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The Decline and Fall of the American Empire

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posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 03:54 AM

The Decline and Fall of the American Empire

A soft landing for America 40 years from now? Don’t bet on it. The demise of the United States as the global superpower could come far more quickly than anyone imagines. If Washington is dreaming of 2040 or 2050 as the end of the American Century, a more realistic assessment of domestic and global trends suggests that in 2025, just 15 years from now, it could all be over except for the shouting.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 03:54 AM

Today, three main threats exist to America’s dominant position in the global economy: loss of economic clout thanks to a shrinking share of world trade, the decline of American technological innovation, and the end of the dollar's privileged status as the global reserve currency.

Although the story itself is not really news, it's a very interesting article. More importantly, it is published on CBS' website. I believe it's the first time I've read a story on the decline of the US in the MSM.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:01 AM
The true america died years ago..

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:09 AM
2025 that's a bit optimistic... America will be very lucky if it lasts that long.. But doesn't have to be all bad, the British empire fell a long time ago, but Britain still held alot of influence and power around the world..

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:15 AM
It's quite eloquent and beautifully written.

I thought it would be rather nationalistic and hubris in tone, but it wasn't. A brutally honest assessment of the plight of the United States.

The final sentence is sobering and uses a forlorn analogy, in suggesting America neglected its opportunity in the world and will not be similar to Britain i.e we stopped our decline in the 1980s and managed to resort back to our values and traditions.

Good thread

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:17 AM
A big part of Americas downfall, I think is down to bush.. You guys in America maybe don't realise this but after invading Iraq, you guys lost alot of respect and power around the world..
Alot of people turned their back on America after that, including world leaders and the masses of those countries..
Before that war, America was highly regarded worldwide and people loved the idea of the American dream, most people don't look at the u.s that way anymore..
If anything it caused people to hate on America.. Which is such a shame for the citizens..

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:19 AM
I believe there are multiple reasons why the U.S. is where it is at today and what is possibly the outcome. Our leaders, experts, and average citizens were always skeptical on the future of this great country.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:20 AM
reply to post by Mdv2

When I was younger I always wanted to live in the states. The bright lights, Expensive cars, Rock music, and exploring what the land had to offer.
It wasn't until I started realizing how fascist the puppeteers of America were, that changed my mind for ever.
What goes up, must come down.


posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:27 AM
reply to post by ThePyramidAgenda

I live in America and I have always wanted to escape to quiet New Zealand!

I do have hope for us, but it is going to take work and im afraid nobody wants to do it

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:29 AM
reply to post by squirelnutz

Well your welcome to come here.
The biggest thing happening over here is the natives trying to claim the foreshores

Nothing major.
But you are welcome here, come and chill.


posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:37 AM
This is on page three of the article, and strikes as quite visionary. It's worth a highlight here ...

Counterintuitively, as their power wanes, empires often plunge into ill-advised military misadventures. This phenomenon is known among historians of empire as “micro-militarism” and seems to involve psychologically compensatory efforts to salve the sting of retreat or defeat by occupying new territories, however briefly and catastrophically. These operations, irrational even from an imperial point of view, often yield hemorrhaging expenditures or humiliating defeats that only accelerate the loss of power.

Embattled empires through the ages suffer an arrogance that drives them to plunge ever deeper into military misadventures until defeat becomes debacle. In 413 BCE, a weakened Athens sent 200 ships to be slaughtered in Sicily. In 1921, a dying imperial Spain dispatched 20,000 soldiers to be massacred by Berber guerrillas in Morocco. In 1956, a fading British Empire destroyed its prestige by attacking Suez. And in 2001 and 2003, the U.S. occupied Afghanistan and invaded Iraq. With the hubris that marks empires over the millennia, Washington has increased its troops in Afghanistan to 100,000, expanded the war into Pakistan, and extended its commitment to 2014 and beyond, courting disasters large and small in this guerilla-infested, nuclear-armed graveyard of empires.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:38 AM
reply to post by Mdv2

It has been in decline for a while now, all due to Iran, and the trap built for US in Afghanistan.

US simply made wrong policies which lead it to where it is now.

