USA: Still The One?

AMERICA’S VIEW OF AMERICA IS CHANGING … Cue Lee Greenwood … because America is in dire need of some pride. According to the latest data from the Pew Research Center, only 28 percent of Americans now believe their country “stands above all other countries in the world.”  That’s down from 38…


Cue Lee Greenwood … because America is in dire need of some pride.

According to the latest data from the Pew Research Center, only 28 percent of Americans now believe their country “stands above all other countries in the world.”  That’s down from 38 percent just three years ago.

Yikes …

Meanwhile, twelve percent of Americans now believe there are “other countries that are better than the U.S.,” up from eight percent three years ago.  A majority of Americans – 58 percent – continue to believe their country is “one of the greatest countries in the world, along with some others.”  That’s up from 53 percent.

Hmmmm … interesting data on how Americans view their homeland.

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Jackie Chiles July 8, 2014 at 1:00 pm

Thinking your country is the best no matter what leads to poor policy decisions.

Bible Thumper July 8, 2014 at 1:36 pm

When you celebrate beating Ghana and then lose to Belgium, it is not good.

Crooner July 8, 2014 at 1:17 pm

When other countries proclaim that they are best we call it propaganda. Be interesting to see by what metrics we are measurably the best country. Richest, sure, but best?

Bible Thumper July 8, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Obama doesn’t believe America is the best and this is one of his only successes. He has managed to convince the country to agree with him. Good job!

Tom July 8, 2014 at 2:41 pm

Actually it took 8 years of George Bush, six years of Tea Partiers, and 25 years of Republicans running my state into the ground to convince me of that. Good Job!

Mike at the Beach July 8, 2014 at 4:15 pm

Did the R’s beat Detroit down, too? In my experience, folks who think one side of the political spectrum is responsible for the problems we face are generally Kool-Aid drinkers. It’s the system that’s broken, and once politicians of any stripe get sucked into it they rarely emerge with their integrity intact. Money, of course, is part of it but not the entire problem. I wish I was smart enough to figure out a solution.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 4:19 pm

Kudos to your for at least seeing there’s a problem. You’re ahead of 95% of the population.

Most everyone else is stuck on R’s & D’s to see anything beyond. They don’t even question the system…they just think “their kind” is gonna fix it.

Give Detroit to Ohio July 8, 2014 at 5:54 pm

Really. Big news this week out of Detroit is that people are having their water turned off for failure to pay the water bill. The average outstanding balance is $1200per household. The “good”news is that there are protests and petitions underway.

Mike at the Beach July 8, 2014 at 9:37 pm

It’s obviously George Bush’s fault, you fascist pig.

Tom July 9, 2014 at 10:00 am

No its obviously Obama’s fault, its because he is a socialist Muslim and Detroit is just the first US city he has taken out. Soon we will all be bowing and facing Mecca once a day.

Tom July 8, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Detroit was a victim of the economy, and a historical warning on the results of lack of economic diversification; but free trade policies pushed by Republicans certainly played a roll in its demise. Another part was a change in attitude by management. When CEOs went from focusing on long term stability, quality, loyal employees, and loyal customers to short run profits and then out before the shoe dropped, quality went through the floor and the customer abandoned the brands. Look at what a recommitment to quality and customer loyalty has done for Ford in just a few short years.

Neither party is devoid of corrupt politicians. But a lot more corrupt politicians are Republicans. Follow the money.

Mike at the Beach July 8, 2014 at 9:36 pm

Again, sounds like Kool-Aid to me. I try to analyze things right down to underlying facts; if I don’t, I’m looking at a symptom, not an illness (coughs, not infections). Technically speaking, we’ve known in the social sciences for more than a decade that Democrats are many times (3-6X, depending upon the study) more likely to face public corruption charges in federal court. This condition has many root causes we shouldn’t bore everyone here with (urban settings, psychological approach to fairness, etc.), but if you’re interested, one of the better studies on that was done by NYU’s Dr. Sanford Gordon (a Princeton PhD) back in 2009 – http://journals.cambridge.org/download.php?file=%2FPSR%2FPSR103_04%2FS0003055409990207a.pdf&code=574c6a44ed103d0981bc6fe8a66d382c

His take was prosecution bias, but interestingly the party affiliation of the Presidency didn’t eliminate the Dem advantage (only changed the numbers a bit). I, on the other hand, take a more even-handed view. I believe that the federal court metric is skewed toward corruption in the purest, technical, and legal sense. I think that much of Republican “corruption” is of the technically legal (but shady) living-in-the-pockets-of-big-donors stuff which can’t end up in court. To your point of following the money- you should look at the recent studies on that. Guess who the big boys on Wall Street like these days? Getting the big money out of politics is a 100% bipartisan problem. I try to traffic in facts, mainly because I find party allegiance Kool-Aid drinking intellectually draining.

