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OP/ED: America Bashing: National Sociologism

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posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 09:28 AM
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I was inspired to write this little polemic by a comment one of my fellow members made expressing frustration at the America-bashing which goes on around here.

This is an opinion piece, and a lot of you won't like it. I make absolutely no apology for that, but hope you will see fit to hear me out and remember that this is a very short essay about a very complicated issue.

Thus some of what I write here will not be 100% accurate, or even close, but rather a distillation of some admittedly difficult to simplify concepts.

In other words, not only am I certainly wrong in some or all of my viewpoints, but this essay cannot possibly express them in their subtlety, so you and I may see things more alike than this article may lead you to believe. But that's the curse of the written word for you. Anyway...

Let's get down to business.

The World's Most Popular Sport

I am an American who is proud to be an American. I love my country passionately and have sworn an oath to uphold and defend its constitution with my life if need be. My time of military service has ended, but I will never renounce my oath, ever.

Just so you know where I stand on all this.

The most common pastime people engage in on Internet discussion forums is complaining. This may be a step up from the Good Old Days, because the most common pastime used to be trying to “pick up chicks”. See IRC.

Everybody has a problem. Some of us have lots of problems. Some of us express our problems by projecting them on others.

It is human nature to blame God for our problems. But not all of us believe in God.

The God Of This World

Enter the United States of America. For those whose ideology has no room for God, but who nonetheless need a substitute for divine culpability, America fills the bill. Our president in particular.

That's why when something goes wrong in the world, no matter where, no matter what, there is always somebody who is quick to blame it on America and/or our president.

9/11? Bush did it. (Or Jews, if you prefer). Either Bush did it through a direct conspiracy, or is at fault for allowing it to happen. Or both. Plus several additional theories, to keep things interesting.

Unemployment in Europe? America. We compete unfairly and still occupy Germany like the evil oppressors we are. When we withdraw troops from Germany, the economic backlash will also be our fault.

North Korea? America's fault. We let China take it over in the first place. Alternately, we didn't fight hard enough to prevent that. We're also responsible for them having nukes, either by respecting their sovereignty or by not respecting their sovereignty. Choose one or both.

Tsunami? Bush's fault, and America's for not warning people on the other side of the world that a tsunami was coming. Oh, and of course, that quake must have been caused by HAARP.

My point is that since America is currently perched precariously (and, I think, briefly) at the apex of a house of global cards, people naturally see us in a paternalistic light -- often to a supernatural degree.

This phenomenon is illustrated by the spectacle of people railing at us for dominating their destinies while simultaneously expressing indignation that we aren't doing more to help them.

The Reluctant God

Of course, America is not God. Nor is it the Great Satan. Nor is it, in my opinion, “God's gift to the world” as some of my more zealous countrymen are famously known to assert.

We're just a nation of people doing our best to get by.

It isn't easy.

Take a look at the last century. America is branded as “war-mongering”, but look at where both world wars started. Of course, WWI and WWII must somehow be America's fault too, right? Maybe because of our aggression in the Spanish-American war, or something.

After all, Europe is a peaceful continent, and if Americans could be more like Europeans, the world would be a better place. Let's just conveniently ignore why Europe became so peaceful after centuries of war.

America? Naw. America was the problem.

I'm not out to knock anyone, though I can almost hear my fellow ATSers revving up their keyboards to let me have it. Especially my dear friends in Europe who no doubt take umbrage at my uncultured, simplistic view of European history.

That's fine. Go nuts. Sock it to me.

I'm here for you.

But the next time you want to blame the U.S. for something -- oh, let's say Global Warming, for example -- I hope you will remember that you are, whether you want to admit it or not, propping up my nation as a god, and thus addicting yourself to a different brand of the same “opiate” you presumably swore off some time back.

America is not the source of all good or evil in the world, and those who choose to assign both Bush and America a more rational and proportional place in the global community will tend to find themselves feeling much less angry at “God”, and perhaps more at peace with themselves as a bonus.

