Chauncey DeVega takes a look at the bleak prospects.
Pulitzer prize winning journalist Chris Hedges is quoted as saying that he feels that these are good times compared to what is in store for the USA.
These are deceptively ominous words.
Samuel Huntintgon had used the damning phrase that the US as a world power has declined in his infamous book The Clash of Civilizations and the Making of New World Order.
I do not remember these words being in his original Foreign Affairs magazine article - that I had read when it was published a few years earlier than the book.
The implication is that he felt that US is not baying for a clash - it is just a thing that will happen as a normal course event in the history of civilizations.
In the book the theses got, intentional or unintentional, focus that the Islamic civilization is more prone to clash with the rest of the civilizations. Only Chinese civilization was the exception with whom Islam happened to be at relative peace.
Let us not forget that in 1990 the US had given a bloody nose to Iraq. Iraq happened to be a country that US had supported in former's folly in going to war with its powerful neighbour - Iran.
Of course there was warm, if not hot, talks in the western press about Islamic terrorism around that time. And for more than four decades the US has been thwarting all attempts to step Israeli expansionist activities in the UN.
Time was ripe to punish their former allies, the Muslims, who did the task of decimating the USSR in Afghanistan in 1989.
And did the US take up the task in all earnestness?
The Muslim world is still reeling under the vagaries of US liberation of Islam and Muslims from fundamentalism and the rest.
May be Chris Hedges' dire forecast is a blessing in disguise and the Muslim world can really heave a collective sigh of relief at the US losing some bite.
Thankfully the communists or the Muslims are not to be blamed for the latest cause of decline.
Ultimately, the pandemic has further exposed and exacerbated — for those still somehow in denial about the decades-long reality of America as a decaying empire — deep political, social, economic, cultural and other societal problems.
The rot is comprehensive - political, social, economic, cultural and other societal problems.
Thank God, for a change, the US looks inward for her problems.
The author cites a George Packer quote from the Atlantic :
Every morning in the endless month of March, Americans woke up to find themselves citizens of a failed state.
Even in this meltdown the Muslims as the dark role model are not at all far from the US imagination.
Even a journalist of Vietnamese origin now can chip in diagnosis:
The falling apart story of Yugoslavia is being brought in. May be this time self-assurance motivated adventure will not be directed against the Muslim world.
In this conversation, Hedges warns that the tumult and pain of Trump's coronavirus crisis is but a preview of far worse things in America's future, as social inequality and political failure combine to create a full collapse of the country's already declining standard of living, as well as its ailing democracy.
The US was a glorious paradigm and in that it was inevitable that living standards higher than sustainable were the norm. Falling of living standards can not thus be taken as a decline but a normal corrective course of nature.
Hedges also explains how the Democratic Party and its presumptive presidential nominee, Joe Biden, will likely not be able to respond to the Age of Trump and the economic and social destruction created by gangster capitalism, in combination with the coronavirus pandemic. Why? Because the Democrats are also part of the plutocratic establishment that has failed the American people.
For long I have been feeling that the mess that Indian Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi has engendered in Indian economy will not easily fixed by anyone taking over the reins from him. But I digress. Coming back to the US - are the people of America so innocent that they have no part in American wrongs?
The question for the rest of the world or at least that part of the world that has suffered because of the US should feel sad?
I'll prefer to lick my own wounds.