Saturday, March 25, 2006

The American Theocracy

The American Theocracy, by Kevin Phillips

....Because survey takers do not always pursue explanations, this book will venture some. Reckless dependency on shrinking oil supplies, a milieu of radicalized (and much too influential) religion, and a reliance on borrowed money--debt, in its ballooning size and multiple domestic and international deficits--now constitute the three major perils to the United States in the twenty-first century.

Shouldn't war and terror be on the list? Yes--and they are, one step removed. Both derive much of their current impetus from the incendiary backdrop of oil politics and religious fundamentalism, in Islam as well as the West. Despite pretensions to motivations such as liberty and freedom, petroleum and its geopolitics have dominated Anglo-American activity in the Middle East for a full century. On this, history could not be more clear.

The excesses of fundamentalism, in turn, are American and Israeli, as well as the all-too-obvious depredations of radical Islam. The rapture, end-times, and Armageddon hucksters in the United States rank with any Shiite ayatollahs, and the last two prsidential elections mark the transformation of the GOP into the first religious party in U.S. history.