"Unlike most of the 111 that preceded it, the 112th Congress must begin the process of restoring the national regime and civic culture the Founders bequeathed. This will require reviving the rule of law, reasserting the relevance of the Constitution and affirming the reality of American exceptionalism."
Is American Foreign Policy Exceptional? An Empirical Analysis
"At least since Alexis de Tocqueville's era, the only clearly articulated view of American foreign policy has been exceptionalism, which holds that Americans deprecate power politics and old-fashioned diplomacy, mistrust powerful standing armies and entangling peacetime commitments, make moralistic judgments about other people's domestic systems, and believe that liberal values transfer readily to foreign affairs. These dispositions, which seem to rest on the premise that war and peace are polar opposites, are at last consistent with and may help to explain America's oft-noted all-or-nothing approach to foreign commitments. This approach, in turn, is consistent with oscillations between major involvement overseas and significant retrenchment. According to this view, because American values are strongly inconsistent with the methods and objectives of Realpolitik, the country has a more messianic, erratic style abroad than has been typical of other great powers.
As prevalent as these claims have been, they have not been tested: we do not know if or in what sense U.S. foreign behavior is idiosyncratic. This article tests the conventional wisdom on these matters in three straightforward ways. Each examines whether an aspect of U.S. behavior discussed prominently in the literature has been atypical of the major powers. We conclude that claims of exceptional U.S. external behavior have been exaggerated, although more research is needed to determine whether other dimensions of U.S. foreign policy that have been widely discussed, such as its presentation to domestic audiences, are indeed highly atypical."
More About This Topic...
Click thumbnails below to view links