America’s Rise to Empire

It took place 70 years ago. Justin Raimondo, with whom I often disagree, is nonetheless a thoughtful and intelligent writer. His essay, a recommendation of Ex America by Garet Garrett, editorial writer for the Saturday Evening Post during the Roosevelt years, highlights the similarities between the America of the 1930s and our circumstances today:

FDR’s relentless campaign to subordinate all rival centers of authority to the power and glory of the Imperial Presidency – isn’t that a familiar story? Under the rubric of the economic emergency – the biggest financial collapse in the history of American capitalism – the ordinary rules and constitutional restraints on the power of government were relaxed and eventually suspended, as opportunists moved quickly to exploit the shocked and vulnerable populace. A propaganda of fear was utilized to engineer the overthrow of “the old order” – “We cannot go back to the old order,” FDR often intoned, without naming which order, and the casualties of the Great Depression could only nod their heads numbly.

Substitute the shock of the Twin Towers crumbling into dust for the Great Depression, and the Bush presidency reads like a rerun of FDR’s.

The Constitution of the United States has been under attack for many years, but what has surprised me as I’ve gradually discarded the sanitized version of history I was taught in school is that the most dangerous enemies of American liberty were never foreign powers, but those leaders we have raised up from within.

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