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Decline and Fall (PDF)
The End of Empire and the Future of Democracy in 21st Century America
"Things fall apart; the center cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world."
Although he was writing nearly a century ago, Yeats could just as easily be describing the United States today. The decline and fall of America's global empire is the central feature of today's geopolitical landscape, and the nature of our response to it will determine much of our future trajectory, with implications that reach far beyond the limits of one nation's borders.
Decline and Fall: The End of Empire and the Future of Democracy in 21st Century America challenges the conventional wisdom of empire. Using a wealth of historical examples combined with groundbreaking original analysis, author John Michael Greer:
- Shows how the United States has backed itself into a blind corner in the pursuit of political and economic power
- Explores the inevitable consequences of imperial collapse
- Proposes a renewal of democratic institutions as the only constructive way forward.
By shifting the conversation from whether today's American empire should survive to whether it can survive, and arguing persuasively that the answer to the above question is "no," Decline and Fall makes an invaluable contribution to the body of speculative post-industrial literature. This book is a must-read for anyone concerned about the State of the Union, or who believes that the time has come to reinvent the American Dream.
John Michael Greer historian of ideas and one of the most influential authors exploring the future of industrial society, writes the widely cited weekly blog "The Archdruid Report" and has published more than thirty books on ecology, history, and nature spirituality. His involvement in sustainability issues dates back to the early 1980s, when he was active in the Appropriate Technology movement and became certified as a Master Conserver. He is the author of numerous titles, including The Long Descent, The Ecotechnic Future, The Wealth of Nature, and After Progress. He lives in Cumberland, MD, an old mill town in the Appalachians, with his wife Sara.