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American Exceptionalism

by Lapidus
Tags: american, exceptionalism
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Char. Limit
#19
Feb12-12, 11:36 PM
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Quote Quote by WhoWee View Post
That still doesn't answer the question of why they did drop out - did they think they didn't need an education?
Basically. The vast majority got a job and figured that a diploma wasn't going to help them as much as going full time would. So they got a full-time job instead.

Of course, there were also the rare few that were expelled, but they're not doing so well.
WhoWee
#20
Feb12-12, 11:44 PM
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Quote Quote by Char. Limit View Post
Of course, there were also the rare few that were expelled, but they're not doing so well.
I'm aware of five persons from the past few years - 2 are on unemployment currently, one is in the county jail, the last two are working part time jobs and on their GED.

The one in jail had a job with his uncle - making about $20 per hour. Unfortunately, his uncle was doing some bad things on the side and got them both arrested.
SixNein
#21
Feb13-12, 11:53 PM
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Back to the OP,

American exceptionalism is probably a result of 12 years of American history and not the most unbiased view of it either.

I'm sure many of you remember reading about how Columbus discovered America and the misnomer of Indians that sticks to this day.
Jasongreat
#22
Feb14-12, 03:23 AM
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Quote Quote by SixNein View Post
Back to the OP,

American exceptionalism is probably a result of 12 years of American history and not the most unbiased view of it either.

I'm sure many of you remember reading about how Columbus discovered America and the misnomer of Indians that sticks to this day.
It is not hard to find examples of American Exeptionalism from 1770- 1850, harder to find from 1850-1930, then harder to find from 1930 on. Now it seems american exceptionalism is that we do what every other county does towards the end of empire, imo, which kind of destroys the exceptionlism part.
russ_watters
#23
Feb14-12, 06:05 AM
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Quote Quote by Jasongreat View Post
It is not hard to find examples of American Exeptionalism from 1770- 1850, harder to find from 1850-1930, then harder to find from 1930 on. Now it seems american exceptionalism is that we do what every other county does towards the end of empire, imo, which kind of destroys the exceptionlism part.
Conquering countries, then rebuilding them and returning the countries to the people of those countries is a pretty exceptional thing for an "empire" to do.

In any case, here's what I believe: I believe that the US is primarily responsible for the unprecedented explosion of peace in the world over the past century or so due to a change in philosophy, specifically with respect to the conduct of war and building of empires in their aftermath. Near as I can tell, the idea of not building an empire with the spoils of war originated with Wilson's 14 points. His ideas led to the UN and to the dissolution of the old empires from the "age of empires" and hence an end to wars between major world powers.

Yes, America's military power allows us to force our will on the rest of the world. But in this context, "our will" is a world free from empires, aggressive wars and tyrants. And for that I think the world owes us at least a debt of gratitude that it was our will imposed on the world instead of the will of, say, the USSR or 1940 Germany or Japan.
russ_watters
#24
Feb14-12, 06:19 AM
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Quote Quote by SixNein View Post
American exceptionalism is probably a result of 12 years of American history and not the most unbiased view of it either.
Which years are you referring to? Please explain.
jambaugh
#25
Feb14-12, 06:26 AM
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Quote Quote by Bobbywhy View Post
The United State and the "coalition of the willing" made war in Iraq for about ten years based on "faulty intelligence" about S. Hussein having Weapons of Mass Destruction".
As I recall, the war started when S. Hussein invaded his neighbor, literally raping and pillaging Kuwait, poised to invade Saudi Arabia, planning to capture and control a substantial percentage of the world's oil supply.

It was the timidity of Bush senior and partners which left the situation untenable over the long term. It was hoped that once contained and weakened the government would fall to internal revolution. Remember this was before 9-11.

Hussein encouraged the belief that he indeed had WMD's (again) presumably to discourage a coalition invasion not realizing (especially in the shadow of 9-11) that this had the opposite effect. Make no mistake. Hussein had made and used chemical weapons in the past and retained the capacity and will to do so in the future. If you believe inspections and sanctions would be sufficient to prevent this take a cold hard look at Iran.

Bush 1 should have asked Congress for a written declaration of war against the Hussein government and occupied the country from the start instead of giving it 3 years to prepare and consolidate.

