U.S. Election Mystery:
Why Don't Americans Care about the World? (News, Switzerland)
of the party conventions beyond U.S. borders, there was above all one question: Doesn't America care
about the rest of the world anymore? ... The rest of the world apparently
doesn't exist for U.S. voters, although it is more and more clear that the
interaction, feedback, and interconnectivity of the financial markets are
affecting the local economy. However, because that isn't obvious enough, it
Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan embraces a supporter in North Carolina, Aug. 12. With the world growing ever-more interconnected, why does America have presidential candidates that hardly mention it?
The candidates for the U.S. presidential election have
finally been chosen. The coronation masses have been celebrated and the mud
wrestling has begun. Outsiders have taken note that the world beyond the
borders of the United States apparently doesn't exist.
For an entrepreneur with a head for figures, Mitt Romney
somehow seems unable to count very well. It's true that he never tires of
emphasizing that debt reduction is central, but his suggestion about how this
might be accomplished is arithmetically adventurous, to say the least.
As a matter of fact, he is calling for a tax reduction of
$86 billion for those earning over $200,000 - and plans to offset this loss of
revenue with other measures. Just what these measures are won't be
communicated until after the election. It isn't at all clear how Romney plans
to finance a massive increase in the defense budget: he has promised $2
trillion the Pentagon hasn't even asked for.
You can twist and turn it all you want, but Romney's
equation (he claims that those who earn less will also pay lower taxes) doesn't
compute: Collect less, spend more, while simultaneously reducing the deficit will
At the Democratic National Convention, President Clinton
took full advantage of his template: He meticulously dissected the claims and
statements made by Romney and his running mate Ryan, listing with relish all
the lies they sell as fact. The speech was a complete success - more so than
Obama's speech the next evening.
Fact checkers have already exposed how casually Republicans
deal with the truth: Every tenth statement made by Republican politicians is misleading
or just plain wrong. In the case of Democrats, "only" every fiftieth is
misleading or wrong. Republican noses must therefore be much longer than those
of their opponents, a fact again revealed by a statement made by Romney spokesman,
who said that the campaign wouldn't be influenced by fact checkers.
Posted by Worldmeets.US
Obama stressed the need for more time to solve problems
and that he has learned a lot over the last four years. His speech was at times
combative, but ultimately it was an apology: The dung heap was huge, please let
me finish the job! For spectators beyond U.S. borders, there was above all one
question: Doesn't America care about the rest of the world anymore?
This question - if anything - was answered only indirectly.
Obama made fun of Romney/Ryan foreign policy ignorance, but didn't want to
belabor the issue. And Republican comments on the subject were even more
indirect: The above-mentioned massive increase in the defense budget, which
must primarily be interpreted as a warning to China.
The rest of the world apparently doesn't exist for U.S.
voters, although it is more and more clear that the interaction, feedback, and
interconnectivity of the financial markets are affecting the local economy. However,
because that isn't obvious enough, it isn't mentioned.
During the financial crisis, this tendency toward
isolationism grew stronger everywhere, even threatening to fragment the
European Union again. But retreating into a smaller system in our connected
world is in complete contradiction to force of fact, exemplified by the reality
that not even big nations like the U.S. or Russia can be self-sufficient and maintain
themselves as they stand today. The election campaign in the United States shows
that politicians see a chance to score political points with voters by making
every effort to obscure this aspect of reality.
So we are unlikely to hear any direct statements on the
subject, but the "Cold War" program that Romney would like should
alert us to what might be coming from that corner. Just because someone doesn't
actually say "axis of evil," does not in any way mean that he won't