Interesting take on the Rice trip.
Prediction 1: When the dollar crashes, the US will find it's no longer the economic superpower it thinks it is. And it will regret having pissed off allies needed in order to get stuff done abroad.
Prediction 2: Bush will eventually be remembered as he who presided over the beginning of the decline of America.
The big question is this: Will America go down peacefully (like the British) or will the hard right stay in power and use our massive military lead to cause a really destructive "stink". It will be up to the American voters.
Am I too pessimistic? I hope so. This is what's at stake though.