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Why All The Nationalism?


lostman42
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I'm at a local car race and they just got done singing the national anthem. All these red necks here just blindly sing the pledge thinking that everyone owes their lives too their county.

Fuck that, I think america sucks! This countries full of stupid bible thumpers who try to convert me on a daily basis, the countries history is stooped in racism and most of our leaders are ignorant power hungry jack asses. Why should I owe a country were many states have banned gay marriage and the peoples rights are way way way to restricted?

 

I hate how many people are stupid enough to think that this is the greatest country in the world. Damn I wish I was european!

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I hate how many people are stupid enough to think that this is the greatest country in the world.

 

I've seen it claimed that the "myth of American exceptionalism" is one of the greatest (if not THE) problems with the USA. You know, the dogma that "we are the best!", "we are always the good ones" and "the rest of the world is doomed without us". I'll leave it to you US folks to determine how correct that might be, but if we assume it's true then nationalism is just around the corner pretty much by default.

 

Damn I wish I was european!

 

Don't.

 

Thanks to the neofeudalists who are just as active here as they are in the states, and their always-trusty rightard allies, Europe is drifting farther and farther to the right each day too. We're not yet as lost as you are, but that may only be a matter of time. :banghead:

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I've seen it claimed that the "myth of American exceptionalism" is one of the greatest (if not THE) problems with the USA. You know, the dogma that "we are the best!", "we are always the good ones" and "the rest of the world is doomed without us". I'll leave it to you US folks to determine how correct that might be, but if we assume it's true then nationalism is just around the corner pretty much by default.

 

I think the statistics will speak for themselves. The linked site is mainly a collection.

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I've seen it claimed that the "myth of American exceptionalism" is one of the greatest (if not THE) problems with the USA. You know, the dogma that "we are the best!", "we are always the good ones" and "the rest of the world is doomed without us". I'll leave it to you US folks to determine how correct that might be...

Thurisaz, when you were born and raised in the United States, you are not even in a position to evaluate how correct this might be until you dare to subject the "we are the best" dogma that has been drummed into your head from the cradle to critical examination, much the same way that one might subject their religious beliefs to critical examination. This is something that few people do.

 

The danger is, that by adopoting as a default core assumption that there isn't, nor even can be any country greater, more free, more filled with oportunity, more wonderful than the United States, where all the rest of the world would do anything to live if they only could, we discard the most important check and balance needed for any great, free, wonderful country: that is to recognize where we have gone wrong (or may go wrong) and commit ourselves to fix it.

 

It fosters the very concerns introduced in the OP, and nationalism can be exploited through the following messages:

 

"We are an excpetional nation, and the greatest on the planet. We were founded as a Christian nation and we have God on our side, in fact, we are God's favored people intended to provide a shining example for the world." (Note that this claim need not be rational or true, but merely be the message promoted.) "We need to get back on track, and the liberals, homosexuals, Secular Humanists, ACLU, and all other terrorists who hate this country are trying to ruin it and get it on the wrong track with their agenda. We need to restore and preserve our place as the greatest nation on God's Green Earth."

 

Voilà! We have just used the technique of wallowing in self praise on how great and free and tolerant and fair we are to open the gate to ironically strike down the measure we have of all the things that are supposed to make us great, and promote bigotry, curtail civil liberties, drum up support for warmongering, and entrench a theocracy that rigidly enforces (via legislation) that which is promoted as "God's law."

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I have often been accused of being "anti-american" as if criticism of anything US related is some unforgivable sin. I shake my head and ask myself why they would think that way form a simple outsider's critique.

 

Along with that comes the audacity from these folk "have you ever been to America?" as if that would change one's perception. Most of these asking have never even left their state let alone their "beloved" country.

 

Moving to sports, the USA and us only compete in Rugby and what you folk call Soccer and you have the World Series where only the USA competes. Ice Hockey again is something you share with Canada but not so much the rest of the world.

 

Only our national team events are anthems played of the opposing countries.

 

It was weird that the US football supporters to SA's 2010 World Cup were given an advisory not to attend and when the yanks were interviewed by the press here, they all were relaxed and felt very safe and were enjoying themselves immensely.