Of course, if facts bore folks they can always resort to the shrill refrain from perpetually-angry-little-boy Rachel Maddow and her ilk- just blame Bush; or maybe his dad.

Tom July 9, 2014 at 9:58 am

Or Republicans and right wing tea nuts donning their costumes and jumping up and down and blaming Obama for bringing about everything bad that has ever happened, including the end of civilization as we know it over the past 6 years.

As for getting big money out of the system show me one Republican other than John McCain who agrees with that and we may have a point of discussion. Just read the people on this site. Republicans and Tea Nuts have no desire to get big money out of the system. Republicans think they are winning in that area. The Republican party is currently pushing the courts to rule the government must allow unlimited donations by anonymous sources. I see no hope from that side. They see big money as the source of power. At least Democrats are pushing for transparency. That is better than nothing.

Bible Thumper July 8, 2014 at 6:53 pm

The data link leads to the poll that compares 2011 to 2014. Therefore this drop does not represent the Bush years. Obama specifically does not believe we ever were the best. To strive to be the best to him is jingoism and America exceptionallism. This is not the Republican or Democrat view.

Tom July 9, 2014 at 10:45 am

I said me. The data is meaningless. People are tired. They have just gone through the longest most expensive war in history. They found out that their government lied to get them into it and we achieved nothing. On top of that the middle class is broke while the top 3% is richer than ever: But yet the middle class is told they need to give more and more. They need to give up Social Security, they need to give up Medicare, they need to pay more of the tax burden so the “job creators” can pay less. They need to work harder for less. While Wall Street pockets billions and CEOs make enough to fund a small country.

It should not be surprising that as wealth disparity in this nation reaches the level of the late 1800s people are beginning to question the difference between America and any other country. The American dream for the middle class is dying with the middle class. Restore the middle class and that will all change overnight. Americans will once again see America as the nation of opportunity and freedom.
Step one get money out of politics, so elected officials have to deal with real people.

The Colonel July 9, 2014 at 7:22 am

Republicans have been in charge of South Carolina for roughly twenty years, we were screwed up long before that.

Tom July 9, 2014 at 9:56 am

Stop looking at the past. They have had 20 years to fix it. A lot more time that the Republicans have given Obama to fix the national economy. If this is the Republican standard, Obama is moving at the speed of light.

Turn out the lights... July 8, 2014 at 1:30 pm

When a country begins to feed upon itself (excessive tax burdens to pay for waste and corrupt officials lining their own pockets with citizens money) then the countdown has begun. This country is toast in less than 100 years.

When a President says “sue me” to the elected representatives for a large segment of the population the gig is up.

RogueElephant July 8, 2014 at 2:58 pm

I think it was Jefferson who said, when the takers outnumber the makers , the country is doomed and can’t return.

Bill July 8, 2014 at 6:16 pm

Yea takers are a problem; oil companies who receive tax subsidies, defense contractors who live from the public purse, Halliburton and its no bid contacts, mining companies allowed to mine public land for free; people with beach houses with subsidized flood insurance, Wall Streeters who received a bail out; Banks who received a bail out; politicians like Sanford who have lived on the backs of the taxpayers for two decades; the list seems to go on and on.

Be Productive July 8, 2014 at 7:00 pm

You are correct Bill, but just because our country is littered with taker crony capitalists doesn’t mean the taker generational welfare class should get a break either.

They all needed to be booted off the government teat.

Bill July 9, 2014 at 11:03 am

Republican are making a huge mistake by fostering this myth that the nations problems stem from poor people on welfare. That really is not a major problem. Do you realize we only spent $235 billion on welfare programs for the non-working poor last year. The vast majority of that went to feed children who cannot work. This is nothing. It is not a problem for a nation like ours, and focusing on it the way Republicans do means we cannot focus on real problems. Those number are miniscule compared to corporate welfare and money flowing to the military industrial complex.
The Republican party is using this as a wedge issue. Dividing the nation and fostering anger and resentment. That will come back to haunt them as more and more minorities realize they are being made a scapegoat for the real culprits who are paying politicians to keep the money flowing.

Be Productive July 9, 2014 at 6:21 pm

“Do you realize we only spent $235 billion on welfare programs for the non-working poor last year.”

