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DO YOU LOVE OR HATE AMERICA??

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I love America, but I hate how we got here. America doesn't exist without dead indians, slavery, and now the 3rd world. I also hate the wastefulness, of which I'm totally guilty. We're creating crazy amounts of pollution. We got billionaires when people can't find water in Flint. 

 

It's disgusting and beautiful all at once. 

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'Nator   
2 hours ago, Legaltitan said:

 

America was founded on the best ideal and principles that have ever been laid down for a country. And people have always fought tooth and nail to come to America because they are inspired by that ideal. But we have never really lived up to that ideal. What we have is we have been blessed with two huge oceans on our western and eastern borders, a very lightly populated land to the north, and weak enemies to the south. We have never really been tested, which means our ability to hew to our lofty founding ideal has never really been tested.

 

 

It's allllll marketing. An entire civilizations founded on bullshit and hucksterism. 

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I like it, but recognize that it is not the greatest. Its a situation where its a pretty good place, but not particularly the best at anything (except guns, military sending etc.) that has let special interests and corporations dictate entirely too much.

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13 minutes ago, 'Nator said:

It's allllll marketing. An entire civilizations founded on bullshit and hucksterism. 

I disagree.

 

I see it more like the "fake it 'til you make it" strategy for succeeding in your career. And the Constitution is a beautifully written legal document. Elegant, really.

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'Nator   
1 hour ago, Legaltitan said:

I disagree.

 

I see it more like the "fake it 'til you make it" strategy for succeeding in your career. And the Constitution is a beautifully written legal document. Elegant, really.

I was exaggerating but I do think our current culture of sales, marketing and branding GREATLY rewards dishonesty and bullshittery over honesty and the sober evaluation of issues. This has had obviously detrimental effects on the culture at large. That's only tangentially related to what you're talking about though. 

 

 

Edited by 'Nator

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29 minutes ago, 'Nator said:

I was exaggerating but I do think our current culture of sales, marketing and branding GREATLY rewards dishonesty and bullshittery over honestly and the sober evaluation of issues. This has had obviously detrimental effects on the culture at large. That's only tangentially related to what you're talking about though. 

 

 

For sure. Capitalism on steroids, where everything must be commoditized and marketed. It's exhausting. And it is one thing that is pretty neat about travelling to other countries, particularly former communist countries. There are things that are done because they are good things to do, and not with an eye to whether it is profitable. 

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Bink   

Apologies in advance for the small literary essay. 

 

I'm reminded of Quentin from Absalom, Absalom! (any fans of Faulkner out there?, @Cyrus?) 

 

At the end of the book, when he is asked why he hates the south, he answers "I don't hate it!", which becomes a kind of plea he repeats over and over in his head, I don't hate it, I don't hate it. 

 

When thinking about Faulkner and this sad book (and really the sadness behind the story Quentin himself narrates) this kind of urgent litany becomes a microcosm of the American experience--something good literature should always do, put us in the crosshairs of the desperate thing that can grind our insides if we let it. 

 

Legal's point about suffering made this quote come to my mind. No, in a sense America has not been ransacked by the war the way that European countries were by WWI or WWII, but there is suffering stitched deeply into our ideology that persists in all of our current turmoils that is uniquely our own. 

 

Quentin doesn't hate the south, he doesn't hate his family, the landscape, his home. But to see the pain written in the south's history is to feel a kind of pain, whether you choose to acknowledge that (guilt) or don't (shame). 

 

This is why I find the repeated use of "America haters" as an insult so telling. It is the surface level hate a bratty child throws at a parent during a meltdown, an all or nothing fixation on a single emotion as if that emotional moment of outburst was righteousness. It never is. To call on my favorite insult again, it's the Old Navy flag t-shirt of nationalism--a cheap token garment that means as much as a sparkler means to lighting the night sky. 

 

America is too complicated a place to entirely love or hate, to put blinders on and ignore our history and the complex cultures that have thrived here (and, equally, those that haven't). As a country, we have our fair share of issues. The fact that most of us aren't hard pressed to name a city where people can't drink the water or that we are keeping children in cages because of the rhetorical power of fear and xenophobia or that we've turned over leadership to a reality TV ultra-wealthy criminal or that people are dying by the droves to opioids and in our healthcare system or...you get the idea. 

 

Does any of this make the hills of Tennessee less beautiful? Or Whitman's "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry" an untrue expression of the American experience? 

 

There is not one answer, one system, one culture, one ideology, one moment that explains who we are makes how we feel ever really be simple (even when it seems that way). We have to strive to connect and be better and build the world we want to persist beyond us.  Blind love for a thing can be just as bad as blind hate. 

 

I see a smirking kind of patriotism, one built on insult and exclusion and a toxic illiteracy of the American idea. I don't think this can be cured but for time, perspective, and experience that makes you see the world as a different place. 

 

As to the original question of this thread, do you love or hate America? if that's too big a question for Faulkner and Whitman it's certainly going to be a tall fucking order for Titansreport. Below is a great poem by one of my favorites in which he imagines Whitman reincarnated in America today, wondering about the American idea and what it now means. 

 

Whitman:     

   “I say we had better look our nation searchingly in the face, like a physician diagnosing some deep disease.” -Democratic Vistas

 

“Look for me under your bootsoles.”

 

On Long Island, they moved my clapboard house

Across a turnpike, & then felt so guilty they

Named a shopping center after me!

 

Now that I’m required reading in your high schools,

Teenagers call me a fool.

Now what I sang stops breathing.

