American Exceptionalism: The Role of the Government in the 21st Century




Elk, Alison

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Significant political events such as the fall of the Soviet Union and the opening of the Communist eastern bloc have ushered in the current era, which has captivated the global audience's study of American Exceptionalism. Despite, America's favorable position among the nations of the world, the domestic battle over what the role of government is presents a significant challenge. The topic of economic fairness has grabbed headlines around the country and has been a contributing factor to this challenge. The 2012 presidential election will provide American voters the opportunity to select a new domestic and international leader. In his ASNE speech, President Obama said, "I can't remember a time when the choice between competing visions of our future has been so unambiguously clear." That's correct. Obama's challenge is to make sure that American voters understand this. in the 2012 presidential election the central issue must be economic fairness. I will support my thesis by showing that the greatest threat to American Exceptionalism is manifested in the growing conflict over the role of government. A general review of Karl Marx and Max Weber's social economic theories will establish the foundation for discussions regarding American Exceptionalism (why democratic capitalism thrived and socialism failed). Next, a detailed analysis of FDR and the New Deal will provide the reader insight into the true conflict that has come to dominate American politics: Is the purpose of American government to be an agent of economic empowerment or dependency? Final commentary will explore the risks to American Exceptionalism if this conflict continues to become more divisive.



American, Exceptionalism, Government, Democracy