When I was young, a mantra among progressives was that America had to stop operating as global policeman. Vietnam was the signal episode of arrogant and ultimately self-defeating American overreach. But there were plenty of other cases of the U.S. government doing the bidding of oil companies and banana barons, and blithely overthrowing left-democratic governments as well as outright communists (or driving nationalist reformers into the arms of communists.)
The level of U.S. political rancor has reached an intensity not seen since the '60s with its battles over civil rights and the Vietnam War. On the one hand, we have Republicans advocating a new Iraq war and more tax breaks for the rich. On the other hand, we have Democrats saying no to war and standing up for working families.