America: The Dictatress Of The World

Authored by Jacob Hornberger via The Mises Institute,

On July 21, 1821, John Quincy Adams, who would go on to become the sixth president of the United States, warned that if America were ever to abandon its founding principle of non-interventionism in foreign affairs, she might well become the dictatress of the world.

Adams issued his warning in a speech he delivered to Congress, a speech that has gone down in history with the title “In Search of Monsters to Destroy.”

Adams was referring to the fact that the United States was founded as a constitutional republic, one whose military forces did not go around the world helping people who were suffering the horrors of dictators, despots, civil wars, revolutions, famines, oppression, or anything else. That’s not to say that America didn’t sympathize with people struggling to experience lives of freedom, peace, and prosperity. It was simply that the US government would not go abroad to slay such monsters.

Here is how Adams expressed it:

Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will recommend the general cause, by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example.

Adams was summing up the founding foreign policy of the United States, a policy of non-interventionism in the affairs of other nations, specifically Europe and Asia.

And that’s the way the American people wanted it. If Americans had been told after the Constitutional Convention that the US government would be intervening around the world, there is no way that they would have ever approved the Constitution.

In fact, as a practical matter, throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, there is no way that US officials could have gone abroad in search of monsters to destroy. That’s because a nation needs a powerful military to go abroad and free people from dictators and despots or save people from famines or other bad things that happen in life.

When the Constitution called the federal government into existence, the last thing the American people wanted was a powerful military. They were overwhelmingly opposed to what they called “standing armies,” which was a term used describe a big, permanent military establishment. That was why there was no Pentagon, no big, permanent military-industrial complex, no CIA, and no NSA for more than 100 years after the country was established. The American people didn’t want those types of governmental apparatuses to be part of our nation’s political system.

The reason Americans were so opposed to standing armies is because they believed that standing armies constituted a grave threat to their freedom and economic well-being. They knew, from both first-hand experience and through history, that dictators and despots used powerful military establishments to destroy the freedom and prosperity of the citizenry, oftentimes in the name of keeping them safe, secure, and prosperous.

So, while there was a basic military force throughout the 19th century - large enough to suppress Native Americans or even to defeat a neighboring Third World nation like Mexico in the Mexican War, it certainly was nowhere near as large enough to cross the oceans and invade and conquer European or Asian countries. The one big exception, of course, was the Civil War, but the army immediately demobilized upon the conclusion of the war.

Things started changing with the Spanish American War in 1898. There were those who argued that America could not be a great nation without owning overseas colonies, like the British and French Empires. Opposed to that sentiment was the mindset that had guided the founding of the country: that empire and foreign interventionism would end up destroying the country from within.

The interventionists prevailed.

First, US officials misled and double-crossed the colonies of the Spanish Empire by leading them to believe that the United States was intervening against Spain to help the colonies win their independence. It was a lie. As the colonies soon learned, the real aim was to step into the shoes of the Spanish Empire by acquiring its colonies. That’s how the United States ended with Puerto Rico, Guam, the Philippines, and Cuba.

Second, the trend toward empire as a way to make America great was followed by foreign interventionism, with World War I and World War II being premier examples.

That was followed by the conversion of the US government from a constitutional republic to what is known as a “national-security state,” a governmental apparatus characterized by a massive, permanent standing military establishment and secretive agencies with the power to assassinate and spy on the citizenry, in the name of preserving “national security.”

That was followed by massive interventions “in search of monsters to destroy” through assassinations, coups, invasions, occupations, support of dictatorships, and regime change: Korea, Guatemala, Iran, Cuba, Congo, Brazil, Chile, Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, and others.

Here is how Adams eloquently expressed what would happen to America if she were ever to abandon our nation’s founding principles of anti-empire and non-interventionism:

She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself, beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force. The frontlet upon her brows would no longer beam with the ineffable splendor of freedom and independence; but in its stead would soon be substituted an imperial diadem, flashing in false and tarnished lustre the murky radiance of dominion and power. She might become the dictatress of the world: she would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit.

