Remember how everyone keeps bringing the fact that the American empire, like every other empire before it, will soon be crumbling, and perhaps that’s not such a bad thing? From our grotesque model of beauty to our fast food to our sedentary car-centered lifestyles, we don’t export much of value these days, and our technology is definitely behind that of many other world leaders. It’s been a long time since America made anything really big, beautiful, or important.
It’s the people I worry about, however, rather than the place, and as long as they are okay—and they’re not, at this point, with one of the widest poverty gaps between the rich and the rest of the population in history, and unemployment only on the slight mend after hitting the highest numbers ever since the Depression—I’m okay with the decline of the American empire. Let someone else lead the world in trends and vapid media and other uselessness for a while.
But in order for us to actually be okay, we need to do a little self-care. We could stand to provide citizens with better employment opportunities, better healthcare, better pay, and better air quality. Something we could use that’s quite simple is also an improved infrastructure, since ours seems to be crumbling to third world status—or even below it.
Sure, once we’re out of gas and we’re all pushing wobbly shopping carts around in a post-Apocalyptic like setting, we won’t need our roads and bridges in good repair so much; but for now, it’s kind of important, and not only would it make us safer, it would provide Americans with much-needed jobs. And even if we can’t afford to pay for new jobs, I think cutting a few Congressional ones (or their aides, or their aides’ aides’ coffee-getters) might put enough money in the coffer to employ people to fix our crumbling roads and other public structures.