Friday, October 03, 2008

The End of Arrogance?

Spiegel - one of the major German weekly magazines - had a cover story this week titled

Unusually enough, I read it. Unusually because I don't typically read essays about economy. What stunned me about this article was the quite obvious cheerfulness, the finger pointing, the Schadenfreude. It's a rather lengthy writing, but let me just give you some adjectives for a taste.

G.W. Bush is called “old,” “erratic,” “unkempt,” what he said is “absurd” according to an unnamed German diplomat, he was a “laughing stock” at the UN meeting, the “lame duck president whom the rest of the world is no longer taking seriously” . The Bush administration was “immoderately self-confident,” and “offended even some of its best friends” .

The United States is no longer “muscular and arrogant” , the article says, no longer “the superpower that sets the rules for everyone else and that considers its way of thinking and doing business to be the only road to success”. American turbo-capitalism comes crashing down in a giant snowball system, they write, it was an “irrational exuberance”. They proclaim an “erosion of American supremacy”.

The second part of the article is considerably less polemic and more contentful, possibly somebody else wrote it. While I was visiting Germany the last weeks, I've come across several articles in that spirit, though most were not quite as blunt.

While I was reading this essay two things came into my mind. First, it looks like the authors were striving to replace American arrogance with European arrogance. Second, it's a very premature judgement. Premature because I doubt anybody knows what the consequences of the present crisis will look like for Europe. Premature also because Americans won't give up their conviction of an alleged “supremacy” that readily.

Now today, they post a selection of several letters received in reply to this article, see

Well, here are some extracts:

“The financial crisis will pass and [...] the US will be stronger than ever.” -- Alice Griffin, New York City.

“The current "crisis" is less a debacle than it is an opportunity to do what the US always does, namely step up and fix the problem.” -- Steve Kopper, Washington, DC.

“Please do not be so quick to count us out. This is not a time to despair but, rather, it is an opportunity to make some money, if you are brave and patient.” -- Kurt Christensen, USA.

“With history comes clarity, and Bush will be judged more accurately than he is today. He could care less what people think.” -- a reader from Cary, North Carolina, USA.

“[Y]ou are dead wrong to count Americans out and to count capitalism out. Free markets and capitalism are the only road to prosperity.” -- Mario Faustini, New York.

“Never count out the United States of America. Yes, we are, and will be, going through a period of pain and retraction, but our people are resilient.” -- Steve H., USA.

So, Europe. Can you imagine such a reply from your citizens to a Europe-critical article in an US magazine? I can't. And that's why they will stay ahead of us.

But you know what? After I've complained for 4 years, one now can actually get cash-back on the Debit card in some German grocery stores...

Update Oct 4:

The NYT comments on Germany's reaction to the mortgage crisis:.
Germans tend to be the strait-laced, play-it-safe types in financial matters [...] “Americans have trust in the future and are willing to borrow against it,” said Matthias von Arnim, a German financial expert and author. “The Germans say, ‘In the future everything is going to be worse, so I have to save.’ ”

[...]

In interviews here, German citizens actually seemed less willing to blame the Americans for the troubles at home, pinning the problem on the greed of their own banks.

“The Americans always go first,” said Gesine Wiemer, 40, who works in marketing for a scientific research company, “but the rest of them go along with them.”


48 comments:

Kalib said...

I've seen many accidents of the American arrogance. "If you don't like our country, why are you here?" was said to my face at some campus in New York. But this does not mean anything. The country is open, I could study/work/even be a president in a few years, and I am not going to blame/stereotype the Americans because of some idiots I met.

And why do you care that much whether the US or Europe (Germany perhaps) is leading the world? Haven't you learned the lesson of what happens when YOU let your ultra-national emotions lead your actions?!?!

And after all, how should we, poor third world citizens, feel about this elitism?

Bee said...

Because I don't want either of them to 'lead' the world. I believe we can only solve the problems ahead together, that doesn't only mean North America and Europe but also the third world countries who don't want to remain third world forever. I don't think there's one 'right' way to organize a country, but believe in plurality. However, there are issues that do impact and have to be addressed on a global level and this can be greatly hindered if some nations - no matter which - think they don't have to listen to others.

I'm not sure who your sentence about 'ultra-national emotions' is addressed at.

sciencetourist said...

"If you don't like our country, why are you here?"

Was said to me in New York and I'm from New York. The United States (America is two continents) has been Balkanized since the 60s with various shades of reactionary right wing crooks, ideologues and wing nuts playing the race card endlessly, fighting against a culture of the future where color doesn't matter, where civil rights are more important than profit and society is not consumed by a capital driven compulsive consumption machine. When Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act he said: "We've lost the South for 50 years". If Obama wins we're a couple years early thanks to the incredible greed and incompetence of the current administration.

It's strange listening to all the blag about renewable resources, carbon footprint, oil dependence that comes from the right when I've been hearing exactly the same thing from the hippies since 1969.

My country is the world and my religion is to do good. - Tom Paine.

Imagine there's no countries ... John Lennon

changcho said...

My 2 cents: it's not just this sudden economic downturn. The whole 8 years of bush administration represent, imho, the beginning of the end for American dominance. In future histories, there'll be probably mentions of a 'before bush II' and 'after bush II' eras. It is actually possible for the US to regain dominance 'post-bush II', but there's no guarantee it will be so; it will be very difficult.

Bee said...

Hi Changcho,

I kind of agree Bush has personally worsened the situation, but given that the USA is still a democracy I can't really blame him for all and everything. Yes, he might have caused the whole world to laugh at the USA, but millions of his own people backed him up. He's scored high in polls because he's unintellectual? What kind of a value system does that represent? What kind of an education creates people who prefer being lead by others who don't understand what's going on? It's the same problem with the economy - and this is not an US problem, the USA is just an extreme case where the problems show most clearly. I doubt anybody really understands what's happening or what has happened. Yet, we're letting that system govern our lives? How can that be? Best,

B.

amaragraps said...

Dear Bee,

I read the Spiegel article too, and for once, I wasn't very impressed with their article, but I wasn't very impressed with the commenters' comments either.

If one lives inside of the US, there is present through the general culture a kind of arrogance towards the rest of the world that the world revolves around you. It's difficult to get a sense that there are valuable things located outside of the country's borders and that life outside of the US can be excellent or at least high quality and very satisfying. If someone is unsure of the above, then listen to the discourse on the blogs and mailing lists for the royal 'we' (signifying USians). I always found it peculiar to be used for people living in a country that is only ~6% of the world's population.

