It’s been a while since I’ve talked poltics, eh??
I am catching up on some reading, and read this interesting article.
What interests me here is that highlighted claim: that the US “is the greatest country in world history”, and therefore is entitled to do that which other countries are not.
This declaration always genuinely fascinates me. Note how it’s insufficient to claim the mere mantle of Greatest Country on the Planet. It’s way beyond that: the Greatest Country Ever to Exist in All of Human History (why not The Greatest Ever in All of the Solar Systems?). The very notion that this distinction could be objectively or even meaningfully measured is absurd. But the desire to believe it is so strong, the need to proclaim one’s own unprecedented superiority so compelling, that it’s hardly controversial to say it despite how nonsensical it is. The opposite is true: it has been vested with the status of orthodoxy.
What I’m always so curious about is the thought process behind this formulation. Depending on how you count, there are 179 countries on the planet. The probability that you will happen to be born into The Objectively Greatest One, to the extent there is such a thing, is less than 1%. As the US accounts for roughly 5% of the world’s population, the probability that you will be born into it is 1/20. Those are fairly long odds for the happenstance of being born into the Greatest Country on Earth.”
We are the greatest ever in all of the solar systems!
I like how he threw in “Depending on how you count…”
I like the second half of the article better, though. Let’s just say that there is such a thing as the greatest country ever (if we were able to collectively decide on how to rate countries as good and bad, then one would come out on top), then some people would be born into it.
But, would that mean that the “greatest country ever” could do whatever it wanted? It could do bad things, because it was a good country? Wouldn’t it lose its greatness at that point? Hmmmmmmmmm.
Does being in a position of greatness, or moral superiority, mean you can do whatever you want? Are your actions inherently good?
Is there no reason to examine the actions of the best country ever, because it is impossible that they will ever do bad things?
I know Someone whose actions are inherently good, and is above reproach. The idea that anyone but Him could be the leader of the greatest Kingdom ever is…
And this reminder makes me even less attached to or enchanted by, I’ll just say it, THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.