George Weigel on America and the world :

The foreign policy debate in the United States has often been peculiar, in that it’s not infrequently about the United States rather than the world. Throughout history, other great powers have thought about world politics in terms of national interest. Americans typically think about the world through the prism of their image of America.

Also today, Patrick J. Deneen on President Obama’s campaign for Leviathan :

The state undermined competing allegiances by demanding primary allegiance to itself alone, and only secondarily and “voluntarily” to these preexisting institutions. Such memberships became less and less “constitutive.” Rather, such associations and memberships came to be viewed as secondary to our primary allegiance to a State that reserves the right to control, oversee, and define any other institution.