All of this was enough to drive me out 10 years ago, and I would have stayed outside if I wasn't in a somewhat desperate situation, so now I'm back inside the US and noting some of the changes. The Americans seem to more humble now, so I consider that good sign, but it's also a changed country in the sense that I'm not convinced it is a true democracy anymore. The legislation passed in the name of terrorism in the last decade is frightening and I feel often that the country is on the path towards a Total State.

If anyone is wondering about that too, take a look:

The Patriot Act, NSA domestic wiretapping, US prison ships, Extraordinary Rendition (torture by proxy), armed US Federal Air Marshals on transatlantic flights, the CIA Torture Manual, Capital Punishment, TSA, Echelon, Carnivore, Omnivore, TIA, Secure Flight, CAPPSII, the AAMVA Project, MATRIX, COINTELPRO, OFAC Scholary Publishing Censorship, the I-Visa, RFID-laden electronic passports, ChoicePoint, the Protect America Act (PAA), the 2006 Military Commissions Act (MCA), the Real ID Act, the Secure Fence Act of 2006, the Child Protection and Obscenity Enforcement Act, the FBI's Regional Data Exchange, DHS/Federal police access to military spy satellites, Bush Administration by-passing the the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) of 1978, the Fraudulent Online Identity Sanctions Act, Guantánamo Bay, The Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP), the 2005 Strategy for Homeland Defense and Civil Support, the militarization of law enforcement, the 2006 Military Commission Act, the No-Fly List, VoIP wiretapping, CALEA, surveillance against reporters, the DHS Automated Targeting System, and the Defense Authorization Act of 2007.

The US' drive seems to be based on fear.. what kind of life is that? It's spreading elsewhere too.. just look at what other governments are doing (with a little bullying by the US).

Now in the age of globalization, whatever paths the US follows will certainly influence the rest of the world, so I agree that nationalistic attitudes doesn't help very much for humans on this blue-green mudball to grow and live better, longer, healthier, and more fulfilling lives if they isolate themselves from the richness that exists everywhere including outside of their borders. Cooperation is the only way that it is going to work. And yes, I know, it's hard to be optimistic sometimes.

For a couple of freedom-related links, I offer this:

Freedom Not Fear 2008 (October 11)

and this:

"Stop worrying about the election"

Amara

Anonymous said...

It is amazing how unaware americans are of how they are viewed by the rest of the world. It seems to be a constant of every powerful nation in history to completely ignore the impact that they have in other nations. The point of view expressed by this German publication is completely standard around the world. Not because is "bad" but simply because is powerful and intervenes in everybodies business. Sometimes with good reasons, but other times with suspect reasons. The habit of American leaders and political appointes to lecture other heads of state and other poeple cultures or ways of doing business has always been the mark of American arrogance. This last presidential address at the U.N. was the last example of arrogance and precisely at the moment that the U.S. needs the rest of the world's money the most in order to survive. The emperor has no clothes because is broke.

Tkk said...

There are arrogance in all countries but the American kind is unique. They actually believe they have a superior culture and governance.

The sources of this belief are many - religious, history, achievements. Every couple of decades, one or more of these sources surge into prominence and the country convinces itself it is on a crusade again, that it is now tasked to right every wrong in the world, that it can get away with everything. Historians call it the American Exceptionism.

Like Germany of Hitler era, and China of Mao era, America under GW Bush brainwashed itself into a culture of hubris and extremism. Now, like these predecessors, it exploded into mass insanity. China went mad under Mao but did little harm to foreigners. Hitler did. As America now goes into national convulsion, will it blame foreigners? My bet, and hope, is no. So sit and enjoy the show, as we watch US version of Mao's Cultural Revolution unfolds. Enjoy all forms of national stupidity being played out as classes clash and blames fly. This crisis has been predicted by history, and therefore cannot be stopped. See: www.fourthturning.com

chimpanzee said...

I was in S. Africa for the 2002 solar eclipse, & I got some interesting feedback from S. Africans about USA.

My hosts were college-educated, & do 4x4 tours. I went out with them to a steakhouse, to meet other S. African 4x4'ers. The wife asked "Don't you feel Americans are insular?". I.e., they are oblivious to the world outside USA, an indication of arrogance.

[ This corroborated with other feedback I get from displaced Europeans I've met in USA. A young Czech guy mentioned how the conversations back in his native country at a way higher level (indicative of higher education), than here in USA. He mentioned how education here in USA is sub par, & how "the students do anything they want" (undisciplined). There were some Sudanese immigrants ("Lost Boys of Sudan"), who said the same thing: HS students horsing around in class, which doesn't happen back in Sudan ]

One guy nicely asked about American foreign policy & military "hyper activity" (referring to Middle East & impending action in Iraq). He was respecting the fact that America came to the aid of the world in WWII, but its foreign policy ever since has been a disorganized mess (which could be interpreted as bullying)

My 17 yr old guide in Kruger Nat'l Park (who was Anna Kournikova's guide in S. Africa) told us (incl German & Italian guy in a campfire):

"American politicians remind me of a little boy"

The whole Iraq invasion is some childish knee-jerk response, to a situation that was created by America itself. Irresponsible foreign policy (p*ssing people off), lack of defensive firewalls inside USA (the warning signs of middle-eastern men acting suspiciously were all ignored), points the fault to America. So, German Chancellor Kohl stated it correctly "we don't want to get involved in any adventures in Iraq", a nice way of saying US politicians are a "bunch of little boys playing war".

The recent Wall Street crisis (flawed system which allows adult posers..acting like kids..to F**K USA with get-rich-quick-schemes), is just another indication of irresponsible management from the Top (Washington DC). They have no idea of long-term planning/strategy, & the whole oxymoron concept of bailing out the failed institutions is further escalation of Stupidity.

"Life is like High School..WITH MONEY"
-- David Letterman

It's a historical phenomenon, that corrective change only comes about after things deteriorate to a Disaster. I believe that Disaster is here. But, sure enough, the corrective action is NOT being taken. Which means, USA will descend deeper into a deeper disaster.

Dr Who said...

"There are arrogance in all countries but the American kind is unique. They actually believe they have a superior culture and governance. "

Errr.. if you think that is unique, you need to travel more. Try China. Or Russia.

The only thing worse than world domination by the US is world domination by anyone else. They have dominated now for over half a century, and while they have made a mess, they have still done a vastly better job than any other nation would have.

What I find funny when talking to Europeans [I am neither European nor American by the way] is the way they talk about their welfare system. They hate it; they tell you that it is enormously expensive and inefficient and harmful to their economies. Yet if you mention the American system they will turn through 180 degrees in a microsecond and suddenly start raving about "solidarity" like some political relic from 1968! It's hilarious.

