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Schadenfreude Indeed!

by coldwarrior ( 71 Comments › )
Filed under Open thread at November 11th, 2012 - 9:00 am

h/t John Difool. Something to drink your Sunday Morning coffee by and think about.

Unrequited Love

Explaining Germany’s Infantile Crush on Obama

A Commentary by Jan Fleischhauer

German schadenfreude knows no bounds, particularly when it comes to the United States. The country loves to feel superior to a superpower like America. Yet Germany also harbors a childish infatuation with Obama — one which has little political grounding. The reasons are psychological.

It’s too bad that Mitt Romney didn’t win. If the Republicans had won, we could finally have known for sure that our suspicion of America’s imminent demise is correct. “Four more years,” translated into the German viewpoint means little more than a “four-year reprieve.”

For the über-watchful among us, the signs of the downfall are obvious. One must only take a look at the condition of the streets (every fourth bridge is crumbling!), or the entirely outdated power grid, to come to the conclusion that this country has its future behind it. A nation that has its utility lines hanging from poles in the street, instead of burying them in an orderly fashion underground, cannot really be taken seriously.

With a bit of luck, the specter across the Atlantic might even take care of itself. It can’t be ruled out. When they are not shooting each other or being fried by dangling power lines then the Americans might simply pop. Two out of every three US citizens are overweight, or even obese! Every child in Germany knows the numbers.

There is hardly an issue about which Germans as so united as they are by their desire to see America on its knees. It unites both the left and the right. Wherever they look, they see decay, a lack of culture and ignorance. “A perverse mixture of irresponsibility, greed, and religious zealotry,” as my adversary, columnist Jacob Augstein, furiously argued on Monday.

A Blessing to Live in Germany

What a blessing it is, one must conclude, to live in Germany, a country where the highways are regularly repaired and the washing machines use so little water that one could water the entire Sahara with what is left over. In which citizens’ initiatives are formed against McDonald’s, and two-bit crime dramas are considered the pinnacle of TV entertainment. If the utility poles here were to snap like toothpicks, then it would be the fault of some natural catastrophe, the likes of which would make a hurricane seem like a gentle breeze.

I don’t want to sound like a smart aleck, but does anyone remember when, in December 2005, a surprisingly strong winter storm left 250,000 people in the area surrounding Münster without power for days? Münster and its environs do not want to rule the world. But still, it was strange to see the same experts on TV, who two years prior, during a large power outage on the east coast of the US, had given their reasons for why something like that could never happen in Germany.

The criticism of America has always been a bit infantile. One is familiar with the theory from psychoanalysis, when people talk about transference, or when suppressed feelings or emotions are overcome by projecting them onto others. It may work for a while, improving one’s feeling of self-worth by devaluing an imagined adversary. But it always falls short. Which is why the ritual must be constantly carried out anew.

For as long as I can remember, America has been on the decline. Already in the 1970s, the country was doomed, and that was before people like Ronald Reagan or George W. Bush came to power. In the meantime, Americans brought communism to its knees, rang in the age of the Internet and revolutionized capitalism several times.

The reality is that a quarter of global wealth is still created in the United States. They still have at their command the largest military power on the globe, and will continue to do so, despite all of the talk of a multi-polar world.

The Infatuation with Obama

Above all, the United States remains the largest chosen destination of millions of people in the world. If they had the choice of where they could live, the majority oddly enough would not choose the German DIN standard for happiness, but life in New York or California, where the potholes are as big as gravel pits. That may make people here want to light as many candles as possible, to pray for the downfall to finally come.

The childish excitement over Obama, that once again took hold over Germans during this election — fully 93 percent of the country would have voted for him in this election — is the flip side of this desire for America’s demise. That the Germans, of all people, should see themselves in a black civil rights attorney from Chicago can only be explained by the fact that they see him as the opposite of what they consider to be normal Americans.

Since Obama spoke to the world in front of the Victory Column in Berlin during his first presidential campaign in the summer of 2008, he has found a firm place in the hearts of German citizens. They will always be grateful to him for this honor. That’s why they forgive him for keeping Guantanamo open and for sending out drones like other people would send postcards.

In the daily Süddeutsche Zeitung, Andrian Kreye correctly pointed out that for Europe, life with Republican presidents is usually easier, because the US then takes the obligations of its alliances seriously.

Obama has no interest in Europe, and all of his attention goes to Asia. If this president calls the German chancellor’s office, it is only to try to sweet talk her into finally implementing euro-bonds, so Wall Street can sleep again. But that is one of those facts that is better to suppress.

Superpowers don’t disappear over the course of years. It takes decades, if not centuries. As such, the verdict might not arrive for awhile yet. The prophets of doom can continue to hope.

 

While we are at it, besides the gender gap, Romney also Lost the Cubans!

 

Romney’s Hispanic Disaster

Now that Florida has been called for Barack Obama by the slimmest of margins, Republicans have to confront the fact that they lost the Sunshine State because of weakness in a key demographic they used to own: Cuban Americans.

