October 31, 2010

The Roots of anti-American Resentment

In my last post Who would have thought so: Obama is incompetent! about the "Obama phenomenon", I briefly discussed its aspects from a European view. The following discussion deserves not to disappear in the depths of the blog bilges.
Obama is incompetent because he is incompetent. Or, for those who find "incompetent" too difficult to understand: S-T-U-P-I-D. Was, is, always will be. His Harvard degree a conspiracy? But yes! It's called "Affirmative Action". Rumours about illness, medication, a grand conspiracy, are just a smokescreen to conceal the fact that the American people elected him. A stab-in-the-back legend American style. Elected him by choice, I'd like to add, and for the oh-so extracerebral valid reason that it must be wonderful to have a "black" president. Now they have what they wanted. They have an incompetent president and the world STILL doesn't like them any better for their pains to appear "non-racist".
Blogger Alligator said...

"Rumours about illness, medication, a grand conspiracy, are just a smokescreen to conceal the fact that the American people elected him."

Yep. Well said Nora. Many Americans were asleep and when Mr. O was preaching "hope and change" a majority did not ask "what are you hoping for and HOW are you going to change things?"

I was extremely concerned by Mr. O's extreme leftist bent as well as the fact that he was the most junior (inexperienced) member of the US Senate. That meant he would ram his ideology through no matter what the populace said. Still I gave him the benefit of the doubt after he was sworn in, but within two months knew my assessment of him was right.

I hate being right in these matters, because our nation is now in a very precarious and dangerous situation. I can tell you that in the last few months, I've seen many former Obama supporters become totally disillusioned with him. A couple I have told "I warned you" without gloating about it.

Sure, there was a political machine backing Obama and helping him along the way, but at the end of the day, it was how Americans pulled the voting levers that put him in office.

29 October, 2010 16:58

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Blogger Universal Realist said...

Editrix said
“This is the most singularly stupid bit of writing, with comments to match, I have read in a long time:”

I have to agree with you. I’ve never heard anyone make these claims about those from within the administration or Democratic Party wanting to remove Obama. Now during this mid-term election time there are some Democrats who are running or up for election who maybe gently distancing themselves from or at most disagreeing with Obama and mostly with Rep. Pelosi. Those on the left are still supportive of Obama but it’s the far left that is upset with him, but not on the basis of his competence but that he is not being leftist enough. I think Obama is going to have a problem winning a second term in 2012. But that really depends on who’s running against him. As in most elections in America the winner is the one who can pull the most independent voters.

I tend to agree with you on why Obama was elected. Whether people want to admit it or not I think it was because of his skin color. Many whites in America wanted to get the race issues and White guilt behind them and they though electing a Black for President would do that. Democrats thought it so much that they felt it was more important to nominate an inexperience 1st term junior Senator who was Black over a woman who was an experience 2nd term Senator and was also a former 1st Lady and dedicated life long Democrat. It was more important to for Democrats have the first Black as President than it was to have the first woman as President. And more young Americans voters really wanted to prove that racism is dead and most are brainwashed into thinking that conservative are old, out of touch and evil white people. But now I think many young people have become disillusioned with their choice because they are now seeing the reality of the politics, government and the world. I didn’t vote for Obama but it had nothing to do with his skin color, I just wasn’t buying what he was selling. He gave great speeches but really said nothing. But a lot of people thought he did. One woman even believed that once he became President she would get free gas. Truth is people heard what they wanted to hear.

Now what I find strange is the idea that American liberals and many young people have that Europe would respect us if we elected a Black as President. Was it really important in Europe for America to have a Black President? If so, why? How many countries in Europe have ever had a Black leader?

Why are Americans hated in Europe? Is it our government? Is it our way of life? Or is it us as a people? Do we come off as arrogant or ignorant or both?

29 October, 2010 20:33

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Blogger The_Editrix said...

'gator: To be honest, I can relate to the gut feeling of watching AT LAST the perceived justice of a black American president. But it is just that: a (passing) GUT feeling. Then all my cerebral alarm bells rang. But I am sure the inner strength of the American people will eventually be able to cope with the situation the election of this "post racial" president has brought about.

UR: "Now what I find strange is the idea that American liberals and many young people have that Europe would respect us if we elected a Black as President. Was it really important in Europe for America to have a Black President? If so, why? How many countries in Europe have ever had a Black leader?"

No European country ever had a black leader, but then, none had slavery and if it had once had close-to-slavery conditions, like Tsarist Russia, the victims were of their own kind, i.e. white. So "white guilt" is a stranger to the European subconscious. I don't think the Obama-hype in my country had anything to do with an increased respect of America. In fact, the opposite was the case. I am sure people sensed Obama's inherent anti-Americanism and responded positively to THAT.

"Why are Americans hated in Europe? Is it our government? Is it our way of life? Or is it us as a people? Do we come off as arrogant or ignorant or both?"