Similarly if you talk to Europeans about Israel. You get all kinds of rabid stuff, some of it borderline fascism, not [I hope] because they really hate the Jews, but because the Jews are associated with the US and must therefore be evil. Similarly views on capital punishment are completely determined by the association with the US. It's convenient to have such a formula to fix all of your opinions. But it's also a bit stupid.

Sadly, Europe seems to want to define itself as the "Not-US". Surely they can do better?

the_world_in_my_eyes said...

I am sorry but do I sense some anti American sentiment growing? America, unlike other global superpowers over the years, has shown its ability to evolve to growing threats. The 20th century brought many challenges from the Great Depression to two world wars to Communism. America rose to those challenges and helped shape a better world. I may not agree with everything it does but I believe in its values and what America stands for.

Third world countries have had enough done for them; they remain third world because most of the money given to them is gobbled up for wars and personal gain! There may be people in the higher echelons of power who may be unworthy to lead but maybe you should put the blame squarely on them instead of dragging the whole country and its ideals.

America has done a lot to ensure the world is safer and yes, it has had its share of faults. But I believe the world would be much safer with America in charge rather than a belligerent trigger happy Russia or China which only donates money to third world countries to bring them into their sphere of influence. So any of you hoping for America to fall, please think about how the world would be without America.

Phil Warnell said...

Hi Bee,

For me it is to ask if arrogance instills confidence or rather has America's confidence lead to it being so. The real question the Americans themselves must answer is will the confidence persist without the arrogance and is it necessary in being the source? I would bet that they will discover they have always had the confidence, which you remind is their strength and can shed the arrogance which has become their weakness, which was neither the source or required. Let’s hope this is true for I further agree that one can identify no other nation that has as you suggest the confidence to lead all of us out of what is actually now a Global problem.

Best,

Phil

amaragraps said...

Dear Phil: Their 'Can-do' perspective is one of the culture's most appealing aspects, I think, and they have (or used to have) one of the most flexible government structures. Will it be enough to help them dig out of their deep hole? Let's see. Meanwhile, with the 700 bn bailout, one of the most stupid government decisions ever, everyone (not only US) is in for a hard ride.

Uncle Al said...

The old joke: The USSR is "Mexico with nukes." The new joke: The US is "Mexico with nukes and Mexicans."

Christ-besotted Bush the Lesser's entire life levied ruin. His father's powerful friends greased his skids. After a $700 billion "thank you" plus 20% in finder's commissions, the obscene flesh sack is almost emptied. Bush the Lesser will sign hundreds of executive pardons on his last day in office - hang in there, Scooter.

Vote for McCain and Moose Jewel! Let's read the last page then burn the book.

Bee said...

Hi Phil,

Yes, thanks. As a previous commenter mentioned, there seems to have been some anti-American sentiment growing here, which wasn't my intention at all. What I actually meant to say is that one should be a bit more nuanced about what's desirable and what isn't. I must have said it several times before, but the US is a large union with several million inhabitants and a long history, whereas Europe is trying to become one. The biggest problem the EU has it that its inhabitants rarely identify with it. Why don't they look somewhat west and try to learn from the USA? I mean, they are not bad in all and everything, at least they keep their people together.

I like your distinction between confidence and arrogance. Problem is, the former easily turns into the latter, on the personal as well as on the national level. I too would hope they manage to keep confidence, as in the USA more so than in every other country the whole system is build up on this confidence. Just read the article in the NYT (I just added an update to the post above), I think it expresses very cleary the difference in confidence about the future between the USA and Germany.

Best,

B.

Bee said...

Dear Amara,

That is interesting. People keep telling me things have changed since Bush, but it's hard for me to tell since I only moved to the US 2004. What stuns me though is the willingness with which all this is being accepted. I can only hope that the next election will lead to improvements. At least Obama seems to have profited quite substantially from the present crisis. Best,

B.

Bee said...

Hi again Phil,

Speaking of unions, did you read this article in the G&M today?

Europe to Canada: Get your act together

Do you think that's an accurate assessment or too self-critical? I find it kind of funny, because when I read something about the EU overseas it's usually full of complaints and funny anecdotes about nonsensical laws and restrictions. Best,

B.

CapitalistImperialistPig said...

Bee,
Thanks for your observations. It's always useful to hear from those who know both Europe and the US from extensive experience.

Arrogance is not a new phenomenon in either persons or nations, and some of the extreme forms are a reaction to perceived humiliations. I don't think that it can be reasonably doubted anymore that the election, and especially the re-election of George Bush was a great disaster for the US and the world. I think and hope that the US can come back, but I suspect that it will be a humbling experience.

The US is hardly the only country to fall victim to occasional bouts of domination by jingoists and know-nothings. The (mainly apparent) successes of Reaganism led to their extreme expression in Bushism. 9/11 then provided the perfect pretext for his totalitarian excesses.

I think it's important not to neglect the role of resentment in life and politics. Hitler owed his ascent in large part to German humiliation in the wake of WWI, and his personality owed at least a bit to his failure as an artist. Similarly, George Bush was always the legacy dumb kid at the smart kid's schools, and his resentments tapped into the resentments of all the Americans who felt the disdain of the intellectual and cultural elite.

Rich boy John McCain and his airhead prom queen are trying to play the same game.

BTW, I suspect that plenty of European leaders have been as dumb or incompetent as Bush - but since WWII they have had much less power to screw up the world.

chimpanzee said...

Good article by Judy Estrin (Elec Eng, MSEE Stanford), who was on Tesla Motors BoD/Board of Directors:

Innovation: Crucial to Our Future [ Judy Estrin ]

What she is saying, is what I see as a need for the new emerging Tech sector of Alternative Energy (incl EV/Electric Vehciels, Hydrogen powered cars, Solar Energy, etc), an NCEA/Nat'l Center for Energy Applications. A virtual R&D Institute, which encompasses various high-Tech universities (Academia) & companies (Industry). It would function as part of a Collaborative/Cooperative R&D Institute (in principle, same as Kea's vision of a Category Theory Inst & G. Lisi's vision of Science Hostels), that would function the same as Germany's Fraunhofer Inst & Japan's Govt/Industry Cooperative Infrastructure (for Automotive Industry). It would parallel the formation of NCSA/Nat'l Center for Supercomputing Applications (founded by Dr. Larry Smarr/UIUC, computational astrophysicist), which was funded by US Govt based on the "Playing not to Lose" argument. I.e., "if you don't fund it, America will lose its status as #1 military superpower" (since military crap is a Supercomputing application). Ironically, NCSA had numerous Tech spinoffs, like the NCSA Mosaic browser (Mark Andreesen of Netscape fame, my boss at UIUC was MA's boss).