No one can seriously deny that Adams has been proven correct - that America - or, more correctly, the US government - has become the dictatress of the world - issuing orders and commands to people and regimes all over the world and backing them up with coups, assassinations, sanctions, embargoes, invasions, and occupations, and all headed today by a democratically elected president who has all the traditional traits of an old-fashioned dictator or despot.


tarsubil Oct 11, 2017 8:20 AM Permalink

It was the end of my junior year in highschool in the mid 90s and the final asked me to sum up American history. My central point was how the Republic swung towards an empire at the Spanish American War and I covered the major conflicts spanning all of American history. I got something like a B-.

Batman11 Oct 11, 2017 3:58 AM Permalink

“The Government should create, issue, and circulate all the currency and credits needed to satisfy the spending power of the Government and the buying power of consumers. By the adoption of these principles, the taxpayers will be saved immense sums of interest. Money will cease to be master and become the servant of humanity.” - Abraham LincolnLincoln was assassinated. Kennedy had the same idea, he was assassinated.“The death of Lincoln was a disaster for Christendom. There was no man in the United States great enough to wear his boots and the bankers went anew to grab the riches. I fear that foreign bankers with their craftiness and tortuous tricks will entirely control the exuberant riches of America and use it to systematically corrupt civilization.” Otto von Bismark (1815-1898), German Chancellor, after the Lincoln assassination.Prophetic words from Bismark, who seems to have predicted the Neoliberal ideology emanating from the US.  

RightLineBacker Oct 11, 2017 2:34 AM Permalink

I agree with the scholarly author and many of the snowflake commenters.

We should just collectively drop our pants, get on all fours and let every crazy despot country fuck us in the ass until we bleed to death.

Sounds like a real good plan.


Matteo S. Oct 11, 2017 12:54 AM Permalink

Odd article which takes political lies at face value.

If the author had minimum knowledge of history and thought about the matter, he would have realized that the constitutional republic did not wait having a permanent army to bully, deceit, steal and slaughter the amerindians.

TeraByte Oct 10, 2017 10:25 PM Permalink

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Isn´t it wonderful, had you any conflict on the planet, there is "the leader of free world" involved like Roman legions with sword spreading "civilization" to "barbarians", who did not want to be exploited by a foreign aggressor. The problem is, that such a spoiled, privileged and wasteful military is now constantly losing battles against more dedicated nationalists. And there is still more to came by making new enemies, when you cannot even complete "missions" you started, shit.

Savvy Oct 10, 2017 9:56 PM Permalink

Americans are assholes to the world and assholes to each other. You whine all day about how you give foreign aid, but what form does that foreign aid take? Yeah you gave 50 million to Ethiopia. In the form of cosmetic surgery textbooks that didn't sell in the US to a country with out a cosmetic surgeon. Your foreign aid is an insult. And you do fuck all about it but sit back while your gov drives your country into penury dropping bombs on unoffending nations.You do fuck all about it.

TuPhat Savvy Oct 10, 2017 10:07 PM Permalink

What have you done about it?  Perhaps you want your life destroyed because you oppose the US government.  We do not have the freedom to change things that you seem to think we have.  I don't think the US ever had 50 million in cosmetic surgery textbooks but if we gave them away just remember your tax dollars didn't pay for it, mine did.  That was not by my choice.

In reply to by Savvy

European American Savvy Oct 10, 2017 10:04 PM Permalink

We're the greatest country on the planet and the worst...all in one. And that is a fact. It used to be our "greatness" far outweighed our "worstness". But now, it's clearly a beautiful clusterfuck where right is wrong and wrong is right. So, we're a crazy fucked up country, but other than Iceland, what other country is better?

In reply to by Savvy

European American Oct 10, 2017 9:33 PM Permalink

The malleable mushed minds of the American Masses have allowed the Zionist Bolshevik Satanic Jews to control and manipulate all aspects of our daily lives. They own Science, Education, Film Industy (and PORNO), Military, Pharma/Medical, Media, Politicians, Central Banks, THEY FUCKING RUN THE SHOW!Hopefully when we've been reamed enough, we'll do what 100 plus countries have done over the last 1000 years. KICK THE FUCKERS OUT!

