Thursday, July 2, 2015

Hypothetical: No American Independence

We approach the anniversary of our divorce from the United Kingdom. There's a lot of could have gone worse, not just for the US, but for the entire world, had this revolution failed.

The US itself probably would not have fared that poorly. America most likely would have won dominion status in the 19th century, and remained part of the Commonwealth. Our expansion would've stopped at the Mississippi, with perhaps an AmerIndian tribe here or there. The US may have been consolidated with other British holdings in the Carribean, or Canada, though most likely not.

We would've become a rich democracy, like we are now, though less powerful. There's nothing wrong with that: we would be like Denmark. The frontier spirit which guaranteed liberty and exceptionalism would've never taken hold, and we most likely would resemble something closer to the modern European welfare state.

Everyone else is a lot worse off, though. An independent America never would've realized Manifest Destiny, and thus never would've seized valuable territories in California, the Great Plains, and the American Southwest.

These territories would've languished under inferior Mexican political institutions for decades or longer. The world's breadbasket (Iowa) would've never taken flight.

Many more people in our world would go hungry, perhaps billions more.

A weaker US would've never become the Arsenal of Democracy that single-handedly outproduced all the Axis nations combined. A stalemate would've developed along the Eastern Front between the USSR and Nazi Germany, at best. In Asia, the Soviets simply would've slaughtered Japan and dominated China utterly.

The Cold War begins in a melee a trois between Nazis, Communists, and a relatively weak Commonwealth.

The likely outcome is nuclear war, either limited or total, but who cares?

A strong America did a lot for the world.

Don't let anyone tell you differently. 

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