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10-20-2006 08:12 AM
gigglegirl It has been my observation (just my opinon) that every our "countries consciousness" (the decisions and actions of our country as a whole) is just a mere reflect of the individuals that make up the greater whole. I think on an individual level, we are conflicted on our ideas of just what freedom means and how to express our ideas about freedom. Its painful and complex. It also carries a level of respnosibility and maturity that a good majority of Americans neither have the interest, time or capacity to handle, so what do we do, we hold our breathe, squint our eyes, say a quick prayer and "pass the buck!"

This "pass the buck" syndrome, has left us all vulnerable and a bit guilty. And although we may not agree with the gov't and the powerful decision makers that represent our country, I believe (just my opinon) that we all need to ask ourselves, where have we dropped the ball in our individual choices. where have we remained stubborn and unreasonable in our lives? Where do we wage war in our lives? Because although our individual choices and attitudes may not seem irrelevant to the "grander choices and actions" of our goverment, they do contribute to the overall consciousness of our country.

Just something to think about.

Many Blessings, Coach K!
09-11-2006 10:01 PM
momz3
Quote:
Originally Posted by bayviewbill33
I have never been ashamed of being an American. I think it is facinating how people who live in America can degrade her and hate her. They are protected by the first Amendment. I dare any of you to go to China and speak out against them or any number of countries. I did not see any protestors sitting in the streets of Bagdad for Saddam to comply with the U.N. resolutions or the inspectors. Why? Because they would be tortured and killed. In America we have the right to peacefully assemble.

America is great. America has been looked down upon for ages so get over it. You can never please everyone. We do a lot of great things. We are a great nation. Look around the world and who has a major influence? France? Germany? Russia? Iraq? Israel? Nope. The one and almost only USA. Hmmm, I seem to remember Levis and rock music were huge black market items in the USSR. Not one shot was fired to bring down the USSR - freedom and capitalism did and there self destructive government as well. People have yearned for our freedom and our lifestyle for a long time. Why have so many immigrants come here and continue to come here? Because America is so evil and awful? Who ever belives this is factually ignorant. Mexicans who walk down the middle of I-5 in California risk there lives (if you ever drove on I-5 you would understand) to come here. Why? Because they like dodging automobiles going 75mph? Call me crazy, but I do not think they want to play chicken with a car going that fast especially since they might have their children with them. Must be something more than that... I wonder what it is??? Freedom. The American dream - perhaps not for themselves but for their children.

We are not a perfect nation. We have flaws. If anyone hates living here so much, America does not have any laws stopping you to leave. I would not want you to leave. Why? If you are capable of constructive critism, your opposition of the way we operate in America needs to be heard (it is also protected). It is how we grow as a nation. You can complain all you want, but do not forget that there are many other people who would die trying to get here to enjoy that right. You think we have it bad here?

I love America and would die for her and her freedoms and her way of living. I want my children to grow up here and nowhere else. I will instill in them how great this nation is despite her having flaws and making mistakes along the way. I want them to travel the world to see how blessed they are to be an American. If my 2 year old son was 18 right now and decided to pass on college and join the military to fight in Iraq or Afghanistan, I would beam with pride. If he were to die fighting, I would be thankful for his sacrifice to keep his countrymen and women free.
Love your post. 100% agreed. If ppl hate this country so much, they canleave. Complain, complain and more complaining. We have more privelages and rights than most countries and ppl are not grateful for that it seems. Seems like everyone in the US is looking for somewhere "perfect" to live. Good luck finding it!!

Jane, glad you are living well and are happy!!
09-11-2006 03:32 PM
mamaofthreecats In America we have a lot to be thankful for. however, there are so many things we need to fix.

I don't think anyone should be embarressed to say they're american, because every country has its flaws.

if there was one thing i would change though, it would be this growing between the rich and the poor. i was raised in a rich house and because of my own personal decisions i've made in life, i've ended up quite poor. poverty seems to be a cycle of struggling from pay check to pay check. hey, i still have a computer though---a great luxery for us!!! i'm living pretty damn well to be so incredibly poor
08-27-2006 02:00 AM
nicolelynn I am personally wrestling out this question.

I was raised in a very Christian Republican environment that taught that America was founded by Christians (Christians claim masons like George Washington and deists like Thomas Jefferson as their own....not sure why), that we are blessed by God, that everything we do is just because of this, war is just, etc.