This is a simplified version of my opinion on the topic. Yours will no doubt vary, but I hope you can cut an ignorant swaggering arrogant cowboy some slack.

America loves you.

Thanks for reading.




posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 09:48 AM
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The United states does not love, its not alive its man made like the god in which we trust.

There is a thin line between love and hate.

The only thing I blame on the united states is all the bodies in Iraq of iraqis and USA Soliders. They died for a country that like animals only knows fight or flight.

I love living in the states would not want to be anywhere else. I also know that there is a need for change. If we keep moving down this road of war, we WILL NOT last. We have been a father, brother for to long its time to become a mother, and love the world.

IMO



[edit on 4-6-2005 by SpittinCobra]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:18 AM
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Originally posted by Majic
Enter the United States of America. For those whose ideology has no room for God, but who nonetheless need a substitute for divine culpability, America fills the bill. Our president in particular.

That's why when something goes wrong in the world, no matter where, no matter what, there is always somebody who is quick to blame it on America and/or our president.


The reason the US gets blamed so often for anything that happens in almost any country is because the US has a presence in almost every country out there. EIther direct military presence or covert ops presence and everything else along those lines.

How many operations are you conducting or supporting right now?
Any ideas?
It's probably dozens.

A war in Iraq.
A war in Afghanistan.
Threats against Syria.
Support for opposition parties and other groups in Iran. state.gov
Support for militaries in Chad, Niger, Mauritania and Mali through the Trans-Sahara Counter Terrorist Initiative. ATSNN
$700 million for muslim militia groups. ATS
Support for opposition groups in Venezuela. State.gov
Dozens of countries getting grants from the NED, which usually go towards opposition political groups. NED
Involvement in the situation in Kyrgyzstan. ATS

The list is so long it would take forever to post.
It would be difficult to find a country that the US is not involved in right now.


[edit on 4-6-2005 by AceOfBase]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:35 AM
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well majic... you got my vote for this month...

[edit on 4-6-2005 by microcosm]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:38 AM
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Heart of the Corporate World - America.

This is how I see it.

America represents the Heart of the Corporate World.

And here lies the problem.

Corporations are GODS here.

They MAKE the Rules.

They tell you what to eat, what to drink, what to watch, what to know, what to read, what to write - just about everything.

How many Churches and Mosques are higher than Corporate Headquaters in cities all over the World?

If you GOD is Money, then you must build a place of Worship to your God.

So lets check out the local scenery of a Big Western Capital City and compare:



New York




Baghdad City



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:40 AM
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Ace of bass...

You do realize it goes well beyond just that, right?

I'm not sure if it was this message board, or another one... but people were saying that the US detonated an underwater nuke to generate the earthquake which started the tsunami...

There was a bunch of other "US Nuke, Tsunami theories" too...

I'll try to find some of them.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:45 AM
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Excellent post, Magic! Very nicely stated.


Originally posted by SpittinCobra
The only thing I blame on the united states is all the bodies in Iraq of iraqis and USA Soliders. They died for a country that like animals only knows fight or flight.

I love living in the states would not want to be anywhere else. I also know that there is a need for change. If we keep moving down this road of war, we WILL NOT last. We have been a father, brother for to long its time to become a mother, and love the world.
[edit on 4-6-2005 by SpittinCobra]



A need for a change? I disagree. I believe that a change is exactly what we needed. A war was inevitable. Mother we have been. We have been mothering for far too long. It was high-time for 'mother' to get fed up and give spankings.

I do like the mother/father analogy you use to describe our role with many other nations.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:51 AM
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Originally posted by SourGrapes


A need for a change? I disagree. I believe that a change is exactly what we needed. A war was inevitable. .


Is it not a cowards or bullies way to pick on the weak? There Was NO threat there, the papers were fixed.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:59 AM
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Originally posted by microcosm
I'm not sure if it was this message board, or another one... but people were saying that the US detonated an underwater nuke to generate the earthquake which started the tsunami...