That or stay out of the whole thing altogether, allow Hussein to wage a full blown war of occupation in the M.E. ultimately ending in Israel using nukes to prevent their own dissolution when he came knocking on their door.

I speculate here but it is my opinion as to the outcome had we been isolationists, unwilling to intervene.
Jack21222
#26
Feb14-12, 07:11 AM
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Quote Quote by jambaugh View Post
As I recall, the war started when S. Hussein invaded his neighbor, literally raping and pillaging Kuwait, poised to invade Saudi Arabia, planning to capture and control a substantial percentage of the world's oil supply.
Lol, none of that happened. Kuwait was angle-drilling underneath of Iraq, and Iraq when to the United Nations to stop it. The UN shrugged its shoulders, to Iraq invaded Kuwait in retaliation. There was no plan to invade Saudi Arabia. No plan to "capture and control a substantial percentage of the world's oil supply." You should clean up your recollection.

More info: http://www.thefinertimes.com/War-in-...-timeline.html
ThomasT
#27
Feb14-12, 07:21 AM
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Quote Quote by Lapidus View Post
Repeatedly I heard the words "American Exceptionalism" from Republicans recently (Gingrich, Limbaugh, others). What do these words stand for? Do the "liberals" and President Obama do not believe in it?
Your question was pretty much answered in some early posts in this thread, imo. But since the thread has rambled on, as threads will do, here's my two cents:

Wrt certain commenters I think that the term is often meant to connote a certain moral superiority of American policies. Of course we know that American policies aren't necessarily morally superior. But America is nevertheless clearly exceptional in terms of its wealth, military power, and the social and political freedom and standard of living of its inhabitants ... all taken together.

The wealth and military power of America carries with it, in the view of some, the responsibility to enforce justice throughout the world. However, what's justice in one view is sometimes injustice in another view.

The empire building of European collectives, from Rome to England to America, has been, by any measure that I can think of, exceptional. Has it always proceeded according to what most of us would consider moral justice? No. Has it made the world a better place for a large proportion of the world's inhabitants? I want to answer yes to that, but, as far as I can tell, it's an open question.
Jack21222
#28
Feb14-12, 07:24 AM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
Conquering countries, then rebuilding them and returning the countries to the people of those countries is a pretty exceptional thing for an "empire" to do.

In any case, here's what I believe: I believe that the US is primarily responsible for the unprecedented explosion of peace in the world over the past century or so due to a change in philosophy, specifically with respect to the conduct of war and building of empires in their aftermath. Near as I can tell, the idea of not building an empire with the spoils of war originated with Wilson's 14 points. His ideas led to the UN and to the dissolution of the old empires from the "age of empires" and hence an end to wars between major world powers.

Yes, America's military power allows us to force our will on the rest of the world. But in this context, "our will" is a world free from empires, aggressive wars and tyrants. And for that I think the world owes us at least a debt of gratitude that it was our will imposed on the world instead of the will of, say, the USSR or 1940 Germany or Japan.
Explosion of peace in the past century? World War 1, World War 2, Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq 1, Iraq 2... Perhaps you meant after the world wars. Even then, the United States has been involved with several wars of aggression that they had no business participating in. Viet Nam and Korea come to mind. The latest war against Iraq was an aggressive war of choice.

Maybe Hussein was a tyrant, but it isn't just tyrants that we knock over. We overthrew a democratically elected government in Iran and INSTITUTED a tyrant in Iran. You think they owe us a debt of gratitude?

I'd attribute the lack of major wars between rich countries to the fact that with the increase in globalization, wars become too expensive for both sides. China and the US will never go to war (in my lifetime, anyway) not because of our "exceptionality," but because the US is one of the China's biggest trade partners. Too many goods and too much money flows between the two countries to make war palatable. The only wars that occur now are between major world powers such as the US and underdeveloped nations. But, this doesn't mean that we're in an explosion of peace, it just means that the wars are increasingly short and lopsided. There's still plenty of war, including aggressive war. Just look at our very recent history.
Jack21222
#29
Feb14-12, 07:32 AM
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Quote Quote by ThomasT View Post
But America is nevertheless clearly exceptional in terms of its wealth, military power, and the social and political freedom and standard of living of its inhabitants ... all taken together.
Wealth: Depends on how you define it. GDP, yes, per capita GDP, no, we're around 7th.