Bill, I’m not going to fact check your number, but if you can’t establish a consistent position on the notion of welfare(either people/corps get it or don’t), then you’ll forever fight the issue of who gets confiscated funds and why….and the big corps with big money will buyoff the pols every time(both D’s and R’s) and always get their share…welfare money does very little to actually help the poor.

If you think otherwise, then I submit the last 100 years in the US as proof….

Turn out the lights... July 8, 2014 at 1:38 pm

I have traveled a fair amount always keeping an eye out for a great place to go when I hang it up. While Ireland, Costa Rica, Belize and Spain are quite attractive and Maine and Vermont are personally appealing I have found that at the end of the day I can buy a nice house on the coast of SC or in the mountains of NC and live comfortably, safely and enjoy all the recreational amenities that we ‘mercans have come to expect.

The Colonel July 8, 2014 at 2:30 pm

Vermont’s tax rates will kill you, they rank something like 5th in worst “personal tax” climates. Maine isn’t much better at 9th (New York is the worst). Ireland’s unemployment is still fairly high – the Celtic tiger has been toothless for a long time. Personal income tax rates average better than 40%. (range is 41%-48%). Costa Rica is pretty but has a very high poverty rate (23%). They have lots of natural resources but don’t do much with them. Spain has Basques and bombs but their economy is smoking (compared to the rest of Europe) – they still have entire cities worth of buildings unoccupied though.
Look north of the Cherokee Highway.

RogueElephant July 8, 2014 at 2:56 pm

Agreed. Especially the mountains of NC. Stay away from Asheville, too many hippy, egg head environmental wackos. Otherwise the most beautiful place on earth.

vicupstate July 9, 2014 at 5:11 am

Better hippy, egg head environmental wackos than right wing nut jobs. At least the hippies will let you live in peace.

Bible Thumper July 8, 2014 at 2:08 pm

“Whether we like it or not, we remain a dominant military superpower….” — Barack Obama.

I suspect Obama doesn’t like it.

shifty henry July 8, 2014 at 6:53 pm

Riiiiiiight! The USA can’t even stop 5 year old children from invading us. Who is coming next?

Touche' July 8, 2014 at 6:56 pm

You forgot “unarmed”, a 5 year old unarmed child invading us…lol

Good thing all our troops are over in Iraqistan and all sorts of other places around the world.

shifty henry July 8, 2014 at 7:03 pm

Very good — +10

Bible Thumper July 8, 2014 at 7:18 pm

For $3,700,000,000 Obama has asked for we can take care of them until they can appear before a judge. They expect 65,000 kids will be cared for. Assuming 100,000 kids, average cost is $37,000 each. Even then 90% will never show up for court hearing and likely not be deported.

Uh huh July 8, 2014 at 2:49 pm

If you have the best country in the world, you don’t need to proclaim it.

People are just waking up, that’s all. Before you can fix anything, you first have to know that there’s a problem…so it’s healthy for Americans to step back and take a realistic view of the country and where they think it’s headed if there’s to be any hope of changing it.

Secession seems to be the best cure to me, but obviously I’m a small minority.(for now)

Jack July 8, 2014 at 3:54 pm

Secession is just a way to abandon your country and force other to go with you whether they want to or not. Go by yourself please. Leave me the heck out of it.

Tom July 8, 2014 at 3:55 pm

Secessionist are generally cowards. They are too afraid to go by themselves. They prefer to drag others along.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 4:05 pm

Isn’t that how this nation was founded, by cowards?

Tom July 8, 2014 at 5:45 pm

Nope. The nation was founded by rebels. In a rebellion you take sides. Rebels fought the British and Tories. The winning side take all. In a secession, you vote to force others to go with you and threaten to lock them up and take their property if they don’t. I.E. you vote to take away their Constitutional Rights. Not the same at all.

Rebellion is a lot more extreme than secession. it requires a larger commitment of risk, more skin in the game, and thus is far less likely to occur for BS reasons. If you allow secession, without consequence, 51% of the people in some geographic area can say they are unhappy and take away all your constitutional rights for unjust reasons that would not result in rebellion. People don’t put their life and the life of their family on the line for BS reasons. People want to secede for BS reasons all the time. If enough people to make a rebellion work are willing to go along with it; something is very wrong and the rebellion is probably justified. I could get 35% of the people in this state to agree to secession tomorrow, because they are rednecks

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 6:36 pm

“51% of the people in some geographic area can say they are unhappy and take away all your constitutional rights”

So….what’s the difference between that principle, which you define as “bad”, and the fact we use the same principle to make a variety of decisions in a variety of our governments?

