The critical moment 409

Europe, sick with guilt and slowly dying of the wrong cure, Socialism, its hopeless condition complicated by the infection of Islam, has been able for more than sixty years to indulge itself with sweet consolations – lavish social security benefits, early retirement, high pensions, “free” health care, long and frequent vacations, paternity leave – because strong, prosperous America was paying the big bills and guarding the door.

While Europe abused, resented, envied, denigrated, despised and mocked it, America steadfastly kept its watch. America created wealth. America paid for the defense of the West.

Then came a change. America made the terrible mistake of electing Barack Obama to the presidency.

At first Europe cheered, maliciously pleased that America would be less free, less strong, less prosperous, more like Europe itself. Envy was satisfied.

But slowly the effects of  a weakened, poorer, less free America began to be felt, first in the more vulnerable European economies – Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Italy, Spain – but soon to some degree in all of them. The gleeful Europeans began to feel the pinch. Lower social security handouts, shorter vacations, longer working hours and years? How could this be done to them, this sudden austerity, this deprivation? It was intolerable, outrageous. Violent protest was called for.

They had not noticed the link between their comfort and all that they despised about America.

What happens in the US elections this November is crucial, not only for America, but for the whole world.

This is the subject of an article in today’s PajamasMedia by David Solway, the Canadian columnist whose political comment is always astute and apposite. The whole column needs to be read here.

He writes, in part:

The US [is] a country struggling for its very soul and teetering on the edge of economic and political meltdown. The “culture wars” between left and right, traditionalists and post-modernists, individualists and statists, are common to every Western nation, but in America the outcome of these wars will determine the fate not only of the country but of the entire Western world. Like it or not, how it goes with America is how it goes with the rest of us.

Europe, as many believe, is almost, if not already, lost. … It could no more resist the Islamic onslaught that is demographically absorbing the continent than it could prevent itself from returning to its authoritarian past in the form of an unelected transnational bureaucracy operating out of the Berlaymont Building [which houses the European Commission, the body that undemocratically governs the European Union] … Britain is the hollow shell of a once great imperial hegemon, studded with mosques and vulnerable to shariah creep, reduced to a condition of plebeian boorishness … minus the slightest vestige of national pride and vigor — in short, a country whose prime minister takes paternity leave. …

The fact is that the remnant Lilliputian West has long depended on the Brobdingnagian stature and power of the United States to ensure its solvency, security, and ultimate survival. 

Envy and resentment of this sprawling and robust — and necessary — giant among the nations were the motivating factors. For without the brawny presence of the United States in the Hobbesian jungle of world politics, neither Europe, Britain, nor the former Commonwealth dominions … could have defended their Enlightenment heritage or relied upon their own feeble military resources to guarantee their longevity. Gratitude, however, does not come easily. Contempt and self-infatuation are far more attractive emotional reactions for the parochial accessories of the grand historical drama. All those in the West who picket American embassies, deplore American ambition, write anti-American articles, columns, editorials and books, and cry “Down with America” are precisely the sycophantic beneficiaries of American strength and munificence.

Europe … responded with unadulterated joy to the election of a statist, far left American president who apologized for American exceptionalism, adopted the socialist model of governance, pledged to reduce military expenditures, and brought his country to the brink of bankruptcy. Europeans did not realize — or did not want to acknowledge — that their “advanced” socialist experiment in welfare governance depended in large part upon American military spending for the continent’s defense, which permitted a liberated fiscal surplus to be invested in social programs, early retirement benefits, and a cradle-to-grave security network.

This is now changing. With the proposed reduction of American military spending … Barack Obama no longer looks like a godsend but a weak and untrustworthy ally — in other words, like a European — who is depriving the continent of its parasitical future.

Regrettably, it is not only Europe that faces the specter of political and economic collapse. For America itself may be entering the tragic denouement of its 234 year odyssey. The “coming darkness” was not prepared overnight …  Nevertheless, the consummation of this trajectory toward radical implosion arrived with the stunning 2008 electoral victory of Barack Obama, following hard upon the Democratic Party assuming control of both houses of Congress. …

It seems as if the country’s governing and intellectual elite has abandoned its responsibility for the preservation of America’s social and political integrity, surrendering by daily increments to the forces of dissolution both within and without its borders. America’s enemies couldn’t have planned it any better.

This is the reason that the November 2 congressional and Senate elections are absolutely critical to stopping and reversing the downward trend which Obama and the Democrats have accelerated. The momentum of calamity must be turned back and the ground prepared for a colossal changing of the guard in the presidential election of 2012. …

Allowing the Democrats to chart the infernal spiral to catastrophe is no longer a viable option. And giving Obama a second term would be terminal.

Are we now witnessing the beginning of a new assertiveness … or the hastening of precipitous decline? Is the great adventure gaining its second wind or is it merely winding down? Will the future be relinquished to an increasingly powerful China and an imminent Islamic caliphate to slug it out for world domination? Or will America shake off its ideological stupor and rise from the debris of its own making as, to our great relief, the once and future republic?