America's present woes have revived the wrongheaded liberal tradition of believing that emulating other countries is the answer, writes Jonah Goldberg. People who suggested becoming more like the Soviet Union or Japan were wrong, and people like Thomas Friedman are just as wrong when they ignore obvious shortcomings to declare that the Chinese or French way is better, Goldberg warns in the Los Angeles Times.
Friedman—who suggests America could learn from China's "enlightened regime"—isn't seeing China's pollution, or the lies and cruelty that underpin its system, Goldberg writes. Such critics share a belief that countries with more power over their citizens and economies are more advanced than the US, he notes. But they forget that states with such controls have a lousy record in the long run, Goldberg adds. "We have our own problems, but history shows the solution to them is not to be found in more centralized planning," Goldberg concludes.
(Read more Jonah Goldberg stories.)