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How others see Americans « Thread Started on Jun 28, 2005, 3

Daily newsbrief journal for June 2005, also see for a global 100-page perpetual brief and follow twitter @usdemocrats

How others see Americans « Thread Started on Jun 28, 2005, 3

Postby admin » Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:00 pm

How others see Americans « Thread Started on Jun 28, 2005, 3:13am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------How others see Americans Still not loved. Now not enviedJun 23rd 2005 | WASHINGTON, DC From The Economist print edition ... mericanism is becoming entrenched, and getting more personalIT IS two years since a surge of anti-American feeling greeted the start of the war in Iraq. In the past few months, the Iraqis have held their election; America has lifted objections to international war-crimes trials over Darfur; Israel's (American-supported) plan to pull out of Gaza has gathered speed; and Condoleezza Rice has been wooing Europeans diplomats with a kinder, gentler foreign policy. Surely, by now the spasm of hostility should be abating a bit.There are one or two signs of that in a new poll by the Pew Global Attitudes Project, the gold standard of international opinion surveys. Positive impressions of America have risen a few points in France, Germany and Russia since 2004, and have surged in India (since 2002) and Indonesia (2003). Against that, opinions of America are still well below their levels in 2000—and in most places they are still basically negative (see chart). American officials usually downplay negative opinions as products of policy disputes or personal animosity, not hostility to the country itself. George Bush remains about as popular as a germ at a medical conference, and public support for the war on terror has slipped markedly in many European countries. This time, though, some American policies are actually popular. People in all 16 countries surveyed said America's relief effort after the Asian tsunami inclined them more favourably towards it (this may explain the sharp improvement in Indonesian opinion). Most countries responded well to President Bush's calls for democracy in the Middle East—though more so in Europe than in the region itself. So it is all the more sobering to find considerable levels of hostility when people compare America with other countries, or express their views about Americans in general, not Mr Bush in particular. Pew asked its respondents to give favourability ratings to five nations: America, France, Germany, Japan and China. America came bottom of everyone's list everywhere except in India, where it was top, Poland, where it was in the middle and China, where it came above Japan. The British view France and Germany more favourably than they do America. China is more popular than the United States throughout Europe. (Germany won this particular beauty contest, by the way, scoring highly almost everywhere except Germany itself.)The survey was conducted during the referendum campaigns in France and the Netherlands over the EU constitution. But scepticism about the future of their union does not imply that Europeans want closer transatlantic ties. Half or more in every non-American country surveyed said they wanted Europe to be more independent of the United States, and huge majorities—between 70% and 80%—said they thought the world would be better off if America faced a rival military power.Americans themselves are still more popular abroad than their country or their president. But the gap has narrowed, partly because the positive image of Americans has declined considerably since 2002. Other people think Americans are hard-working and inventive, yes. But in most countries, more than half think of them as greedy and violent and, in the Middle East, as immoral. The Pew poll even raises questions about how far others still see America as the land of opportunity, as Americans do. One question asked: “Suppose a young person who wanted to leave asked you to recommend where to go to lead a good life—what country would you recommend?” Nobody except the Indians picked the United States first (see table). Given the lack of consistent long-term data, it is hard to know how these attitudes compare with, say, the 1960s. But this is the fifth survey of its kind since 2000. For that period, the Pew polls provide strong evidence that anti-Americanism is more than a blip associated with Mr Bush or Iraq.-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Help us air "Working Retirement" ad on Social Secu« Thread Started on Jun 28, 2005, 4:40am » --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Help us air "Working Retirement" ad on Social SecurityGeorge W. Bush is going to make Social Security privatization a key part of his State of the Union address this week. After his speech he is going on a cross-country tour to promote his agenda. That’s why, as Americans form their opinions about his plan, we need to make sure they know the facts – privatization means benefit cuts of up to 46%.Today, we’re releasing a new ad – Working Retirement – which builds off the famous MoveOn Child’s Pay ad to explain why privatization is a bad idea. The ad footage was shot by Charlie Fisher, who also did Child’s Pay. We’re working to raise $500,000 to run it in key Congressional districts where members of Congress are considering supporting Bush’s plan.
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