It used NDU in Afghanistan (some evidence of DU also), thinking that there would be an insurgency straight away, therefore by contaminating them (they would die slow and painful deaths), but failed miserably as the word spread and people got angrier and angrier.

It is funny how no one asks why Afghans started revolting against US occupation couple years after US invasions?? It is because they found out they were bombed with chemical weapons, that they were getting sick, more deformed babies then ever etc etc.

The mistakes were huge, not really mistakes, but simply a very bad leadership, mixed with a very bad system which has stuffed up America, and which has allowed the corporation to buy US leadership and use them as their assets to make more money for them.

In the above sense, the real elites can move from country to country without any worry, even if US is destroyed, their concern is money.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:50 AM
The Day America will fall;
Will be the day they take "IN GOD WE TRUST"
off of the dollar bill.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 04:53 AM
Indeed a well put thread and replies so far, i can only hope it remains like this. Now as for the U.S. so called empire, well it is true that the dollar is not what it was 20 years ago, but that also reflects a change in global trade. With the introduction of the euro and creating a one world order across europe were only the highest industrialized nations have a voice, or should i say are heard more often. We begin to see a change even within the eurozone. Germany has silently expressed ideas of perhaps leaving the euro zone or at best, creating a dual status. That idea has been shot down along with those who supported such a silent thought.

This ultimately will lead to new leader to be elected in the upcoming election. Yes, people that is correct, the current chancellor will no longer be the hard nosed politician who is trying to force lower industrialized nations into adopting Germany policy. The negative side to the upcoming power shift will see the U.S. market burst into life within the eurozone. Many will announce the rebirth of the dollar. Although one should look deeper into the reasons for the new eurozone power shift. The word "Chinese" and its slow but steady push into the euro is what will drive the europeans to adopt the U.S. model.

Many may be or are not aware, that China does not regard workers or workers rights, or the financial institutions as equal to themselves, this is one simple reason why eurozone is to remain and the dolloar is to be the pendulum for when its required to be put into momentum.

So in short, its not over until the fat lady sings.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 05:00 AM
reply to post by Northwarden

Good points.

I noticed those points will maybe tie into Iran. Countries will start looking at Gas powered Power stations instead of coal. OZ is looking at gas powered stations:

By 2025, Iran and Russia will control almost half of the world's natural gas supply, which will potentially give them enormous leverage over energy-starved Europe. Add petroleum reserves to the mix and, as the National Intelligence Council has warned, in just 15 years two countries, Russia and Iran, could “emerge as energy kingpins.”

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 05:13 AM
America as an ideal and an idea, died on November 22, 1963. Of course most people didn't notice - they rarely do. The American Empire will be lucky to last until 2025. I will morn the American democracy, but not necessarily the ugly but necessary 'national security state" we have now. What we need for survival is certainly not what anyone wanted.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 05:18 AM
The entire decline and eventual fall of the united States of America come from greed within the government and a public that cares more about "American Idol" than the laws passed by our legislators.

Slowly but surely they are causing an engineered demise of the United States in an effort to control the world.

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 07:48 AM
That article seems to hit the all the angles of the potential decline or collapse of the United States in the years to come. It was fair assessment of the economic situation, energy requirements, education, military capabilities, and other serious matters that should have been reigned in years ago. The fact of the matter is, I think the mound of excrement has become insurmountable? America is etching closer and closer to a black hole, and through over extension of military assets, costly entitlement programs, astronomical borrowing and deficit spending, sharp decline in manufacturing, widespread bureaucratic and political corruption, and a alarming brain drain in the sector of the sciences and technology; America is on a collision course with empires of the past who were once great and passed to the annals of history.

Countries rise and fall all the time. The US is not immune from that immutable fact of history. In essence, the US was never meant to be a global super power. However, circumstances of history like the World Wars and the Cold War beckoned that ascendancy to the lone global super power. America was in the right place, and the right time to project its power and influence abroad. Time went on with perks of global status being reaped by the politicians, financial interests, and corporations, the good times were taken for granted; and opulence and decadence reigned supreme. No one thought that after a great party, there is a clean-up that follows.