Exit polls from Fox News and the Pew Hispanic Center indicate that Cuban-Americans gave Obama 49 percent of their vote, besting Mitt Romney’s 47 percent. A competing exit poll by the Democratic firm of Bendixen & Amandi International gives Romney a 52–48 edge. Either way, Obama did far better among Cubans than he did in 2008, when he won only 35 percent of their votes.

Regardless of which one is most correct, the margin in Florida clearly can be explained by Romney’s collapse in support from perhaps the most anti-Communist voting bloc in the country. Ever since the Bay of Pigs invasion, Cubans have rallied behind Republicans, with every GOP nominee holding huge rallies in Miami and declaring “Cuba libre!” and “Cuba, si; Castro, no!” Ronald Reagan won more than 80 percent of Cuban voters in his two races for the presidency.

Everyone has realized that younger generations of Cuban-Americans would become less conservative since they have no direct memories fleeing the country or of Communist rule there. But there are signs that the Romney-Ryan ticket even lost support among older Cubans.

Democratic operatives told the Miami Herald that they exploited the fact that Paul Ryan had been a long-time supporter of lifting the 50-year-old embargo on direct trade with Havana. “They did their ticket a lot of harm with Cubans, and allowed us to at least get a hearing with them on other economic issues,” an Obama-campaign official said.

Nor did the GOP’s headaches in Florida end with Cubans. Cubans make up a third of Hispanics in Florida, but a full 27 percent of them are Puerto Ricans. Among that group, Romney fared disastrously. He lost Puerto Ricans 83–17 in the Bendixen exit poll.

Sadly, there is even speculation that Romney’s disastrous showing among Puerto Ricans on the mainland helped drag down Governor Luis Fortuño, the promising Republican governor of Puerto Rico. Fortuño had campaigned for Romney in Florida and appeared in Spanish-language ads for him. But he lost his bid for reelection by 15,000 votes to Alejandro Garcia Padilla, a Democrat who had made a big show of having lunch with President Obama during his visit to San Juan in 2011.

Luis Martinez-Fernandez, a history professor at the University of Central Florida, told National Journal that “it was really a bad choice by Fortuño to get so close to people like Romney.”

Many political experts I spoke with said that Romney’s opposition to legislation that would legalize children of illegal aliens didn’t play a big role in his poor showing among Hispanics in Florida. “Cubans have the right to legal residency here as soon as they set foot on U.S. soil, and Puerto Ricans are already full citizens,” one Hispanic businessman told me. He also didn’t perceive much of an advertising effort: “Romney really dropped the ball by not running Spanish-language media until Labor Day and then only half-heartedly.”

“If you want to captivate Hispanics or any other group, you need to start early in the election cycle and you need to focus on issues that are not as divisive,” argued John Quinones, a Puerto Rican Republican. Quinones narrowly lost a GOP primary for Congress in Florida this year in a largely Hispanic district to a right-wing talk-radio host who wound up losing badly to Democratic firebrand Alan Grayson. But he told National Journal he didn’t think the damage was permanent: “I don’t think it was so much about Obama being the right candidate as it was about how Romney was perceived by a lot of Hispanics. Republicans have a lot of work on their hands.”

Florida Republican party chairman Lenny Curry couldn’t agree more. “Our weakness with Hispanics is something we have to address,” he told me. “We’re going to have to figure out if we’re serious about having a relationship with diverse communities. I can’t believe these numbers, and we have to fix them.”

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71 Responses to “Schadenfreude Indeed!”
( jump to bottom )

  1. 1 | November 11, 2012 9:06 am

    We nuked the wrong power at the end of WWII. Well, I don’t think we’ll make the mistake of saving Europe a fourth time. Enjoy your Shari’ia hell-hole.


  2. John Difool
    2 | November 11, 2012 9:12 am

    There’s been a surge in nationalism over the past few years especially in places like Germany, France & Belgium.

    My guess is they are getting ready to reach the tipping point as far as outsiders go, immigrants & muslims specifically & we all know historically Europe is avery xenophobic place & also historically they’re favorite past-time as Ironfist said a few days ago is killing people, mainly other Europeans.

    Both the left & right in Germany are united in the desire to see America fail & I’m sure that sentiment rings true in other parts of Europe.

    Germany is the economic powerhouse in Europe & they tried twice last century to rule the entire continent & half the world with it. With America out of the way, beaten & severely weakened their dreams may finally come to fruition. The only thing left to fight about after it takes place is who is going to oversee that dream, the left or the right in Germany.

    It’s not like the U.N. will be able to stop it & by that time most Americans won’t care & will want to stay out of it.

    Me included.


  3. 3 | November 11, 2012 9:19 am

    John Difool wrote:

    It’s not like the U.N. will be able to stop it & by that time most Americans won’t care & will want to stay out of it.

    If we fall apart, the remanents are likely to be very Isolationist. Depending on the exact lines of our breakup, the South will have good ports for a Navy, but will we want to expend our blood and treasure making the high seas safe for commerce? I doubt it. We’ll look inward, cut trading ties, and try to heal the damage done by 70-80 years of socialism-lite. The rest of the world can go to hell, for all I care. I suspect that most of my fellow citizens will feel the same.


