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Old 06-24-2008, 04:33 AM
 
Location: Western Mass.
605 posts, read 1,636,194 times
Reputation: 292
Quote:
Originally Posted by ozzie679 View Post
I get very tired of our government telling us that we are the "greatest country in the world". Why do we constantly need to be reminded at how great we are? If we are so great, why does Bush need to tell us every five minutes? Anti-Americanism has been around for a long time. But in the last 8 years, it has really escalated.
I think most outsiders are baffled as to why anyone would even think that America is the greatest country in the world. It's not about foreigners thinking "their country is the greatest" instead - I just don't think that type of sentiment exists elsewhere, at least nowhere near the extent to which it seems to in America.

 
Old 06-24-2008, 04:56 AM
 
2,421 posts, read 3,090,633 times
Reputation: 3720
Australia and America, Are Both constantly fighting An unfortunate negative Stereotype! Though,, Atleast America, Happens to be the Country, That people do look too and talk about!...As hard as it maybe at times, To deal with people's critisism?

Last edited by Kangaroofarmer; 06-24-2008 at 05:35 AM..
 
Old 06-24-2008, 05:25 AM
 
Location: Anchorage, Alaska (most of the time)
1,163 posts, read 2,323,430 times
Reputation: 1668
Quote:
Originally Posted by ozzie679 View Post
I get very tired of our government telling us that we are the "greatest country in the world". Why do we constantly need to be reminded at how great we are? If we are so great, why does Bush need to tell us every five minutes? Anti-Americanism has been around for a long time. But in the last 8 years, it has really escalated.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonrob View Post
I think most outsiders are baffled as to why anyone would even think that America is the greatest country in the world. It's not about foreigners thinking "their country is the greatest" instead - I just don't think that type of sentiment exists elsewhere, at least nowhere near the extent to which it seems to in America.
This is, in my experience, exactly what makes most people "annoyed" with the US. The whole "we're the greatest on earth".
Sorry, but who can actually claim that? No one, because everyone has faults, and the US does, like it or not, have many more faults than many other countries in this world.
Not said that the US doesn't have great advantages and positives about it that make up for alot of these aults, but that can be said about many other countries. And with their positives and negatives, they are better than the US or atleast equal.
There is no "greatest country" on earth. I have never encountered that sentiment outside of the US, and I hope I never will. Patriotism in all honour, but calling your own country "the greatest of them all" is bordering fanatisism. There are great advantages that a country might have compared to others, but they never make one country the best, and they are never the best advantages forever. That's why they update "The best country to live in"-list every year.

If one looks at statistics, the US is not the best country on earth. To be not so humble, the Scandinavian/Nordic countries are actually far better if one looks at the standard of living, health care, degree of democracy, education, etc etc. BUT WE'RE NOT TELLING EVERYBODY THAT WE ARE THE GREASTEST NATIONS ON EARTH!
Let's face it- people hate hate hate hate hate people who brag. Cut back on the bragging, and people would like you better.
The same goes for nations too, let's just face it.

People aren't so "annoyed" with China and Russia or Myanmar or whatever as they are with the US, because China and Russia and Myanmar doesn't tell everybody else how they are the greatest nations on earth. If they did, people would "hate" them too.

Everyone has faults, nations too, and people do actually know this and are actually very understanding of this. As long as someone doesn't have many faults but still tells everyone how great he/she is and that he/she is better than everybody else.
Imagine you being happy or atleast neutral to your lifestyle, family and life in general. And that there is a guy at work who you are, let's say neutral to when it comes to lifestyle, family and life in general.
You don't want to be him, and you are satisfied wth yourself- again, you don't want to be him.
But he talks to you like all you want to do is become him, how he's life is so much better than yours, that what you have accomplished in life is nothing compared to what he has accomplished, and how you can't resist being around him and how your biggest goal in life/dream is to move into his home with him.
Would be pretty annoying, wouldn't it?

Or to use the "fat guy"- example:
Imagine the fat guy telling the less fat guy that he needs to lose weight because he's ugly, fat and smells bad, and then goes on about how good-looking, popular and well-liked he himself is.
That's pretty much the US vs. the World - relationship right now.