As imminent disaster loomed on the horizon, and finally reaching the gates, everyone continued to drink and be merry as the walls closed in around them. The crisis ahead is untenable, and if anything is going to be done to lesson the blow, it won't be a simple act of legislation or a decree from a charismatic leader that will solve the problem as had being the storied solution in the past. Some kind of national effort is going to have to be initiated to hopefully feather the fall, and insure the viability of future generations.

This is a serious time, and fortunately some have read the tea leaves. However, far to many remain in the dark about the crisis looming, and they hope it will just go away with time. Their apathy to the scenario is what could make this decline a roaring howl instead of a whimper? Think of it as a deer in headlights view of the world and the situation at home. Get out of the way of the speeding car or get hit. Good article, and a fair assessment of the current situation, as well as a viable incite into future outcomes.
edit on 6-12-2010 by Jakes51 because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 08:03 AM
reply to post by taskforce4256

I'll be glad to see the Democracy gone and replaced with The Republic

posted on Dec, 6 2010 @ 08:08 AM
Just would like to add the following post, which I originally posted in another thread but is very applicable:

Although a cliché - a picture being worth a thousand words - very much applies the following five brilliant masterpieces painted by Thomas Cole in the 1830s. Thousands of books and essays have been written on the rise and fall of empires, yet no book could possibly illustrate that scenario as clearly as these paintings do. It is the perfect metaphor of an empire's life cycle. Specifically, the series of paintings depicts the growth and fall of a fictional city in a way very similar to to the way the United States of America has evolved and the downwards direction it is heading.

Niall Ferguson, professor of history at Harvard University and specialized in financial and economic history explains how many civilizations share a sharp curve of decline and that a society's demise ''may begin only a decade or two after it reaches its peak population, wealth and power." He claims that an imperial collapse may come much more suddenly than many historians imagine.'' A combination of fiscal deficits and military overstretch suggests that the United States may be the next empire on the precipice. Yes, America is on the edge.''

Throughout history imperial leaders inevitably emerge and drive their nations into wars for greater glory and "economic progress," while inevitably leading their nation into collapse. And that happens suddenly and swiftly, within "a decade or two."

Be it the British or the Dutch empire, Napoleon's or the Roman empire - the above described parallel is very distinctive for the fall of past empires.

Hereunder you will find the series of paintings and the short explanations of professor Ferguson from his latest work, "Collapse and Complexity: Empires on the Edge of Chaos," in Foreign Affairs, the journal of the Council of Foreign Relations, a nonpartisan think tank. His message negates all the happy talk you're hearing in today's news -- about economic recovery and new bull markets, about "hope," about a return to "American greatness" -- from Washington politicians and Wall Street bankers.

I found the following quote from his explanation very much applicable and recognizable to the stage of the life cycle that I believe we are at. Wars (Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran), greed (bankers), corruption (politicians) are peaking at a period of relative wealth:

'The Consummation of Empire' focuses us on Ferguson's core message: At the very peak of their power, affluence and glory, leaders arise, run amok with imperial visions and sabotage themselves, their people and their nation. They have it all.

But more-is-not enough, as greed, arrogance and a thirst for power consume them. "Most great nations, at the peak of their economic power, become arrogant and wage great world wars at great cost, wasting vast resources, taking on huge debt, and ultimately burning themselves out."

I've included a time line, that I consider to fit the the situation of the US, which is arguable.

I - The Savage State (Until 1492, the pre-colonial era)

"In the first, 'The Savage State,' a lush wilderness is populated by a handful of hunter-gatherers eking out a primitive existence at the break of a stormy dawn." Imagine our history from Columbus' discovery of America in 1492 on through four more centuries as we savagely expanded across the continent.

II -The Arcadian or Pastoral State (1783 - 1945: Post Colonialism era)

"The second picture, 'The Arcadian or Pastoral State,' is of an agrarian idyll: the inhabitants have cleared the trees, planted fields, and built an elegant Greek temple." The temple may seem out of place. However, Cole's paintings were done in 1833-1836, not long after Thomas Jefferson built the University of Virginia using classical Greek and Roman revival architecture.

