May 2, 2011

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Okay, Let’s Decline.

President Obama, listen carefully. By every benchmark, this should be an American century. Our known fossil fuel reserves are soaring, as new finds of coal, natural gas, oil, tar sands, and oil shale keep growing, not shrinking. Demographically, we are expanding; Europe, Japan, and China are shrinking.

We do not have the strikes of Europe, the violence of the Middle East, the state oppression of China. India has religious, social, and caste tensions unknown in the U.S. American farmland is the most productive in the world, its farmers the most gifted and innovative. We inherited a vast, developed infrastructure; out duty is to improve and expand it, not, as our ancestors, start from scratch building a Hoover Damn, intercontinental railroad, or port facilities in Oakland.

On the other hand, a significant portion of our leadership — including our President — doesn’t much like the idea of American exceptionalism. Like Britain just after World War II, we have a leadership class that fundamentally doesn’t like the country it leads as it is, and wants to change it into something . . . less.