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On America’s 244th year of independence, I offer these “rants” from Tom Engelhardt, an American editor, publisher, and author who belongs to the same generation as our 45th president.

That my generation, whether in the form of Donald Trump or Mitch McConnell, would be responsible for turning imperial America into an autocratic-leaning, collapsing semi-democracy, and a first-class world annihilator, I would have found hard to imagine. [In the early 1970s], if you had told me that, half a century into the future, the world’s fate would rest on a presidential election between a genuine madman and something close to a dead man (that, for all we know, may not prove to be an election at all), I would have dismissed you out of hand. And yet that, it seems, is the pandemic legacy of my generation for which we should all be ashamed, even as we watch the young, driven by the insanity and inanity of it all, turning out in our diseased streets to protest a country coming apart at the seams.

Excerpt from “The Age of Disappointment? Or How the American Century Ends” by Tom Engelhardt, published in TomDispatch.com on June 18, 2020.

Tom Engelhardt is a co-founder of the American Empire Project and the author of a history of the Cold War, The End of Victory Culture. He runs TomDispatch.com and is a fellow of the Type Media Center. His sixth and latest book is A Nation Unmade by War.

A Happy Fourth of July to all my American blogging friends! For the sake of our country and planet, may saner minds prevail.