"America is great because she is good. And, if America ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great."
It is said that Alexis de Toqueville said that, but he didn't. Still, it remains one of the world's great quotes, regardless who said it.
Greatness is attained not by seeking greatness, but by seeking goodness. Goodness leads to greatness more surely than will a pursuit of greatness itself. This is true in people, and it is true in nations. The pursuit of greatness is vanity, and those who would attain it this way end up with their vanity. Often, they attain power and fear more than respect and admiration.
There is more greatness to be found in goodness than there is to be found in power. It is a greater thing for a nation to help people than to hurt them.
Now, I will venture into politics, that is, into opinions you might disagree with.
When I say that it is a greater thing for a nation to help people than to hurt them, one thing I think of is our immigration policy. If we would ease restrictions, it would help people who come from other countries. That is helping people. That is a good thing. That is goodness. That is the pursuit of goodness.
On the other hand, what do we do? Do we seek to wield power over these immigrants? Do we remind them that this is our land, and that they are not citizens and that they cannot come here without our permission? Do we seek power over them? Do we say we are a nation of rules, and insist they keep our rules, and thus we keep them under our power?
What do we do? Do we seek to be great? For, in suggesting they will lower our economy, we are seeking not for goodness, but for greatness. We are seeking to be economically great at the expense of being good to others.
In your values, lie your spoils. If the nation seeks greatness this way, it will not reap true greatness.