Day of Reckoning How Hubris, Ideology, and Greed Are Tearing America Apart

Patrick J. Buchanan

St. Martin's Griffin



Trade Paperback

304 Pages



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It seems as though America is coming apart at the seams. Forces foreign and domestic seek an end to U.S. sovereignty and independence and the prospect of an America breaking up along the lines of race, ethnicity, class and culture looms. In Day of Reckoning, Patrick Buchanan reveals his interpretation of the nation's existential crisis and shows how President Bush’s post-9/11 conversion to an ideology of  “democratism" may have led us to the precipice of strategic disaster abroad and savage division at home.Ideology, writes Buchanan, is a Golden Calf, a false god, a secular religion that seeks vainly, like Marxism, to create a paradise on earth. While free enterprise is good, he likens the worship of a “free trade” that is destroying the dollar, de-industrializing America, and ending our economic independence, to cult madness. While America must stand for freedom and self-determination, he believes that the use of U.S. troops to police the planet or serve as advance guard against “world democratic revolution” is, as Iraq shows, imperial folly that will bring ruin to the republic. While America should speak out for human rights, he writes that it is morally arrogant to confront Russia and hand out moral report cards to other nations. While we have benefited from immigration and the melting pot has worked with millions of Europeans, Buchanan finds absurd the idea we can import millions of aliens, legal and illegal, from every culture, clime, creed, and continent, and still remain a country.

To save America, according to Buchanan, the first imperative is to remove from power the ideologues of both parties who have put the country in jeopardy. In his final chapter, Buchanan lays out ideas to prevent the end of America. He calls for a bottom-up review of all of America’s Cold War commitments, a ten-point program to secure America’s borders, ideas to halt the erosion of our national sovereignty and restore our manufacturing preeminence and economic independence, and a formula for finding the way to a cold peace in the culture wars. Buchanan offers a radical program, for neither party is addressing the real crisis of America—whether we survive as one nation and people, or disintegrate into what Theodore Roosevelt called a “tangle of squabbling nationalities” and not a nation at all.


Praise for Day of Reckoning

"Buchanan can write, and he knows how to provoke. His foreign policy prescriptions—withdraw from NATO, abandon our commitments to Taiwan and South Korea and pretty much everywhere else in the world—are not likely to be adopted by the nominee of either major party in 2008, but he presents them forcefully and often persuasively. They deserve a wider hearing in American politics than they are currently given, if only to challenge the adherents of the prevailing orthodoxy to question their assumptions."—Chris Suellentrop, The New York Times

"Buchanan's vigor and urgency make this book spellbinding . . . If you read no other book by Buchanan, read this one."—Booklist

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

Day of Reckoning
1The End of Pax AmericanaNever glad confident morning again!--ROBERT BROWNING, "THE LOST LEADER" 
The American Century is over.Pax Americana has come to a close. Gone now is all the hubristic chatter of an American Empire. Gone is the "unipolar world" where the United States was the undisputed hegemonic power."The US has had its unipolar moment for about fifteen years but is beginning to realize that it isn't getting the things done it wants," says Paul Kennedy, author of The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers. The essay that carried his verdict was
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  • Patrick J. Buchanan

  • Patrick J. Buchanan, America’s leading traditional conservative, was a senior adviser to three American presidents, ran twice for the Republican presidential nomination, in 1992 and 1996, and was the Reform Party’s candidate in 2000. The author of eight other books, including the bestsellers Right from the Beginning; A Republic, Not an Empire; The Death of the West; Where the Right Went Wrong; and State of Emergency, he is a syndicated columnist and a founding member of three of America’s foremost public affairs shows, NBC’s The McLaughlin Group and CNN’s The Capitol Gang and Crossfire. He lives in McLean, Virginia.
  • Patrick J. Buchanan Photo: William Sorenson
    Patrick J. Buchanan


    Patrick J. Buchanan

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