My world came crashing down a few years ago when I learned that ofcourse, none of this is true and our history is very tainted with blood. I take my faith more seriously now than ever before and do not understand how Christians can be anything but pacifists. God favors no nation above anothers. Our freedoms and material abundance often equal others exploitation (lets not forget we would have never taken over this land if we wouldn't have given Native Americans smallpox infected blankets to kill them off....). And now the Iraq war. When my husband and I went to Europe this summer we left our Air Canada tags on our backpacks for a reason. *sigh*.

I am meditating on all this seriously. I told my husband yesterday that if we go to war with Iran ...I seriously want to think about trying to immigrate to Switzerland.

We'll see.
07-09-2006 07:54 PM
Mamita Mala What disturbs me is the fact that most people forget that America does not equal the Unites States. The Americas include Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and South America. So what I think is that most people in the United States view themselves as the center of this planet , even to the point of taking an inclusive word like America as if it were exclusively their own. Such an attitude is reflected in language and actions like the fact that the U.S. is the proud owner of the commonwealth (pretty name for colony) of Puerto Rico and continues to invade other countries.
07-09-2006 01:28 PM
akashapeace I'm British... and I can safely say that I don't lack respect for American's. I didn't understand the motivations of those that voted for Bush, especially since there is so much information available for those willing to research the geo-political and economic motivations for Bush's decision to invade and occupy Iraq. It is unfortunate that the Bush Administration has followed a path that has damaged the 'image' of the U.S.A globally, but I honestly believe that 'change' starts at the grassroots level and those passionate enough about the 'wrongs' that have occured will challenge the misconceptions and the misinformation that exists as a result of the Bush Administration.

As Ghandi states 'You must be the change you wish to see in the world'

But in saying this, the same thing applies to the British too... Tony Blair, imo, is no better. And we too need to act
06-18-2006 12:38 PM
Janelovesmax I just got an American citizenship and extremely happy.
My family and I came from a very poor town of Ukraine. US gave me life. This is a country with tons of opportunities, I'm excited that my son will be growing up here.
If you want to talk about corruption, try to live in Russia.

America does a lot of good for other countries. Yes, of course it has many sceletons in the closet (or out of closet), but every country does. We just got really unfortunate with Bush administration.
04-28-2006 08:41 AM
Down_under
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marg of Arabia
N.M.
After 9/11 we had the world behind us!! We had enormous support, respect, and sympathy. What did we do with that sentiment?? First we went into Afghanistan to go after the Taliban. Did we help the Afghanis?? NO!!! They are no better off. Then we unilaterally, pre-emptively struck the very weak and poor country of Iraq for no concrete reasons! Along with dozens of other bad foreign policy decisions. Our slacker way of dealing with the Israel/Palestine situation and so on...... So, yes, I do believe the world has some pretty good reasons to hate this country.
marg
As an Australian this is the general concensus over here. After 9/11 everyone wanted to be on the side of the USA, everyone wanted to help them. Then slowly, as the years have gone that support has dwindled as the Bush government have made what seems to be more and more poor (and often disgusting!) decisions. To be honest now I am beginning to even feel ashamed as an Australian, for the unconditional support our government shows to Bush.

I also often feel sad for Americans. The social security system over there certainly sounds as if it is nothing to be envious of. It sickens me when I hear of childred who go without medicines because they are too expensive, or families who dont get the medical care they need because they cant afford health insurance. I can't imagine being a single mother and being forced into work because the government wouldnt help me out. I am horrified at the thought of ever sending my child to a school where security guards were needed, or metal detectors were used. I certainly dont "hate" america, but i'm in no way envious of americans either!
04-26-2006 11:21 PM
papayapetunia I like what Dan Savage said about the USA in a recent interview:

"Canada got the French and Australia got the convicts and we got the [expletive] bat[expletive] crazy Christians. And that matters. We're all lied to in high school—"The Pilgrims came here seeking religious freedom." No they didn't. They were the Puritans kicked out of England. They went to Holland, Holland was like "[expletive] you people," and they kicked them out too, so they came here. They came here seeking the ability to persecute everybody else—and each other—for their religious beliefs. And we are living with the descendants of those nutjobs, and we have to fight them."

It makes so much sense now...
04-26-2006 06:29 PM
swimswamswum "America" refers to two continents and lots and lots of countries.

