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  1. #11
    Senior Member Tiltyred's Avatar
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    Everybody else learns English as a second language and pays attention to what happens in America because we're in a dominant position, and they think whatever we do affects them, so they feel free to voice opinions about what Americans should and shouldn't do. I don't know about you, but I don't have time to learn all the languages on the earth, everybody's customs, and everybody's politics. I don't see that it's symptomatic of gross general ignorance if we don't. Plenty of non-Americans think they know everything about American after they've been to one city. There's great ignorance in the entire world. We don't have a premium on it that I know of.

  2. #12
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiltyred View Post
    Everybody else learns English as a second language and pays attention to what happens in America because we're in a dominant position, and they think whatever we do affects them, so they feel free to voice opinions about what Americans should and shouldn't do. I don't know about you, but I don't have time to learn all the languages on the earth, everybody's customs, and everybody's politics. I don't see that it's symptomatic of gross general ignorance if we don't. Plenty of non-Americans think they know everything about American after they've been to one city. There's great ignorance in the entire world. We don't have a premium on it that I know of.

    This is true to an extent. Many people I know who are not native Americans really had no idea how large and varied this country is.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  3. #13
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Perhaps if our country behaved more in keeping with our classical liberal principles, our international reputation would improve.
    Not as much as you might think; Anti-Americanism on the basis of our cultural/institutional influences through the free market and our defense of American sovereignty was quite severe long before the specific Bush administration policies you are thinking about.

  4. #14
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    The latest figures I read in the newspaper were that 5% of the world's population controls 45% of the world's resources.

    The only problem seems to be that those 5% not only want to be in control, but they want to be loved as well.

    And the two are simply not compatible.

  5. #15
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    Not as much as you might think; Anti-Americanism on the basis of our cultural/institutional influences through the free market and our defense of American sovereignty was quite severe long before the specific Bush administration policies you are thinking about.
    It didn't start with Bush, and it clearly will not end with him, either. It's been going on since the 1890s.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  6. #16
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    It didn't start with Bush, and it clearly will not end with him, either. It's been going on since the 1890s.
    Our activist foreign policy during the Twentieth Century was not always detrimental to our international reputation, at least among liberal democracies (WWII and the Marshal Plan comes to mind), though there have been plenty of policies which have been. I personally think a robust foreign policy is necessary to both protect our interests and (potentially) to advance our ideals, but I would agree that it also allows us to more easily engage in counter-productive foreign adventures.

  7. #17
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    It didn't start with Bush, and it clearly will not end with him, either. It's been going on since the 1890s.
    Don't forget about Polk!
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  8. #18
    On a mission Usehername's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiltyred View Post
    Everybody else learns English as a second language and pays attention to what happens in America because we're in a dominant position, and they think whatever we do affects them, so they feel free to voice opinions about what Americans should and shouldn't do. I don't know about you, but I don't have time to learn all the languages on the earth, everybody's customs, and everybody's politics. I don't see that it's symptomatic of gross general ignorance if we don't. Plenty of non-Americans think they know everything about American after they've been to one city. There's great ignorance in the entire world. We don't have a premium on it that I know of.
    While certainly your POV has some measure of truth to it, IMO as a Canadian this is sort of what the OP is talking about.

    English isn't America's language. It's the Earth's primary language. See how many countries you can name off the top of your head that primarily speak English, and then check out a map and see how many countries within Africa or other places are similar... English is everywhere. English is how you get by when you travel the world, and it's not because of America's position of power, but because of Europeans in power long before America had its foothold.

    Your point of not monopolizing ignorance is well-taken, and I have met some extremely thoughtful Americans, however, I know I can generally sense when an American has never left their own country (beach umbrella drinking vacations aside) and experienced different cultures simply by listening to them speak about topics (even topics that have nothing to do with politics or religion).

    Many (not all, but many) Americans have no idea of what exists outside of their borders not in the sense of geographic knowledge of information or language like you speak of (all of which are, as you note, relatively insignificant), but primarily in worldview.

    And these Americans can't see what they're missing because everything they know is filtered through American media and American individuals.
    *You don't have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.
    *Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason once accepted, despite your changing moods.
    C.S. Lewis

  9. #19
    Rainy Day Woman MDP2525's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Come on, the world doesn't hate all of the US, they just hate this part:



    International tourists flock to places like NYC, Las Vegas, and California. But you won't find them going to Kentucky to see The Creation Museum.
    You're right. They might just go for the Kentucky Derby or their Bluegrass festivals. Or maybe they'll visit Nashville for fantastic live music. Or Atlanta for their famous aquarium. Or Orlando for Disney. Or New Orleans for jazz and amazing food and culture .... I really hate these kinds of comment about the South. I'm not saying it's perfect and there isn't problems but not everyone is a racist, evangelical zealot. Yet, that's the brush we get painted with. It sucks.

    Another thing, I live in a very transient city. Most of the people who live here aren't from or born here. If you come down here and start spouting off negative generalities about the people and area. Well, it's downright rude! I mean, most people wouldn't appreciate this. So yeah. People do this a lot! Then wonder why they are ostracized. Thing is, most of us are open to discussions about different people and ideas and politics and all that. But it's mostly done in private arenas. Making the kind of statements irl or the post you did here only makes us clam up and not want to engage in any well meaning conversation. I mean, there's a reason it's called "Southern Hospitality" but we usually shut that down real fast when we hear comments like that.
    ~luck favors the ready~


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  10. #20
    cast shadows metaphours's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Usehername View Post
    While certainly your POV has some measure of truth to it, IMO as a Canadian this is sort of what the OP is talking about.

    English isn't America's language. It's the Earth's primary language. See how many countries you can name off the top of your head that primarily speak English, and then check out a map and see how many countries within Africa or other places are similar... English is everywhere. English is how you get by when you travel the world, and it's not because of America's position of power, but because of Europeans in power long before America had its foothold.

    Your point of not monopolizing ignorance is well-taken, and I have met some extremely thoughtful Americans, however, I know I can generally sense when an American has never left their own country (beach umbrella drinking vacations aside) and experienced different cultures simply by listening to them speak about topics (even topics that have nothing to do with politics or religion).

    Many (not all, but many) Americans have no idea of what exists outside of their borders not in the sense of geographic knowledge of information or language like you speak of (all of which are, as you note, relatively insignificant), but primarily in worldview.

    And these Americans can't see what they're missing because everything they know is filtered through American media and American individuals.
    This is pretty much what I was trying to say.

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