…John read this little gem over the holidays …
… and it has just popped in his feed again. He presumes that Mr. Will is tired and rather than writing new articles he is just putting older ones back on the treadmill. Which is odd … because this one is weird.
One particular paragraph that stood out for me (my bold), was when George wrote …
Obama’s foreign policy presumed the existence of “the community of nations.” But that phrase is worse than hackneyed and sentimental, it is oxymoronic: Different nations affirm different notions of justice; a community consists of people made cohesive by a consensus about the nature of justice.
… and it got me to wondering whether the ‘United States’ itself is in fact an oxymoron …. after all – if you take that second sentence and replace ‘nations’ with ‘states’ and ‘community’ with ‘country’ – does that not in fact clearly layout where the United States is today?
Different states affirm different notions of justice; a country consists of people made cohesive by a consensus about the nature of justice.
I think he is wrong about the community of nations. Sure, the US doesn’t want to be ‘part of the world’ – but most of the other countries do.
George’s final paragraph is worth a repeat that helps everything fall into place.
Soon, foreign policy will be conducted by a man who, although in 2010 he said WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange deserves the death penalty, now seems to trust Assange on the subject of Russian hacking more than he trusts the consensus of the nation’s $53 billion civilian intelligence institutions. Time passes and, we are told, brings progress.
Graham continued …
And, of course, it gets much worse, once you look more closely at the USA. For example, dissing the job you are about to get, and the institution it runs, is not typically a route to engagement, but …
So if there is no consensus even upon our institutions, upon what they are and what the skills and qualities would be required of the people to run them, what hope of community?
Which leads us into another discussion. Does the USA really still have sufficient community of interest — enough common agreement on its ideals, what it is and how it should operate — for it to continue as a coherent unit? Or is it coming to time for fragmentation? Even the United Kingdom, with a longer history than the USA, is now threatened with breakup as the outer units realise their interests may lie elsewhere. And this time there are no redcoats to enforce unity.
John Goes On
And just because it didn’t make the 2016 ballot, doesn’t mean it is going away – Mr. Draper understands persistence.