It may be just a coincidence that as I have grown older I have grown more pessimistic about the state of the union, but I don’t think so. I am well aware how easy it might be to project my own declines (old age is a bitch) on the world. Still, the evidence of “Empire’s End” is everywhere. The story at hand is just one of many data points.
When I was young, even American Nazis had 1st Amendment rights. Today, only “politically correct” identity groups do, whereas “politically incorrect” groups face federal harassment.
It gets worse. In 1928 Edward Bernays published his groundbreaking work, Propaganda, which proposed, “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.” It is my observation that the organs of propaganda have become so powerful within the USA that nothing like a nation exists anymore.
And yet I remain optimistic. Our Declaration of Independence and Constitution are antidotes to the political madness we currently endure. I may not live to see their principles resurrected in my lifetime, but I expect they will be resurrected.