President Obama And the American Brand – The Sno’ Ho, and Stuck on Stupid With Plastic Patriotism

20 Apr

Two interesting articles here – the first, from Slate,  has to do with the Sno’ Ho’ and the Tea Party’s view of how President Obama is handling International Affairs –

Hegemoron – Sarah Palin’s ignorant imperialism.

Sarah Palin thinks Barack Obama is a wimp. She’s been going around to Tea Party rallies, invoking the spirit of revolutionary Boston and castigating Obama for failing to exalt American power and punish our adversaries. She seems blissfully unaware that the imperial arrogance she’s preaching isn’t how the American founders behaved. It’s how the British behaved, and why they lost. Palin represents everything the original Tea Party was against.

Two months ago, the modern Tea Party held its national convention in Tennessee. There, Palin ridiculed Obama for “reaching out to hostile regimes, writing personal letters to dangerous dictators and apologizing for America.” “We need a strong national defense,” she demanded. “We must spend less time courting our adversaries.”

Last week, at a tax-day rally in Boston, she resumed her attack. Tea Party activists “will never apologize for being American,” she snarked. Our military power is “a force for good throughout this world, and that is nothing to apologize for.” She even implied a divine right to fossil fuel. “God knows we have the resources,” she told the crowd. “He created them for our use right here in America.”

What the Sno’ Ho’ is promoting here is exactly the sort of Plastic Patriotism put into action by the Bushit Administration. It hearkens back to Raygun’s bombing of Libya which, when considered cynically accomplished not much more than…

To make Americans feel better about themselves. In that right-wing narrative, most conservatives forget how the Raygun Adminstration traded guns and drugs for hostages in Iran, and the deadly failure of gunboat diplomacy in Lebanon, resulting in 243 US Marines dying. They also want to forget how the Bushit totally wasted the massive International goodwill after 911, with an illegitimate and massively costly invasion of Iraq, a country which has nothing to do with the attacks on US Soil. The Bushit Administration effectively had the international will to form a coalition to utterly destroy Al Qaeda, and it’s nefarious associates – and wasted it on a sock dance on the deck of a carrier.

What pisses off conservatives most?

That Obama’s approach of constructive engagement, coalition building, and following the old American adage of “Walk softly, but carry a big stick” – is working.

World warming to US under Obama, BBC poll suggests

Views of the US around the world have improved sharply over the past year, a BBC World Service poll suggests.

For the first time since the annual poll began in 2005, America’s influence in the world is now seen as more positive than negative. The improved scores for the US coincided with Barack Obama becoming president, a BBC correspondent notes.

As in 2009, Germany is viewed most favourably while Iran and Pakistan are seen as the most negative influences.

Nearly 30,000 people in 28 countries were interviewed for the poll, between November 2009 and February 2010. Fifteen of the countries have been surveyed every year since 2005, allowing long-term trends to be discerned.

In these nations – or 14 of them, not including the US itself – positive views of the US fell to a low of 28% on average in 2007, from 38% in 2005, but recovered to 35% in 2009 and 40% in this year’s poll.

Meanwhile, perceptions of China in the 14 other countries have been declining – falling from 49% on average in 2005, to 34% in 2009 and 2010.

“People around the world today view the United States more positively than at any time since the second Iraq war,” said Doug Miller, chairman of international polling firm GlobeScan, which carried out the poll with the Program on International Policy Attitudes (Pipa) at the University of Maryland.

“While still well below that of countries like Germany and the UK, the global standing of the US is clearly on the rise again.”

In only two of the 28 countries, Turkey and Pakistan, do more than 50% have a negative view of the US.

Germany is the most favourably viewed nation (an average of 59% positive), followed by Japan (53%), the United Kingdom (52%), Canada (51%), and France (49%). The European Union is viewed positively by 53%.

In contrast, Iran is the least favourably viewed nation (15%), followed by Pakistan (16%), North Korea (17%), Israel (19%) and Russia (30%).

As you can see in the second chart, US Influence by Country – Mexico’s pissed off at the US…

Now other than guns, drugs, a virtual “Berlin Wall”, and racist calls for jailing or deporting every Illegal Immigrant in the US by the racist right…


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