We all remember the neocon hubris embodied in their Project for the New American Century. It turns out that the Obamians nurture a similar and only slightly more modest ambition: American world domination for just another fifty years.
Over his years in office, Obama has evolved and now is running for reelection as something of a Hard Power Democrat, highlighting his prowess in the use of force. Still, generational differences persist between the Obamians and the Clinton alums. For example, Bill Clinton and his secretary of state Madeleine Albright spoke of America as the “indispensable nation.” As secretary of state under Obama, Hillary Clinton has offered similar themes. “The United States can, must and will lead in this new century,” she said in a 2010 speech.
But when Obama’s younger aides talk about America’s role in the world, there is a subtle recognition that its post-World War II dominance may not last forever. “We’re not trying to preside over America’s decline,” deputy national security adviser and Obama speechwriter Ben Rhodes observed in an interview. “What we’re trying to do is to get America another 50 years as leader.”
In the language of Washington centrist politics, 50 more years of global domination is supposed to signal moderation.