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What Does It Take to Destroy a World Order?

What Does It Take to Destroy a World Order?

Alfred W. McCoy

Once upon a time in America, we could all argue about whether or not U.S. global power was declining. Now, most observers have little doubt that the end is just a matter of timing and circumstance. Ten years ago, I predicted that, by 2025, it would be all over for American power, a then-controversial comment that’s commonplace today.


What does it take?

An unapologetic, concerned population, not afraid to take any actions necessary to hold it’s government responsible.


Here’s to the day when the USA is but one more bozo on the bus, like Great Britain, Spain, France, Portugal,… Better yet, Imagine:


The U.N. should have been–could have been–humanity’s last, best hope, if only the far right in the US had not tried to undermine it and marginalize it almost from the beginning.

America’s inherent racism, combined with its obsessive fear of Socialism of any form,
and also its tendency toward violence, rendered impossible the full implementation of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which would led to more co-operation between nations.

Without universal cooperation in order to adapt to changing climate, without collaboration intstead of competition, its hard to imagine how humanity can ameliorate the worst effects of what is coming.


Great history lesson. Thank you Professor McCoy.

Would implementing the Green New Deal make much difference?

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I wonder if it all fell apart after WW 2? It seems , inreading about it, that the entire nation wa invested in the war, with stories of pope willfully saving gas and doing without, and supporting-----becsue nearly the entire nation was focused n that war. The ability to turn washing

Imagine is one of the reasons that I started down my current path.
I think it still is a great rallying cry.
But we need so much more to evolve into today’s dynamic.

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I agree with you, but where we will we find such people? The population that voted in polls 70% for a war against Iraq because there could be a mushroom cloud over their cities? Not likely. They won’t even recognize what is wrong.

Basically, current governments are publicly planning for a world that can not exist under current energy usage patterns. The Belt and Road project is a case in point.
Imperial decline progresses by supplanting genuine leadership and public participation with a courtier class responsible only to an oligarchy. Oligarchs have been lying to the public for decades, if not centuries, and now believe their own fables. The logical conclusion has them electing a proudly ignorant, bare-faced liar as President.
Trump may have little long-term impact. Except that the world can no longer pretend the US knows anything about the world, their own best interests, or the best interests of their longest allies and best friends. Clinton, his so-called opponent, encouraged the Honduran coup and directly attacked Russian strategic interests by trying to occupy Sevastopol. US oligarchs put the world through two great recessions in 10 years, destroying decades of lower and middle class wealth. US oligarchs can’t be expected to defend democracy, expand human rights, or manage the most important part of world’s economy.
The last acts of the Imperium will have them lying to each other as their society collapses: political elites that can’t tell trusted friend from odious enemy because the enemy looks and acts so much like the US; an immense military incapable of winning the smallest wars; children are used to punish immigrant families fleeing US imperial cruelty in their own countries; the worst educated generation since 1776 as schools, libraries, an independent press, and dissenting voices are crushed by corporate design; resurgent bigotry aided by brutally stupid, corrupt police cruelty; random violence blessed by empty prayers; vapid indifference for anything that doesn’t touch their own families, or their favourite sport.
These are all signs of a society about to collapse with only a minor environmental disaster, out of the environmental armageddon certain to come, needed to start the landslide.

H.L. Mencken: 'Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.’

Voltaire: “Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”

Is this sarcasm…
“The global order didn’t blink when the sprawling Soviet empire imploded in 1991” They did not blink because the Western capitalists were plundering the former Soviet Union with eyes wide open.

“military interventions has been balanced, even softened, by a surprisingly liberal world order” Iraq, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Congo, Palestine? Hundreds of thousands killed…

“sovereign states meeting as equals at the United Nations” Meeting yes, but at every turn votes vetoed by the strongest former empires.

Praising the World Bank!!!???

“Universal Declaration of Human Rights” - which along with other international agreements is ignored daily by USA and other former imperial powers


Exactly. This article reminds one of Trump’s tactics - divert attention from war crimes committed by this empire by talking about empires in general. Then throw in climate change which will do in not merely the US empire but all other nations as well.

The fact is that it has always been the existence of a small pathological group that is responsible both for the creation of the US empire and its eventual demise. The period around the end of WW2 saw an acceleration of the empire disease, when MacArthur had two officers drawing a line dividing North and South Korea that subsequently escalated into the Korean War. It was also around that time when MacArthur proclaimed the Pacific Ocean an Anglo-Saxon lake. Logically, then, to protect that lake, US power had to be predominant around all littoral states, which again meant the war against Vietnam and even Laos and Cambodia (each of the three nations suffered more bombings than that dropped in the entire WW2 European theatre ). And, to establish a “world order” later invasions, all contravening international laws, were conducted in the MidEast as well. Not to mention the empire’s backyard, Latin America, or Africa which was gifted, whether the Africans like it or not, with “AfrICom”.

No empire can last if it has to invade nations almost all the time. Not all “natives” from other countries and regions are impressed by threats and declarations such as “taking out” some menacing Russian weapons or that half a million deaths of Iraqi babies was “worth the price” of punishing Saddam Hussein’s regime. The longevity of any country, and even more so an empire, rests on morality as much as military power. This is something the neocons have to learn. And so does this article’s author.

Thank you for your post. While reading the article I thought that the piece needs a big dose of Howard Zinn because it is very deficient.

The U.N. still is the best chance we have. It needs to be reformed but it’s the best chance we have.

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My desperate clinging to optimism can’t bring my self to click on the “like”. But every word is right on. (sigh)