Isn’t that democracy?

Tom July 8, 2014 at 6:55 pm

We don’t live in a pure democracy. We have certain rights the majority cannot take away simply by voting. Much less a super minority. You cannot take my property except by due process of law. If you want to change that you must amend the constitution. That requires a supermajority. The government has an obligation to defend my rights.

If 51% of the people of Greenville SC want to form a new country and make it a Christian Theocracy and can force me to leave my country and join them, what good are my constitutional rights. I mean zero.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 6:58 pm

You never really answered my question…for example, if 51% of people in Greenville vote for a 1% tax on everyone…then they get to legally take your money….that’s no different from 51% of them saying they want to change the local government to a Christian Theocracy(which they could!)

Tom July 8, 2014 at 7:09 pm

Actually no they could not form a Christian Theocracy, but that aside. Taxes are a taking but that taking is by due process of law. Ergo not theft. Governments must have funds to exist. Taxation is how those funds are provided. Taxation is clearly constitutional.

However, taxation must be rationally related to the achievement of permissible constitutional goals. They cannot be arbitrary and capricious. If they are you can challenge them in court and if the court agrees with you they may overturn the tax. Its not just a 51% vote. Constitutional Theory is complex, even if people do not believe it to be so.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 7:29 pm

Yeah…..ok….”taxes aren’t theft” by due process….well secession isn’t a violation of your rights by your argument because it’s “due process”…in fact, it’s the same process.

Tom July 8, 2014 at 7:39 pm

No its not the same process. It is not necessary or rationally related to achieving permissible constitutional goals. Secession is clearly not constitutional because if it were the Constitution would have no meaning at all. The states ratified the Constitution and the various Amendments to it. There is a way out. Its called a Constitutional Convention. If such a Convention is called, and you can get the necessary Supermajority vote, the Union can be dissolved. That is due process of law. Due process of law is different for different things. Otherwise no one has the right to secede. You can leave the country but you cant take your real property and the property of other people with you.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 7:49 pm

“No its not the same process.”

Yes, yes it is.

“Secession is clearly not constitutional because if it were the Constitution would have no meaning at all. ”

Is secession specifically forbid in the Constitution? No.

At Virginia’s ratification convention, the delegates said, “The powers
granted under the Constitution being derived from the People of the
United States may be resumed by them whensoever the same shall be
perverted to their injury or oppression.”

Jefferson said, “If any state in the Union will declare that it prefers
separation … to a continuance in the union …. I have no hesitation in
saying, ‘Let us separate.’” in response to the NE Federalists attempt to secede.

History and facts are against you.

If people ever decide again, using your terms, to undertake “due process” and vote to secede, let us hope that it doesn’t come to violence to stop them from doing so by the people that wish them to be perpetually under the thumb of an unjust government.

Tom July 8, 2014 at 8:14 pm

All you say was prior to the passage of the 14th Amendment. If there was any debate as to the rights of states to secede before the passage of the 14th amendment; and there was, that was ended with the passage of the 14th Amendment. That amendment requires the federal government to defend the constitutional rights of its citizens against action by the states. It cannot do that if states can secede. The states have no right to secede. The Union can only be dissolved by Constitutional Convention. That is the only due process for a state to leave the union.

We have been down this road before. If a group of people attempt to take my rights under the United States Constitution away from me I will expect my government to defend my rights. Just as it defended the rights of hundreds of thousands in 1861. Unjust is in the eye of the beholder. What if I think the government of the State is unjust?

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 8:28 pm

“If a group of people attempt to take my rights under the United States
Constitution away from me I will expect my government to defend my

What right would be taken from you by a vote of secession? If a majority can change the administration of government, why can it not change its form?

You are making no sense logically. Further though, let us not suggest this magical piece of paper, the Constitution, means anything to a people that want to be free of a government that is supposedly restricted by it.

“What if I think the government of the State is unjust?”

You do the same things we all must do today:

You try to change it or leave. There’s a lot of ways to try to change it, surprisingly many are not approved of by the government you are trying to change.

So for example, when someone asks why it’s ok to change government administration with a 51% majority, and that might include violating your rights, like taking your money…and the answer is that only certain rights violations are acceptable…well…that is a ridiculous argument to any outside unbiased observer.

If you can’t apply due process consistently in your claim that it justifies rights violations, it’s pretty much a worthless concept(as you define it).