Those persons were on the extreme edge.
I had heard of the theory that HAARP caused the earthquake that led to the Tsunami and that was discussed here but I don't think anyone took the Nuke theory seriously. The Nuke story was probably brought up by someone just to discredit conspiracy theorists.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:06 AM
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Originally posted by SpittinCobra

Is it not a cowards or bullies way to pick on the weak? There Was NO threat there, the papers were fixed.


I'd rather not get into the 'reasoning' behind the war. It's been played out over and over and over again. That argument no longer interests me, and I'd rather not hash it out with someone who's been a member here long enough to read and comment on the many threads already archived here at ATS.

What I don't mind discussing is our 'relationship' w/the country we are fighting for at the present. Are we not like a mother to the nation? How long did we give support to these people. How many years? How long do we have to continue supporting other countries before we check to see how things are moving along?

If you support someone, you also take responsibility for them.

If you don't want our 'nose' in your business, then don't take hand-outs from us.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:09 AM
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Don't Get Me Wrong

Frankly, I'm rather pleasantly surprised at how tame the response has been so far.

Not that I wanted to draw flames with this essay, but rather that it's a touchy subject and well, let's face it, some of you really do have good reasons for being upset with the United States.

Still, I am gratified by the thoughtful responses. If we keep going like this, we might actually get somewhere. That's expecting a lot, but I'm an incurable optimist.

As I lamented above, one essay doesn't even come close to explaining my perspective on things. This one won't either, but I hope it helps.

Hide The Silverware

First off, I want to assure you that I am not saying the U.S. is blameless in all things. In fact, we all know damn well that America has its grubby little fingers in just about everybody's pie.

America is like the house guest that just won't leave.

For those of you who may think I'm calling for you to look the other way at America's excesses and abuses, I want you to know that not only don't I want to say that, I'm with you on this.

I don't think America sucks, but we sure as hell do plenty of things that suck. Name a sin, I'm sure America has committed it. If we haven't, it's probably because we are researching better ways to do it.

As much as I love America, I am a major critic of it, as is my right.

Just so you know.

The Long View

America has done some great things and some atrocious things, but the truth is that in the history of humankind, there are no saints, only sinners.

So it boils down to deciding what brand of sin you tolerate best.

America wasn't always in other people's faces, telling them what to do, manipulating their currencies, intruding in their domestic affairs, spreading the “gospel of democracy”, assassinating politicians, funding coups, forcing policy down people's throats, planting spies in their governments, publicly claiming innocence while secretly doing the dirtiest of tricks, condemning opponents as “evil” while propping up dictators and operating death squads.

No, it didn't used to be that way at all.

We used to be a relatively unassuming country that, by and large, preferred to keep to ourselves.

Hard to believe, isn't it? We've come so far.

I'm trying to keep my screeds down to bite-sized pieces, so I'll end this one now.

I'll leave you with a question to ponder, though:

When did America “go wrong”, and why?



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:15 AM
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Originally posted by SourGrapes



If you don't want our 'nose' in your business, then don't take hand-outs from us.



So in other words we give hand-outs so we can have our hand in the pot.
Thats kinda dirty, Maybe we should worrie about handing out money to our own people, they are already in our business.

As for how we are being a mother to Iraq now, We have no choise we crippled the country we have to mother it back to health. I can respect you not wanting to talk about the war.

The problem is most of the problems stem from the war.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:20 AM
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In the past couple of months that I've been a member here, I've become more and more cynical of America, and what it supposedly stands for. It's not just ATS, it's a seed that's been growing since I was old enough to understand people's opinions and to get into the "real" world where you don't have the daily pledge of allegiance or other pro-American icons. But all of the anti-Bush and anti-American threads here, whether I've tried to ignore them or not, have sunk in little by little. I hate that.

I miss the time when it was good to be an American. The time when it was acceptable to think that we had to do the things we were doing. The time when our government wasn't corrupt, wasn't just trying to fill their pockets. The time when you felt like you should stand behind the president no matter what, because he was our leader, he was the one everyone wanted to be.