  4. 4 | November 11, 2012 9:21 am

    Celebrity chefs can’t dice onions as finely as the punditry can dice the American electorate. We lost the Cubans? What about the transgendered, left-handed Lithuanians?

    If I didn’t have a family to support, I’d be very tempted at this point to pull a Charles Whitman.


  5. John Difool
    5 | November 11, 2012 9:29 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    John Difool wrote:
    It’s not like the U.N. will be able to stop it & by that time most Americans won’t care & will want to stay out of it.
    If we fall apart, the remanents are likely to be very Isolationist. Depending on the exact lines of our breakup, the South will have good ports for a Navy, but will we want to expend our blood and treasure making the high seas safe for commerce? I doubt it. We’ll look inward, cut trading ties, and try to heal the damage done by 70-80 years of socialism-lite. The rest of the world can go to hell, for all I care. I suspect that most of my fellow citizens will feel the same.

    Another widespread conflageration in Europe will fracture the U.N. & most likely be the end of it, which is fine by me.

    No need to stand in the way of history & the natural order of things anymore.

    I say let ‘em have it.


  6. 6 | November 11, 2012 9:32 am

    Went to the salon for my nails yesterday -- the ladies know I’m a conservative, blog, etc., and one snotty princess asked if I was in mourning over the loss of Romney. She votes the straight Dem ticket and said she was thrilled Obama won a second term. I asked her “okay, why.”

    “Well, uh, it means that finlly the rich are going to pay their fair share. And women’s rights are protected.” I just smiled and said “okay, because I hope you enjoy paying 43% tax on your dividend income. I hope you enjoy pying tax when you sell your house. And if you think that they’ll stop at $250,000 for high tax rates you’re crazy. Soon ‘rich’ will be $150,000, then $100,000 and finally $75,000. When that happens, don’t blame me.”


  7. 7 | November 11, 2012 9:35 am

    Good morning all. Excellent articles/linkage on this post and the previous Dorian Grey contribution. I will not support any further efforts to save or support Europe. The normals should leave for any decent place that will take them. That will leave the xenophobia to fight it out with the moslems on their own.

    Another beautiful day in the Sonoran Desert today although it’s a bit chilly at only 42 F.


  8. Bumr50
    8 | November 11, 2012 9:37 am

    @ John Difool:

    The UN needs to get the hell out of here.

    Let them have their HQ in some “globalized paradise” that they’ve helped create.


  9. 9 | November 11, 2012 9:37 am

    @ Carolina Girl:

    The real rich, the people like the Kerrys and the Kennedys and the Obamas, will simply move their assets off-shore. What they won’t be doing is starting businesses or doing the things that the economy needs to get back on its feet. I’d have told the bitch not to come complain to me when she loses her job, because we’ll see unemployment back in the double digits soon. And that will be before the Economic Collapse.


  10. John Difool
    10 | November 11, 2012 9:38 am

    @ Carolina Girl:

    They honestly believe there is a limitless supply of money, that it grows on trees or just magically appears on pallets through a portal from another dimension or something.

    I’ve had this same discussion with my uber-lib mother on numerous occasions & they don’t understand the rich will simply cut hours & jobs to recoup their costs, just move away, ship companies overseas or shut them down completely.

    On a national scale there is a mass exodus of the rich fom the blue states to the south which in effect takes billions out of the coffers after taxes are raised having the unintended opposite effect.

    This will begin to happen on a global scale here, in France after Hollande was elected the rich are moving from France to the U.K. in droves, taking their money & businesses with them.


  11. 11 | November 11, 2012 9:44 am

    Bumr50 wrote:

    @ John Difool:

    The UN needs to get the hell out of here.

    Let them have their HQ in some “globalized paradise” that they’ve helped create.

    Yes, like Haiti (although that’s a bittoo close formy taste), or Sudan.


  12. Guggi
    12 | November 11, 2012 9:44 am

    John Difool wrote:

    With America out of the way, beaten & severely weakened their dreams may finally come to fruition.

    They already do it together with France. I call it the new “Frankish Empire” = “Neue Frankenreich”.


  13. 13 | November 11, 2012 9:45 am

    Maybe Romney should have used Reagan’s line “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?” as a central part of his campaign.


  14. John Difool
    14 | November 11, 2012 9:48 am

    mfhorn wrote:

    Maybe Romney should have used Reagan’s line “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?” as a central part of his campaign.

    And sadly most folks on the left will say they are indeed better off than they were four years ago.

    No welfare to work requirements, expanded entitlement benefits & free Obamaphones.


  15. Bumr50
    15 | November 11, 2012 9:49 am

    @ Carolina Girl:

    Even scarier, five years ago I had a CPA teaching an economics course at business school that believes the very same thing.


  16. 16 | November 11, 2012 9:49 am

    @ John Difool:
    We are so doomed.


  17. 17 | November 11, 2012 9:49 am

    A rare ‘Kudos’ to Google for honoring our Veterans today.


