We may have reached our imperial sell-by date, as empires do.
Has the great American experiment in liberty gone off the rails? Kurt Andersen’s latest book, Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire, a 500 Year History, is a provocative chronicle of magical thinking and make-believe. It provides a new paradigm for understanding the post-factual present, where reality and illusion are dangerously blurred. He and journalist Jeffrey Goldberg discuss the history that religion plays in America’s roots and world view. According to Andersen, history shows Americans have a peculiar knack for believing the unbelievable — for being suckers for those who want to sucker them.