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see country sink |  Montreal Magazine

see country sink | Montreal Magazine

I have always been wary of primitive anti-American sentiment.

Whenever I hear friends speak ill of the United States, I make a point for them to remind them that the country they slandered was the home of Philip Roth, Louis Armstrong, Jackson Pollock, James Baldwin, Carson McCullers, Orson Welles, etc.

America is a victim

But the longer it went on, the harder it was for me to contrast my anti-Americanism.

I look at what’s going on with our neighbors to the south, and all I feel is fear.

And severe pain.

It is as if the works of the American artists who honored them, their intelligence, their talents, and their genius, no longer weigh against the great tidal wave of stupidity that is in the process of engulfing the country.

What can Jean-Michel Basquiat’s painting or Norman Mailer’s novel do against the gross ignorance of the masses and the hysterical extremism of elites, left and right?

nothing. We are no longer in the 1960s, when culture had a certain influence – if not a certain influence – on the direction a country could go.

Important novels are no longer on the bestseller list, and universities have become advertising factories for the latest fashionable ideas.

In short, the longer it lasted, the more I got the impression of seeing the sinking of the Titanic.

To witness the slow and endless agony of civilization.

It was not the Russians who finally managed to outsmart the United States, nor the Chinese.

It is the Americans themselves who will set fire to their barracks.

The United States is literally imploding from within.

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They are consumed by their demons.

All opinions are equal

I know it’s common to quote this author when it comes to the United States, but Alexis de Tocqueville had it all planned out.

in Democracy in AmericaThe famous French philosopher, published in 1835, said that the concepts of liberty and equality, so dear to Americans, might lead them to their downfall if they considered them absolute values.

Because society, whether we like it or not, is a chain.

However, a man who believes that he is absolutely free and does not recognize any form of authority (whether political, intellectual or moral) does not consider himself part of a chain, but as an independent, self-sufficient link. He does not owe anything to anyone.

This individual will not shy away from the affairs of the city and focus only on his own life, but will eventually believe that his opinions are as true as those of any expert.

The decline of the empire

This is currently happening in the United States.

Trump, that’s it: a perversion of the egalitarian ideal. It pushed the idea of ​​equality to its zenith.

All opinions are equal, and no theory is more credible than another, it is enough for me to have the conviction that a thing is true for it to be so.

How can you build a cohesive society on such foundations?

How do you avoid collapse?