One of the fun things about Don Arthur’s posts is following the links. I followed a link to Peter Boettke and a few links later came upon this (pdf) fine statement of the early and (for so long) enduring American commitment to modesty in international affairs. I guess isolationism doesn’t suit a country the size of the US today. But these words of John Quincy Adams sure seem prophetic of recent times.
America does not go abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the wellwisher of freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own”¦She well knows that by once enlisting under banners other 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, ambition, which assumed the colors and usurped the standards of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force