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Old 11-09-2002, 11:42 AM   #1
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The New Role of the United States of America

The thread that deep posted of terrorists being transported on U.S. military planes got me thinking about American ideology these days; specifically, what is, or what should be, the role of the U.S. on the world stage. The U.S. is often referred to as the "world's policeman." I humbly suggest that we begin to pursue alternatives.

I've seen a number of things justified, throughout the so-called War on Terrorism, by saying that "Well, they're terrorists, so we can detain them illegally/transport them like cattle/deny them basic civil and human rights." I, as an American and a Christian, don't buy that anymore--if I ever did.

Don't get me wrong. I'm scared. I know I live in a world full of terrorism, full of people who would probably slit my throat or something if they had the opportunity. But I think I'm more afraid of living in a country that perpetuates the ideology and actions that creates terrorism--and don't say it doesn't. We are making terrorism, and the threat thereof, bigger and scarier. You know that's the truth.

Why do we not, as a nation that consistently claims to be better than those of the terrorists who would destroy us, *act* as though we are better? Why do we not share more of our wealth and time with the impoverished of the world? Why do human rights go straight out the window as soon as they're inconvenient for us to attend to?

We are better than this, or at least we are supposed to be. We are the most powerful and wealthy nation in the world. Instead of using that position to be an example of what nationhood can be--prosperous, fair, peaceful, and attentive to the dignity of all persons--we have used this position to bully smaller, weaker nations, to pollute the planet, and to possibly drag our allies into a war that a majority of U.S. voters AND other countries' citizens do not want.

If anyone starts waving the anti-American flag at this post, go ahead and wave it, but I still believe that one of my most sacred rights as an American is the right to criticize my country. I'm not pointing fingers here--not at any one President or administration or political figure. This is just my opinion. And maybe I'm wrong. I've been wrong before. But I suppose the question I really want answered is: how do we cultivate a more responsible ethic of nationhood? How do we prove to the rest of the world something that few nations are wont to believe at the moment: that we truly do have one of the greatest countries in the world?
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Old 11-09-2002, 02:12 PM   #2
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Re: The New Role of the United States of America

Quote:
Originally posted by paxetaurora

I've seen a number of things justified, throughout the so-called War on Terrorism, by saying that "Well, they're terrorists, so we can detain them illegally/transport them like cattle/deny them basic civil and human rights." I, as an American and a Christian, don't buy that anymore--if I ever did.
Pax...please explain ......How they are being "illegally" transported? How they are being denied basic and civil rights?


Quote:
Originally posted by paxetaurora
Don't get me wrong. I'm scared. I know I live in a world full of terrorism, full of people who would probably slit my throat or something if they had the opportunity. But I think I'm more afraid of living in a country that perpetuates the ideology and actions that creates terrorism--and don't say it doesn't. We are making terrorism, and the threat thereof, bigger and scarier. You know that's the truth.
I am not trying to put words in your mouth, but, you make it sound like we have brought this on ourselves. Do you honestly believe that Al-Qaeda is fighting for a noble cause, like a Robin Hood, looking to rob from the Rich Americans and redistribute their spoils amongst the poor and downtrodden?


Quote:
Originally posted by paxetaurora
Why do we not, as a nation that consistently claims to be better than those of the terrorists who would destroy us, *act* as though we are better? Why do we not share more of our wealth and time with the impoverished of the world? Why do human rights go straight out the window as soon as they're inconvenient for us to attend to?
Help me out here....I see many people working their asses off...paying taxes. How much more do we have to give? When 1/3-1/2 of what I make gets taken from me....How much more should I have to give?

This is going to sound very, very bad, but I will try to make the best of it. As a teacher, I see children, on free lunch programs. I am not opposed to this, however....these same children.....are:

Wearing better clothes than I can afford for my children......
They have all the latest games and toys.......
They somehow have the money to buy an extra lunch.....
Able to take trips to Florida.......(I am saving for one in three years)
Have multiple siblings with different fathers.
Take music lessons.....$8.00 a week(not counting instrument rental)
Play football, baseball, ect......($$$$$ Equipment, Fees)

How much more of the money that other people and I have worked hard to earn.....Do we have to give?

That said....I do have children that need this program.....and I am not opposed to it....but the fact is....

Many people busted their ass to get ahead in the world against great odds. I respect and admire that. These people are in my estimation few and far between. Too many people take advantage of the system.

This has nothing to do with my job as a teacher...I work along with many teachers out there extremely hard to help our students. Teaching is my job and I love it. I would not want to be any place else other than with my own children.