"Needs & Solutions model"
-- Fortune magazine

America has a good platform for Business (kinda, despite flaws exposed in latest Wall Street crisis), so maybe the current crisis is good timing for some Solutions to be proposed & adopted.

The NCEA would have a tie-in to HEP/High Energy Physics, because the latter has been cursed by a Public Perception problem (which affects Public Funding of blue-sky projects like particle-accelerators):

"If you don't have a Product to show [ say, a Tesla Roadster EV ], you are considered useless"
-- J. Hewett/SLAC, involved with HEP Outreach

I am working on fine-tuning a Concept, which will end up as a DoE proposal to give HEP a boost:

"INSPIRATION [ capture Public Imagination ] first..Outreach/Education second"
-- idea for IYA/International Year of Astronomy

Was anything like the above discussed at the Science, Information, Society conference?

"Look around you. If you're like me, your life is filled with technology and tools that help you work, live, and play. New devices like iPhones, social networks like Facebook, "breakthrough" pharmaceuticals, and sleek household products are all around us. It seems like innovation in many fields -- from Web 2.0 to personalized medicine -- is accelerating at a rapid pace in the United States, right?

Wrong. In fact, the underlying infrastructure of research, development, and application that produced these marvels -- as well as world-changing innovations like the Internet -- has drastically deteriorated in the U.S. in recent years. The decline of what I call our "Innovation Ecosystem" poses a grave threat to both the economic prosperity of our country and the security of our children's future. The state of innovation is a critical issue that should be getting more attention in the days leading up to the presidential election.


Leading-edge science and technology have been at the foundation of our country's economic growth for more than a century. Significant inventions like the personal computer, cell phones, and the Net have all driven major cycles of our economic growth. Today, more than ever, our role in the future depends on our ability to sustain a culture that supports and promotes the ability to innovate. Along with the rest of the world, the U.S. faces major challenges -- climate change, national security, dependence on oil, and the need for affordable health care -- that threaten our future. Each of these challenges also brings opportunities - if we give innovation the attention it deserves.

Innovation does not just happen. Like a garden, it must be actively nurtured. The once-groundbreaking technologies that today seem commonplace were all built on a strong and deep foundation of investments by business and government in our long-term growth.

In the course of writing my new book, Closing the Innovation Gap, I discovered that the mania for instant gratification that is killing innovation has spread from Wall Street to Washington to Silicon Valley, permeating our culture. Stockholders focus on short-term transactions at the expense of building for the future. Federal agencies like DARPA -- which financed the research I did in the early '70s at Stanford led by Vint Cerf [ Judy's father was V. Cerf's PhD advisor ], the father of the Internet -- now demand technologies that can be deployed within months to aid the war effort. Instead of educating our children to become inquisitive about the world around them and have respect for science, we drill them on standardized tests, while scientists are devalued as just another political special-interest group.

"Our culture is telling kids that science isn't cool -- particularly for girls," Sally Ride, the first female astronaut in the US, told me. "When we were growing up, our society put much more emphasis on the importance of science and math, so there was a cultural imperative that created a generation of scientists and engineers. Now that imperative is gone.


We are rapidly losing our advantage in the emerging global economy. Most of these marvelous new products and services, even the iPod, capitalized on pre-existing technologies. We are too focused on incremental innovations, to the detriment of truly disruptive breakthroughs. In the meantime, we are spending and creating value elsewhere, rather than investing in our growth.

There's a disease that afflicts trees called root rot. Infected trees eventually die, but for a long time, they appear to be healthy, with lots of branches and green leaves. Root rot is an apt metaphor for what has happened to America's Innovation Ecosystem as our planning horizons have become focused purely on making things better for today, this quarter, or this year -- with hardly any thought for the fate of future generations.

One of the most crucial roles of a nation's leaders is to foster the right environment for innovation through inspiration, wise funding, and smart policy. Instead, the country has been led into a quagmire of religious ideology and partisan bickering. Science does not belong to the right wing or the left, and the hijacking of science policy by ideologues has had a chilling effect on innovation. The curiosity and openness that helped define the American character have been replaced by fear and apathy. The national trust necessary to build alliances with the rest of the world is gone, along with our willingness to take the economic risks required to make significant breakthroughs.

Reviving sustainable innovation will require sweeping changes at all levels of society -- from the schoolroom, to the boardroom, to the hallways of our nation's capitol. This year will bring a welcome change at the top in Washington. But we need not only a new administration in the White House, we need a new kind of national leadership.

America is used to setting the global agenda, expecting everyone else to follow. Those days are over. Now new ideas travel around the world at the speed of light. Simply because a discovery occurs in a U.S. lab does not mean that we will be the sole beneficiary. A zero-sum view -- assuming that progress in the rest of the world is a loss for us -- only leads to more barriers and stifled possibilities.

As an entrepreneur, I learned early on that you don't need to be the biggest to lead, but you do need to be more agile and know how to leverage the resources around you. We must be prepared to compete with other countries for talent and investment while ensuring that they remain our allies. The rate of innovation is proportional to the level of collaboration and sharing.

As voters, we need to consider which candidates will have the vision, courage, and ability to rally the nation's resources and inspire innovation. That's the kind of leader we will need to reignite the economy and address the major challenges that we and our children will face in the coming decades."

Plato said...

I think "Patriotism and pride" can come off as arrogance. It's delving further into the terminology to reveal the greater problem that resides at the disintegration of one's purpose in that democratic society. If you are to loose all your rights for caring for oneself(independence) under a economic status, then why not appeal to some "nationalistic pattern"( hauntings of the ole Germany) without representing the voice for those concerned? Better to instill the understanding of democratic societies then to seek to blindly follow.

To see beyond one's borders is to reveal the gathering of communities under their own charters and constitutions democratically manifested to realize that a "world government idea" is not to be sought to advancement in it's ideologies, too no borders of business and capitalism seeking to profit under open trade. But to help recognize that it's people will experience the same rights and freedoms as anyone else regardless of one's race, gender, or status in terms of economic situation.

If one was to see each country as an individual then it would serve to help one recognize what the United Nations "is" in terms already(a World Government)who wishes to extend those same rights in the humanitarian sense, then to push agendas controlled under political representations, as economic revitalizations that are distant from the rights of the citizens of those countries and it's populations.

Best,

Giotis said...

Hi Bee,

The problem is that due to its irresponsible behavior around the world (the latest crisis is just another example), the US threatens the very existence of the whole western world. What it should be preserved here is not the dominance of a nation but the values of the western culture: Freedom, Democracy, Justice, humanism, the respect to the individual and its needs in parallel to the welfare of the society etc. In contrast to that, the only American value is the mighty dollar. They have managed to ridiculed all these ideas by using them only as a cheap excuse to expand their power and make money. As one said, Soviet Union ridiculed the idea of socialism and US ridiculed the idea of democracy.