I know that time was entirely in my own mind, and I was frolicking around in my youthful naivete. But it was a lot easier--psychologically at least--to get by having faith in those who led us than trying to find fault with everything in the news. Maybe ignorance is bliss. Maybe not.

I guess what I'm trying to say is Majic, you're right. America is not perfect. Not by a long shot. But contrary to all of the ideas of shadow governments and global conspiracy groups, I do feel that America's imperfections are not terminal. We can fix it. Maybe I'm still naive and ignorant, but I don't think ignorance is denied just by pointing out everything that's wrong. And we need to start taking pride in our country again. We need to stop complaining to ourselves and start doing something to fix it. We need to like America at least, if not love it. Maybe then we can start to change things in our country, and maybe even get other nations to at least not hate us as much. You got my vote



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:32 AM
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Originally posted by Majic
[Frankly, I'm rather pleasantly surprised at how tame the response has been so far.


I believe it's because most of the responses have come from mature, open-minded members thus far. Give it some time. I wouldn't give it a day before tempers flair. (or, maybe I'm being pessimistic)




America wasn't always in other people's faces, telling them what to do, manipulating their currencies, intruding in their domestic affairs, spreading the “gospel of democracy”, assassinating politicians, funding coups, forcing policy down people's throats, planting spies in their governments, publicly claiming innocence while secretly doing the dirtiest of tricks, condemning opponents as “evil” while propping up dictators and operating death squads.

No, it didn't used to be that way at all.

We used to be a relatively unassuming country that, by and large, preferred to keep to ourselves.

Hard to believe, isn't it? We've come so far.

I'm trying to keep my screeds down to bite-sized pieces, so I'll end this one now.

I'll leave you with a question to ponder, though:

When did America “go wrong”, and why?





I'm not so sure that America has changed. We are still a very young country. We're still in our infancy compared to most. I'd say we've matured rather fast as well.

I believe we've been a country of 'givers'. America likes to assist other countries. I believe we are this way because of our founding fathers. Many who originally came to America, did so out of economic 'need'. Our fathers knew what it was like to lose children to famine, disease, and poverty.

Even the wars we have fought (with the exception of the Revolution and Civil) have been to assist other nations. Of course we will always have more than one side and opinions. Otherwise there wouldn't be a need for war. Opinions will differ on who's side we've assisted. The right side? Everyone has their own perception as to what's 'right'.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:33 AM
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The United States is a fantastic country; culturally diverse, enourmously successful, populated by friendly people, and wonderfully strong. It's just that it seems to have been hijacked by entities that are steering it down the path to destruction, and unfortunately much of the rest of the world is either following suit, or finding itself in the firing line.

While the rest of the world is observing this transformation with mixed feelings of sorrow, helplessness, and sometimes misdirected anger, many Americans, who love their country dearly, are also coming to this realization and seeing that something is indeed rotten in the state of Denmark. The problem is that the large remainder have become victims of two deceptions; one being the Republican-Democrat paradigm, and the other being the blurring of the distinction between government and nation, and government and individual.

The R-D paradigm, which also exists in most countries with a multi-party system, succeeds in keeping Americans railing and fighting against each other and therefore effectively impotent, while the country finds itself in the throes of an increasingly aggressive and, maybe, ultimately self-destructive foreign policy. There's a crazy driver at the wheel, yet the backseat passengers are arguing about whose leg is on whose side.

The lack of distinction between government and nation means that ingrained psychological triggers, sometimes called "patriotism", and often appendixed with the adjective, "blind", cause the individual to interpret any words of disparagement against his or her government as a personal attack, or an attack on his or her countrymen, and hence, will react with automated emotion-driven defensiveness, which only serves to enhance the aptness of the "blind" moniker. When seeing these type of reactions, I am acutely reminded of why militia were so important in American history, and also of the oath taken by American soldiers, law enforcement officers and, I believe, new citizens, which states that they promise to "protect, preserve and defend the Constitution of the united States of America against all enemies, both foreign and domestic."

