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Fall 2012

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Phi Kappa Phi Forum

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In his State of the Union address last January, U.S. President Barack Obama said that "anyone who tells you that America is in decline or that our influence has waned, doesn't know what they're talking about." Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, when in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, warned that unless Americans changed directions, they would see the "end of the American century by 2015." As bright and capable as both of these politicians are, they are both whistling in the wind. The American century - the post-World War II era of U.S. global leadership and dominance - ended a decade ago, and it is not coming back. While that does not mean the cessation of American wealth and might, it does mark a significant transformation in U.S. society and economics, and the country's place in the world. To cope with this transformation, Americans needs to recognize the nation's relative decline.


Reprinted from Phi Kappa Phi Forum Vol. 92, No. 3 (Fall 2012). Copyright (c) by David S. Mason. By permission of the publishers. For more information, go online to

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