Quote:
Originally posted by paxetaurora

We are better than this, or at least we are supposed to be. We are the most powerful and wealthy nation in the world. Instead of using that position to be an example of what nationhood can be--prosperous, fair, peaceful, and attentive to the dignity of all persons--we have used this position to bully smaller, weaker nations, to pollute the planet, and to possibly drag our allies into a war that a majority of U.S. voters AND other countries' citizens do not want.
Please...quote a poll....give me some data. The last poll I saw said that the United States Citizenship was 60% in favor of action against Iraq if the United Nations was involved. The UN is now involved.

From CBS.COM...the latest poll from NOV 4 indicates:

The general support for using military force to remove Saddam Hussein has remained very constant. Sixty-four percent in this poll favor the policy. Just over three weeks ago 67 percent favored it, and in August 66 percent did. Just as in previous polls, support drops off when respondents are asked to consider some negative potential consequences of a war, down as low as 42 percent if military action meant that the U.S. would become involved in a war lasting months or even years.

As for Pollution...and bullying....Well....I am not in disagreement on the pollution thing. We can do better.


Quote:
Originally posted by paxetaurora

If anyone starts waving the anti-American flag at this post, go ahead and wave it, but I still believe that one of my most sacred rights as an American is the right to criticize my country. I'm not pointing fingers here--not at any one President or administration or political figure. This is just my opinion. And maybe I'm wrong. I've been wrong before. But I suppose the question I really want answered is: how do we cultivate a more responsible ethic of nationhood? How do we prove to the rest of the world something that few nations are wont to believe at the moment: that we truly do have one of the greatest countries in the world?
You are acting more like an American that I can respect when you offer a dissenting view than the 61% of the eligible voters who failed to vote last Tuesday.

As for your cultivation of Nationhood.......

Our current administration has:

Worked with the UN on Iraq and now currently has the UN supporting the resolutions. I hope people can see that this President has worked hard to do what is right in this area. 15-0 was the vote. Does this sound like they do not believe that we are a responsible nation? As for your theory that the world does not admire our government, our country, our way of life.......

Why do so many of them want to get here.....legally, and otherwise?
Why do they want to attend our schools?

I suppose.....we can do better in many areas....But I still want to know...how much more I have to give....when clearly.....others are taking advantage of the system.




Peace to all.
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Old 11-09-2002, 02:36 PM   #3
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Re: Re: The New Role of the United States of America

Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox
Many people busted their ass to get ahead in the world against great odds. I respect and admire that. These people are in my estimation few and far between. Too many people take advantage of the system.
And too many people bust their ass just to survive in this world. Too many people work sixty hours a week just to put a roof over their head and food on the table. Too many people work two different jobs and still can't afford health insurance. Too many people work harder than you can imagine and still won't ever 'get ahead' in the world because the odds are so stacked against them. That's why we need fair progressive taxation and the provision of healthcare, welfare, education for everyone, regardless of their ability to pay.

I agree that people take advantage of the system: too many rich people and corporations take advantage of the system to avoid paying their due in taxes. That's what pisses me off, not the person who does a day of work, cash in hand, even though she's claiming unemployment benefit because she wants to be able to buy her kids a present this Christmas.
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Old 11-09-2002, 02:52 PM   #4
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Re: Re: Re: The New Role of the United States of America

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Originally posted by FizzingWhizzbees


And too many people bust their ass just to survive in this world. Too many people work sixty hours a week just to put a roof over their head and food on the table. Too many people work two different jobs and still can't afford health insurance. Too many people work harder than you can imagine and still won't ever 'get ahead' in the world because the odds are so stacked against them. That's why we need fair progressive taxation and the provision of healthcare, welfare, education for everyone, regardless of their ability to pay.

Sounds like many people I know. it also sounds like you want me to pay more taxes.
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Old 11-09-2002, 03:00 PM   #5
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Quote:
Sounds like many people I know. it also sounds like you want me to pay more taxes.


Not you specifically. And it's not so much that I want people to pay more taxes, it's that I believe we should have progressive taxation, by which those more able to afford it contribute more. I believe those with an annual income of $2 million should pay a larger percentage of their income in taxes than someone with an annual income of $5,000. And I believe that's the only way to create a society in which nobody is deprived of healthcare or education or other essentials because of their financial situation.
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Old 11-09-2002, 04:41 PM   #6
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Re: Re: Re: Re: The New Role of the United States of America

Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox


Sounds like many people I know. it also sounds like you want me to pay more taxes.
Dread,

W and Company will have you paying more taxes than any lefties left standing.
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Old 11-09-2002, 05:11 PM   #7
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Dread-
You still got your 600.00 tax refund?
I do mine
Thank you GWsexy Bush
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Old 11-09-2002, 06:02 PM   #8
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Re: Re: The New Role of the United States of America

First of all, I just want to thank y'all for staying nice...I was a lil bit pissy when I posted this and I'm glad that no one has said mean things. So anyway, here I go answering Dread's points.


Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox

Pax...please explain ......How they are being "illegally" transported? How they are being denied basic and civil rights?
I said they were being transported like cattle, not illegally transported...although that probably should be illegal anyway.

Quote:
I am not trying to put words in your mouth, but, you make it sound like we have brought this on ourselves. Do you honestly believe that Al-Qaeda is fighting for a noble cause, like a Robin Hood, looking to rob from the Rich Americans and redistribute their spoils amongst the poor and downtrodden?
No way. I don't believe, as some probably do, that 9/11 was "America's fault." It was the fault of a few dozen twisted individuals who committed an extremely evil act. And Al-Qaeda's "goal," if they have one, is to promote their own sick agenda of terror and religious tyranny--not to help the poor and downtrodden. But I do believe that if America wants to present itself as a country that deserves better treatment from the rest of the world, then we ought to act like it. With great power comes great responsibility. Didn't you ever see Spider-Man?

Quote:
Help me out here....I see many people working their asses off...paying taxes. How much more do we have to give? When 1/3-1/2 of what I make gets taken from me....How much more should I have to give?
I believe that our government ought to be able to do better than they are with the money we already give them. I'm not in favor of increasing taxes--I'm a working girl myself--but we have one of the lowest tax rates in the Western world, too, hard as that is to believe.

Quote:
Please...quote a poll....give me some data. The last poll I saw said that the United States Citizenship was 60% in favor of action against Iraq if the United Nations was involved. The UN is now involved.
The UN may well be *involved.* But I'm not certain that the UN is really behind us. And 60% is no groundswell of support, either, particularly if that support is contingent on the support of the UN.

Quote:
Just as in previous polls, support drops off when respondents are asked to consider some negative potential consequences of a war, down as low as 42 percent if military action meant that the U.S. would become involved in a war lasting months or even years.


Quote:
As for your theory that the world does not admire our government, our country, our way of life.......

Why do so many of them want to get here.....legally, and otherwise?
Why do they want to attend our schools?
I see your point here, and I should have made myself clearer. I'm not saying that the U.S. isn't a darn great place to live--I think, for the most part, it is. But when you consider a lot of the places from which immigrants (legal or otherwise) come--the former Soviet Union, Haiti, Cuba, whatever--is it really saying much that the U.S. is better than those places? Of course we are! It doesn't take much to be a better place to live than Port-au-Prince! The question I address, I suppose, is that of *complacency.* Are we really satisfied, in this GREAT country, to merely be a little better than Russia?

Dreadsox, I appreciate your comments--it's both sides of the debate that make FYM, and America, great. I think you have a lot of good points, too. Peace to you, too, and everyone else while I'm at it.
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Old 11-09-2002, 06:43 PM   #9
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The current human development report by the United Nations states that the USA has the 6th highest standard of living in the world. Were way ahead of Russia.
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Old 11-09-2002, 06:44 PM   #10
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Re: Re: Re: The New Role of the United States of America

[b]I'm a working girl myself[b/]

I love the thread, dont have time to respnd but i thought this was funny. I'm sure you're not the type of that working girl!!
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Old 11-09-2002, 06:57 PM   #11
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Re: Re: Re: Re: The New Role of the United States of America

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[B]I'm a working girl myself[b/]
I'm sure you're not the type of that working girl!!

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Old 11-09-2002, 07:39 PM   #12
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Quote:
Why do so many of them want to get here.....legally, and otherwise?
Why do they want to attend our schools?


Dread,

Could it be because we offer the best deal on the planet.

Our pay to play rates cannot be beat.

Immigrants get to participate in the American dream at our bargain basement prices.

The costs of starting a business, the payola involved, etc. in other countries is significantly higher everyplace else. Our tax system that we all complain about, is the lowest of all developed nations.
No, I donít want to pay more taxes, Iím American, remember.

As much as the Corporations complain, they are not relocating in England, Europe, Canada.
Sure many are using sham legal* off shore Caribbean Corps to avoid our reasonable tax rates, but they are not moving operations there.



*legislation bought and paid for
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Old 11-09-2002, 11:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
and to possibly drag our allies into a war that a majority of U.S. voters AND other countries' citizens do not want.