  18. 18 | November 11, 2012 9:51 am

    @ Kirly:

    It’s been a long time, but a friend of mine & I started using ‘WASS’ (We Are So Screwed’) whenever we email links to stories about the direction this country’s headed economically, socially, and our lack of the stones to fight for what made this country great.


  19. John Difool
    19 | November 11, 2012 9:54 am

    Kirly wrote:

    @ John Difool:
    We are so doomed.

    No we aren’t, they are.

    Sooner or later the sweets-jar is going to come up empty when the sweets run out.

    There will be hell to pay for Democrats then, hell to pay for the rest of America too, but mostly for them


  20. huckfunn
    20 | November 11, 2012 9:56 am

    The U.S. saved the europeons’ asses 3 times during the last century and they’ve come to expect it. As they attend the coming mandatory public beheadings, they’ll find that schadenfreude is a very dry teat indeed. There will be no armadas of ships, fleets of airplanes, mountains of goods, billions of dollars or millions of Yanks coming to their rescue.


  21. John Difool
    21 | November 11, 2012 9:59 am

    huckfunn wrote:

    The U.S. saved the europeons’ asses 3 times during the last century and they’ve come to expect it. As they attend the coming mandatory public beheadings, they’ll find that schadenfreude is a very dry teat indeed. There will be no armadas of ships, fleets of airplanes, mountains of goods, billions of dollars or millions of Yanks coming to their rescue.

    “It’s Over, Over There” will have a new meaning


  22. huckfunn
    22 | November 11, 2012 10:02 am

    John Difool wrote:

    “It’s Over, Over There” will have a new meaning

    Yep. And it’s too late for them to put the muzz genie back in the bottle.


  23. John Difool
    23 | November 11, 2012 10:08 am

    Saw a few clips of the new Lincoln movie from Spielberg & so far it looks awful.

    First of all I doubt a man who was 6’4″ or 6′” by some accounts & known for soaring rhetoric with a deep barreling voice talked like Mr. Burns from the Simpsons.

    Second of all although very thin & tall, I wasn’t aware Lincoln was fond of wearing a shawl & looked carried himself like an opium or heroin addict hurting for a fix.

    Third, they made Mary Todd Lincoln look sane & supportive of her husband.


  24. huckfunn
    24 | November 11, 2012 10:15 am

    @ John Difool:
    I was actually looking forward to this movie, but the critics are saying that there’s nothing new in it and the whole thing is dull as mud. Hard to imagine the perky Sallie Field portraying the dour and depressed Mary T. Lincoln.


  25. Bumr50
    25 | November 11, 2012 10:16 am

    @ John Difool:

    Everything Steven Spielberg has made in the past decade is designed to make white people feel guilty, as far as I can tell.


  26. John Difool
    26 | November 11, 2012 10:19 am

    huckfunn wrote:

    @ John Difool:
    I was actually looking forward to this movie, but the critics are saying that there’s nothing new in it and the whole thing is dull as mud. Hard to imagine the perky Sallie Field portraying the dour and depressed Mary T. Lincoln.

    Wow, didn’t realize that was Sally Field until you just mentioned it.

    She really uglied herself up for that part.


  27. John Difool
    27 | November 11, 2012 10:20 am

    Bumr50 wrote:

    @ John Difool:
    Everything Steven Spielberg has made in the past decade is designed to make white people feel guilty, as far as I can tell.

    I can’t help to think this is a an effort to defame the first Republican president by Spielberg & the limey guy playing him.


  28. John Difool
    28 | November 11, 2012 10:22 am

    Holy shit, Allen West just declared winner in Florida & retains his seat !

    Epic meltdown of the left in 5…4…3…2…


  29. huckfunn
    29 | November 11, 2012 10:25 am

    John Difool wrote:

    Holy shit, Allen West just declared winner in Florida & retains his seat !

    Link?


  30. Guggi
    30 | November 11, 2012 10:27 am

    @ John Difool:
    You wanted me to copy&paste it here from the other thread:

    This is well known. The hate from left wing to right wing Germans (and many other Europeans as well, like French people or the Austrians) has been a case for academic research for the last ten years. It stems either from 19th century right wing wrighters (“thinkers”) who disliked the republic as well the democratic principles in the U.S.A. or from left wing writers (“thinkers”) who have been seen the U.S.A. as only a greedy capitalist country and with people without education. Still today you’ll hear people in Europe saying that “all Americans are stupid, without education and manners”.

    Since after WWII — and especially since 1967 — it became even worse because of the relationship with Israel. Till the 1970′s the working class was very pro-USA but since then it was poisened by the 68-generation and everyone with barrely a highschool degree sees her/himself as an intellectual if she/he is against the U.S.A.

    But: this doesn’t prevent them to go there for vacation and to come back as a “specialist in US-politics and life style”.

    ———

    But there is more: in the 1930′s the SU as well as Nazi-Germany saw the U.S.A. as a capitalist/economic stronghold and she has to be beaten. Anit-Aericanism was always tide to anti-Semitism and Hitler called the U.S.A. not “Uncle Sam” but “Uncle Shylock”. Today the reference from the populists on the right (FPÖ, Vlaams Belang etc.) goes to the “East Coast” but means the same.

