Sunday, November 19, 2006

VDH: Will the West Stumble?

Will the West Stumble?

What a stupid question. By any benchmark of economic prosperity, military power, and political stability, Western civilization--in the United States, Europe, and the former British Commonwealth--has never been stronger. Globalization has become a euphemism for Westernization, an apparent unstoppable juggernaut.

So how could the lingua franca of English, uniform international travel, or worldwide commerce ever falter--given that American-style material bounty is spreading among billions the world over?

But the global sale of PlayStation 3 or a world in Levis is only the glitzy veneer of civilization. That shared taste almost unnoticeably hinges on a powerful and liberal United States that keeps the peace and remains the spiritual and intellectual fountainhead of an entire global system--one ultimately dependent on American core ideas like freedom and tolerance. What pressures China to liberalize, protects the creativity of Japan, assures Europeans they can be postmodernists in safety, and guarantees that the world commerce is protected from both old and new piracy is a confident and strong United States.


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