is that empire? Is all expansionism imperial?



posted on Feb, 24 2006 @ 10:05 AM
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Originally posted by danwild6
The term empire is defined as "A political unit, often made up of a number of territories or nations, ruled by a single supreme authority."- Webster's II New College Dictionary Riverside University, Houghton Mifflin Company:


OK . . .



As far as the US being an empire itself. It doesn't fit the classical definition IMO


I disagree. There are a lot of small, poor, weak countries that are ruled by the U.S. They don't fly our flag, and they have on-site governments composed of natives, but they are no more independent in reality than Poland was in 1970.



Now we conquered the west but incorporated the newly conquered lands directly into our republic. Just like Rome did. Is that empire?


That's not what Rome did, but never mind. No, that's not empire. But what we're doing in Latin America, southeast Asia, and many other places is.




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