    Immediately after WWII -- even before the “Cold War” started -- the SU was in need in the concept of an enemy to keep their people going. The novel “America” (published in 1946, not translated into English) by Ilya Ehrenburg became a prominent example who denounce the U.S.A.
    Another way was the peace movement, which was from the very beginning infiltrated, founded and used by the SU and leftwing supporters in The West (including those in the U.S.A.). The peade movement was a leading tool in the fight against “America” a country now seen as an “imperialistic power” and the greatest danger to peace.

    This became very prominent during the demonstrations in the 1970′s (anti Vietnam demonstrations) when German lefties chanted: “USA -- SS -- SA”. The generation of the 1960′s in Germany started to rewrite history, to relativate Nationalsozialism, calling the U.S.A. the very source of Nazism and to denounce the American way of life as the life of “locusts” (Heuschreckenkapitalismus).

    During the 1980′s it became even worse when then chancellor Kohl and then president Reagan came across with the Nato double track decision. The peace movement -- now complete under controll of the Stasi on behalf of the KGB -- run amok and when they failed and with the fall of the wall (Mauerfall) it became worse. What the communist always denied came now to light: many communists turned to or had been before 1989 Nazis.

    Today -- with the Euro crisis -- we face some kind of renaissance and nostalgia for leftwing politics and O. became the king of this movement.


  31. John Difool
    31 | November 11, 2012 10:29 am

    huckfunn wrote:

    John Difool wrote:
    Holy shit, Allen West just declared winner in Florida & retains his seat !
    Link?

    A little premature as I read the headline wrong but he won a victory in Palm Beach County anyway.

    Still have to finish a recount in St. Lucie county by Wednesday.

    http://www.thepatriotspress.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=537%3Athe-patriots-press-allen-west-prevails-in-palm-beach-county&catid=11&Itemid=191


  32. heysoos
    32 | November 11, 2012 10:30 am

    huckfunn wrote:

    John Difool wrote:
    “It’s Over, Over There” will have a new meaning
    Yep. And it’s too late for them to put the muzz genie back in the bottle.

    how right you are…more groveling here
    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2012/11/brussels-bans-annual-christmas-tree-it-may-offend-muslims/


  33. John Difool
    33 | November 11, 2012 10:31 am

    @ Guggi:

    Very nice deduction, I really can’t expound or improve on it.


  34. eaglesoars
    34 | November 11, 2012 10:32 am

    I dealt with Germans for years. Anti-Americanism is a pathology and existed in Europe before the revolution. I get to that shortly.

    There is no better example of it in its modern form than Brett Stephens’ (of the WSJ) account of the lunch he and his wife had with her friend and her friend’s husband -- a diplomat from Germany.

    The German Diplomat from Hell

    “What occasioned this discovery was meeting a relatively senior German diplomat posted to the New York consulate. My wife--also German--knows his wife socially; our children use the same playground. They had invited us to their home for Sunday brunch.

    I should say here that I speak almost no German, and it quickly became apparent that the diplomat’s wife spoke almost no English. So it was perhaps natural that, soon after we arrived, she and my wife took to one corner of the spacious apartment while the diplomat ushered me into his study. Less natural was the conversation that followed. I made the normal chitchat of first encounters: praise for the unobstructed (and million-dollar) views of the Hudson River; a query about what he did at the consulate.

    But the diplomat had no patience for my small talk. Apropos of nothing, he said he had recently made a study of U.S. tax laws and concluded that practices here were inferior to those in Germany. Given recent rates of German economic growth, I found this comment odd. But I offered no rejoinder. I was, after all, a guest in his home.

    The diplomat, however, was just getting started. Bad as U.S. economic policy was, it was as nothing next to our human-rights record. Had I read the recent Amnesty International report on Guantanamo? “You mean the one that compared it to the Soviet gulag?” Yes, that one. My host disagreed with it: The gulag was better than Gitmo, since at least the Stalinist system offered its victims a trial of sorts.
    Nor was that all. Civil rights in the U.S., he said, were on a par with those of North Korea and rather behind what they had been in Europe in the Middle Ages. When I offered that, as a journalist, I had encountered no restrictions on press freedom, he cut me off. “That’s because The Wall Street Journal takes its orders from the government.”
    By then we had sat down at the formal dining table, with our backs to Ground Zero a half-mile away and our eyes on the boats on the river below us. My wife and I made abortive attempts at ordinary conversation. We were met with non sequiturs: “The only people who appreciate American foreign policy are poodles.” After further bizarre pronouncements, including a lecture on the illegality of the Holocaust under Nazi law, my wife said that she felt unwell. We gathered our things and left.”

