Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
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27-07-2011, 07:07 PM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
gld that you're at least enjoying the people you meet Hughsie though I wholeheartedly agree with your regular opinions. There's a lot of social norms that are just pompous.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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27-07-2011, 08:53 PM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
I hate the american media for a whole new reason. New series airing on A&E, "Scared Straight"! A reality TV show about juvenile hall, that's right, teen correctional facilities are our new source of entertainment.

The privatized dystopian United States portrayed in 'Death Race' seems more plausible all the time.

Hey brother christian, with your high and mighty errand, your actions speak so loud, I can't hear a word you're saying.

"This machine kills fascists..."

"Well this machine kills commies!"
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27-07-2011, 08:56 PM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
The whole idea of movies like that is that we'll end up like the later part of the Roman empire, which happened about 30 years ago.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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28-07-2011, 06:57 AM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
Just getting back to the original post, Thomas Friedman - who is best known as the author of many books including "The World is Flat" and is even better known as being one of the biggest asshats on the planet - has made one interesting point in his long career (I mean that literally, too; he's made exactly one interesting point). If we opened up the boarders of every country in the world for one week and everyone could go live any place they wanted to, where do you think the lines would form? Friedman's guess was that the longest lines would form at the US. Granted, he wrote that prior to the start of this sweeping anti-immigration meme that is sweeping the nation, but I still think his basic point is fundamentally correct.

That does not mean that lines would not form in the UK, in Canada, etc. (I'm heading right to Australia myself), but you'd see a lot of countries just empty and I guarantee you that the US is simply not one of them.

Why do people hate America? Because we are the last global power, we wield too much influence in global economies and policy, and because they don't currently need us to save their ass. If the Germans get militant again or China turns into a military threat, you'll see attitudes change and damn quickly too.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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28-07-2011, 09:02 AM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
I wouldn't say I hate the US or that Americans are stupid/evil/whatever but I would say that I really dislike the American political agenda and the hate-filled, polarized political/religious/cultural messages that seems to permeate the media.

As a Swede who speak English almost fluently I can watch American TV-shows and movies and I can follow discussions on the Internet or in media in general. A lot of the time what is shown from America is a polarized country without any middle-ground. Of course I know (hope?) that most people are decent people who stand somewhere in the middle and that what we see are the loudest people even if they're the minority. When seeing American news shows and American shows about the news (e.g. Daily show) I get the picture that a lot of the information is biased, mostly slanted to the right, and that people seem to agree that it is ok. I heard from someone at Fox news (ok, maybe not the best example since I know it's the most biased channel) that they aim to show "the other side". I mean if they even state clearly they don't try to be objective in the news reporting how can anyone expect to get the facts?

Here in Sweden we have two commercial free state owned (but not state operated) channels and I would say the news shown here at least strive to be as objective as possible and they try to show both sides if possible (and no, I don't mean they would actually show a proponent of ID if they talk about evolution :-D). Of course they don't always succeed but at least they are (in my opinion) better than most other news I've seen.

My point, finally, is that the view a lot of people get of the US is that it's a country that is divided in two and both sides like to take to the extremes by using biased information in the guise of news which gives the impression of Americans as not so smart people who buy into what they say on the telly and not try to oppose this bias that is everywhere.

Now I would also say that Swedes know that Americans aren't this bad but I can see how it might be easy to get that impression.

As someone who lives in a mostly atheistic country I also see the US as a very religious country where it seems religion is part of everything and people who aren't Christians gets shunned or even terrorized. This is extremely scary to me.

If we look at this a bit more historically the US has been involved in a lot of bad stuff all over the world in everything from supporting military revolutions of democratically elected presidents (Allende) to selling guns to terrorists (Contras) to starting illegal wars (Iraq) to blocking all trade to countries who don't share the same ideology (Cuba). Some of these thing has been done covertly and some have been done openly and with the support of the people. I think this kind of involvement is very scary and I wonder who gave the US the right to be world police at the same time as they ignore international projects like the ICC or the Kyoto-protocol.

Then we could also discuss the strange views on sex and violence that are shown in American culture. It is absolutely awful to show a nipple or someone swearing in TV but it is no problem to show people being beaten or killed. At least to me that's just weird :-)

Another thing (at least in Sweden) is the strange and unwavering support and aid the US gives to Israel. I'm not saying that everything done by the Palestinians are correct or peaceful but it is very seldom you hear the US say that Israel did something wrong and if they do they never press the issue or try to make Israel stop e.g. the illegal (by international law) settlements...

Last point I'm going to make is about the war on terror, I know that 9/11 was horrible in every way imaginable but the way the world has evolved after that is in my opinion in the opposite direction of where it should go. The things Bush started (and Obama continues) has resulted in a step backwards for human rights, it has increased religious intolerance, especially towards Muslims, it has increased tensions between the Arab world and the Western world etc.

Wow, this comment got a lot longer then I expected, I hope it's not too much rambling and that you can get at least a feeling of what I'm saying.
In conclusion, I'm not trying to say that people view all Americans this way but it is probably a couple of reasons that might affect people when forming their opinions of the US. I could also include that we are aware of the many great thing to come out of the US e.g. the Internet. The world isn't so black and white as it might seem at those times when people start ranting about bad Americans...