It's tough being top dog, and it is natural for there to be a certain amount of jealously directed at the most successful and powerful nation in the world, but there are two kinds of big brother figures; there is the kind who protects his weaker siblings and friends and by this earns their respect, admiration and love, and there is the kind who uses his strength for not so noble ends, ensuring his position of dominance through bullying and intimidation. Somehow, at some point in the timeline, certain forces have succeeded in metamorphisizing the United States from the former into the latter. (And if you think I am referring to George Bush, you need to look deeper into who really controls the United States.) One does not make enemies simply because one is strong; children will ignore a bully until that bully comes and steals their lunch money, or rips their artwork to shreds. And so, the forces that have hijacked United States foreign policy, tramping around the international school yard, cussing, pushing and beating, have provoked anger; anger which sometimes is blindly directed at anyone or anything American, as flag burnings and kidnappings of innocent American citizens will show.

Concerning some of the outlandish conspiracy theories, more often than not shadowy forces behind the U.S. government are accused of being the protagonists. This prejudice is the function of one truth and one mistake.

The truth being that the United States has the most advanced, developed and secretive intelligence networks on the planet. Nowhere else in the world has there been more intrigue, drama, hidden projects and metaphorical 'Watergates' than in the U.S., excepting maybe a brief period in the former Soviet Union. Drama creates drama, and secrecy encourages speculation.

The mistake being that many conspiracy theory dabblers fail to grasp the concept that, if their truly are such all-encompassing, far-reaching conspiracies, then the United Sates - as other nations - is simply a tool of a greater entity, the influence of which is global in scope rather than national; reaching across the Earth, and likely far back into the dark recesses of history.

[edit on 2005/6/4 by wecomeinpeace]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:38 AM
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Originally posted by wecomeinpeace
The mistake being that many conspiracy theory dabblers fail to grasp the concept that, if their truly are such all-encompassing, far-reaching conspiracies, then the United Sates - as other nations - is simply a tool of a greater entity, the influence of which is global in scope rather than national, reaching across the Earth, and likely far back into the dark reaches of history.


That could very well be true.
That entity could be using whichever country or countries that have the power at the time to advance their own interests. It doesn't matter if its the US, Britain, France, the Soviets or any other country that could do their dirty work for them.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:48 AM
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Originally posted by AceOfBase
That could very well be true.
That entity could be using whichever country or countries that have the power at the time to advance their own interests. It doesn't matter if its the US, Britain, France, the Soviets or any other country that could do their dirty work for them.


More than that, AOB, if the Hegelian Principle is truly the modus operandi of some nefarious, conspiratorial force, then the enemies of those controlled nations are also merely sock puppets.

Problem, reaction, solution. Out of chaos order. And all that.



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:48 AM
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Originally posted by Majic
Don't Get Me Wrong

Frankly, I'm rather pleasantly surprised at how tame the response has been so far.


I'll leave you with a question to ponder, though:

When did America “go wrong”, and why?





Frankly I think America went wrong by reponding to all the plea's from other countries arround the world for help from us.

The US is not a 911 agency, yet many countries think it is and that is wrong.

Just my two cents which are worth nothing



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 12:03 PM
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Originally posted by shots
Frankly I think America went wrong by reponding to all the plea's from other countries arround the world for help from us.

The US is not a 911 agency, yet many countries think it is and that is wrong.


I completely agree with this. We need to back off as soon as possible; we've got far too many problems of our own to be able to solve those of the rest of the world. But at the same time, we can't, at least not anytime soon. That's what screwed us with Afghanistan--we went in to "help," stayed long enough to fight the Soviets, and left the country in shambles. We've got a bad habit of doing that. I think we should stop getting involved for now, take care of the irons that are currently in the fire, and, for a little while at least, go back to focusing on us (there's another word for that, and I can't think of what it is...)

My two cents, most likely worth less than shots'



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 01:39 PM
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You have voted Majic for the Way Above Top Secret award.

Excellent post, and a true breath of fresh air compared to what we usually smell coming from all the internal and external America bashers on ATS.



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