AurorusBorealus European American Oct 10, 2017 10:09 PM Permalink

Yes... blame the Jews... just like another crack-pot dictator who tried to conquer the earth.  It is always better when someone else is to blame for everything... is it not?  It would never be those poor people who vote time and again for every candidate who proposes more and more and more military spending.  A majority of U.S. citizens want war with North Korea.  Is this the Jews doing?  Those Jews... out to get North Korea since the time of Abraham, and those poor U.S. nationals are so stupid and so incapable of even basic cognitive function that they are nothing more than clay in the hands of Jewish propaganda masters.What a ridiculous world-view you have.

In reply to by European American

MK ULTRA Alpha European American Oct 10, 2017 10:59 PM Permalink

No, he's an Argentinian in Argentina who hates America because of the Falkland Islands etc. he's on here everyday with an anti-American rant. It is real easy to see he knows nothing about America and how we suffer under Zionism. The USA is a Zionist Dictatorship and our votes do not count. he's an International Communist but he keeps saying he's not. he hates America and it is an obsession, he's ignorant to believe his anti-American rants will hurt us, when we've been reduced to being neo-feudal slaves. he's mentally ill.

In reply to by European American

honestann Oct 10, 2017 8:59 PM Permalink

headed today by a democratically elected president who has all the traditional traits of an old-fashioned despot.Yeah, and note that he won largely by saying he did NOT want to fight wars or nation build during the campaign.I'm not sure I understand this clearly, because it seems to me that a rather large majority of residents of the USSA approve of the USSA overthrowing fictitious governments and murdering millions of humans overseas.  Am I wrong?  Obviously I can't be sure, but the "live and let live" attitude seems rather rare in the USSA the last time I was there, about 5 years ago.

TuPhat honestann Oct 10, 2017 10:02 PM Permalink

I almost voted for Obama because he promised to bring the troops home and get us out of foriegn wars.  I voted for Trump because he promised something quite similar.  Both have been disappointing to me and a lot of other americans.  One of the reasons ZHrs seem to hope for a big economic collapse is because there doesn't seem to be any other way of killing the beast that the MIC has become.  I don't know how many americans share that opinion but a lot of us do.

In reply to by honestann

Archibald Buttle TuPhat Oct 11, 2017 1:01 AM Permalink

this one wholeheartedly shares that opinion, knowing full well what it will mean down the road. individual hardship will be the penance for our collective failure to confront the problem back when (if) it was possible to deal with in a more palatable fashion. by our own standards, we ultimately have ourselves to blame. perhaps we will manage to address the issue in that tiny window between football and baseball seasons, when the masses aren't so consumed by sportsball. one can dream...

In reply to by TuPhat

AurorusBorealus honestann Oct 10, 2017 9:17 PM Permalink

I get social media postings from friends in the U.S., and at least one third or more of those postings are supplications and adorations of the milltary.  It is endess: "Remember our Vets," "Thoe who refuse to stand for the anthem are disrespecting the veterans who died for their right to kneel," and so forth.  It is a continuous stream of warfare worship from these people.  Not since the Assyrian empire has there been such a bloodthirsty and militant nation on this earth.As an aside, to the rational people who remain in the U.S., none of your glorified veterans died preserving your freedom: at least not since 1945.  They have died imposing your will and your empire on the rest of the world and they have died as hitman, collection agents, and thugs for Wall Street and American multinational corporations.I have never received any social medai texts or posts from anyone in the U.S. glorifying the death of Al Capone or some other gangster.  What is the difference?

In reply to by honestann

FBaggins Oct 10, 2017 8:57 PM Permalink

The evidence is that America has gone far beyond any such do-gooder nation helping people around the world from oppression, to a militaristic empire supporting some 100 tin-pot corrupt dictators and despots around the world, while causing civil wars, revolutions, and even famines in its quest for world hegemony. It’s military-intelligence-media complex has absolutely no moral limits in plundering foreign resources, or in protecting the petrodollar and its US-Treasury-Federal Reserve magic money machine. “RUSSIA SAYS THAT U.S. SIMULATES ANTI-ISIS FIGHT IN IRAQ AS GROUP’S MEMBERS CROSS INTO SYRIA”…  

Herdee Oct 10, 2017 8:54 PM Permalink

Adams didn't mention how foreign wars would bankrupt America. Maybe he took it as a given. Just look at the run down cities and infrastructure wherever you go. The average American today is as poor at geography as he or she is at seeing that their banking system and government are corrupt.

