Daniel W. Drezner recently challenged his twitter followers to submit the YouTube clip that best represented U.S. Grand Strategy. All are worthwhile and illustrative of current or recent American grand strategy and its results. Of particular note is a late entry by Diana Wueger, “Like a BUS!,” which portrays beautifully the benefits and dangers of hegemonic power.
According to Daniel:
Like most of these seemingly short clips, Wueger’s submission works on two levels. On the one hand, it demonstrates the ways in which hegemonic power allows some actors to be able to pursue policies that small actors simply cannot. In this comparison, this clip reminds the viewer of the many global public goods that a hegemonic actor might feel obligated to provide. Compare Bus 62 with the U.S. Navy after the 2004 tsunami, for example. On the other hand, hegemonic power can also have unanticipated negative externalities. Sure, Bus 62 simply plows through the barrier. However, it does so without helping the other people stuck in traffic, and, like a boss, nearly plows over the person in the way. A cautionary tale about the uses and possible abuses of power.