There's a lot to think about!
04-26-2006 05:49 PM
LoBleusMama America is still wonderful, her identity has just been stolen by a bunch of crooks and theives
01-17-2005 11:07 PM
Aquaduct I think the US is a great nation, with a rich and varied culture, disregarding things like McDonalds, Dunkn' Donuts, Disney and Exxon.
I love your great sense of humour, your interest in things spiritual, your great music (Jazz, blues, gospel, rock...), Love your interest and abilities in exploring human nature, admire your great novelists, and when it's not too glitzy and shallow I enjoy a lot of your entertainment. Hell, I've got no choice, the TV's full of it here in New Zealand. No, but I really do admire many aspects of American culture.

You're not emotionally repressed, you know how to express your feelings....as compared to us Anglo-Saxon types here in NZ. I know this is a huge generalisation!

So be proud.

But remember the US Govt. is not the American people of culture...or at least, along with the military-industrial complex it is only a part of it, and not the whole. Thank goodness.
01-16-2005 11:30 PM
calpurnia
Quote:
Originally Posted by huggerwocky
Ahhh....yes.And what's that supposed to mean?

power=glory
money=goodness
influence justifies everything?

or what?

I really don't get it
Americans are better than everyone and you better damn well remember it?

And if it weren't for you I'd be speaking German right now.
01-16-2005 11:29 PM
calpurnia
Quote:
Originally Posted by bayviewbill33
Not one shot was fired to bring down the USSR - freedom and capitalism did and there self destructive government as well.
Uh?

Ah, I suppose you're disregarding Romania. 'Cause that sure wasn't brought about by the beauty of capitalism without bloodshed.

Of course you can check out Argentina for another view of the beauty of capitalism.
01-16-2005 08:51 PM
huggerwocky
Quote:
Look around the world and who has a major influence? France? Germany? Russia? Iraq? Israel? Nope. The one and almost only USA..
Ahhh....yes.And what's that supposed to mean?

power=glory
money=goodness
influence justifies everything?

or what?

I really don't get it
10-14-2004 06:19 PM
loftmama what fun to see this thread revived.

did reese every say what country she was referring to or from what experience she was drawing from that indicated the U.S. was unpopular during the Clinton years?

i was really surprised that she thought so. from my personal experience, the Clintons were VERY popular - so much so that everyone seemed to be naming their babies either Bill, Will, William or Hilary. We thought it was quite amusing and were glad that we were from a country so well respected!

unfortunately, that seems to have changed during the bush administration.
10-11-2004 03:37 PM
bayviewbill33 I have never been ashamed of being an American. I think it is facinating how people who live in America can degrade her and hate her. They are protected by the first Amendment. I dare any of you to go to China and speak out against them or any number of countries. I did not see any protestors sitting in the streets of Bagdad for Saddam to comply with the U.N. resolutions or the inspectors. Why? Because they would be tortured and killed. In America we have the right to peacefully assemble.

America is great. America has been looked down upon for ages so get over it. You can never please everyone. We do a lot of great things. We are a great nation. Look around the world and who has a major influence? France? Germany? Russia? Iraq? Israel? Nope. The one and almost only USA. Hmmm, I seem to remember Levis and rock music were huge black market items in the USSR. Not one shot was fired to bring down the USSR - freedom and capitalism did and there self destructive government as well. People have yearned for our freedom and our lifestyle for a long time. Why have so many immigrants come here and continue to come here? Because America is so evil and awful? Who ever belives this is factually ignorant. Mexicans who walk down the middle of I-5 in California risk there lives (if you ever drove on I-5 you would understand) to come here. Why? Because they like dodging automobiles going 75mph? Call me crazy, but I do not think they want to play chicken with a car going that fast especially since they might have their children with them. Must be something more than that... I wonder what it is??? Freedom. The American dream - perhaps not for themselves but for their children.

We are not a perfect nation. We have flaws. If anyone hates living here so much, America does not have any laws stopping you to leave. I would not want you to leave. Why? If you are capable of constructive critism, your opposition of the way we operate in America needs to be heard (it is also protected). It is how we grow as a nation. You can complain all you want, but do not forget that there are many other people who would die trying to get here to enjoy that right. You think we have it bad here?

I love America and would die for her and her freedoms and her way of living. I want my children to grow up here and nowhere else. I will instill in them how great this nation is despite her having flaws and making mistakes along the way. I want them to travel the world to see how blessed they are to be an American. If my 2 year old son was 18 right now and decided to pass on college and join the military to fight in Iraq or Afghanistan, I would beam with pride. If he were to die fighting, I would be thankful for his sacrifice to keep his countrymen and women free.
09-06-2004 09:01 PM
Aquaduct You're not imagining things Marg. It really is true. As Noam Chomsky has documented so eloquently and thoroughly in his many books , declassified State Dept. papers, and quotes from influential planners and advisors like George MacKennan reveal they are only too aware that to get the population on their side for invasions, imperialistic adventures, economic measures that benefit the rich to the detriment of everyone else, they need to shape their thinking, create "necessary illusions" etc.

