There is still a lot Americans can do to topple the police state tyrants, but any revolution that has any hope of succeeding needs to be prepared to reform the system from the bottom up. And that will mean re-learning step by painful step what it actually means to be a government of the people, by the people and for the people.
There is a recurring theme throughout the 2016 presidential campaign, particularly on the Republican side: "Be afraid -- be very afraid." It is enough to conclude American greatness lies in our historical rearview mirror. It is somewhat counterintuitive if one also accepts the myth of "American exceptionalism."
After the Cold War, the American self-image became that of the "sole superpower." We were the only 800-pound gorilla in the world, and therefore we could do what we pleased without having to worry about any other country's ability to stop us. Russia, under Putin, is reasserting itself as the second weighty gorilla in the room.
The quest for certainty, both in philosophy and law, offers ample evidence of philosophical failures. But humans have a need for philosophy, so embracing the humanistic, organic philosophy of Aristotle, Burke, Tocqueville, Berlin, Havel, and many others is where I think individual and social fulfillment can be found.