Truth to Power

Could we be wising up?

Polls suggest Americans rethinking world policy

Is it the economy? The blood spilled in Afghanistan and Iraq? A fear of China, or imported diseases?

It must be a mix of all that bothers us, experts suggest, because never in the history of polling have so many Americans said the nation should take care of its own and stay out of other countries’ affairs.

Just when you thought technology and trade had made the globe as small as it could get, talk of a “new isolationism” is spreading.

“It seems to be happening across the political spectrum, across the board,” said Michael Dimock of the Pew Research Center.

A Pew report last month startled policy wonks left and right, showing public trepidation toward the rest of the world spiking to historic highs.

To one poll question, roughly half of Americans agreed that the U.S. should “mind its own business internationally” and let others get along on their own. To another question, 44 percent said “we should go our own way” and not worry whether other nations disagree.</em>

Not that the government is going to care what we think, but this is a positive step in the right direction. It ain’t our world to run, people.

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