I have been reading Noam Chomsky lately I am in the middle of a great book of his titled, “Hegemony or Survival: America’s Quest for Global Dominance (American Empire Project)”. The book is a good read, Chomsky lays out the groundwork for a thesis which is, the United States of America has engaged in an an Imperial Grand Strategy since the beginning of the second world war and that the strategy has been developed since the days of George Washington and his conquest of the Iroquois nation.
Hegemony is the dominance of one society over another. It is hard to argue against the fact that the United States has not been in the Hegemony business. English is the most widely spoken and used language in the world. 1.5 billion people in the world speak English and the current population of the United States of America and the United Kingdom is only 396 million. Some will argue for American exceptionalism and that the ideas of democracy and a republic are so lofty that others 1 billion 1 hundred four million people are so taken with republican ideas and democracy that they speak English. Keep in mind that democracy was invented in 500 BCE in Athens and some would argue that the French ideas of democracy. liberty and equality are almost identical to those of the United States. Why doesn’t the whole world speak French then? Some would argue that the French have abandoned colonization while the United States has embraced it with wars on almost every continent disguised as peace keeping, nation building, liberation movements.
All this reading and researching into Hegemony and colonization got me to thinking about Nietzsche and his will to power.
[Anything which] is a living and not a dying body… will have to be an incarnate will to power, it will strive to grow, spread, seize, become predominant – not from any morality or immorality but because it is living and because life simply is will to power… ‘Exploitation’… belongs to the essence of what lives, as a basic organic function; it is a consequence of the will to power, which is after all the will to life.from Nietzsche’s Beyond Good and Evil, s.259, Walter Kaufmann transl.
I am not positive but a will to power concept lacks something that if humanity is to survive needs to have and that is faith in a higher power or humanity. It makes sense that a society that does not have faith in others will find it that societies responsibility to use their perceived power to enforce their cultures and norms on other societies. The United States started with land management and the slaughter of the indigenous peoples and have not taken their foot off the gas pedal since.
Instead of learning from others the United States has tried and is succeeding in homogenizing the entire world. There is little besides voting that I can do to stop the spread of the United States but in my personal life I will try to be more open minded to others and understand that every living being is exceptional and deserves to be treated that way.
We can learn a lot from other living things if we understand that we are not omniscient.