As Ferguson continues the tour you sense you're actually inside the New York Historical Society, visually reminded of how history's great cycles do indeed repeat over and over. You are also reminded of one of history's great tragic ironies -- that all nations fail to learn the lessons of history, that all nations and their leaders fall prey to their own narcissistic hubris and that all eventually collapse from within.

III - The Consummation of Empire (1945 - 2000: post World War era)

"The third and largest of the paintings is 'The Consummation of Empire.' Now, the landscape is covered by a magnificent marble entrepôt, and the contented farmer-philosophers of the previous tableau have been replaced by a throng of opulently clad merchants, proconsuls and citizen-consumers. It is midday in the life cycle."

But more-is-not enough as greed, arrogance and a thirst for power consume them. Back in the early days of the Iraq war, Kevin Phillips, political historian and former Nixon strategist, also captured this inevitable tendency in Wealth and Democracy:

"Most great nations, at the peak of their economic power, become arrogant and wage great world wars at great cost, wasting vast resources, taking on huge debt, and ultimately burning themselves out." We sense the "consummation" of the American Empire occurred with the leadership handoff from Bill Clinton to George W. Bush.

Unfortunately that peak is behind us: Clinton, Bush, Henry Paulson, Ben Bernanke, Sarah Palin, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and all future American leaders are merely playing their parts in the greatest of all historical dramas, repeating but never fully grasping the lessons of history in their insatiable drive for "economic progress," to recapture former glory ... while unwittingly pushing our empire to the edge, into collapse.

IV - The Destruction of Empire (2001 - 2025?)

Then comes 'The Destruction of Empire,' the fourth stage in Ferguson's grand drama about the life-cycle of all empires. In "Destruction" "the city is ablaze, its citizens fleeing an invading horde that rapes and pillages beneath a brooding evening sky." Elsewhere in "The War of the World," Ferguson described the 20th century as "the bloodiest in history, one hundred years of butchery." Today's high-tech relentless news cycle, suggests that our 21st century world is a far bloodier return to savagery.

At this point, investors are asking themselves: How can I prepare for the destruction and collapse of the American Empire? There is no solution in the Cole-Ferguson scenario, only an acceptance of fate, of destiny, of history's inevitable cycles.

V - Desolation

"Finally, the moon rises over the fifth painting, 'Desolation,'" says Ferguson. There is not a living soul to be seen, only a few decaying columns and colonnades overgrown by briars and ivy." No attacking "brigands?" No loveable waste-collecting robots from Wall-E?

The good news is the Earth will naturally regenerate itself without savage humans, as we saw in Alan Weisman's brilliant "The World Without Us:" Steel buildings decay. Microbes eat indestructible plastics. Eons pass. And Earth reemerges in all its glory, a Garden of Eden.

In my belief we have reached the The Destruction of Empire stage of the life cycle. Ferguson goes on to say that a swift collapse might be a very plausible possibility, in contrast to very slow and gradual collapse? ''What if collapse does not arrive over a number of centuries but comes suddenly, like a thief in the night?" What if the collapse of the American Empire is dead ahead, in the next decade? What if, as with the 2000 dot-com crash, we're in denial, refusing to prepare?''

'All Empires ... are condemned to decline and fall'

Great powers, like great men, are born, rise, reign and then gradually wane. No matter whether civilizations decline culturally, economically or ecologically, their downfalls are protracted."

We are deceiving ourselves, convinced "the challenges that face the United States are often represented as slow-burning ... threats seem very remote."

Throughout history, empires function "in apparent equilibrium for some unknowable period. And then, quite abruptly ... collapse," a blunt reminder of the sudden, swift, silent, certain timetable in Diamond's "Collapse" where a "society's demise may begin only a decade or two after it reaches its peak population, wealth and power."

You are forewarned: If the peak of America's glory was the leadership handoff from Clinton to Bush, then we have already triggered the countdown to collapse, the decade from 2010 until 2020 ... tick ... tick ... tick ...

ATS thread

edit on 6-12-2010 by Mdv2 because: (no reason given)

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