I thank them for saving their world from totalitarianism but they should not drag us down with them. I truly believe that Europe as the birth place of all these ideas should take the lead and guide the world. We are now mature enough to do it.

And one message to the American voters: Please think twice before you vote. If you don't want to loose the remaining of your credibility in the eyes of the world, for God's shake, don't elect Palin again. Bush has done enough harm already.

BR

Bee said...

Hi Plato,

Ignorance isn't excused neither by patriotism nor pride, in combination, pride about own achievements must remain empty because those of others aren't acknowledged. That's unfortunately the impression I've had in many instances in the USA - pride is build mainly on ignorance. I still recall having been asked whether we do have credit cards in Germany. You tell them that actually other nations are ahead of them in some regards, they just don't want to hear it. The only result I've gotten was that I've been called arrogant in return, just for pointing out that Germany has already some decades experience with environmental protection. It is considerably better here in Canada though I should add, they seem to be more aware about what's going on outside their country.

Best,

B.

Bee said...

Hi Giotis,

I agree with you, except that I don't think Europe should 'guide the world'. They should weigh in more often, but eventually it won't work without some democratic global leadership that preserves national identities. As I've tried to express, the Americans have a lot of good traits. Somebody has to be the one who has the courage to try all stupidities, from a European perspective that's the role of the USA. The problem is that some national stupidities affect other nations, and it's in cases like this that it's necessary to deal with the situation globally. Unfortunately, this works presently very insufficiently. Best,

B.

Phil Warnell said...

Hi Bee,

Although the article you point to describing Europe’s dismay of Canada lacking unity in terms of purpose, policy and thereby directions may be a little overdone, it for the most part is sadly accurate in my opinion. Regionalism is actually at the root of Canada’s formation and has never diminished, yet rather increased as time progressed. It could be said that to a large extent that for the majority the one and only defining aspect of Canadians as a group is that they are the North Americans that are not Americans.

Being then only a negative it has never served well to build upon in terms of a National unity born of what should be shared values, aspirations and goals, which of course our neighbours have always had stemming from their initial statement of purpose as being life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I would wish however that somehow enlightened Canadian leader(s) will take note of Europe’s accomplishments in terms of unity based on common values, goals and aspirations and realize the need in having them, for perhaps then we may at long last not merely discover who were are, yet rather more importantly learn what we wish to become. Many may dismiss this as simply being high sounding rhetoric, yet I understand it as the truth none the less.

Best,

Phil

Count Iblis said...

I think things will improve because of competion from China, India, and a stronger Russia.

I think that the problem is caused by the fact that the US was in a dominant position after the Cold War.

If you are in a powerful position, you can get away with making mistakes, denying that problems exist etc.. Take e.g. editing news reports by scientist for the general public on climate change by the Bush administration. Or the way the evidence for Iraqi WMD was presented to the public.

The educational system also suffers. When the US had the Soviet Union as a competitor, the US invested much more money in state of the art technolgy for the military, for space exploration, etc.

These investments create a lot of jobs for techincally qualified people, which has a feedback effect on the educational system. E.g. when Kennedy announced the Moon program, it transpired that the educational system was not good enough.

I think because the educational system in the US has become worse in the past few decades, you now have far more Americans with an "anti-intellectual" attitude. So, someone like Bush can get away with rhetorical arguments. And Obama is now very aware of the fact that he must not sound too "professorial", or he can forget about being elected. :)

Phil Warnell said...

Hi Amara,

This business of whether or not there should have been a bailout for me is somewhat a redundant debate, as all it actually represents is to admit to there being a problem and give a value as to what as a minimum monetarily may be required to remedy it as to relieve uncertainty and restore confidence. That is to say that no matter how it occurred or who is to blame there is a price to pay.

In my opinion this agreement doesn’t inhibit the government or the people from looking to define and deal also with these issues as well, with it being instead mandatory to do so as being part of the long term solution. This debate for me amounts to nothing more then to think that to complain about the milk being spilt as to simply identify who spilt it amounts to serving as the key to a solution. What the bailout is in essence is to serve in defining what as a minimum milk has been lost and marks the beginning of the attempt to salvage what milk there is left, as to facilitate being able to survive to then be able to get on to producing more.

Best,

Phil

amaragraps said...

Phil: Your words regarding confidence is how I use the expression: 'Can do' attitude. As I said, I find that perspective one of the most appealing about the culture. And I don't believe that I said anything regarding who is to blame. Were you referring to the financial crisis? Yes I agree, there is a price to pay (I think an even larger one now after the bailout).

Bee: One of my soundbites for comparing US and Europe: The Americans can learn from the Europeans how to respect differences, and the Europeans can learn from the Americans how to work together. Ciao, Amara

Phil Warnell said...

Hi Bee,

It has come to mind that many think that unity will foster equilibrium, while this in fact from the scientific viewpoint is a disadvantageous. That is if we are to look to thermodynamics a state of equilibrium leads to a situation where no work can be done and then nothing created.

Therefore from this perspective the only way to foster meaningful growth is to have policies that serve to increase potential, rather then to force equilibrium. America has always known this to be true, while even some well intentioned nations and their peoples fail to realize this. Again, some other then would argue that disparity with its differential as being only natural is a requirement. However, for me it again serves as reason to hope that only intellect may defy nature and in this way be able to exceed as to break natures laws. It then amounts to replacing maintaining disparity with methods of creating and thereby increasing potential.

We were all taught that Maxwell’s demon cannot exist and yet I have always hoped this not to be true and further that humanity may discover it can and with it how to be created.

Best,

Phil

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I read the article, an excellent and informative one i should add,and wonder why many here are not comfortable with it.
I would say what is written there is lets say 90% truth.
One can observe this AMERICAN ARROGANCE for example in relation with IMF(international monetary fund)and the neoliberal economic policy the US was trying to advance and impose on countries in the developing world(the term third world, which i do not like, also shows this American arrogance)in the past.
The US was doing that in the last 20 years or so and caused
death,suffering and misery in many parts of the world,hundreds of millions or even billions were affected by that AMERICAN ARROGANCE.
And that led to the rise of patriotic leaders like Hugo Chavez there, and has contributed and will contribute to the collapse of the American empire.

That was what the Germans were telling us,but many here felt offended and tried to attack Germany.

peace,
Louis

chimpanzee said...

"All empires fall"

The arrogance ("hubris") comes with the Peak, which leads to the Decline. Everything in Nature happens in cycles, & so does the evolution of countries.

