View Poll Results: What force does the American Empire have on the world?

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  • Wholly Benevolent

    3 6.25%
  • Rather Benevolent

    15 31.25%
  • Hardly Benevolent

    5 10.42%
  • Not one way or the other

    2 4.17%
  • Slightly Malevolent

    3 6.25%
  • Malevolent

    3 6.25%
  • Very Malevolent

    3 6.25%
  • America is not an Empire

    14 29.17%
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Thread: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

  1. #1
    Advisor Tubub's Avatar
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    Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    The other day I was talking about the decline of the American Empire(ie trillions dollar deficit, weakened global military apparatus, narcissistic home populace) and the implications, as well as consequences, its collapse would have on the world. I was talking about what a horrible effect that could plausibly have on the world when my friend responded that it would likely be good, highlighting the end of British Imperialism as a triumph for humanity. Really? Has humanity really benefited through the ages from the demise of Western empires like ancient Greece, Rome, and Imperial Britain? I mean, many nations may have achieved their autonomy from Empire's ending, but historically have in turn begotten horrible poverty because of their immature and weak economic institutions... not to mention the often volatile and anarchic political situations. It seems like academia has waged a war against Imperialism for over a century, but when we look at nations like India and China, what is the bright beacon of light in otherwise dark circumstances? To me, it is quite clearly the liberal, secular influence of the West(which has much more influence in India than in terms of China.)

    Now, I don't mean to be beating the drums too much, and I understand as well as recognize the cost both in lives and treasure Imperialism has on the home nation, not to mention the often negative cultural and social affects it brings on the victim country. I also don't want to come off as arrogant, nor do I want to disregard the fruits of free trade and the fact that some influence is natural so exerting by way of arms is unnecessary.

    I foresee responses that highlight the usual points of Imperialism=Bad in general, but I'm more curious about people's ACTUAL perception of America's global military apparatus, instead of some philosophical discussion of Imperialism's moral implications(Whether good or bad). What is concrete evidence that America is a malevolent force in the world? Has the Democratic peace theory not largely succeeded, thanks largely to Western nations? Do countless nations not live off American aid and/or under the shadow of her tree of liberty(heh), allowing the US military to fight wars that their militaries would otherwise be forced to partake in?

    (Note: Keep in mind when I talk of America as an Empire I mean in a distinctly American sense of the term, as used by Thomas Jefferson when he wrote about the "Empire of Liberty" that would be America.)
    Last edited by Tubub; 06-18-10 at 07:43 PM. Reason: Add note
    “Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure...than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”
    -TR

  2. #2
    I invented Human Nature
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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    I put slightly malevolent because of alot of foreign policy blunders, but its a "necessary" evil in my opinion. Just representing our interests-- every country does that.
    Don't tread on me= Don't tread on my corporate masters

  3. #3
    global liberation

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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    I wish we had an empire. Check the dictionary.

  4. #4
    Advisor Tubub's Avatar
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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    Quote Originally Posted by ecofarm View Post
    I wish we had an empire. Check the dictionary.
    Check out the end note man. We don't necessarily befit the traditional definition of empire, but our global military appratus does reflect the nature of an Empire, as well as the language of our statesmen... It is empire in a distinctly American sense, an "Empire of Liberty." Historically, we were anti-Imperialists Imperialists, but recently American foreign policy has been overtly aggressive.
    “Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure...than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”
    -TR

  5. #5
    global liberation

    ecofarm's Avatar
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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    An empire specifically denotes possessions. Liberation does not create possessions. Stop using the language of the enemy.

  6. #6
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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    "...we shall divert through our own Country a branch of commerce which the European States have thought worthy of the most important struggles and sacrifices, and in the event of peace on terms which have been contemplated by some powers we shall form to the American union a barrier against the dangerous extension of the British Province of Canada and add to the Empire of liberty an extensive and fertile Country thereby converting dangerous Enemies into valuable friends." - Jefferson to George Rogers Clark, 25 December 1780

    "we should then have only to include the North in our confederacy, which would be of course in the first war, and we should have such an empire for liberty as she has never surveyed since the creation: & I am persuaded no constitution was ever before so well calculated as ours for extensive empire & self government." - Jefferson to James Madison, 27 April 1809

    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." -
    -- Thomas Jefferson

    "If America wants concessions, she must fight for them. We must purchase our power with our blood."
    James Monroe

    "The American continents ... are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers." (From the Monroe Doctrine)


    "In the Western hemisphere the adherence of the United States to the Monroe Doctrine may force the United States, however reluctantly, in flagrant cases of wrongdoing or impotence, to the exercise of an international police power."
    —Theodore Roosevelt, Annual Message to Congress, December 6, 1904

    America's neutrality is ineffectual . . . at best . . . The world must be made safe for democracy."
    —Woodrow Wilson, Address to Congress, April 2, 1917

    We're an Empire in a distinctly American sense, an "Empire of Liberty." There is nothing wrong with that in my opinion, but don't pretend that we don't have a global military apparataus that POSSESSES 100s of thousands of troops in different nations around the world. Period.
    “Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure...than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”
    -TR

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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    Empire requires a Monarchy.

    English 101
    "I do not underestimate the ability of fanatical groups of terrorists to kill and destroy, but they do not threaten the life of the nation. Whether we would survive Hitler hung in the balance, but there is no doubt that we shall survive al-Qa'ida." -- Lord Hoffmann

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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tubub View Post
    Check out the end note man. We don't necessarily befit the traditional definition of empire, but our global military appratus does reflect the nature of an Empire, as well as the language of our statesmen... It is empire in a distinctly American sense, an "Empire of Liberty." Historically, we were anti-Imperialists Imperialists, but recently American foreign policy has been overtly aggressive.
    Tell me what empire has ever stationed troops on foreign soil only with permission from the host nation?

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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    Man, seriously, read my whole comment. I know you have some political plugs and scores to settle but I have ad nausem said IN A DISTINCTLY AMERICAN SENSE of Empire, as reflected by Thomas Jefferson's landmark words the "Empire of Liberty".



    Our armies do not come into your cities and lands as conquerors or enemies, but as liberators. ... It is [not] the wish of [our] government to impose upon you alien institutions. ... [It is our wish] that you should prosper even as in the past, when your lands were fertile, when your ancestors gave to the world literature, science, and art, and when Baghdad city was one of the wonders of the world. ... It is [our] hope that the aspirations of your philosophers and writers shall be realized and that once again the people of Baghdad shall flourish, enjoying their wealth and substance under institutions which are in consonance with their sacred laws and their racial ideals.

    -- General F. S. Maude to the people of Mesopotamia, March 19, 1917

    The government of Iraq, and the future of your country, will soon belong to you. ... We will end a brutal regime ... so that Iraqis can live in security. We will respect your great religious traditions, whose principles of equality and compassion are essential to Iraq's future. We will help you build a peaceful and representative government that protects the rights of all citizens. And then our military forces will leave. Iraq will go forward as a unified, independent, and sovereign nation that has regained a respected place in the world. You are a good and gifted people -- the heirs of a great civilization that contributes to all humanity.

    -- President George W. Bush to the people of Iraq, April 4, 2003
    “Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure...than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”
    -TR

  10. #10
    Dungeon Master
    Veni, vidi, dormivi!

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    Re: Is the American Empire a Benevolent force for the World?

    it only benevolent as long as you don't have a conflicting ideology.
    So follow me into the desert
    As desperate as you are
    Where the moon is glued to a picture of heaven
    And all the little pigs have God

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