The Economist has been watching events in America for a long time. A recent issue reports that "nearly six out of ten Americans now say that they oppose even [U.S. President Barack] Obama's 'good' war—the one against al-Qaeda and the Taliban. An America that is bleeding economically at home, with unemployment stuck at nearly 10% and debts as tall as the eye can see, is losing confidence in its ability, and perhaps in its need, to shape events in far-flung regions such as Central Asia and the Middle East" ("After Iraq," Aug. 28, 2010).
Writing in The Times of London, Stephen Robinson makes this comment in his review of Michael Mandenbaum's book The Frugal Superpower: "America is becoming more like Europe partly by political will, but mostly because of demographic forces Washington cannot control. As President Obama unveils socialised medicine, ageing baby boomers have pushed up spending on health and pension programmes to 40% of the federal budget" ("A Weakened Washington," Oct. 8, 2010).
He further observes that "it is the diplomatic/military operation that will be slashed as politicians fail to cut welfare spending." Britain has already started down this road. Massive defense cuts are already on the table. Remember, however, that as the Economist editorial above notes, "Even in an age of austerity America still towers above all comers in military power."
How soon will it be before even this enormous advantage begins to wane?
Stephen Robinson in his previously quoted review predicted: "The USA will no longer deploy in defence of oppressed civilians in the Balkans, Somalia and Haiti. It will act only if its specific interests are threatened, notably in the Middle East, and in facing up to a resurgent China" (emphasis added).
A full-page Times article from a Washington correspondent was titled "US Poverty Soars to Highest in 50 Years as Obama Struggles to Revive Economy" (Sept. 14, 2010). Times columnist Anatole Kaletsky observes that "a toxic mood has gripped US politics." He asks: "Is it just pre-election jitters or the sign of a much more serious decline?...Is America in the early stages of a permanent decline in its standing?" (Oct. 6, 2010).
The Times' chief foreign commentator Bronwen Maddox offers one reason in her article "America Is Strangling Itself With Green Tape" (Aug. 6, 2010). She observes, "If you add armies of lawyers to a vast pile of regulation on the environment and health, it's a disaster for investors [who normally help propel economic growth]."
These questions should be asked: Can the United States really afford all these massive social and environmental programs without incurring massive long-term damage to its economy? In the long run, will European-style socialism really work in America? And while many Americans now see that the government's economic policies are leading to looming disaster, will that be enough to reverse course?
Our free 110-page booklet The United States and Britain in Bible Prophecy explains the historical backdrop of America's current afflictions while also projecting where the nation is headed in the future. Request or download your free copy today. (Sources: The Times [London], The Economist.)