 

And yet

It was only when everyone stopped believing in me

That I began to live again—

First in the thin whine of Montana fence wire,

Then in the transparent, cast-off garments hung

In the windows of the poorest families,

Then in the glad music of Charlie Parker.

At time now,

I even come back to watch you

From the eyes of a taciturn boy at Malibu.

Across the counter at the beach concession stand,

I sell you hot dogs, Pepsis, cigarettes-

My blond hair long, greasy, & swept back

In a vain old ducktail, deliciously

Out of style. And no one notices.

Once I even came back as me,

An aging homosexual who the Tilt-a-Whirl

At county fairs, the chilled paint on each gondola

Changing color as it picked up speed,

And a Mardi Gras tattoo on my left shoulder.

A few of you must have seen my photographs,

For when I looked back,

I thought you caught the meaning of my stare:

 

Still water,

Merciless.

 

A Kosmos. One of the roughs.

 

And Charlie Parker’s grave outside Kansas City

Covered with weeds.

 

Leave me alone.

A father who’s outlived his only child.

 

To find me now will cost you everything.

 

                                -Larry Levis, from Winter Stars

 

 

Anyways, sorry for the long post. I shouldn't have started thinking about Faulkner. Feel free to go back to the regularly scheduled programing of Tards vs Libtards: Dawn of Justice.  😂

Edited by Bink

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GOAT9   

I have been to several countries. The US is the greatest despite all the bull shit. You think this is the only country with political conflict and divisiveness? Nah, Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Brazil, Venezuela, even the UK are the same way. People attacking each other over dumb shit, riots in the streets. Partisanship and propaganda everywhere. Yeah its a world wide phenom right now. Its even occurring in China and Russia, those places are just authoritarian and suppress it. 

 

I blame it on the Greatest Generation dying out. That was the last generation that knew true hardship. Now that they are gone and their stories are becoming old and forgotten, people are criticizing and rewriting history as they see fit. Quiz a younger person on history and watch them fail miserably. They are doomed to repeat the mistakes of old. It will be the same portrait just written on a different canvas.

 

Its no coincidence that politics is becoming more radicalized and extreme at a time when the last generation that saw the horrors of such things are disappearing. 

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50 minutes ago, headhunter said:

Best country in the world

By what standards? 

 

We have the most incarcerated people in the world, per capita. 

 

We have a very high infant mortality rate. 

 

We have an idiot running our country, along with his toadstools who pat him on the back because they’re invertebrae.

 

We come from a place of slavery (unbeknownst to many there are a lot of countries who don’t have this origin). 

 

We have killed more people across the globe than any other nation in the past 75 years. 

 

Shall i continue? 

 

The idea is a beautiful one. The Supreme Court has been the only tool for justice besides sporadic movements from Congress or a President. 

 

We torture, defile, and murder captives. 

 

We are poorly educated. 

 

Our teachers are underfunded. 

 

We pay more per capita than any nation in the world for healthcare. 

 

Our veteran service is abysmal. We literally leave those who are blown up and screwed in the head to fend for themselves in many instances. 

 

Our police brutality is the worst of any true democracy. 

 

Shall I continue? 

 

We pave the way for the military industrial complex. We are the Gold standard of killing people from above. We are the Gold standard of destroying sovereign nations. 

 

We just had a 1.5 trillion dollar tax cut where 64% is going to the top 1% (sure is equitable). 

 

Our citizens do not get COLA, raises, or vacations. They don’t. Wages have been stagnant for going on 40 years. 

 

We are now the world’s leader in making sure dictators don’t give up their nukes since we offed Gadaffi...

 

We do extremely well at providing a place for entrepreneurs, and we’ve also set the stage for free speech around the world. This isn’t the time of Reagan. Donald Trump is still sitting around 40% and is likely the dumbest motherfucker I’ve ever heard speak. 

 

 

Oh, let’s not forget the gun violence. It’s a crazy standard to keep up with our greatness as dumbasses slaughter people and dipshits refuse to even fund studies into how we provide preventative treatment. 

 

Edited by IsntLifeFunny

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Just now, IsntLifeFunny said:

By what standards? 

 

We we have the most incarcerated people in the world, per capita. 

 

We we have a very high infant mortality rate. 

 

We have an idiot running our country, along with his toadstools who pat him on the back because they’re invertabrae. 

 

We we come from a place of slavery (unbeknownst to many there are a lot of countries who don’t have this origin). 

 

We have killed more people across the globe than any other nation in the past 75 years. 

 

Shall i continue? 

 

The idea deal is a beautiful one. The Supreme Court has been the only tool for justice besides sporadic movements from Congress or a President. 

 

We torture, defile, and murder captives. 

 

We are poorly educated. 

 

Our teachers are underfunded. 

 

We we pay more per capita than any nation in the world for healthcare. 

 

Our veteran service is abysmal. We literally leave those who are blown up and screwed in the head to fend for themselves in many instances. 

 

Our police brutality is the worst of any true democracy. 

 

Shall I continue? 

 

We pave the way for the military industrial complex. We are the Gold standard of killing people from above. We are the Gold standard of destroying sovereign nations. 

 

We we just had a 1.5 trillion dollar tax cut where 64% is going to the top 1% (sure is equitable). 

 

Our citizens do do not get COLA, raises, or vacations. They don’t. Wages have been stagnant for going on 40 years. 

 

We are now the world’s leader in making sure dictators don’t give up their nukes since we offed Gadaffi...

 

We do extremely well at providing a place for entrepreneurs, and we’ve also set the stage for free speech around the world. This isn’t the time of Reagan. Donald Trump is still sitting around 40% and is likely the dumbest motherfucker I’ve ever heard speak. 

 

 

leave then

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