WTFUD Oct 10, 2017 8:42 PM Permalink

The US is becoming the Lesser Dictatress of late (although not by choice), shown up through its flagging influence on the geopolitical stage.

Moreover, the shift towards more autonomy in the West has Goldman/JPM & Associates in a panic. Centralizing a vassal country's Purse Strings ensured control.

Notice how President Trump was dead against Independence for Catalonia but prior to being GOT-AT, pro Brexit?

Giant Meteor balz Oct 10, 2017 9:20 PM Permalink

Imagine ,These modern day lying . self serving shits, wouldn't even make good footmen ..Not fit to polish their boots, nor powder their wigs in comparison to the intellect ..The modern day version is an insult to the intelligence of ditch diggers and garbage haulers everywhere ..

In reply to by balz

Endgame Napoleon Oct 10, 2017 8:31 PM Permalink

The Adams’ agenda sounds like the America First foreign policy agenda. But I do not ageee with this notion that America has been the aggressor, oppressing third world and other countries, quite the opposite.

FDR had to be coaxed by Churchill to even think about getting into another world war after the US had joined allies in the bloody WWI, unleashing a period of pronounced isolationism in America. It took a major act of war on US soil to get the US fully involved in WWII, even though Hitler was one of — if not the most —evil dictator ever.

After WWII, the US did what few nations in history have done, giving back the vanquished lands to their people and even helping them to thrive economically.

American foreign policy is not at all spotless, but is better than most, but at this point in history, we need a return to inward-looking, America-focused, non-interventionist policies. That is what we voted for.

But we have to maintain a strong defense as a deterrent. We do not have to use it unless conditions are extreme. If you are not going to build a wall, put the standing army on the southern border.

HRClinton runswithscissors Oct 10, 2017 9:30 PM Permalink

Re.. "This was from a time before filthy news took over America...who let the news run the show?"A: Protestant Anglo-Americans and the Dutch-Americans!  With their Do-Gooder, hippie-deity* views toward the (((news))).Their arrogance, smugness, presumption and lazy thinking gave us the results we see today. * A custom-designed organized religion, targeted at slaves, servants, vassals and women. I.e. at all those at the bottom of the power chain, who had no representation on priestly altars. Until someone decided it was a good idea to do so, to unite a bankrupt and crumbling Roman Empire: Emperor Constantine. Is it any wonder, that kids are made to read religious texts before they learn some real History? 

In reply to by runswithscissors

Chupacabra-322 historian40 Oct 10, 2017 8:52 PM Permalink

@ historian,

Satanic New World Order Globalists. These types of jews (the main ones who are in power), are Talmudic (babylonian text), International, Zionistic Jews.

They control our money supply (federal reserve- Alan Greenspan, Ben Bernanke, Janet Yellen - all jews), control our banks (fed, central banks around the world, Rothschild), are working with our politicians, our president (jared kushner, george soros-friendly globalist), the ones who are influencing the migrant crisis (barbara spectre), and of course george soros is a jew.

They are responsible for the Russian revolution (lenin, trotsky were both jews, stalin had a jewish mother), are responsible for cultural marxism (frankfurt school was all jewish).

When I'm referring to "Jews", I'm not talking about everyday average orthodox or religious, torah jews. When I say "Jews", I'm referring to the ones in seats of power; zionist jews whose goal is global domination and deracination of sovereign countries and destruction of western society.

Acts 7:43 KJV.

43 Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan figures which ye made to worship them: and I will carry you away beyond Babylon.

Remphan is Saturn, whose symbol is a cube, or six-sided object, or the perimeter of the hexagonal star that appears on “Israel’s” flag.

As soon as Stephen bought this up, the Jews in attendance stoned him to death. We should therefore point this out as often as we can. (They) hate it.