There isn't a simple "yes" or "no" answer to that. I think French anti-Americanism is due to the fact that you saved their sorry arses twice during the last century. German anti-Americanism is a bit more involved. I said before that Germans are no more racist (in fact, less, or so I think) than other European peoples. Always remember that our main identity-creating state, Prussia, was a political, not a tribal entity. Racial conflicts were, different from the British isles, largely unknown within the German countries. The lack of any notable colonies added to that because it kept Germany largely white. The Poles who came to work in the West German mines in the 19th century have been thoroughly absorbed, the "Gastarbeiter" one century later as well, and towards the un-absorbable Turks we are hatching an attitude of proactive obedience and dhimmitude.

No, our problem isn't racism, it's antisemitism, and here we come (I think) to the core of anti-Americanism. The American people are serving as a projection screen for German antisemitism. Not uncommon points like, say, the "Jewified East Coast" (verjudete Ostküste) are proof of that. Of course, this is not JUST antisemitic, but issue of German anti-modernism as well, but the borders between those phenomena are blurred. There are shadows of envy of a (really or perceived) more successful, better functioning and more happy society as well, and, again, here we come back to (dare I say it?) antisemitic elements.

Like with antisemitism, there is nothing Americans can DO about it, because anti-Americanism is, like antisemitism, not a prejudice (prejudices can be rectified), but a resentment.

I think we all have to come back to a common ground of Western solidarity and to acknowledge what is different and why and to stress the mutual interests. And one day, maybe, perhaps, we will see hat we can actually learn from each other.

31 October, 2010 14:56

I'll post any further discussion here.

3 comments:

bruce-church said...

Hi Editrix,

The US is undergoing a profound change in its thinking that's long overdue. The US participated in the destruction of its main competitors, the Europeans, during WWI and WWII. After that, each time the "get rich quick" mindset became king and mightily resisted paying for education and healthcare--so the US can have a stable economy without having to import talent from other nations. That mindset led to the Great Depression and to this latest debacle.

Unfortunately, the anger of speculators who lost a ton of money in the stock market, and now blame Obama for it, is mainly what makes the news and is "buying" the election. After they get over their tantrum, the same absurd income disparity in the US will present itself the day after election.

I thought this Spiegel article captured what's fundamentally wrong with the US society and economy quite well. Here are excerpts:

http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,druck-726447,00.html

The unemployment rate in the United States is at about 10 percent...the real number is likely to be closer to 20 percent. For the first time since the Great Depression, Americans have a problem with long-term unemployment.

Everyone was speculating in real estate, including secretaries, officer workers and people who, as Jakobeit says, made $50,000 a year and were periodically up to $1 million in debt...

The rich keep getting richer, with the top 0.1 percent of income earners making more money than the 120 million people at the bottom of the income scale. The rich...are trying to buy the elections. Meanwhile, the government is not helping the poor, and in fact is telling them: There's no money left for you.

It's the old concept of bread and circuses...this approach was easier for the people in power, on both the right and the left, than investing in education or health care.

In a country with a limited concept of social cohesion, laughable from a European perspective, the quiet demise could have unforeseen consequences. How strong is the cement holding together a society that manically declares any social thinking to be socialist?

bruce-church said...

My comment on the latest tiff between Germany and the US:

The US is going through the same phase with graying and shrinking China and Germany as it did with Japan in the 1980s. Whenever a country's demographics are shrinking and getting grayer, it can plow all its money back into R&D and improving production and increasing exports instead of spending it on healthcare, education, housing, and infrastructure. Without a burgeoning population, there's no need for more roads, houses, schools and hospitals. However, as the process continues and the bulge of the population passes from the working years into retirement, that country goes into economic decline like Japan has since the 1990s. Meanwhile, the export surplus country blames all US woes on the US itself, just like Germany and China are now. Japan, too, was in such a triumphal mood, scolding the US, that is, until the 1990s came:

Interview With German Finance Minister Schäuble
'The US Has Lived on Borrowed Money for Too Long'
http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,727801,00.html

bruce-church said...

Each year fewer Germans enter the workforce:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6159233.stm

The Federal Statistical Office estimates that people aged 65 in 2050 will live for 4.5 years longer than those at the same age today.

At the same time, the average age will rise from 42 to 50, while the number of people aged over 80 will rise from four million to 10 million, it said.

Coupled with a shrinking birthrate, this means that the total number of people in the workforce will drop by 22% to 39 million from 50 million.
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The age structure of Germany is an upside down pyramid. Not even half as many kids are born each year as was born during the 1960s. Moreover, most Germans don't work past 55 years old, and the bulge of Germans born during the 1960s are just 5 to 10 years away from turning 55:
http://www.destatis.de/bevoelkerungspyramide/

By comparison the US birthrate and population is relatively stable the last 50 years, so there will be no labor shortage--or at least there will be warm bodies, but maybe not with the necessary skill sets:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Uspop.svg