All famous people must "face" that (because of) their celebricy, people are going to talk about them, discuss their faults in open, condem their every mistake, etc. They're rolemodels, and what they do effect other people.
If the US is to be the world's rolemodel (the world didn't ask for this, the US took it upon itself, so it is the US's choice, just as it is every actors/artists choice to stand in the spotlight) then it must accept that people around the world is going to talk about it, discuss its faults in open, condem its every mistake, etc. The US wants to be the "rolemodel", and what it does effects other people.


I like the US. I like far more about it than I don't like. But being accused of being jealous of it, of wanting nothing more than to move there whatever the cost, and to be told every day that the US is better than any other country, are things I don't like.
I'm not anti-American, I'm anti-bragging.
Peace?


Ok, I've tried not to, but I really must say this():
How many threads like this do we have now in the world-forum? Haven't we already covered the topic to great lengths? No? Please?
 
Old 06-24-2008, 05:27 AM
 
Location: Ireland
650 posts, read 781,637 times
Reputation: 305
Quote:
Originally Posted by orangeapple View Post
And at a certain point, people just get sick of only being criticized.
I find this interesting, and I want to ask you: does it really feel that way to you, that others 'only criticise' America? Millions of people around the world absolutely love America. On one hand, it seems that some criticism thrown into the mix wouldn't be so upsetting, but from this thread it's clear that it is. I'm finding it curious.

Quote:
Originally Posted by orangeapple View Post
I don't like being negatively stereotyped or unfairly criticized anymore than the next person.
It's true that none of us like it, but we all suffer it: stereotypes say the Irish are all drunk, the Italians are all Mafia gangsters, everyone has one. It IS sad and stupid, but what can you do but shrug it off, and help educate others? That's what's fascinating me about this thread: I'm encountering views I hadn't heard before, some upsetting or bewildering but all valid, and interesting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian.Pearson View Post
I don't really care what other countries think about the US. What do they think about Russia or China? ...The focus on America is because it is the top dog. I rarely hear criticism from critics of America who are vehement in their views of the above-mentioned countries.
Most people do have opinions on Russia, China, and everywhere else of course. But those countries don't seem to be bothered by "Anti-Russianism" or whatever; at least I've never heard much of it. Maybe this is a result of history or geography (both give reason), but America generally seems to see itself apart from the rest of the world, instead of an equal part in a worldwide community (as you've just said, "top dog"). I wonder if that's part of it? (honestly wondering, I'm trying to make no judgments)

Of course America is hugely influential on the world stage. Of course that influence can be resented by others sometimes, when the influence runs counter to their own needs. But look how all politicians and leaders have to continually shrug off their critics (Lord, poor Hillary Clinton for instance, and the rest of the candidates)...can Americans *in general* pick up that skill, and grow a tougher skin? Who cares after all, if others are criticising you?
 
Old 06-24-2008, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Southern California
2,920 posts, read 4,201,044 times
Reputation: 3699
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyLaLa View Post
I find this interesting, and I want to ask you: does it really feel that way to you, that others 'only criticise' America? Millions of people around the world absolutely love America. On one hand, it seems that some criticism thrown into the mix wouldn't be so upsetting, but from this thread it's clear that it is. I'm finding it curious.
Yes, it is almost shocking now to hear someone say something positive about the US who is not an American. The exception is people who have immigrated here, and then they obviously have positive things to say.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweden View Post
This is, in my experience, exactly what makes most people "annoyed" with the US. The whole "we're the greatest on earth".
Many Americans don't feel that way at all about the US. Just because you've talked to a few obnoxious people does not mean everyone or even most people think that way. It's simply another stereotype.
The government tries to tell people here that powerful + influential = greatest, because they want to soothe the dissatisfaction people have with this country, but I don't know too many people who buy it. Everyone I know thinks the US is going down the drain.

I've found many foreigners to be ridiculous in their nationalism also, btw. I've talked to some British, Swiss, Italian, whoever, that are so full of themselves and go on about how much better their country is. I've also talked to people who don't do that at all, and so I wouldn't lump people together.
It's all in your perspective. The real matter is, some people resent any pride Americans may have. Some only like it when Americans are timid, apologetic, even ashamed. That's unfair.