I have to say though, I’m surprised you think 35% of the population would be for secession, I think it’s much less…but I hope you’re right and I’m wrong.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 8:59 pm

“Rebels fought the British and Tories. The winning side take all. In a
secession, you vote to force others to go with you and threaten to lock
them up and take their property if they don’t.”

I just caught this definition after re-reading everything, it is the pinnacle of absurdity.

No where in any definition of secession do I find that the winning party gets to take your property if you don’t go along.

Maybe you’ve got an old secession manual about or something I’m not aware of.

Thing is, what you’ve described is almost EXACTLY what happens if 51% vote to tax you…if you don’t pay the taxes…they come take your stuff and sometimes throw you in jail…so there’s that…maybe that’s what your thinking about is taxes.

RogueElephant July 8, 2014 at 2:49 pm

Looks like Obummer’s plan is working. When he took office we were #1 in the world., Now, six years later, we are reduced to a third world country. Sounds like a plan to me. Anyone who thinks this all wasn’t by design, I have this development property you might be interested in.

It's a plot! July 8, 2014 at 2:55 pm

…and to think it’s the libertarians that often wear the “conspiracy theory” label(sometimes proudly).

Some people, like the skinny half white socialist President, really do think quasi-socialism is ‘best’….they are just idiots…that’s all. I just don’t buy he actively is trying to tear the country down…he’s just an ignoramus that’s never lived in a communist country for an extended period of time.

So he has no idea how the country became so wealthy, nor does he understand the nature of government. In fairness to him, it’s not just the Democrats that glorify government, Republicans do it too….the argument isn’t “government is bad” to 95% of the pols and population, it’s “my style of government better than yours”…so he’s operating inside a mental box without even realizing it.

Jack July 8, 2014 at 3:47 pm

If you think we are a third world country move to a second world country, you should be happy and I know the rest of us will be happier. Typical Teanut. You and your kind have been beating down the middle class and running this country into the ground since 1980. The result is all yours. There is nothing a lame duck president could have done in 6 years to reverse what your kind has done over 30. But real americans are beginning to fight to restore the middle class and real American ideals, instead of your fake news, rush and beck ideals of division and resentment and your Koch Brother’s ideals of government to the highest bidder.

Forest Hump July 8, 2014 at 4:08 pm

lol….restoration is on the way Jack! We are going to spend ourselves back on to track!

Are you really that fucking stupid?

Thomas July 9, 2014 at 2:42 am

If Fits really wanted some heated discussions, he should post a few enterprise articles expounding conservative values…he can’t. There is not one morsel of conservative ideology in his cone head. He is sponging for hits…LoL

Thomas July 9, 2014 at 2:36 am

You can’t even name a second world nation. Clinton’s signing of NAFTA and the General Agreement on Trade & Tariffs in 1993 then repealing Glass-Steagall in 1999 destroyed the middle class.

Jack July 9, 2014 at 10:12 am

The repeal of Glass Steagall was a major mistake and the primary cause of the collapse, but it was pushed through by Republicans. Phil Gramm was the leader. The bill that repealed Glass Steagall was the Gramm Leach Bliley Act. Note Gramm, Leach and Bliley are all Republicans. Clinton cannot escape blame for not vetoing that bill, but he was not the instigator of that plan. This was big money in operation once again.

Phil Gramm was paid by big banks to get that bill through. They were exercising their free speech rights by lining Phil Gramm’s pockets.

NAFTA was also a Republican bill. Again Clinton cannot escape blame for not vetoing it. The bill was drafted and introduced during the Bush I Administration by Republicans.

I am very glad some conservatives are finally seeing the error of their was on regulation of Banking and Securities and pure Free Trade.

We need to restore Glass Steagall and we need fair trade not free trade. Maybe we can get somewhere if more of you will admit Gramm Leach Bliley and NAFTA were mistakes from the beginning.

Jack July 9, 2014 at 2:59 pm

Oh, sorry I forgot about the second world, Ukraine.

shifty henry July 8, 2014 at 7:01 pm

Rogue, I believe you are exactly correct! First it was just a little bit of shit here and there, then it became bad shit, and Lil’ Benito plans to quickly escalate situations and events to the REALLY BAD SHIT. Stay tuned, but don’t tune out……

euwe max July 8, 2014 at 3:08 pm


That’s a clever cake!

Nice observation July 8, 2014 at 4:34 pm

It took a hell of a lot of work, that’s for sure.

shifty henry July 8, 2014 at 6:50 pm

I like it……

Benjamin Ghazi aka Ben July 8, 2014 at 4:25 pm


Yesteryear Conservative July 8, 2014 at 5:17 pm


Love it or Leave It!


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