A lot of the changes are so gradual that they don't even qualify as news, or even as interesting: they're so mundane that we just take them for granted. But history shows that it's the mundane changes that are more important than the dramatic 'newsworthy' events.
We talk a lot about individual rights, but in fact Americans are very willing to give up our individual rights if it means our property values will be protected, and so on.
Americans are opting out of public venues like the playground and the sidewalk for private venues like the healthclub and the mall. We're living our lives inside one form of corporation or another.
The Cold War went on for so long that it bred a kind of worldwide military establishment. Even when budgets went down in the early and mid-nineties, it didn't really affect it.
The first thing to recognize not just about Afghanistan but about any poor undeveloped country is that as big as it looks on the map, it's much bigger when you're there.
If you travel around America you see different sections of highways donated by this or that person, and that's a slow beginning of what may end up being a situation common in the Third World: some sections of highways in wealthy areas are beautifully maintained and other parts are just dirt-strewn potholes.
It is a cliche these days to observe that the United States now possesses a global empire - different from Britain's and Rome's but an empire nonetheless.
The more dynamic the capitalistic expansion, the greater the disparity. It is from the disparity that we are going to get all the political upheaval for the next few years.
The most important thing I learned as a foreign correspondent in about 80 countries is that it takes a very shallow knowledge of history to think that there are solutions to most problems.
Given the level of anti-Americanism in the world, given the level of frustration with the United States throughout the Muslim world, you've got a homegrown attack or you have a nuclear explosion in the air that is not a test somewhere. Those are still the biggest threats out there.
The United States is not overdeployed or overextended with deployments in 150 countries on any given year. On any given week we have about 65 deployments.
What Americans can't face is that one of the reasons that the Russians and the Chinese were so impressed with us during the Cold War was the fact that Nixon and Kissinger went on bombing despite public reaction.
When you talk about aiding this country against that country or about fighting terrorism, when you actually take that decision and strip it down, it always comes down to one person in the field giving specialized training to somebody else in the field.