It's like that LCD Soundsystem song, "North American Scum":

"I hate the feelin' when you're looking at me that way
cause we're North Americans
but if we act all shy, it’ll make it ok
it makes it go away."
 
Old 06-24-2008, 07:56 PM
 
Location: Texas
5,069 posts, read 5,432,533 times
Reputation: 1531
Quote:
Who cares after all, if others are criticising you?
LOL, certainly not me. As I may have mentioned somewhere, it's mostly the left who are concerned about criticism of the US and "our standing in the world community" as they put it.
 
Old 06-25-2008, 12:51 PM
 
9 posts, read 42,853 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by orangeapple View Post
See, this is anti-Americanism, and I agree that it isn't new.
I wrote that people may think of Americans as a whole as being vulgar or unsophisticated, but I don't think that is true. It's a negative stereotype.
Yes, and it has many roots in reality. I recently visited a very high end international resort. There were people from several nations- mostly Europe staying there. I could spot most of the Americans though. They had tattoo's, and seemed much more rowdy than the other guests.

There is a strain of America that is very much a "Go to hell with you and the world" philosophy. Look at the millions of harley davidsons that sell. We all love a real cowboy, a real mountain man, etc..

And, the then the most unbelievable part is that commerce has found a way to unite even that with doesn't want to unite. Bike rallys are big business. Tatoo's are big business.

There is NO OTHER country with that type of culture and it has to be both distasteful and yet marveled at.. hence the love/hate..

If you look at some of the posts in this very forum a theme that occurs over and over is 'yes Europe is great, but I want my children to grow up to be whatever they want'.. and so they look at moving right back to the USA.
 
Old 06-25-2008, 04:47 PM
 
6,745 posts, read 5,172,772 times
Reputation: 1805
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atl_321 View Post
I think some of the so called Anti- Americanism is not at all new. Part of the issue may be that Americans aren't cultured, for lack of better word, the way much of Europe has been. And to see that type of un-cultured person succeed to the point Americans have, leaves a bad taste in some peoples mouths. From what I've read, this dates at least to the revolution and probably all along.
But our history is is not as long as the rest of the world. I would say some of us are "uncultured" (I use that word weakly) We also have our own culture. Ours is a mish-mash of many countries. We are not as homogeneous like the French or Germans.

I agree to a point. I don't like our arrogance and I think many of us are uncouth. In some parts of the country, the people are the first generation to walk upright in their family. (I won't mention any regions) But the same can be said of the UK. There are some rough characters over there.
 
Old 06-29-2008, 11:53 AM
 
7 posts, read 27,429 times
Reputation: 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by OgleCo View Post
Anti-Americanism has spread through Europe like wildfire.

Visit YouTube and just search anti-americanism.

Astounding.

Only about 23% of the Spanish (Spain) have a favorable opinion of the US
Only about 39% of the French have a favorable opinion of the US
Only about 56% of the Brits have a favorable opinion of the US

There is one hour long segment on YouTube, at Princeton University, I didn't watch the whole thing, but I got my polling information there. I knew that there was SOME Anti-US attitudes in Europe, I just didn't know it was this widespread.

A Poll in Germany conducted in 2007 shows that due to negative American media in the country, Germans had a more favorable opinion, by far, of IRAN than of the United States.

Also, I noticed in the polling that American support numbers FELL significantly from 2004-2005. Hmm. George W. Bush's second term couldn't have been the cause?

If I could find the link to that hour-long segment I would gladly provide it. If you are interested and astounded like I was, do some investigating on YouTube.

So, I am anxious to hear from Europeans and Americans alike. Europeans, I want you, especially, to be honest.