The weasel words are thought up by clever PR trained consultants, and other figures from the intellectual classes who are part of the invisible power structure behind "the president". Weasel words like..."anti-American", "collateral damage", "plausible denial" come to mind.

There's no special dept. though. They don't need one for that. Why when there is a revolving door between Wall Street and the White House. The President doesn't need to select his cabinet of advisors and policy-makers from elected representatives...he and his cronies only have to cherry-pick from the Corporate world which they come from.

I think the right word for the US governmental regime would be plutocracy.....rule by the rich and powerful.


As a non-American, I can say that yes, there is a certain derision in my country for US actions by intelligent educated people, but also a lot of misplaced respect and admiration.

Some people will always look up to and worship power.

But I would like to say this. The US govt. is not the American people. Many who hate US imperialism, realise there are loads of good American people , who may oppose US imperialism, may be ignorant etc.

As Chomsky points out no State Govt. is a moral agent. They act in the interests of internal elites. The New Zealand Govt. if we had the military arsenal of the US, and pop. would be just as bad, imo.

Many Americans seem to really care about the wrongs that US imperialism gets up to. I respect that.
10-15-2003 11:41 AM
Marg of Arabia
Quote:
And now with the recall in California, it seems that there is no point in voting, because if the rich don't like the person elected, they'll just pool out money, and push for a recall.

Amen! Rev. Kimberly!!!!!!!!! I feel about as hopeless as you do!!

What is going on in this country??

Why can't we grow up??

Why are we so controlled by the media??

I found myself humming a jingle I heard on the radio all day yesterday. It seemed to have buried itself in my brain like a memory chip. It was a commercial for a car dealership. These brainwashing techniques seem to work in advertising.


I sometimes imagine a secret department in our government that is constantly working on brainwashing the American public into believing any lie told to them. This dept. advises Bush on his speech giving. Teaching him the techniques we are unaware of. Teaching Bush and Co. how to plant lies in American people's heads. You know, where they just repeat a lie at least 20 times per day until the American public is brainwashed much the same way that I have been brainwashed by that damned car commercial!!!

marg
10-14-2003 11:29 PM
nudespirit I'm not so sure that anyone can say that the world looked as bad at us now, as three years ago. The Human Rights Convention/Committee of the UN actually booted out the U.S. after Bush became president because of his tactics, his demanding nature, and his egotism. To my knowledge, the U.N. has never separated/kicked out the U.S in regards to anything until this. That is HUGE.
I'm proud to be an American, but I'm also ashamed to be an American right now. Our voices weren't heard this last election, it was stolen. And now with the recall in California, it seems that there is no point in voting, because if the rich don't like the person elected, they'll just pool out money, and push for a recall. It isn't just. If the people vote, that should be the end of it.
And, Bush is asking for billions of dollars for Iraq and a teeny tiny bit of that for Afghanistan, when he's absolutely refused to help our state governments that are in serious debt and failing.
And what of Afghanistan and Iraq? He finally admitted that Iraq (ie Saddam Hussein) had nothing to do with 9/11, he has yet to come forward and finally admit that they had no ties to Al Qaeda even though the CIA and many other agencies have been saying this all along.
And Afghanistan? On the news this evening Osama and his son Saad were seen together in Sudan, and he is responsible for 9/11.... we took everything we had and moved our attention to Iraq, a country that was under control and is now massacring each other, our own service members, looting and rampantly raping the women and children that are in sight. Women in Iraq have made statements saying they felt safer under Saddam's rule than they do now. And, if things are to get better, the U.S. can never leave. Which means more of our loved ones dying over there to try to regain some sense of control.
And what of that? Promised to several Iraqi's that were brought in to help build a government are being denied the very right to make any decision. They're left out of the loop and so feel helpless on helping their own people with governing decisions.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan has been left a mess, rebuilding is little and people are starving and dying every day. And, according to the news, Al Qaeda has moved right back in and will probably regain control.
Someday, I hope that Americans wake up and realize that they have to make decisions for themselves with valid information, and not just believe everything that is told to them by government officials. And in that, our news has to get better. I've had to read news from other countries to get more information as to what is going on around the world.
10-14-2003 07:47 PM
ladylee What do you think about America????

