Lessons of America's 'Decline'
International Journal of Contemporary Sociology, Vol. 48, No. 2, October 2011
16 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2013
Date Written: October 1, 2010
Pointing to the burden of coping with two lengthy wars and a rapidly mounting national debt, some have argued that the U.S. has overextended itself and is now in decline. The validity of and appropriate response to this claim must be examined on an empirical, constructive, and normative level. After outlining the viability of various predictive models, this paper concludes that while U.S. power has waned, resignation to an inevitable decline is premature. Instead, the U.S. should narrowly focus its resources on achievable security goals and avoid the costly yet historically ineffective strategy of pursuing nation-building policies.
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