Is the USA an Empire in everything but name? [POLL] Watch

Poll: Is The USA an empire in everything but name?
Yes (16)
48.48%
No (14)
42.42%
Yes, including the rest of the West (3)
9.09%
Anonymous263
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#1
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#1
Just interested in peoples opinions. Is it just America or the entire west in general? feel free to post your opinions after voting.
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Aj12
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#2
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I don't really see how it could be an empire. Sure it could practice imperialism but having an empire (as in formal imperialism) is a very different thing that requires you to formally dominate a nation, directly appointing leaders ect.
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Arbolus
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#3
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(Original post by Aj12)
I don't really see how it could be an empire. Sure it could practice imperialism but having an empire (as in formal imperialism) is a very different thing that requires you to formally dominate a nation, directly appointing leaders ect.
It's done all those things in the past, though. It conquered and absorbed hundreds of Native American tribes during the 19th century, as well as a huge chunk of Mexico. Later on, it began interfering with overseas countries such as Cuba, Hawaii and the Philippines, overthrowing governments which showed too much independence and in many cases directly annexing the land as an unincorporated territory.

Whether or not America is still an empire today is debatable, but you can't deny that it's been one for most of its existence.
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Aj12
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(Original post by Arbolus)
It's done all those things in the past, though. It conquered and absorbed hundreds of Native American tribes during the 19th century, as well as a huge chunk of Mexico. Later on, it began interfering with overseas countries such as Cuba, Hawaii and the Philippines, overthrowing governments which showed too much independence and in many cases directly annexing the land as an unincorporated territory.

Whether or not America is still an empire today is debatable, but you can't deny that it's been one for most of its existence.
Oh no I certainly agree it has in its past. I actually wrote my dissertation on the subject but as of today I would't describe it as a formal empire.
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Anonymous263
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#5
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(Original post by Aj12)
Oh no I certainly agree it has in its past. I actually wrote my dissertation on the subject but as of today I would't describe it as a formal empire.
i did say in everything but name lol :P
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MatureStudent36
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#6
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(Original post by Anonymous263)
Just interested in peoples opinions. Is it just America or the entire west in general? feel free to post your opinions after voting.
Voted no. Every country in the world tries to influence the external environment. It's just that the rest of the world bought into their vision than the soviet unions.
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MatureStudent36
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#7
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(Original post by Arbolus)
It's done all those things in the past, though. It conquered and absorbed hundreds of Native American tribes during the 19th century, as well as a huge chunk of Mexico. Later on, it began interfering with overseas countries such as Cuba, Hawaii and the Philippines, overthrowing governments which showed too much independence and in many cases directly annexing the land as an unincorporated territory.

Whether or not America is still an empire today is debatable, but you can't deny that it's been one for most of its existence.
Cuba and the Phillipines was down to an issue with Spain. Hawaii if I recall wanted to join and is quite happy being part of the US.
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Aj12
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#8
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(Original post by Anonymous263)
i did say in everything but name lol :P
But its not. For it to be an empire it'd have to have formal control of nations, it'd have colonies and regions of land it directly controls. Formal empire requires direct control and total dominance. What the United States has in some places is sphere's of influence. Even informal imperialism requires economic as well as political control of nations. There are imperialistic elements of US foreign policy, however to say that it is close to an empire or an empire in all but name is factually incorrect.

(Original post by MatureStudent36)
Cuba and the Phillipines was down to an issue with Spain. Hawaii if I recall wanted to join and is quite happy being part of the US.

The US wanted Cuba as a protectorate and actually explored buying it from Spain at one point. The US turned Cuba into little more than a defacto colony. Hawaii was manipulated from the start with a coup launched by pro US elements on the island.
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MatureStudent36
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#9
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(Original post by Aj12)


The US wanted Cuba as a protectorate and actually explored buying it from Spain at one point. The US turned Cuba into little more than a defacto colony. Hawaii was manipulated from the start with a coup launched by pro US elements on the island.
As you've posted informative things in the past I'll now to your knowledge on this one and do some more research.

Although in Hawai's case, as there's no meaningful sepratist movement I'd say that Hawaiians aren't feeling subjugated people.
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Simes
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#10
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#10
It is a cultural empire, enforcing its language organisations, values and so on onto other cultures.
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Schrödingers Cat
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#11
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#11
The USA can barely look after itself let alone other colonies.
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Rakas21
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#12
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#12
(Original post by Anonymous263)
Just interested in peoples opinions. Is it just America or the entire west in general? feel free to post your opinions after voting.
Your statement is somewhat correct from about 1840 (when they invaded what was then Mexico) to the end of the Cold War but since then the US has not engaged in anything that could really be defined as imperialist and today we see rising powers removing it's hegemony.

By around 2050 the US will be largely as is (though Peurto Rico actually voted to join in 2012), the EU will have either collapsed or be a superstate expanding across the Arab North African states, China may have a few new islands but will be largely as is and India will be lucky if its still in one piece given ethnic divides. Those are the only nations this century which could if they wished establish an empire.

(Original post by MatureStudent36)
As you've posted informative things in the past I'll now to your knowledge on this one and do some more research.

Although in Hawai's case, as there's no meaningful sepratist movement I'd say that Hawaiians aren't feeling subjugated people.
Aye. Regardless of why it joined, Hawaii has been treated as just like any other state. Bar blind nationalism there's really no reason why any native would feel resentment or like they've been held back.
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Smash Bandicoot
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#13
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#13
I was curious about this, USA doesn't engage in informal imperialism either?
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Anonymous263
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#14
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#14
(Original post by Aj12)
But its not. For it to be an empire it'd have to have formal control of nations, it'd have colonies and regions of land it directly controls. Formal empire requires direct control and total dominance. What the United States has in some places is sphere's of influence. Even informal imperialism requires economic as well as political control of nations. There are imperialistic elements of US foreign policy, however to say that it is close to an empire or an empire in all but name is factually incorrect.
Well it doesn't have to have formal control of nations, there isn't like a rulebook that all empire have to follow.
They have puppet states that they control, previous empires had that too including the British empire!

