The United States and European societies are losing the economic and demographic race to the top.
Perhaps the Europeans were always doomed. The frivolous nature of the French Enlightenment and French Revolution, which Europe embraced over the mature and reflective British and German Enlightenments, led Europe to an abyss of avarice and irresponsibility. The First World was the beginning a pan-European disaster that has with odd intermittent pause continued to this day. Now after two decades of self-determination, the Europeans have failed to secure their prosperity and failed to build a united federation. Previously, the Eurocrats boasted that the European Union would become a world power that would rival the United States. But in 2013 – as the Eurocrisis continues and Europe is unable to establish social order under pressure from Islamist radicals and unassimilated immigrant groups – the verdict of history is heard from across the pond: “You can’t build this.”
America was always different. We believed different things. We believed that human nature is flawed and corrupted, where large number of humans were gathered together in society religion and the diffusion of power were necessary to preserve peace. The concentration of power in the hands of a group or an individual was dangerous due to human nature. The American recognition of these core facts of human civilization was not unique. Leaders and philosophers in various societies had lamented – and at times celebrated – the general corruption of human will. American exceptionalism existed because the wider population accepted this understanding of human corruption.
Who are we as a people?
Why did we choose a different path from the Europeans?
One the great tragedies of 1960s is growing belief that Americans are not a people, and that Americans do not have legitimate claim to their land or its resources. We should be skeptical of this line of thinking. If progressives have ruined American education over the last 50 years, it seems logical to question their historical assumptions.
However, at this time there is a question of more immediate importance to the future of the United States: Can we rebuild ourselves?
The tea party and other American restorationist movements have yet to articulate a complete vision of the American nation and reject the limiting language of economic determinism.
Commercial systems do not make a people. While the pseudo-intellectuals are allowed to continue setting the limits of discussion of on the attributes of the American character, the recovery of liberty will become harder to attain. Further, it is hard to influence culture when one is actively participating in it.
The tea party has reached the moment in which each member must decide to help increase the movement’s sophistication or allow it to drift into irrelevancy.
To rebuild America, the restorationists need to articulate a sophisticated foreign policy, defense policy and fiscal policy. They need to explain their vision for a productive and harmonious nation and the role of the government within that nation. And they will need to flex their social muscle. While politics is important, the health of society will determine whether an electoral “revolution” will have lasting effects on the country. We cannot rebuild our government when our communities are failing.
American society must be reformed. In many ways the American people have lost their virtue. Our violent crimes are becoming more violent, we reject our responsibilities and delink from our families. A restorationist social response that negates the many negative influences on society and politics can serve as a foundation for cultural renewal. But if we acknowledge that Europe cannot replicate America’s success, can we rest assured that we, who are so wantonly copying Europe, are able to repeat the successes of our forefathers? Time will tell.