    James Ceaser is a poli sci prof at UVA. He wrote a book,
    Reconstructing America: The Symbol of America in Modern Thought that develops chapter and verse the evolution of anti-Americanism. I highly recommend it. But if you don’t have time he also wrote a precis A genealogy of anti-Americanism

    And example from the piece

    Degeneracy and monstrosity

    Developed over a period of more than two centuries by many diverse thinkers, the concept of America has involved at least five major layers or strata, each of which has influenced those that succeeded it. The initial layer, found in the scientific thought of the mid-eighteenth century, is known as the “degeneracy thesis.” It can be conceived of as a kind of prehistory of anti-Americanism, since it occurred mostly before the founding of the United States and referred not just to this country but to all of the New World. The thesis held that, due chiefly to atmospheric conditions, in particular excessive humidity, all living things in the Americas were not only inferior to those found in Europe but also in a condition of decline. An excellent summary of this position appears, quite unexpectedly, in The Federalist Papers. In the midst of a political discussion, Publius (Alexander Hamilton) suddenly breaks in with the comment: “Men admired as profound philosophers gravely asserted that all animals, and with them the human species, degenerate in America — that even dogs cease to bark after having breathed awhile in our atmosphere.” The oddity of this claim does not belie the fact that it was regarded for a time as cutting-edge science. As such, it merited lengthy responses from two of America’s most notable scientific thinkers, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson. In Jefferson’s case, the better part of his only book, Notes on the State of Virginia, consists of a detailed response to the originator of this thesis and the leading biologist of the age, the Count de Buffon. The interest of Franklin and Jefferson in refuting this thesis went beyond that of pure science to practical politics. Who in Europe would be willing to invest in and support the United States if America were regarded as a dying continent?

    As I said, this is a pathology. It has been around for centuries and it isn’t going away.


  35. Storagemanager
    35 | November 11, 2012 10:32 am

    Military expert Paula Broadwell, who was allegedly improperly involved with resigned CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus, confirmed in October that the CIA annex in Benghazi asked for reinforcements when the consulate came under attack on September 11. She also acknowledged that “there was a failure in the system.”

    Broadwell was speaking at her alma mater, the University of Denver, on October 26. Her lecture, which is on YouTube under the title “Alumni Symposium 2012 Paula Broadwell,” now has added value, because based on the recent disclosures, it can now be assumed that she indeed knew exactly what it was that Petraeus knew about the attack.

    Broadwell confirmed the reports on Fox News that the CIA annex asked for a special unit, the Commander in Chief’s In Extremis Force, to come and assist it. She also said that the force could indeed have reinforced the consulate, and that Petraeus knew all of this, but was not allowed to talk to the press because of his position in the CIA.
    http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/161964


  36. huckfunn
    36 | November 11, 2012 10:41 am

    heysoos wrote:

    huckfunn wrote:

    John Difool wrote:
    “It’s Over, Over There” will have a new meaning
    Yep. And it’s too late for them to put the muzz genie back in the bottle.

    how right you are…more groveling here
    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2012/11/brussels-bans-annual-christmas-tree-it-may-offend-muslims/

    I saw that yesterday. Total surrender to a hostile foreign ideology.


  37. John Difool
    37 | November 11, 2012 10:41 am

    @ eaglesoars:

    This guy bashed America while taking in a several million dollar view of ground zero & the Hudson River from a luxury penthouse.

    This could have been Van Jones or Bill Maher instead of a German diplomat.

    There is absolutely no difference between the left anywhere, our own or theirs.


  38. Guggi
    38 | November 11, 2012 10:42 am

    @ eaglesoars:

    Or this one


  39. eaglesoars
    39 | November 11, 2012 10:53 am

    Guggi wrote:

    @ eaglesoars:

    Or this one

    In this essay, German-Israeli historian Dan Diner argues that the European consciousness uses America as a metaphor for the dark sides of modernism. He finds an especially aggressive variant of this negative judgement in Germany, the roots of which he traces back to the Romantic period.

    Ceaser comes to the same conclusion vis a vis Germany. But not necessarily France. He tells a funny story about a dinner the American delegation had been invited to at some French muckey-mucks Paris mansion. The French started on the degeneracy theme, how everything on the continent was physically stunted and deformed. Ben Franklin invited everyone at the table to stand, which they did.

    Suffice to say Thomas Jefferson was among the American guests.


  40. Guggi
    40 | November 11, 2012 11:06 am

    @ eaglesoars:

    France even blocked music with English lyrics. They rule how much music has to be played from France and how much is allowed from the anglophone world.

    There is much anti-Americanism in France too.


  41. John Difool
    41 | November 11, 2012 11:08 am

    Guggi wrote:

    @ eaglesoars:
    France even blocked music with English lyrics. They rule how much music has to be played from France and how much is allowed from the anglophone world.
    There is much anti-Americanism in France too.

    I’m all for the blocking of music from France period. Even music sung in English.


  42. Guggi
    42 | November 11, 2012 11:13 am

    John Difool wrote:

    I’m all for the blocking of music from France period. Even music sung in English.

    Noooooooooooooo ! No more fun :-P


  43. waldensianspirit
    44 | November 11, 2012 11:17 am

    John Difool wrote:

    There is absolutely no difference between the left anywhere, our own or theirs.