As someone pointed out:

"when you're on Top, you can afford not-to-be-good"

This was told to me by an ex-Northrop engineer (the game of getting US Govt military contracts is non-democratic, "it's all RIGGED" as he told me). He knows the brother (also an aerospace engineer) of R. Feynman's son-in-law (who I met while flying R/C aircraft).

So, the "embarassment of Riches" syndrome that America is going through is typical "empire downfall". I was just watching/recording a series on Roman Empire on the Military Channel, & the fall was brought about by the "distributed empire" (geographically spread out, loss of centralization) & invasion of outside influence. There is a really uneasy parallel between USA & Germany (after WWI):

1) catastrophic event
Psychological trauma resulting in fervor of Nationalism, & hyperactive military activity

2) crazy military activity spreads out resources
creates enemies worldwide ("opening up too many fronts"), & get attacked/taken over.

I'm waiting for the "taken over", maybe not militarily but possibly economically. I think China is a "sleeping giant" (which alreadys "owns America", everything is made in China & is America's creditor). The current Economic decline will get worse, before it gets better.

"Increasingly, it's a race between Education & DISASTER"
-- H.G. Welles

America better address the disastrous educational system (feeder series to college), otherwise it will fail to compete in the Global Economy. The whole H1B Visa program was created to offset this phenomena (US college grads aren't making the grade in Industry).

PS Caltech/JPL is a joke
read my post on QD here

JPL hired a crackpot amateur astronomer (no college degree, got D's & F's in math in High School), who is a manager for their Mars mission..who tells PhD's what to do. He apparently has a criminal record (he confessed "he did something to someone"), carries a gun, & is good friends with Dr. Elachi (JPL director). So, there is reason to believe Elachi's life is in danger.

JPL hired another flunkie (U. of Arizona MS in Aerospace Eng), who was profiled in a Tucson paper as "having less than stellar grades". He allowed a crackpot amateur astronomy email list on LPL/Lunar Planetary Laboratory servers (filled with nutcases, 1 who has been accused of "wire fraud" & has done business w/Caltech & possibly Harvard), where I got an indirect death threat. Just like what recently happened to Frank Wilczek/MIT, because of the crackpot LHC black-hole nonsense. I got a hold of this JPL flunkie to complain, & he promptly hung up on me!? (well, he didn't hit the end key on his cellphone, so for the next 45 minutes I listened to him screw off in a Pasadena bar with his girl friend). He is a very prominent figure (a politician who gets his ugly mug in every freakin' Mars program on TV), & is part of JPL's decline (as part of USA's decline in being competitive in the Tech sector).

"Bob, you don't need a lawyer [ LPL Director told me to call the cops ]. All you have to do is GOTO THE MEDIA. You think they wouldn't take a shot at these morons, for a ratings bonanza??"
-- S.H., lawyer friend, HS classmate, U. of Michigan Law School grad

So, expect to see a beauty of a scandal involving Pro-Am (professional-amateur) collaboration in Astronomy. A UIUC Aerospace Eng PhD (program manager for Stardust) is an alumni from my Dad's dept (who was Dept head) was involved with "corrective measures" from the 3 consecutive Mars Mission failures. My ex grad school officemate (Vice President of Georgia-Tech) former GaTech colleague is now President of Caltech. So, I will simply make an appt, feed him all the details (massive paper-trail on the Web). Tell him "Fix it..OR ELSE [ run to the Media ]". Caltech supposedly has protective whistle-blower programs in place, so the above cockroaches (educational flunkies) should be removed. People with criminal records, jail-time, etc.


BTW, S. Baliunas/Harvard (former Carnegie Observatories Head, & some other leading scientists) were victimized by this bigger problem in Amateur Astronomy: crackpots who are doing a dis-service to professional astronomers. A Caltech physics alumni & amateur astronomer publicly used the term "uneducated bumpkins". See H.G. Welles quote above about a race between Education & Disaster.


PS correction

"George Bush/Jr reminds me of a little boy"
-- 17 yr old S. African tour guide

Someone published his Yale grade transcripts, & he got a C in Astronomy. I'm not surprised he is destroying basic Science research, but conjuring up this insanity of human exploration of Moon & Mars. Robotic spacecraft (using Artificial Intelligence) works!! Manned missions are not cost-effective, especially in this age of Economic crisis.

A. said...

I need my conscience to keep watch over me
To protect me from myself
So I can wear honesty like a crown on my head
When I walk into the promised land

We've been too long American dreaming
And I think we all lost the way
Forlorn somnambulistic maniacal in the dark

~DCD

Phil Warnell said...

Hi Amara,

I realize that you didn’t talk about who should be blamed and yet for most this reluctance to pass the buyout centered around the concept that to take no action would assure those responsible would then naturally be most identified and punished.

This is however nonsensical since the money that was squandered was not by and large the property of the perpetrators’, yet rather that of others who for the most part were unaware as to where it was allocated or secured. As to the cost in as much of it was from those of other nations I feel this to be more or less a settlement attempt offered by a delinquent lender, with the lender offering to pony up 700 billion against a loss at last count exceeding 2 trillion. I then wonder who do they expect to then make up for the short fall.

Therefore the way I look at it is if the rest of the world accepts this and it in turn does calms and relieve the situation, then both the U.S. government along with its citizens have got themselves one hell of a deal. That is not to say it’s entirely undeserved when in the past they have shouldered the load for many nations with no prospect of anything be salvaged.

Best,

Phil

Bee said...

Hi Louis,

Who are the 'many' who are 'not comfortable' with the article? I agree it is an excellent article. I was just trying to say it's kind of cheap to point fingers with hindsight, and I don't want American arrogance to turn into European arrogance. Best,

B.

Thomas D said...

Why ever do we need 'big nations' anyway? And what would be so great about Europe becoming one - instead of a loose alliance that nevertheless seems to 'work together' so far as it is necessary on the continent-scale (see eg CERN)?

The problem with 'big nations' is the same as crop monocultures: when they go well it's great, when they do badly it creates problems of an almost insoluble scale. The returns are big but so are the risks.

Whereas in a patchwork like Europe some parts will always have better or worse strategies in government, so the whole is insulated from all falling apart at the same time. Different countries could even learn from each other what works or doesn't...

There's a simple old phrase: All your eggs in one basket. The continent of North America has been doing that for a long time now, that's a good way to get powerful if your basket is well-made, and a good way to screw things up violently when your basket becomes a basket-case.

Perhaps the 'Founding Fathers' had something to say about this too - I doubt they would have approved of the fact that decisions taken in Washington determine the fate of hundreds of millions of people.

Giotis said...

