The Amerislump Is Upon Us

Just how fast is the United States sinking? A cautionary tale of declinism — and the political bloviation it inspires.

SUSAN GLASSER

Conservative agitator Pat Buchanan’s new book says America might not survive until 2025. "The Suicide of a Superpower," it’s called. Even the less alarmist are suddenly sounding a lot like him as economists now predict that China may surpass the United States as the world’s largest economy a lot sooner than we thought, and learned conferences are convened to deal with what Fareed Zakaria memorably dubbed "the post-American world."

Here at Foreign Policy, my colleague Joshua Keating (coiner of the "Amerislump" phrase) has taken to tracking all the gloom-and-doom punditry under the heading "Decline Watch" on our website — and not a day goes by without a classic example, from the poverty-stricken new muppet on Sesame Street who doesn’t have enough to eat to the supposed cocaine slump on Wall Street and the new government initiative to attract Chinese shoppers here — so they can buy Made in China goods, but at the cheap prices caused by our undervalued dollar.

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