Los Angeles Times critic Kenneth Turan suggests that Hollywood is falling apart. Possibly it was killed in a catastrophic car crash or crushed in an alien invasion or stomped on by an evil Decepticon. But New York is in rough shape as well, the latest challenge coming from London as the Financial Times claims a smackdown is ahead in the financial markets. And the she or he who controls capital — London or New York — controls everything.


It might be suggested that America is dying on the edges but at the same time is awakening in the middle. There is evidence to this as conservatism ascends in state governments this cycle, as state governments begin to ignore Washington and form together politically and organizationally on issues of economy and constitutional rights, as the economy rises in the middle, declines on the edges and skyrockets in states like North Dakota. Bloomberg tells us that the U.S. is seen as the biggest oil producer after overtaking Saudi Arabia, soaring at shale formations in Texas and North Dakota. And as it is on the world stage as London and New York fight for dominance, so it goes here at home: Whoever controls the money controls everything.

This will take some getting used to, especially for us here in the Northeast as the realization insidiously sets in that we are not the world, we are only other Americans in North America. Indeed, most importantly, we like James Fenimore Cooper's Natty Bumpo, have left "the world" behind to come here to be awakened again as if from a thousand years of sleep and that awakening has not yet happened.

This new, rising phase of economy identifies the American condition in evolution; wealth, prosperity and population rising to prominence in our immediate times might be seen in paradigm in the Senate races today of State Sen. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstCash surge puts more Senate races in play GOP cautions Graham against hauling Biden before Senate Farmers: New Trump ethanol proposal reneged on previous deal MORE (R) in Iowa and Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric Sasse NBA commissioner says China asked league to fire Rocket's GM Lawmakers set to host fundraisers focused on Nats' World Series trip Hong Kong protesters trample, burn LeBron James jerseys in wake of comments MORE (R) in Nebraska. They forecast a new America, one we on the edges might be unfamiliar with but ignore in our peril.

Visualize this: The benign center of American hopes, dreams and desires not in Washington, D.C., but in Nebraska or in Des Moines, Iowa. Sasse, professor and college president by trade, offered this playful idea at the beginning of his campaign for Senate as a "thought balloon" and it perfectly draws in the abstract what arises in real time directly ahead.

Washington was selected as the benign "center" of the industrial North and the agrarian South in 1776 when America consisted of three cities and a forest. D.C. was, at least until 1861, the “center." But today the forests are full and we are an East/West/North/South country in the middle of an East/West world and this configuration will likely be our destiny for the next millennium or so, framing the earlier 250 years as an age of magical thinking and Leviathan dreams of cosmic conquest; a transitional phase or prelude to the real destiny of our continent.

This America may more closely resemble that long stretch of Ohio presidents which ran from the end of the Civil War to the turn of the 20th century, because culture and politics follow the money and today money rises in the middle. Potential Republican presidential contenders like 2012 nominee Mitt Romney, Texas Gov. Rick Perry or former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush might look best to Ohio's Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanRural broadband in jeopardy unless Congress fixes taxing problem Overnight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Pence says Turkey agrees to ceasefire | Senators vow to move forward with Turkey sanctions | Mulvaney walks back comments tying Ukraine aid to 2016 probe On The Money: Senate fails to override Trump veto over border emergency | Trump resort to host G-7 next year | Senators to push Turkey sanctions despite ceasefire | McConnell tees up funding votes MORE (R) for VP sidekick in this rising scenario, as he would be the the very good fit as for the new "man in the center."

Quigley is a prize-winning writer who has worked more than 35 years as a book and magazine editor, political commentator and reviewer. For 20 years he has been an amateur farmer, raising Tunis sheep and organic vegetables. He lives in New Hampshire with his wife and four children. Contact him at quigley1985@gmail.com.