American Decline

Why the troubled US empire could quickly fall apart

Asia Times

For the first time in more than a century, the United States has a real, serious, ascending global competitor.

The US wars lost in Iraq and Afghanistan exposed imperial overreach beyond what even 20 years of war could manage. That the defeats were drawn out for so many years shows that domestic politics and the funding of the domestic military-industrial complex were, more than geopolitics, the key drivers of these wars. Empires can die from overreach and sacrificing broadly social goals for the narrow interests of political and economic minorities.

The United States has 4.25% of the world’s population yet accounts for about 20% of global deaths from Covid-19. A rich global superpower with a highly developed medical industry proved to be badly unprepared for and unable to cope with a viral pandemic.

Levels of debt – government, corporate and household – are all at or near historical records and rising. Feeding and thereby supporting the rising debts is the Federal Reserve, with its years of quantitative easing.

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