    Exactly! The world is striated along different contrasting lines then the boundaries of nations


  44. 45 | November 11, 2012 11:19 am

    Taking government/societal advice from Germans is like taking dietary advice from Chris Christie. The Hun should stick with the engineering.


  45. 46 | November 11, 2012 11:22 am

    Guggi wrote:

    @ eaglesoars:

    France even blocked music with English lyrics. They rule how much music has to be played from France and how much is allowed from the anglophone world.

    There is much anti-Americanism in France too.

    A culture that needs to be protected by legislation is probably not worth the effort, and that goes for American culture as well.


  46. John Difool
    47 | November 11, 2012 11:24 am

    Bumr50 wrote:

    I guess they still don’t know what caused this?
    2 dead after explosion levels 2 homes, damages 18 others on Indianapolis’ Southside
    IFD fire crews call in ATF to help with investigation

    Natural gas leak I’ll bet. Happens all the time.


  47. 48 | November 11, 2012 11:27 am

    John Difool wrote:

    Natural gas leak I’ll bet. Happens all the time.

    We should ensure that this never happens again! Ban natural gas, it’s evil and dangerous! What about the children!?!? ;)


  48. eaglesoars
    49 | November 11, 2012 11:29 am

    Guggi wrote:

    @ eaglesoars:

    France even blocked music with English lyrics. They rule how much music has to be played from France and how much is allowed from the anglophone world.

    There is much anti-Americanism in France too.

    Yes, the difference between chauvinism and cultural self-cocnfidence.

    My favorite Aunt was married to a career Air Force guy. They were stationed in Fountainbleu w/NATO for 7 years. Aunt Eve just loved the place. Then DeGaulle pulled out. All the French Aunt Eve had known -- the hair salon, fish monger, neighbors, etc. -- all of a suddent pretended they couldn’t understand her French.

    I studied anti-Americanism for YEARS. Nothing surprises me.

    Speaking of trying to control music -- have you ever seen the movie Pirate Radio? It’s about the Brits who tried to ban rock and roll -- at the time almost solely American -- so this group of DJs got a boat, turned it into a radio station and parked it in international waters. The first time I saw it, I thought it was a great story. Then I found out it’s also a TRUE story!


  49. 50 | November 11, 2012 11:32 am

    @ MacDuff:
    It’s almost as dangerous as dihydrogen monoxide!


  50. Bumr50
    51 | November 11, 2012 11:34 am

    @ John Difool:

    Some of the Indianapolis folks are saying that a home blew up a short while ago after thieves looted the gas appliances and left the open lines leaking.


  51. 52 | November 11, 2012 11:36 am

    Bumr50 wrote:

    @ John Difool:
    Some of the Indianapolis folks are saying that a home blew up a short while ago after thieves looted the gas appliances and left the open lines leaking.

    Well that certainly would do it, given enough time the amount of gas, in a confined space, well very powerful explosion is all that needs to be said.


  52. Bumr50
    53 | November 11, 2012 11:37 am

    @ Iron Fist:

    Wicked Witches worldwide say you are an evil bigoted troglodyte.

    //


  53. 54 | November 11, 2012 11:39 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ MacDuff:
    It’s almost as dangerous as dihydrogen monoxide!

    :D Millions will die! 11ty! I get thirsty just thinking about it!

    Seriously though, I read a piece that brought up the fact that some 400+ Americans are killed in natural gas explosions annually and, were it a new energy source, we may well reject piping this “agent of death” into our homes.


  54. 55 | November 11, 2012 11:41 am

    Bumr50 wrote:

    @ Iron Fist:
    Wicked Witches worldwide say you are an evil bigoted troglodyte.
    //

    And his high school science teacher said he would never amount to anything… // :twisted:


  55. Mars
    56 | November 11, 2012 11:44 am

    I know I was suffering from clinical depression when I was in Germany, but still I can’t help but remember the whole thing in shades of black and white. The country was dirty, the people were rude, and a day didn’t go by when there weren’t nazis protesting everyone and everything in at least Munich.

    It was kind of funny, when I visited Luxembourg I commented that it felt like the Wizard of Oz. I went from black and white to bright, colorful, and alive.

    Still, though while in Europe I saw very little industry. All I saw was the wine, beer, and auto industries. That was pretty much it.

    Most stores were stocked with goods brought in from somewhere else.


  56. 57 | November 11, 2012 11:45 am

    MacDuff wrote:

    Iron Fist wrote:
    @ MacDuff:
    It’s almost as dangerous as dihydrogen monoxide!

    Millions will die! 11ty! I get thirsty just thinking about it!
    Seriously though, I read a piece that brought up the fact that some 400+ Americans are killed in natural gas explosions annually and, were it a new energy source, we may well reject piping this “agent of death” into our homes.

    The scary thing is, that when it was a new energy source, that is almost exactly what we did do. It was only the invention of Mercaptan (Methanethiol: CH3SH) that saved natural gas as a home heating and cooking source of energy.


  57. 58 | November 11, 2012 11:48 am

    @ Mars:

    European countries are like a continent of Norma Desmonds; “We’re still big, it’s the world that’s gotten small”.


