Parallax Views w/ J.G. Michael

Is America an Empire in Decline? w/ Alfred W. McCoy

February 8, 2021

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On this edition of Parallax Views, is American an Empire? And, if it is, is that Empire decline? Noted academic Alfred W. McCoy, Fred Harvey Harrington Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, believes the the answer to both those question is "Yes." McCoy has authored numerous books over the years including The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade, A Question of Torture: CIA Interrogation, from the Cold War to the War on Terror, Policing America’s Empire: The United States, the Philippines, and the Rise of the Surveillance State, but his most recent book, In the Shadows of the American Century: The Rise and Decline of US Global Power, deals with the idea the idea of as a declining empire most directly.

Last month, McCoy penned an article for TomDispatch that supplements the observations and analysis of In the Shadows of the American Century. Entitled "While America Was Sleeping: Waking from a Four-Year Fever Dream to Find Global Power Gone", the piece explores the ramifications of the 4-year Trump Presidency on America's status as a global hegemon and what it portends for the new President Joe Biden and America as a whole.

In this conversation McCoy and I discuss a number of issues including:

- The idea of America as an empire
- The ascension of China as a global power, the decline of American primacy, and what both together mean for the world
- Obama's geopolitical strategy and the TPP (Trans-Pacific Parternship)
- The imperial hubris of the George W. Bush Presidency and the Iraq War; the "unanaswerable question" of pinpointing the exact reason of U.S.'s decline in terms of global power
- Trump's acceleration of the decline and why McCoy believes the full-force of said decline could be felt as soon as 2030
- Reasons for China's ascent as a global power
- And much, much more.

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