Without editing myself & off the top of my head-I don't think much of America, and have felt this way for as long as I can remember. I've lived in many different regions around the country and have never felt I belonged here. The only time I truly felt at home was living in NYC, because of the diversity of cultures.

From high school on I was around people from all different countries-European, South American, Middle Eastern, etc. I was curious about their countries, their cultures and way of life. I remember being amazed that (most of) the US students didn't seem to be particularly curious about anything beyond their own experience. I still encounter people like that 20 years later-I wonder how much things have changed in our more "global" existence.

That's what I don't like about America-its myopic view of the world.

I think America needs to stop talking and listen more--our way of life is not THE way of life and it's foolish and dangerous to keep these outdated povs. When out of the country, I'm proud when people don't take me for being an American. That's a pretty sad statement.

I just read what someone above said about our culture being immature--I also feel this in an adverse way. I don't sense any hugely sacred or historic creative energy here that will even be remotely close to that in other countries in a few hundred years, when our culture "matures."
10-14-2003 02:30 PM
mamabutterfly
Quote:
Originally posted by Hilary


the rest of the world has been waiting for the USA to grow up, since the Treaty of Versailles according to my Dad
ITA, Hilary. Your Dad sounds great.

Problem is, does the world have long enough to wait for this maturation? How much havoc on the earth, its resources, native peoples, animal species, human health, other cultural traditions, in the meantime? Sigh.

Ilaria I know just what you mean about that misperception, too. Very frustrating. :

BTW, I have my own long list of things I love about this country, its people, even some founding values, but *too much* being done 'in our name' contradicts all this goodness, sadly.

mamabutterfly
10-14-2003 09:34 AM
Ilaria
Quote:
popular hogwash by the conservative press who want to sing the USA's praises whilst denegrating the rest of the world. I hear every social ill and catastrophe in Europe blamed on socialism. It is such a nonsense, and totally inaccurate, but sadly believed by the majority of Americans.
ITA! Once again, I think it's due to ignorance...most Americans only have a vague idea of what Communism and Socialism are and how they work in modern Europe. To them it's either Socialist or Capitalist, all or nothing, while the 2 can coexist and work fairly well...
Another thing that boggles my mind is when Americans go on about being able to start and own a business, as if it is some sort of characteristic to the USA!?: My dad opened and has owned his own business for 25 years now, in Italy!
10-14-2003 03:26 AM
Britishmum "Our way is like that of a young and cocky adolescent full of bravado...the rest of the world patiently awaits our culture's maturation. I daresay that when that maturation is complete there will be much of a destructive, manipulative, negative nature commited in immaturity that will require humble apology and restitution."

How true.

NM I'm always confused by the statements, popular by talk show hosts in this country, about the ills of Europe due to socialism. :

Wasn't your last president a liberal? Wasn't Thatcher a raving conservative?

This seems to just be a popular hogwash by the conservative press who want to sing the USA's praises whilst denegrating the rest of the world. I hear every social ill and catastrophe in Europe blamed on socialism. It is such a nonsense, and totally inaccurate, but sadly believed by the majority of Americans.
10-13-2003 08:48 PM
Marg of Arabia I would love to join you! Thanks for the invite.

I had a very close friend in Saudi from Northern Ireland who recently moved to the gold coast. If only we had the money to get us over to Oz!!! I wish!!!
10-13-2003 08:22 PM
untomySelf Ah no worries Marg, come on over for a cuppa and we can discuss the insanity of T3 together. Its spring here at last and the rosella's are singing outside my window. Ill make you a home made aussie sausage roll and we can drink dandelion tea

(Did you know the postmen/women actually do their rounds by motorcycle here , theres some tricia for you)

10-13-2003 10:43 AM
Marg of Arabia Well, I predict that Arnold will fail as a politician. But, Americans don't really care that much. He will still have the peoples support. Why? because they care more about "the image". This is the sad state of affairs in this country I am living in
10-13-2003 10:40 AM
Marg of Arabia dup
10-11-2003 10:16 PM
burritomama Just had to add this: the cover of our local newsweekly this week: big headshot of Arnold looking blearily trimumphant and the headline: "California, show me your t*ts!"

Straight talking man indeed.

Of course, the newsweekly spelled it out.

10-11-2003 08:37 PM
applejuice Three reasons not to change the U.S. Constitution:

1. Napoleon, a Corsican who became head of France;

2. Stalin, a Georgian who became head of the USSR;

3. Hitler, an Austrian who became head of Germany.

Arnie is Austrian. If he wants to head a country, he should go back to Austria; they deserve him.
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