 

But I guess the US folk that do travel to distant lands are not the run of the mill "nationalists" and the few I have met in RL were definitely not woo woos and we share much in common believe it or not.

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in the UK it's practically obligatory to have some form of anti-US humour and opinion ingrained into us. I like it. But, we are far from perfect. We do not harp on about how amazing we are, in fact we're rather self loathing, but we are 'proud' of it and there is a definite superiority deeply embedded in the brits.

 

I'm not sure how right wing we are though.....

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Interesting thread

 

I retired from the military and lived half of my career in another country. The first time I came home to visit I had spent two years abroad and was stunned by the amount of flag waving and propaganda on TV. Like anything else, if you don't take a step back now and then you can't see the trees in the forest

 

Yes, and especially in a military environment overseas, there is an exceptional amount of nationalism though it is veiled in patriotism. The ignorant young are pretty bad at representing civility towards the host nation because of course, "The U.S. is #1". That's all they know and as another poster commented, it's been drilled into their heads since birth. Those of us that made the military a career and stayed in overseas locations tended to exhibit considerably less nationalistic attitudes due to maturity, experience, and likely marrying someone from the host country.

 

"The Greatest Generation" however is the worst. They could be called Nationalist Fundies. ShackledNoMore pretty well captured their mantra. Infrequently I have been in conversations with a member of that generation and somehow the topic would evolve to world events. Invariably I'd mentioned that the U.S. is a great place to live but not THE greatest place to live. It's disconcerting for them to hear that from a career military person.

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Back in the 80's when SA was excluded from international sport and the olympics, they held a "national" olympics and this was soooo similar to Germany with all the national pride and the arrogance of standing up to the rest of the world.

 

Our fundie woo woo political right was also divided along language lines and the atypical Afrikaner tended to display this extreme patriotism too. The English speaking like me were more liberal but we were a minority even though English was a business preference and in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town the more predominant language. The atypical Afrikaner and your rednecks would have been at home with each other's political POV back then and maybe even now.

 

The folk competed against each other and the internal competitions were very much seeped in nationalism. The black folk that dared compete were estranged from their ilk and was a huge fuck up to say the least. Of course back then the NP controlled the press and we were only allowed to hear what was PC for the day.

 

Me being critical of the US is simply expressing my observations from having lived through what I believe very similar circumstances. The rest of our histories do share similar paradigms too.

 

FWIW

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All this nationalism betrays fundy-Christians' fear that they will be a minority. Another thing: I don't agree with people when they say, "If you're a woman living in America, you're one of the luckiest women alive". I'd absolutely love to move to another country and I don't believe I'd be worse off. Now I'm not saying that I want to move to a war-torn third world country, but I mean a place like Canada, or the UK, or Austraila, or even somewhere in Scandinavia. I don't believe American women are better off than the women in those countries.

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Criminy folks, if you really think it is that bad, go ahead and move. You'll find jerks in every country. If you want to change things, do your part. But just sitting back and bitching about how terrible it is here is bogus. We still have incredible freedoms, and a system that doesn't typically kick down your door without repercussion (yes, I know it does happen occasionally). I like my firearms and can't have those in Britain, Canada, and most other countries. I'd like to see a lot of change as well, and I expect that the more we can do to collectively express our desires through voting, and through changing the culture (which takes time), we can see those changes.

 

I agree that there is a bull-headed and dull-minded approach that many Americans take to all of life, not just nationalism. I just read that a fundy shot his coworker for mocking the rapture on May 21st. You can't fix stupid.

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The nationalism is very usefull to the US goverment in that it alows them to do what they please with no reprocusions. you could almost argue that this is all feed by the US goverment itsself in order to put the people behind the american agenda.most of it would of rose out of post WW2 with what was seen in american eyes as a souly american acomplishment and latter being fueled by the regan administration and the fall of the soviet union.

 

tis a very dangorus position to be in when you start to think you cant be harmed for then you stop trying to prevent it and thats when you are the most vuanrable. i agree that the biggest problem to america is that we belive the universe revolves around us.