Hi Bee,

I understand what you are saying and i agree. Of course the American people have many virtues. I didn't criticize the people basically but the establishment and their leaders. I am sure that the majority of the Americans don't have a clue about the true agenda of their government.
Also i want to make clear that when i said that Europe should take the lead, i didn't mean of course that it should replace US in the world scene and impose its interests on other nations but to act as a role model for other countries in order all these ideas to be spread around the world. We are no angels either but i want to believe that Europe after so many wars and bloodshed has finally learned from its history and is now wise enough not to repeat the same mistakes. We should become the community of nations that the rest of the world should look upon for guidance and for help. Call me naive but i truly believe that.

BR

Bee said...

Hi Giotis,

I agree. I don't think you're naive. Best,

B.

Anonymous said...

Hi B.,

above we can read quotes of Americans who reacted to the article: http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,582003,00.html
and many are quite offensive and speak about the past,how Germany should be grateful of USA etc, but what Americans forget is that the Nazis were heavily influenced by jewish hater Henry Ford,in particular his book The International Jew, the World’s Foremost Problem (November, 1920).
Many of the racial ideologies realized during the Nazi era were
imported from the USA.
In addition the USA benefited greatly from the defeat of Nazi Germany because tha was how it became a superpower.

peace,
Louis

Bee said...

Hi Louis,

Indeed. And they like to forget it. You might find this interesting. Best,

B.

Anonymous said...

Louis said: "Many of the racial ideologies realized during the Nazi era were
imported from the USA."

Oh I see. Auschwitz and Treblinka were *forced* on the Germans by the USA. I now understand World War 2 completely. Thanks.

But you must admit that the War did change things...instead of murderous Germans convinced of their superiority, we now have self-righteous, highly "moral" Germans *still* convinced of their superiority....people who can put out psychotic re-writings of history like yours and still sign their letters "peace".

Jee-zuz.

Plato said...

Bee Said:Ignorance isn't excused neither by patriotism nor pride, in combination, pride about own achievements must remain empty because those of others aren't acknowledged

I am certainly not making any excuses for them or what might appear as discriminatory. But you need to understand something about patriotism that is part of the American landscape. I hope our neighbours, and others from different countries are warm to the example I will illustrate to demonstrate this.

While visiting Disney Land this summer, and going to the "parade of lights" this caravan of "floats" traversed through the park. The last lighted vehicle shown was the stars and stripes, with walking colonial soldiers ahead and around in costume. As this past, there were cheers from the crowd.

You see, even I recognize something that is inherent in those who feel something for their countries. Feel pride. People want "others to feel as well" that they are important. Just as you might of Germany where you and Stefan come from.

This is why I say it is important to dig deeper, and understand where this arrogance comes from.

Just to put it into perspective better. My own son in law immigrated from Germany when he was 12. Canada is a land of Immigrants. My own Grandparents from Austria(what was before).

Regionalism is "provincial jurisdiction" and run by democratic political elections.

Just as we vote on a federal level.

While I would like to see our neighbours to the south think of Health care for all it's citizens, our country is trying to become "like them." That could change?

You see the contradiction?

The current progressive conservative government supported by the same initiatives of the Bloc party in Quebec's self detemination over ruling the consitution of Canada advances the thinking that regional(Provincial jurisdiction) should govern healthcare. The federal government makes transfer payment to the province.

This supports the contention of Phil, as well as the EU, about this regional disparity of our provincial parties as to whom they shall deal with?

But little does one realize that he( our Prime Minister) is acting on a federal level in terms of directing this country, while giving little thought to the Federal level in terms of what we once held in high esteem in terms of an Canadian Identity. For heavens sake, Canadians voted Tommy Douglas as one of the most important persons in this country.

Some would call it "socialist platform" and be done with it. This is far from what the "human factor asks for" in the face of "business" which is being toted behind the scenes as mentioned in regards to trade.

There are "no borders for business," and if we were to consider the thermodynamic realization, the Maxwell demon has been invoked in this case.

Money has been entropically been realized when all are treated the same. If each of the citizen of their respective countries thought about what made their country special, Canada's resources would make one think Canadians are very lucky they have these resources?

Well privatization has sought to make each citizen of this country pay more then what our neighbours are paying for gasoline? Open to market fluctuations? It's only right you should pay what the market is paying? IN Canada we pay more.

While one side of the political party in the states saids that they would initiate drilling, our neighbours should look at the landscape of our map of Canada as the pipelines will in future all transport fuel down to them.

Bee:The only result I've gotten was that I've been called arrogant in return, just for pointing out that Germany has already some decades experience with environmental protection.

Yes I would agree they are indeed a shining example.

Your secret document was interesting too.

I would not think it to inappropriate to compare the PI institute too, "providing a place for ingenuity to surface" given the encouragement and money for students to work to speak on their ideas and explain them as well. Of course under the watchful eye of their teachers.

Unorthodox avenues to financial support of different research ideas is a choice some may have, too continue to pursue their own ideas. The time may not be appropriate now, does not mean one should not continue.

Best,

changcho said...

Amara said:
"If one lives inside of the US, there is present through the general culture a kind of arrogance towards the rest of the world that the world revolves around you. It's difficult to get a sense that there are valuable things located outside of the country's borders and that life outside of the US can be excellent or at least high quality and very satisfying. If someone is unsure of the above, then listen to the discourse on the blogs and mailing lists for the royal 'we' (signifying USians). I always found it peculiar to be used for people living in a country that is only ~6% of the world's population."

I agree. but I'm not sure if this is another symptom, or a cause of it (probably the former). Most people who live in the US will probably agree with the following observation; watch the nightly news in the US (free, over the air newscast). People who live outside the US will be interested to know that the 1-hour newscast spends roughly 1 minute (!) on 'news of the world'. However your mileage may vary...

Thank goodness there is satellite TV and the web!

chimpanzee said...

There was an ABC Nightline show on European entrepeneurs: French woman who had a medical equipment startup company in Silicon Valley (she was an astronomy major in college!), German Silicon Valley entrepeneur (Andy Bechtolstein, SUN co-founder & Google investor), Indian Silicon Valley entrepeneur. All were notable European immigrants who made it in USA.

"Business [ in USA ] is very good!"
-- Dr. xxx, Caltech CS prof
[ US is built around business, although recent events might lead you to believe it's of the crooked kind ]

They commented that Europe had become "old", & found better (business) opportunity in USA. They all laughed when a graphic was shown about Germans partying & drinking beer, & the French woman jokingly commented "drinking beer..". (I don't remember the punchline of this graphic, so maybe someone call fill me in). She had found the system in France was difficult (too many restrictions), while it was easier in US.