Military Power: No question

Social freedom: Not even close. According to the UN, we rank 13th.
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1...lopment-report (Note: this article is outdated, but I cannot find any new data)

Standard of living: Again, we're not number 1 here either. According to the report sited here, we're 13th: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quality-of-life_Index

So, you'll need to define "exceptional" as "among the top 10" for your statement to work.
ThomasT
#30
Feb14-12, 07:58 AM
P: 1,414
Quote Quote by Jack21222 View Post
Wealth: Depends on how you define it. GDP, yes, per capita GDP, no, we're around 7th.

Military Power: No question

Social freedom: Not even close. According to the UN, we rank 13th.
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1...lopment-report (Note: this article is outdated, but I cannot find any new data)

Standard of living: Again, we're not number 1 here either. According to the report sited here, we're 13th: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quality-of-life_Index

So, you'll need to define "exceptional" as "among the top 10" for your statement to work.
Ok, then (if you want to be nitpicky ) consider it so defined.

But, come on, don't you agree that America is still the preeminent power in the world?
daveb
#31
Feb14-12, 08:15 AM
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Quote Quote by WhoWee View Post
IMO - there used to be a saying - "America - love it or leave it" - perhaps we should bring it back?
I hope you are being sarcastic here, and not serious. It is precisely a love of America that causes people to criticize the policies and actions of the government. Otherwise, one could argue, "if you don't love the policies of the current administration, then you should just leave". It goes both ways.
Decimator
#32
Feb14-12, 10:15 AM
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Quote Quote by Lapidus View Post
Repeatedly I heard the words "American Exceptionalism" from Republicans recently (Gingrich, Limbaugh, others). What do these words stand for? Do the "liberals" and President Obama do not believe in it?
Rush Limbaugh has transcripts on his website, so I quick looked up his own definition. Here's what he has to say:
Quote Quote by Rush Limbaugh
RUSH: Really, the founding of this country is a miracle. You and I know it. What is American exceptionalism? Everybody has their own definition. I'll tell you what mine is. The rule for human beings since the creation of time, since the creation of the planet, the normal, standard operating procedure has been tyranny, dungeons, oppression, poverty. The vast majority of the people who have ever lived in the world have been imprisoned or dictated toward, lived under tyranny, been poor. It's been the standard. The exception to that has been the United States. The exception to what life was like for most every human being has been the United States of America. That's one definition of American exceptionalism. It's not that we're better than anybody else. This is what Obama and the Democrats don't like. They think we're saying we're better people. No, no, no, no. We're luckier. We have a country that was founded by brilliant people who understood that we are blessed by God.

(applause)

RUSH: The whole notion of hating the country, I know it exists, I know there are people out there who hate this country, don't like it. Intellectually it doesn't compute, and it saddens me to no end, but I know that they believe that this is a country that has stolen from every other country, that we have raped and pillaged and that we have conquered and that we have murdered and all this. No concept, no understanding, 'cause they're not taught of the wonderful things this country has done for the rest of the world, the standard of living that we brought to ourselves and people around the world. And at some point, you have to say, I'm not gonna waste my time trying to persuade 'em anymore. I'm just gonna try to see to it that those people remain few in number and can't win elections. Because it really comes down to that.
http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/20..._new_york_city
ThomasT
#33
Feb14-12, 10:31 AM
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@ Decimator,

Thanks for reminding me why I don't bother to listen to anything that Rush Limbaugh has to say about anything.
russ_watters
#34
Feb14-12, 10:33 AM
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Rush's definition is similar to what is on the wiki for the subject for one possible definition. While it is interesting food for thought, I find it a little useless and an oversimplification:

Sure, by our youth we never went through feudalism, but does that really say anything useful? And while we avoided some western growing pains, we couldn't avoid others, such as slavery.
russ_watters
#35
Feb14-12, 10:34 AM
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Quote Quote by ThomasT View Post
@ Decimator,

Thanks for reminding me why I don't bother to listen to anything that Rush Limbaugh has to say about anything.
Er, did you read it? What was so bad about it?
ThomasT
#36
Feb14-12, 10:54 AM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
Er, did you read it?
Yes.
Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
What was so bad about it?
I don't think it's worth discussing. Rush has a certain view about things. A view that I consider, for the most part, to be overly simplistic and obviously biased, to a fault. I mean, would anybody call Rush Limbaugh an objective commenter?


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