Your thoughts?
This shocked me, too, Ogle. And what shocked me even more is the fact that anti-Americanism has been going on in Europe/Britain since the beginning of America. All they needed was a real reason to hate America, and they took us having a bad leader and gladly ran with it. As if they have never had any bad leaders. They have entire TV shows/shows on Britain's equivalent to Broadway doing nothing but putting down & making fun of Americans. Who would have thought Europeans/Brits would be so insecure and immature. In fact, this show was sold out every single night and was the longest running show ever on Britain's equivalent to Broadway. Any show about any other people in the world doing nothing but putting another people down would bore Americans to death. This is a huge difference in Americans and Europeans/Brits. They make fun of us for some of the most ridiculous, pathetic, immature things....things such as grade school children would say and think. They always hate and make fun of each other. This is just something Americans have never been obsessed with.

It has hit most Americans like a ton of bricks, considering we always thought of Europeans/Brits as our older cousins/friends across the pond. Secondly, we thought they were sophisticated, secure people versus very uncouth people who act more like grade school bullies. Making fun of Americans by trying to portray all Americans as being fat, lazy, ignorant rednecks is more like something I would expect from Arab Muslims in the east, not Europeans/Brits. It seems that our friends/cousins across the pond have more in common with their Muslim population than they do with us.

It isn't "all" Europeans/Brits, of course, but it is a majority of them. And, yes, their media has a hell of a lot to do with it. They say our things are in their faces and try to say we are trying to do away with their "superior" culture and substitute it with ours. I don't recall us twisting their arms, though, to buy our things, watch our movies, listen to our music, etc, do you?

Many Europeans/Brits are moving from their countries because of their violent Muslim populations. Haven't you noticed we have a whole lot more Brits on our TV shows/movies/commercials lately? The Swedes are moving out of their country "in droves" b/c of their violent Muslim population according to a Swedish newspaper. The liberal Europeans, who are really the ones who are more anti-America, are destroying Europe/Britain.

You should get the book "The United States of Europe" by T.R. Ried to learn more about all of this craziness. Personally, I think these Europeans/Brits are shooting themselves in the foot. If anyone is trying to change their countries/cultures, it would be their Muslim populations. But as usual, hatred extremism will blind people of their true problems. This also has a lot to do with trying to find an enemy that will unite Europeans under the EU. In my opinion, though, they have chosen the wrong enemy. The future for Europe will prove this to be very true, in my opinion. If Europeans and Americans were smart we would stick together. This is our only chance of survival of our freedoms in the future.
 
Old 06-29-2008, 12:04 PM
 
7 posts, read 27,429 times
Reputation: 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyLaLa View Post
I think you might have run into a cultural difference there, more than any mean-spiritedness.

If you read British, Irish, well many European newspapers and blogs, you'll see that we're very open about criticising our own governments too, which I think is a healthy thing: our elected representatives SHOULD know when we're unhappy with the job they're doing. And I think a lot of Europeans are political-minded and enjoy such discussions when they have the chance to meet someone from another country.... which we don't see as antagonistic, just sharing views; I wonder (knowing I wasn't there) if your friends were simply trying to engage you in a discussion to hear your opinions and insights, that's all.

Although our family visits America every few years and love it, we NEVER talk politics with anyone, and I cringe inside if someone else brings it up. In my experience, a lot of Americans are just SO sensitive about their own country that they'll take any criticism as deeply personal, and have a patriotism that's fierce enough to be almost frightening when seen from the outside.

Just a few thoughts.
Lily, I hardly thing that making fun of Americans for loving their country...we can't help it if the EU has been trying to desensitize you guys from your countries so you'll be more for uniting under the EU...not carrying passports...we cannot hop from one country to the next as you do because it's like hopping from state to state for us and we usually do not need a passport unless we cross the ocean, which isn't an everyday thing for anyone...making fun of us for being overweight...grade school bullies come to mind on this one...trying to portray all Americans as ignorant, lazy rednecks...again, grade school bullies come to mind...saying we have no culture...saying our country is young and Europeans are older and wiser and we should always listen to you...I think the correct way would be for us to listen to each other, you tend to forget most of us were Europeans before coming to the US...I could go on and on about the petty, ridiculous, uncouth way many Europeans/Brits/Irish make fun of and put down Americans which has nothing whatsoever to do with our government/politics or whatever.

And, yes, you guys do seem to be very obsessed with hating and making fun of each other as well. I think this is anything but healthy and a good way to be.
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