  58. 59 | November 11, 2012 11:50 am

    doriangrey wrote:

    The scary thing is, that when it was a new energy source, that is almost exactly what we did do. It was only the invention of Mercaptan (Methanethiol: CH3SH) that saved natural gas as a home heating and cooking source of energy.

    I’m chemistry-challenged, bu I take it that’s what gives it it’s distinctive odor?


  59. 60 | November 11, 2012 11:57 am

    MacDuff wrote:

    doriangrey wrote:
    The scary thing is, that when it was a new energy source, that is almost exactly what we did do. It was only the invention of Mercaptan (Methanethiol: CH3SH) that saved natural gas as a home heating and cooking source of energy.
    I’m chemistry-challenged, bu I take it that’s what gives it it’s distinctive odor?

    Yup… That’s exactly what it is. When they first started putting natural gas in peoples homes… It was not for heating or cooking. It was for lighting. Each gas lamp in the house had it’s own petcock that turned on and off the gas. Each lamp also had a glass shield that kept any wind or breeze in the house from blowing out the flame. Forget to lower the glass shield and a breeze might blow out the flame or close the petcock and the gas would start to build up in the house. Since you couldn’t smell the gas, well you can guess the rest.


  60. 61 | November 11, 2012 12:02 pm

    @ doriangrey:

    Oh, and I should add, the event that nearly caused us to abandon natural gas, was when a schoolhouse in Texas exploded. The citizens of Texas demanded that either gas be outlawed or something be done to alert people of a gas leak.


  61. eaglesoars
    62 | November 11, 2012 12:04 pm

    MacDuff wrote:

    I’m chemistry-challenged, bu I take it that’s what gives it it’s distinctive odor?

    That’s why they put birds in mines -- they’d suffocate first

    Mars wrote:

    The country was dirty, the people were rude, and a day didn’t go by when there weren’t nazis protesting everyone and everything in at least Munich.

    Was this before or after The Wall fell?


  62. Mars
    63 | November 11, 2012 12:06 pm

    eaglesoars wrote:

    MacDuff wrote:
    I’m chemistry-challenged, bu I take it that’s what gives it it’s distinctive odor?
    That’s why they put birds in mines — they’d suffocate first
    Mars wrote:
    The country was dirty, the people were rude, and a day didn’t go by when there weren’t nazis protesting everyone and everything in at least Munich.
    Was this before or after The Wall fell?

    After. 90-94


  63. Mars
    64 | November 11, 2012 12:08 pm

    eaglesoars wrote:

    MacDuff wrote:
    I’m chemistry-challenged, bu I take it that’s what gives it it’s distinctive odor?
    That’s why they put birds in mines — they’d suffocate first
    Mars wrote:
    The country was dirty, the people were rude, and a day didn’t go by when there weren’t nazis protesting everyone and everything in at least Munich.
    Was this before or after The Wall fell?

    Oh, and certain areas you had to worry about being stabbed by a Turk.


  64. eaglesoars
    65 | November 11, 2012 12:08 pm

    doriangrey wrote:

    Since you couldn’t smell the gas, well you can guess the rest.

    My paternal grandparents were in rural Penna. Back when I was a kid we’d play with igniting the water from the kitchen tap. Great fun. But you COULD smell it -- which I found very confusing since many in my family were in the mines and I knew it was supposed to be odorless.

    years later it was explained to me that what I was smelling (rotten eggs) was actually the biological matrix the gas was coming from/created in, i.e., stuff just rotting.


  65. eaglesoars
    66 | November 11, 2012 12:10 pm

    Mars wrote:

    Oh, and certain areas you had to worry about being stabbed by a Turk.

    Mars, I gotta go. Next time I ‘see’ you I’ll derail the thread to talk about Germany.

    Later.


  66. Bumr50
    67 | November 11, 2012 12:16 pm

    @ eaglesoars:

    Tell it to Josh Fox.


  67. John Difool
    68 | November 11, 2012 12:19 pm

    @ Guggi:
    @ doriangrey:

    There are places like Russia & China that don’t use Mercaptan at all, a truly scary thought.


  68. darkwords
    69 | November 11, 2012 2:17 pm

    @ 28 John Difool: That would be a silver lining.

    I had 5 years between two trips to Germany ending in 2008. What was starkly different in the German system in those 5 years was the increase in the population of cultural muslims in the country.


  69. 70 | November 11, 2012 7:22 pm

    John Difool wrote:

    Bumr50 wrote:
    I guess they still don’t know what caused this?
    2 dead after explosion levels 2 homes, damages 18 others on Indianapolis’ Southside
    IFD fire crews call in ATF to help with investigation

    Natural gas leak I’ll bet. Happens all the time.

    But bad guys have been known to loosen valves on occasion.

    You always have to do an investigation.


  70. southwood
    71 | November 14, 2012 9:39 am

    @ Iron Fist:
    I think you should really be concerned about saving America. You have enough on your plate there, pal, with your shariah compliant, Islam appeasing, CAIR friendly administration. We in Europe don’t envy you very much at all.


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