American power is projected around the globe in the time honoured manner of all Empires - but on a scale all its own and with weaponry previously only dreamt of. As Empires inevitably decline they seem to have a tendency to cling to hubris and therefore take risks beyond their means. I see no reason for the USA to be any different. Oh no, hang on - there's that democracy thing, isn't there? - Engaged, active citizens monitoring the actions of their government and calling their excesses to account. Or was that just a film I saw once. It's all a bit blurred.