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Empire As A Way of Life: An Essay on the Causes and Character of America's Present Predicament Along with a Few Thoughts about an Alternative
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Second, Williams meant Empire as a Way of Life to be an essay to be read by the widest possible audience and certainly not one to be read after his much more detailed, complex works on diplomacy. And so it happened: Empire became a book widely read by lower division college students in history, political science, and sociology. We welcome the book in its new edition.
Readers should be forwarned that much of Williams' arguments in this book are rehashings of ideas he put forth with much more detail in Contours of American History, The Tragedy of American Diplomacy, and The Roots of the Modern American Empire. Empire as a Way of Life should not be a reader's first encounter with Williams. His earlier works illustrate how deep Williams'knowledge of US history truly is. What this book does is develop his earlier arguments into a concise indictment of our society and its need for empire to sustain our growth. Williams points out that this does not need to be the case, but disinterest amongst American voters and the corporate world's ability to manipulate the issues creats the reality in which empire thrives.
According to Williams, most, but not all, presidents give in to demands for empire and in reality do a disservice to the rest of the world and to our own ideology.Read more ›
The roots of these policies are to be found in the surplus production of agricultural and, later, industrial products and the need to conquer overseas markets for selling these surpluses. In other words, it was (is) waging wars for trade. By the way, the surplus proceeds went (go) to a minority.
The few who rule the US see an imperial policy as the end and purpose of American culture. They want to be the just judge (and jury), the center of global government and the policeman enforcing that power!
But for W.A. Williams, it is an illusion to reap the rewards of empire without paying its costs and without admitting that the US is an empire.
As H.J. Raymond said: `I greatly fear we shall sacrifice our liberties to our imperial dreams.'
Already in 1980, 50 % of all US scientists and engineers were employed in military work and 53 % of all tax dollars were used for military operations (more than double the health + education budget).
The author also criticizes heavily Roosevelt's New Deal, because it created an institutional link between the huge companies and the military. Power became even more consolidated and centralized. The State and the large corporations had become the Very Visible Hands oiling the economic process by taxes imposed on ordinary citizens, while the proceeds went (go) to ...
For W.A.Read more ›
William Appleman Williams explained it well twenty-five years ago when he wrote this essay. Imperialism has always been our nation's "raison d'etre" despite all the high-sounding libertarian rhetoric to the contrary. In Williams's Marxist view of elite behavior, elites have always sought to enhance their pocketbooks at the expense of everyone around them.
The Revolutionary War was a war to secure their pocketbooks from the mercantilists in England.
The Constitution was a "coup d'etat" over the Articles of Confederation and the libertarian United States of America because the elites (Hamiltonians) who pulled it off wanted wars with North Africa and the Articles prevented the warmongers from starting them.
The War of 1812 was fought on behalf of Yankee elites and their pocketbooks.
The War Between the States was a war for empire. Abraham Lincoln made a "bargain with the 'Devil'"(p 92) to rape the Bill of Rights on behalf of Yankee elites and their pocketbooks.
The Spanish-American War was instigated by the U.S. on behalf of elites and their desire to acquire the Philippines. After the U.S. liberated the Philippines quite quickly, they spent the next three years killing Filipinos in the name of empire.
The British were so impressed with American empire, they sent a fifth column to win us over to join them in the trenches of France for the Great War. Woodrow Wilson obliged them by sending our boys over to the Western Front to "usher in a millenium of democratic progress" (p134).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Book was exactly as promised great product fast shipping good prices i would recommend any day thanks for reading byePublished on February 3, 2013 by ERIC LAUGHLIN
This book should be read by all Americans who
care about the future of this country and its imperial
role in the world.
I recieved my bool sooner then I thought. In really good conidtioin like new. It has come in handy with History Class..
Received item in a timely manner. Book was in GREAT condition, like new! Empire As A Way of Life: An Essay on the Causes and Character of America's Present Predicament Along with a... Read morePublished on April 12, 2011 by v1114