'it'd have colonies and regions of land it directly controls.'
The US has over 600 military bases worldwide, many of which don't answer to the laws of that country.
Guantanamo is also a region of land that they control.
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Aj12
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#15
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(Original post by Anonymous263)
Well it doesn't have to have formal control of nations, there isn't like a rulebook that all empire have to follow.
They have puppet states that they control, previous empires had that too including the British empire!

'it'd have colonies and regions of land it directly controls.'
The US has over 600 military bases worldwide, many of which don't answer to the laws of that country.
Guantanamo is also a region of land that they control.
Well it does given that that, that is the definition for an empire. Indeed they do have puppet states, although to what degree is debatable. The so called puppet states of the US often act fully in their own interest, often contrary to US policy goals. Could you name some of the states you think are puppets?

A lot of British control certainly came from puppet leaders, it was great, self administering colony you could drain the wealth from. But it also held proper colonies such as in Africa and the best example the British Raj in India.

The military bases don't make a country a colony. We have bases in Germany, Cyprus, Canada and Kenya, which of these are British colonies?

I'll give you Guantanamo which is an overhang from the days of US empire in th pacific.


Still this is sketchy evidence for a formal empire as such. As I've being saying imperialistic yes, but I'm yet to be convinced on anything close to an empire.
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MatureStudent36
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#16
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(Original post by Anonymous263)
Well it doesn't have to have formal control of nations, there isn't like a rulebook that all empire have to follow.
They have puppet states that they control, previous empires had that too including the British empire!

'it'd have colonies and regions of land it directly controls.'
The US has over 600 military bases worldwide, many of which don't answer to the laws of that country.
Guantanamo is also a region of land that they control.
Pretty much all of those bases are at the request of the host nation.

Having an American military base in your borders has its benefits.

Guantanamo bay was gifted to the Americans. It wasn't taken by force and the Americans still pay for its use.
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deliverous
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(Original post by Aj12)
I don't really see how it could be an empire. Sure it could practice imperialism but having an empire (as in formal imperialism) is a very different thing that requires you to formally dominate a nation, directly appointing leaders ect.
I don't see that as particularly important. The only thing that matters is that it tries to act like an empire. It would appoint leaders if it could. And it certainly gets rid of leaders when it really wants. If they are willing to kill leaders they don't like, does it really matter that they aren't appointing leaders as such? We should care about how governments act, not about whether they fit practically meaningless theoretical concepts.
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Aj12
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#18
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(Original post by deliverous)
I don't see that as particularly important. The only thing that matters is that it tries to act like an empire. It would appoint leaders if it could. And it certainly gets rid of leaders when it really wants. If they are willing to kill leaders they don't like, does it really matter that they aren't appointing leaders as such? We should care about how governments act, not about whether they fit practically meaningless theoretical concepts.
Its hardly meaningless. Empire has become like fascism some sort of petty insult thrown about when people want to apply negative connotations to a nation. Its intellectually lazy and factually incorrect.

I'd say the distinction does matter. Appointing leaders gives you that much more control. Merely allowing coups to happen, or pushing for them creates leaders and governments that you quickly lose control over and tend to end up being pretty autonomous. Heck look at Iraq, often seen as a clear example of an American empire. They lost control of the country to Iran whilst they still had thousands of troops milling around.

My point in all this is the US today simply does not fit any detailed definition of an empire. If you want to say it acts imperialist feel free. But to my mind an empire is simple wrong.
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flibber
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#19
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#19
You don't need a monarchy to have an empire. France had an empire until well into the 20th century despite being a republic, owning Indochina, the Levant, and much of West Africa. So did the USA after 1898, owning Guam, Philippines (until after World War 2), Cuba (until 1902), and Puerto Rico after the war with Spain.

Plus the USA acts like an Empire as well.

Although the United States is a republic, it likes having so-called 'political dynasties'. For example, with the help of her father, a popular former governor, Gwen Graham managed to defeat the incumbent in a Florida congressional district, even when Republicans did quite well in the House elections this year. Here's a list:

Adams: John Adams President 1797-1801, John Quincy Adams President 1825-1829

Pryor: David Pryor Senator (D-AR) 1979-1997, Mark Pryor Senator (D-AR) 2003-2015

Kennedy: John F. Kennedy President 1961-1963 (D-MA), Robert Kennedy Senator 1965-1968 (D-NY), Ted Kennedy Senator 1962-2009

Bush: Prescott Bush, Senator 1952-1963 (R-CT), George H.W. Bush President 1989-1993 (R-TX), George W. Bush President 2001-2009 (R-TX) Jeb Bush Governor 1999-2007 (R-FL)...

Clinton: Bill Clinton President 1993-2001 (D-AR) , Hillary Clinton Senator 2001-2009 (D-NY).


That's why Hillary Clinton is the front-runner for President in 2016; she shares the surname of Bill. Even though the Republicans shut down the government and impeached him, he and they still managed to get major legislation done, unlike the gridlock America is facing today. Hence Americans look at the 1990s as a time free from partisanship, economic hardship, high employment.
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Anonymous263
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#20
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it does seem like america and the west in general act like they run the world
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