Take care and hugs to y'all
/Martin

P.S. If this comment hadn't been so long I would have loved to join your conversation about Japan, I love the country and I lived in Tokyo for close to 9 months when I was backpacking in SE Asia, but I'll leave that for another time.

Tl;dr
Take one look at Glenn Beck, O'Reilly and their opinions and you can see why people unlike Americans ;-)
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28-07-2011, 09:41 AM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
Here is the thing about moderates. Moderates don't have time to protest, to go on TV and rant, to write long diatribes, etc. We're too busy going to work and spending time with our families. The majority of the US are moderates, and probably just right of center moderates. The people on TV are extremists, either to the left or the right. If you are judging the US from what you see on TV, you are getting the wrong impression.

That said, there are definitely enclaves of stupidity in the US, no doubt about it. But, again, those are not the norm. Most people get up in the morning, go to work, raise their families, and don't give a toss what about things that are not their business.

Shackle their minds when they're bent on the cross
When ignorance reigns, life is lost
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28-07-2011, 10:02 AM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
The united states has done a lot of great things for the world as well. I think the good ol USA is just to freaking complex to sum up as good or bad.

To be honest, it's not so much Europeans that bother me, it's our own. Half of the time they don't even know what they are talking about, just stupid teenagers who post.. 'America sux... lol'

Ugh...

Though one thing that does bother me, as I said, is European smugness, especially from Great Britain and Canada (they are much more European then the rest of North America), considering they are so similar to us.

I think people tend to see the likes of Sarah Palin and her likes on TV, and the idiot tea party people who support her. Most Americans think she is a nut job.

There is a huge anti-immigration fad sweeping across the world for some reason. Though I'm not exactly sure if it applies to me as much (sadly).

I think I'm going to create a Japan thread for people to all share their stories and feelings on a nation that exports weirdness. (for some reason, atheists flock to Japan)

[Image: 1471821-futurama_bender_s_big_score_imag...er-1-1.jpg]
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28-07-2011, 11:38 AM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
I am European born but live in America and I have to say I am as frustrated as the OP at the continuous negative attitude the rest of the world has toward America. Is America perfect? Of course not. But
- A huge number of advances, specifically scientific and even more specifically medical, come from America. Many countries now use these drugs and treatments. Not only America isn't full of idiots as they like to think, but America has also the money to put into this kind of research. The same money they begrudge America for having in the first place. Talk about hypocritical.
- America just can't win. If a disaster happens in some part of the world, everybody expects America to put out its own money and resources to help. When they do, they are blamed it's not enough. Or it's too much. Or it's not done right. Without thinking that America doesn't really HAVE to do anything in the first place. And when it's America's turn to have natural disasters, nobody helps them back.
- When something happens (like Libya, Yugoslavia, etc) everybody wants America to come and settle the problem. Then they are called imperialists. If America gains anything from its intervention, they are criticized because apparently America is supposed to be Santa Claus and bring goodies out of sheer kindness of its heart.
- Americans are the biggest charity givers in the world. Private American charities have done tons of good in the world. American foreign aid is staggering. Private American citizens are always ready to give to charity. No other country is as generous where charity is concerned, than the US. Yet they are called all sorts of ugly names.
- If other countries really think American TV programs are so stupid, they should stop importing and showing them. Maybe people abroad should stop watching them. People should stop parroting American fashion and slang. But they don't. Because while they like to think of themselves as oh so superior, they really aren't.

Personally, my view of American foreign politics is very Libertarian: bring ALL troops home, close down all foreign basis, close down all foreign aid, and let the rest of the world fend for itself.

English is not my first language. If you think I am being mean, ask me. It could be just a wording problem.
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28-07-2011, 01:27 PM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
As news-bulletins mainly focus on negative news, the US has a serious image problem
[Image: palin+waving.jpg]
Thinking people know that these men and woman are not representative for the American citizens but not everyone is willing to pour water in the wine.

This man and his administration
[Image: george-w-bushpotatos.jpg]
Is what really ruined the polished American good guys image. Especially since he did 2 terms.

basically, what people here in Europe loath is the way the US meddles and influences the economy without them having influence back.

The thought alone of Sara Palin ever becoming president makes me want to flee my home planet.

Observer

Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
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28-07-2011, 01:49 PM
RE: Hate America- It's the hip and trendy thing to do.
Well , as I was growing up in Romania , the US was a dream destination. Learning English was the national fad and everyone hoped they would get to immigrate to an english speaking country. Later that image changed , as a lot of young people who didn't grow up in the communist eastern Europe stopped seeing the US as a dream and judged it critically.
The problems arose during Bush and politicians like him who drove the US into the ground, at least from an image perspective. All the hope and dreams got shattered when the US was led by a politician , no less incompetent than those most people wanted to escape from.
I guess people had a very unrealistic and optimistic view of the US , they glorified it in their minds and when they were faced with reality , they hated it.

My own opinion -> never judge countries as a homogenous group. People have very different opinions , and judging people based on a label is cheap an easy , but is intellectually unfair.

Atheism is a religion like OFF is a TV channel !!!

Proud of my genetic relatives Big Grin
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