- Where Declinist Talk Can Be Useful Tufts international politics professor Dan Drezner responds by pointing out that adjusting America's expectations with its actual ability, however, can be helpful. "I'm not saying that the U.S. is in terminal decline and therefore should engage in a systematic strategic retreat," he writes, clarifying an earlier post. But "on the foreign policy front, selective U.S. retrenchment doesn't imply terminal decline so much as a temporary realignment to ensure that American power and interest are matched up going forward." Then he offers a question to his readers: "does retrenchment presage resurgence?" In other words: can correcting problems lead to new growth?
- Declinism: It's the Way Humans Think "The human brain is programmed to look for what is new, and what is dangerous," writes The Atlantic's Megan McArdle: "we're prone to ignore all the strengths of the American economy that are still there" and instead "focus on what has gone wrong." Thus, "the narrative of decline is usually the best fit for the facts that loom largest in our imaginations." But that's precisely why, "if you're tempted to make confident pronouncements on the future of American power--economic or geopolitical--its worth reading all the commentators in the past who were equally confident, and absolutely wrong."
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