 

 

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Criminy folks, if you really think it is that bad, go ahead and move. You'll find jerks in every country. If you want to change things, do your part. But just sitting back and bitching about how terrible it is here is bogus. We still have incredible freedoms, and a system that doesn't typically kick down your door without repercussion (yes, I know it does happen occasionally). I like my firearms and can't have those in Britain, Canada, and most other countries. I'd like to see a lot of change as well, and I expect that the more we can do to collectively express our desires through voting, and through changing the culture (which takes time), we can see those changes.

 

I agree that there is a bull-headed and dull-minded approach that many Americans take to all of life, not just nationalism. I just read that a fundy shot his coworker for mocking the rapture on May 21st. You can't fix stupid.

 

Not to come off like I am greatly disagreeing with you, but it is one thing for Bubba Joe decorating his house with flags (along with his NASCAR memorablia) and singing patriotic songs after each prayer; and it is entirely different when you have a school board made up of Bubba Joes that dictate what a school can or cannot teach because something is simply "not Amerikan". Then you have those Bubba Joes getting into public office and refuse to tackle an issue by implimenting techniques from other countries because, "If it ain't Amerkan, it ain't right." I am of the contention that we have too many Bubba Joes that have kept us back.

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This is one reason I will not visit America until either 2016 or 2021 when the Rightists and the nationalists are done with fucking over USA. Rampant nationalism really sickens me as much as a picture on Rotten.com. In the meantime I have other countries that's not big on being blindly patriotic nor cryptofascistic to visit.

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This is one reason I will not visit America until either 2016 or 2021 when the Rightists and the nationalists are done with fucking over USA. Rampant nationalism really sickens me as much as a picture on Rotten.com. In the meantime I have other countries that's not big on being blindly patriotic nor cryptofascistic to visit.

 

What makes you think they will be done by then? By that time, they may very well have taken complete control over the nation.

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Criminy folks, if you really think it is that bad, go ahead and move. You'll find jerks in every country. If you want to change things, do your part. But just sitting back and bitching about how terrible it is here is bogus. We still have incredible freedoms, and a system that doesn't typically kick down your door without repercussion (yes, I know it does happen occasionally). I like my firearms and can't have those in Britain, Canada, and most other countries. I'd like to see a lot of change as well, and I expect that the more we can do to collectively express our desires through voting, and through changing the culture (which takes time), we can see those changes.

 

I agree that there is a bull-headed and dull-minded approach that many Americans take to all of life, not just nationalism. I just read that a fundy shot his coworker for mocking the rapture on May 21st. You can't fix stupid.

 

I haven't got the impression that people are complaining about life in the US, just the incredible arrogance that many Amerikans exude the belief in their country's superiority. All countries have idiots and flaws, but they don't all believe they are better than everyone and everywhere else.

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I find pride in pretty much anything related to one's race, nation or workplace to be really idiotic for the most part. It's truly bizarre to me. I can understand having pride in something that you personally done but when it comes to a country or race and you've had no choice in the matter of either, and more than likely you've done nothing to help that race or country become what it is today; it becomes really silly. Even when people are proud to work for company X it makes me giggle a little bit. Depending on the role, I can understand pride if you've basically doing some vital task that the company is known for and you're the reason that it has become famous, but other than that if you're just doing menial work or work anyone else can do, why be proud? In all cases you're being proud about the accomplishments of not yourself, but others.

 

In Australia there isn't too much of this spirit but there is a bit. It does become contrasted when you compare your average American to your average Australian. It amazes me how thin skinned Americans are about their country. They'll talk shit about countless of other places, even to your face while they're in your country but if you so much as compare another country to America with a more favorable look to it, they'll have an aneurysm. I personally couldn't give a shit if you talk crap about Australia or even the country from where my parents were born and most people I know would be the same. Yet, it's fairly common to see American's respond with the whole "don't like it, then leave" shtick.

