The last line of this short article asks:
"What has America done to earn leadership such as this?"
A very profound comment by "ruddie" on this page really deserves some more discussion:
What did America do to deserve this president? A lot, I think, starting in the 1960's, when college curricula changed and that change has now infused K-12 education as well. We teach a history that denigrates American culture and values and emphasizes America's mistakes (usually ignoring their historical contexts). We value youth and style over experience and substance. We are fed news primarily in one of two forms... soundbites or opinion masquerading as fact. We have bought into the myth that only liberals can be intellectuals and cultural leaders. This last has been particularly damaging.
We live in an extraordinarily discouraging time, and one can only hope that as the lefty boomers retire from the academy that a new phase of scholarly pursuit will ensue, and that the interpretations of America we've had shoved down our throats for the last 40 years will be tossed out the window as a new generation of scholars seeks tenure.