In reply to by historian40

serotonindumptruck Oct 10, 2017 8:27 PM Permalink

I honestly didn't know much about the Sixth President of the United States.This is an interesting biography."At age ten, John Quincy accompanied his father on a dangerous winter voyage to France. John Adams was sent to Europe as a Commissioner to negotiate for peace with Great Britain. He took his son on the diplomatic mission in order to give the boy international experience and provide for a second generation of enlightened leadership in U.S. foreign relations. While crossing the Atlantic the ship was struck by lightning (killing four of the crew), survived a hurricane, and fought off British vessels."

red1chief Oct 10, 2017 8:24 PM Permalink

"Adams was summing up the founding foreign policy of the United States, a policy of non-interventionism in the affairs of other nations, specifically Europe and Asia." Um, why exclude the middle east? That's where most of our wasted tax dollars go. 

nmewn Oct 10, 2017 8:23 PM Permalink

Provocation, jus cuz...a contrarian is always a contrarian.Is Xi standing down now? How bout Li'l Kim? The mooolah's? St Pooty? Show me the SJW's & Code Pink-ish in China, Russia, North Korea, Iran.Remarkably, navel gaze-ish ;-)

GunnyG Oct 10, 2017 8:22 PM Permalink

I hear the world whining but I don't remember the US forcing various countries to enter into NATO, SEATO, the fucking UN, etc. As a matter of fact, a whopping majority of the US would LOVE to close the bases, bring home the troops, boot the UN, and let the world suck ass.

Hans-Zandvliet GunnyG Oct 10, 2017 9:10 PM Permalink

No, the US didn't force them. They lured them in and then took over control. NATO = USA (plus their European vasal states as fig leaves to cover the USA's war crimes behind the so called "international community"). The USA has turned the UN into a muppet show, while the IMF and World Bank are extremely lucrative UN-institutions to financially and economically colonize the rest of the world. Read "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" by John Perkins and you will learn the inner workings of the IMF and World Bank to the benefit of the USA.If those organizations weren't so profitable for the USA, they would have pulled out a long time ago. So it's you who should stop whining about the USA dictating those institutions for its own benefit.As far as your whopping majority of Americans goes who would LOVE to close bases and pull out of NATO and the UN, that I would LOVE to believe. But here as well: then stop your whining, get out into the streets and force your corrupt politicians to do so!

In reply to by GunnyG

Albertarocks GunnyG Oct 10, 2017 8:49 PM Permalink

You don't remember?  Let me refresh your memory about how that works then.  Remember when Bush gave the entire world an ultimatum... "You're either with us or you're with the terrorists"?  The fact that those 'terrorists' (or terrists or tourists... nobody could understand Bush when he tried to say that word) didn't even exist was a moot point.  Anyway, the minute he uttered those words Canada's reaction was typical of Canada's reaction to the world's most bullying neighbor... "fuck you".  Canada's stance was, and always has been, "if you ask us we will consider any request".  "If you try to shove it down our throat like you usually do, we're going to shove back and you know it.  So fuck you George."So do you remember what the US did in retaliation when Canada refused to "do as you're told" and bomb the shit out of Iraq based on lies about WMD?  They cooked up a story about mad cow disease in Canadian livestock and we as a nation were forced to kill every fucking beef animal in this entire country and start all over again.  5,000,000 animals killed and thrown in the landfills.  A $10 billion industry destroyed.  There was no mad cow epidemic whatsoever... it was all made up and blown to gargantuan proportions with USA leading the way and ensuring no other country on the planet would buy Canadian beef (even though it is repeatedly reviewed as being some of the best in the world).That's how it works.  That's how the USA 'forces' others to either tow the line, whether it be on criminal enterprises or not, or pay a price.  So rest assured, NATO members are not necessarily NATO members by choice.

In reply to by GunnyG

BobEore Albertarocks Oct 10, 2017 9:19 PM Permalink

At the behest of its media masters... the herd daily redirects itself in pursuit of distraction. bUShy BanDits?


No one can seriously deny that Adams has been proven correct - that America - or, more correctly, the US government - has become the dictatress of the world - issuing orders and commands to people and regimes all over the world and backing them up with coups, assassinations, sanctions, embargoes, invasions, and occupations,

hOw cute... and even moar corectly... an Sraeli gubbernment has become etc etc... but let\s DEFINITELY NOT TALK bout

stuff like dat! Mises... talmudic austrian tink tanker in the service of the $power... serving up faux Merikan-first agitprop so as to encourage the zheeple to abandon all critical thinking, in favor of a mess of pottage.

Seriously argue? No serious argument needed dud. Yu exposed for what yu be - Merikan peeples ENEMY!

In reply to by Albertarocks