 

Even just the general American mindset is surprising to me. Things like the healthcare system, education, work place rights seem so backwards. I just can't believe that such a powerhouse of a country operates as what you'd expect of a 3rd world country. Also, there's the fact that little attention is paid to places outside of the US. I'm continually shocked at how uniformed they are of the world in general and there's not even that much interest. I mean, even on this forum from what I see in the News section, the vast majority of the stuff is US centric, yet, I'd say that probably half of the regulars here are not from the US. Not that I personally care, just an observation.

 

Anyways, not meaning for it to be a "let's bash Americans" thread. Nationalism in anyone annoys me. Yes, it's most seen in Americans but I see it a lot as well in other nations as well. It's not uncommon to see people born here who are 2nd or 3rd generation to still call themselves "Lebanese" or "Greek" or "Italian" despite the fact they know nothing of the culture, let alone the language. I find such "patriotism" frustrating as well. More so than that of any other kind.

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You know, America is a very young country, just a little over 200 years old. The rest of the world is pretty ancient. Not to excuse its arrogance but maybe that's why America thinks and acts like a child who points at everybody else and says I'm better than you! :lol: And the rest of the world looks back at America with a mature attitude.

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Yet, it's fairly common to see American's respond with the whole "don't like it, then leave" shtick.

In my memory, that began during the Vietnam War. It's a right wing expression of their simplistic, one dimensional thinking. Anyone who questioned the wisdom of our Vietnam involvement was labeled a Commie and urged to leave the good old USA. Red, white and blue Love it or Leave it bumper stickers abounded during the '60s. Dissent was (and still is) considered un-American. I don't get it either.

 

There was a post WWII golden era enjoyed by America, but those days are gone. America comes up short in many important areas today. The old guard is still not interested in being part of a global community, but revels in the past when America was a leader, not an anachronistic struggling giant among the nations.

 

At this point in history I would indeed leave, but alas, I'm too old. Most of us didn't leave during the '60s because we thought we could fix things. Today, we are part of the problem.

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I find pride in pretty much anything related to one's race, nation or workplace to be really idiotic for the most part.

 

Contrarily, I've sometimes gotten shit for criticizing foreign policy or other aspects of the country that have no relation to those who feel their pride wounded over my criticisms. But what are you going to do? Many just have trouble connecting dots.

 

4th of July was always a fun holiday for me growing up though. It doesn't bother me that people feel emotional about it. Generally, the type of patriotism wrapped around July 4 is different than the type that exerted itself directly after 9/11. Russia is a pretty patriotic country too. For the most part, it's all just good fun for people.

 

BTW, if anyone wants to see some hard core patriotism, they should visit here on military day. I recommend viewing from a distance though. Drunken paratroopers running through the city streets singing military songs all pumped up on testosterone is a pretty volatile concoction.

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You know, America is a very young country, just a little over 200 years old. The rest of the world is pretty ancient. Not to excuse its arrogance but maybe that's why America thinks and acts like a child who points at everybody else and says I'm better than you! :lol: And the rest of the world looks back at America with a mature attitude.

 

Young in the sense of organization but I have thought the same thing for a very long time. Couple it with the U.S. being (essentially) geographically isolated from the rest of the world and one shouldn't wonder how these attitudes and ignorance persist. An indication of this occurred a few years ago when the U.S. Army started utilizing anthropologists to understand the people of Iraq and Afghanistan. Maybe a whole country wouldn't be pissed off and uncooperative if you took the time to even understand that showing someone the sole of your shoe is offensive....among other things.

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Russia is a pretty patriotic country too. For the most part, it's all just good fun for people.

 

Yeah, you reminded of a thing I forgot to mention: American nationalism is more arrogant than it is disturbingly scary. That is left to the Slavs. Not all of them, but I've noticed it in Russians, Serbs and Croats. Numerous examples to give, aside from the fact that there was (the last time I checked) a Nationalist party in control of the nation, Mladic is considered a hero by a big portion of Serbs, a man who was responsible for genocide. In Croatia, a man affectionally known as Ante, has statues dedicated to him in public. He too was responsible for genocide in WW2, he was effectively a Nazi puppet. It would be like Germany putting up a statue dedicated to Hitler. In Russia, from what I've read, has a lot of Neo-Nazis running about.

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