Over the last several years a rift has opened beneath the Atlantic, pushing the United States and Europe farther apart. One cause has been increasingly different approaches to foreign policy. Another has been a sense that Europeans and Americans have distinct approaches to domestic affairs as well. Alongside the shelf of books chronicling transatlantic disputes over Iraq, terrorism, the United Nations, and similar topics, another shelf is filling up with analyses of how the "European model" is not just different from the American one but superior to it. This literature (T.R. Reid's The United States of Europe: The New Superpower and the End of American Supremacy; Jeremy Rifkin's The European Dream: How Europe's Vision of the Future is Quietly Eclipsing the American Dream; and Mark Leonard's Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century) does a good job of pointing out the chinks in America's armor and highlighting the ways Europessimists have overdone their gloomy portrait of the continent and its future. The books tend to have significant flaws of their own, however—including, oddly enough, a shared blind spot regarding Europe's true hope for long-term greatness and the obstacles it must surmount to achieve it.


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pp. 100-103
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