Half-A-Million March in Anti-War Rally in Italy

November 09, 2002 01:56 PM ET


By Luke Baker

FLORENCE, Italy (Reuters) - More than half a million anti-war protesters from across Europe marched through this Italian Renaissance city on Saturday in a loud and colorful demonstration denouncing any possible U.S. attack on Iraq.

Brimming with anti-American feelings and riled by a tough new U.N. resolution to disarm Iraq, young and old activists from as far afield as Russia and Portugal joined forces for the carnival-like rally, singing Communist anthems and 1970s peace songs.

"Take your war and go to hell," read one banner, in a forest of multi-colored and multi-lingual placards.

"Drop Bush, not Bombs" read another. Some placards depicted President Bush as Hitler and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi as Mussolini.

Organizers said the rally, planned months ago, gained added relevance by Friday's U.N. Security Council resolution which gave Iraq a last chance to disarm or face almost certain war.

The protest, involving children as well as grandmothers, marked the climax of the first European Social Forum, a four-day meeting of anti-globalisation campaigners from all over Europe. Delegates discussed topics from debt-reduction to support for the Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation.

Florence has been virtually shut down for the November 6-10 period, with the State Department advising its citizens to steer clear of Italy's art capital over concerns that violent, anarchist groups might infiltrate the demonstration.

Authorities estimated that some 450,000 protesters flooded Florence's streets for the march on a chilly autumn afternoon.

But by dusk, the crowed had swelled to over half a million, many of them arriving on specially chartered trains and buses. Organizers estimated the gathering at around one million, making it one of Italy's biggest ever anti-war rallies.

Despite the large crowds, the march was largely peaceful and no incidents were reported.

"The atmosphere here is wonderful. Absolutely perfect. It shows that a new young left is emerging," said Stavos Valsamis, a 27-year-old Greek activist from Athens.

Children climbed on their parents' shoulders to get a view of the sea of crowds marching along the seven-km (4.5-miles) route. Many clapped as marchers passed by.

"This is amazing, it's so impressive," said 12-year-old Bianca Ronglia as she watched with her family from the side of the road. "I'm happy and proud that my city is holding this."

BIGGER THAN GENOA

The march was bigger than a protest at a G8 summit in Genoa last year, when 300,000 demonstrators took to the streets and an orgy of violence left one protester dead and hundreds injured.

Some 7,000 police officers were on call but security forces kept a low profile along the rally's route. No incidents were reported.

The rest of Florence was a ghost town with most shops in the art-rich historical center pulling down the shutters for fear of vandals. However, the city's famed museums remained open and offered free entry to the few tourists around.

Many Florence residents deserted the city for the four days of the forum, prompting criticism from those who stayed behind.

"I'm really disappointed by my fellow Florentines -- it really shows very little faith. This whole event has been very calm, in fact the city has been much calmer and friendlier than usual," said housewife Maria Briccoli, 37.

As well as university-age students, older political activists and thousands of trades unionists, Saturday's throng also included Italian World War II partisans and a U.S. Vietnam war veteran who marched in the first row of the crowd.

While Friday's U.N. resolution gives the Security Council a central role in assessing the new arms' inspection program for Iraq, it does not require the United States to seek U.N. authorization for war in case of violations.

"I think it's a scandalous resolution," said Sean Murray, 29, a member of Workers' Revolution. "It proves once more that the U.N. is a puppet of America, Britain and France."
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Old 11-10-2002, 04:59 AM   #14
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The fact is, the majority of US citizens support disarming Iraq with force if necessary. They support Bush and his policy on terror and Iraq. The USA will not stop defending itself because of the opinion of people from other countries. Despite the rally in Florence, Italy has been a stronger supporter of the USA than countries like France or Germany. The UN voted 15-0 to support Bushes policy of disarming Iraq. EVEN Syria voted to support the resolution!
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Old 11-10-2002, 05:17 AM   #15
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There was a time that the USA was happy to arm Sadam. That were the days

And now that Iraq is not following western rules we are prepared inocent civilians and poor children. It realy puzzels me that some countrys are allowed to have weapons of mass destruction ( IsraŽl ) and others not.

There was a tv programm on that was reporting about the Big oilcompanies who where splitting the oilcake in pieces already. France agreed with the VN resolutions after thier biggest oilcompany secured a part of the cake.

And about the US is the police of the world ? Bullshit, killing people in a ohter country ( Jemen ) is like a deathpenalty without a trail. ( Hitler and Stalin did like that kind of police work )
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