There was a 60 Minutes episode about IIT/Indian Inst of Technology grads, & how they found success in USA. One Silicon Valley entrepeneur remarked how he breezed through CMU/Carnegie-Mellon grad school. I.e., the IIT training was far more rigorous than USA. American universities are flooded with Asian, Indian, Eastern European (Russian, et al), European students & professors.

I had previously commented about the failing educational system in US. Well, just look at any major university faculty & students, & it's staring at you. I call it "mini Europe", "mini Asia", or "mini India". The "cream rises to the top", & it's mostly foreign talent. I had pointed out that Caltech/JPL is hiring flunkies & potential homicidal maniacs (carrying guns & criminal records/jail-time).

Contrast this with how universities ("The Prison") can't contain the immense brains of S. Wolfram, L. Motl, G. Lisi, et al., who have all fled. Bee & Kea are expressing dis-satisfaction with the Establishment as well. As per the 60's series The Prisoner

"Better to have Brain Drain..rather than Brain-in-the-Drain"

Above was article title, about how India is losing its best students to American universities. Problem is, it's also a reflection of failed US educational policy: American students with serious case of brain-in-the-drain. American students (as a whole) cannot compete with the world.

I was just speaking to a friend (Masters in Aerospace Eng, USC), who is Astronomy instructor at Cal State Long Beach. He is totally frustrated with the incoming students, the math skills are not low..NON-EXISTENT according to him. He is a refugee from Aerospace Industry (Apollo missions of the late 60's). After the Sputnik crisis in USA (Russian leaped ahead of USA, familiar story of Europe >> USA), there was a nationwide panic. Seriously! His high school was the target of recruiters who said "We need you for the Space program", & he dutifully followed. He darkly comments how he was "sucked in", then "spit out" (after the Apollo missions accomplished the purely Political objective: beat the Russians to the moon). He grumbles about being laid off in early 70's, left to find jobs "flipping burgers" (at a McDonalds).

What is it, 50 yrs later & the SAME THING IS HAPPENING? China announced its Space program, & of course US has to play "catch up" & goto the Moon & Mars (WAIT: I thought we already went to the moon.."been there, done that"). Thereby, destroying basic Science Research funding for the next decade. We already had the Fiscal 2008 crisis for HEP (80 million shortfall), thus jeopardizing ILC (infringing on Europeans too)..the next step after the LHC. All because of a science-challenged Administration in Washington DC (to put it mildly, they only manipulate Science to their crackpot political agenda).

As I mentioned earlier, 2 of my U. of Arizona alumni friends (1 is an adjunct astronomy prof @Steward Observatory) have said:

"We're [ USA ] in the Dark Ages"

Bottomline:
American arrogance has filtered in to the Educational System, & the consequences are DISASTROUS. Maybe the Europeans can set example, & lead the clueless arrogant Americans out of their path-to-destruction.

"Increasingly, it's a race between Education & Disaster"
-- H.G. Welles

Rae Ann said...

These few days later, now we are beginning to see that the world's financial problems outside of America are even worse than the ones inside America. The Spiegel article was way too quick to judgment. Perhaps the "American Arrogance" really has always been more of a "European Arrogance" in another land? ;-)

Bee said...

Hi Rae Ann,

Yes, indeed. And it wasn't hard to see it come. The major problem with Europe is that it is not really a union like the USA, so now the nations can't agree on what to do, and some are doing their own thing while others are waiting what's going to happen. It's a big mess. I wonder how long it swaps over to Asia, maybe next week. It's a big chain reaction going on. I can only hope that nobody is dumb enough to tell the average person their money is going to lose value if they leave it with the banks. Makes you wonder doesn't it? How many blogs would it take to spread this message and cause a classical run on the banks? Best,

B.

Bee said...

Btw, it seems Canada is doing pretty well so far (except for the drop in the Canadian $), or have I missed something?

Giotis said...

Yes, the situation in Europe is bad too at least for some countries. I'm considering buying Iceland.

Plato said...

Bee:How many blogs would it take to spread this message and cause a classical run on the banks?

Pensions under investment, and the numbers being displayed have a roller coaster effect, and are defining for some whether they need to pull "all their money out."

Retirement has now been extended for a lot of folks. They do not need any help to realize what has happened. As well, credit has now found reason, to come back home and cause many of us to build again a strong foundational decision base, that asks for independence, a rethinking of depending on others, and thinking about what shall be liquid and allow a "safety net to live."

Blogs serve to find information that precedes some of the possibilities people will face under different situations, aside from media's pulse of the day.

Sometimes "the call for independence" is a revival of sorts that has been explained under the understanding of "loosing sight of what is important at home." It has a gathering effect for reflection and a time when new decisions will be made for the future.

It's just the way of it that such consolidating factors force one to deal with issues at home. Culture has always suffered at these times because it reflects the need for dealing with important questions of survival. Shelter, warmth, and food to sustain what one would like to extend into the world, under that safety net.

Many students understand this I am sure, that not all will find jobs in their preferred areas, but will have to make due until they can find what it is they want to do. Some are entrepreneurial in that they can "live on less" and have found ways to sustain a life style.

Such reflections are necessary many times in a person's life and is a renewal time. How well is it that one can weather the storm?

It's another one of those times.

Best,

Anonymous said...

Jee-zuz,
it seems you cant swallow the truth,the story about Henry Ford is true,but he was not the only one,
"...By 1930, John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil company had 'married' the I.G. Farben chemical pharmaceutical cartel," writes Dr. Horowitz in the book.
"Farben's directors
-- the cream of the SS and Third Reich -- decided that Jewish people would best serve as slave labor in their corporate 'concentration camps.' Hitler's 'racial hygiene' program, historic documents showed, evolved from the 'public health' and 'scientific eugenics' effort of the Rockefeller Family, the
British Royal Family and other powerful notables including Prescott Bush --
George W. Bush's grandfather.

It was Rockefeller money that primarily built the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute
for Eugenics, Anthropology and Human Heredity in pre-Nazi Germany, forerunner
to today's Cold Spring Harbor Labs' operation. Then, the Rockefellers
installed Ernst Rudin as the Institute's director. He later became Hitler's
chief racial hygienist. Margaret Sanger, the grand matriarch of 'family
planning' and world 'population control' worked vigorously at that time to
herald the necessary elimination of 'dysgenic' people -- mainly Blacks and
the mentally retarded.
..."

And you speak about murderous Germans, of all people you as an American,you must be really ignorant, at least when it comes to history.
Any other people more murderous than Americans ? Lets forget what USA did as a superpower, in the last 60 years or so and just concentrate on the genocide against, you know who, or should i tell you ?

peace,
Louis