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Old 2013-09-19, 15:27   Link #30721
sikvod00
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Putin is the leader of a country. When he criticizes another nations' beliefs, customs, or traditions, and etc., I don't immediately reject the judgement. But actions speak louder than words and I think it's important to know how he does things differently in his own country. Plenty of people can criticize aspects of the U.S., but not someone like Putin.
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Old 2013-09-19, 15:37   Link #30722
KiraYamatoFan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aohige View Post
I think America is, for the better or worse, an exceptional nation in human history.
Not necessary individual citizens, but as a society as a whole.
There are numerous faults and shortcomings, but as a whole I believe it still stands tall as the leader.

And I'm not American.
If Earth was to be decimated tomorrow leaving only one nation intact, I'd probably choose USA to be the survivor, even above my home nation.
(preservation of the larger variety of gene pool and cultures is also a reason though. Melting pot and all.)
Very much this.

Despite all the flaws, I can see how and why the US is something special of a country. For me living in Canada, we can see why although that doesn't mean that we can't have good things of our own in our own society. There are a number of things in my home country that I would not trade off, but yet I can respect a number of things regarding the US.

Speaking of Putin, I don't think he's in a position of saying anything when a number of his countrymen are probably making a full-blown Ewan McGregor-style rant (see Trainspotting) about Russia at this time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoemiChan View Post
To be exact the PRC... they're good for nothing land grabbing hypocrites who uses battleships to show they're serious for peaceful negotiations.
When I receive updates regarding all the territorial disputes, it's always China asking this, asking that, saying one shouldn't be involved, etc. My biggest regret is there's no one at the Pentagon nor in the DOD is hawkish enough to make the PRC taste their own medicine in the media.

Last edited by KiraYamatoFan; 2013-09-19 at 16:31.
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Old 2013-09-19, 15:48   Link #30723
Triple_R
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sikvod00 View Post
monir made it perfectly clear in his post that it's not about rejecting the validity of the remarks, it's about condemning\criticizing the messenger.
And that's what some people, including myself, disagree with.

I think that in some cases, the message is more important than the messenger. Putin's op ed is one of those cases, in my view.

If somebody makes a good point, then they made a good point. A good point is a good point, no matter if it's voiced by one of the greatest people who ever lived, or if it's voiced by one of the worst dictators of all-time.

So I agree with Ledgem. I think McCain's response was petty, and is counterproductive to international diplomacy. Putin's op ed was nowhere near as aggressive and insulting as McCain's piece was, imo. Putin's op ed was slightly chiding, but much more carefully restrained than McCain's piece.

Honestly, I do think there's a lot of misplaced arrogance in Washington right now, coming from both major parties. America has an exceptional past, several great ideas were promoted by America, and several great accomplishments were made by America. But in some areas, America has actually been in decline for over a decade now. Now's not the time for American politicians to be talking about how exceptional America is, imo. Now's the time for American politicians, and Americans in general, to take stock of the problems that their country is facing, both domestically and internationally.

America should not try to be the world's policemen, imo. America's military is already stretched thin as it is. And as bad as Assad might be, is he really, truly worst than what would likely replace him if he's toppled? I'm skeptical of that myself.

Just look at the mess Egypt is now in. Can we honestly say it would be worst if Mubarak was still in control? And if you take out Assad, do we simply get another situation like what's in Egypt right now?

While I'm a big believer in democracy, I have to admit the current results of the once ballyhooed Arab Spring has been sobering to me. I'm increasingly thinking that democracy isn't something that can be imported through foreign actions. It has to rise up strictly from the people themselves, or it likely won't work.
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Old 2013-09-19, 16:01   Link #30724
ArchmageXin
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Quote:
Speaking of Putin, I don't think he's in a position of saying anything when a number of his countrymen are probably making a full-blown Ewan McGregor-style rant (see Trainspotting) about Russia at this time.


Quote:
When I receive updates regarding all the territorial disputes, it's always China asking this, asking that, saying one shouldn't be involved, etc. My biggest regret is there's no one at the Pentagon nor in the DOD hawkish enough to make the PRC taste their own medicine in the media.
[snip]

In order to have a territorial dispute, there has to be TWO parties. China itself is a country with a large coastline that have overlapping water with several countries. Of course there will be disputes and question of boundaries.

As for pentagon [snip], the DOD and Pentagon has been tooting the "China danger to rest of the world" since Oct.1.1949 all the way to Sep.11.2011. From Tibet to Taiwan, there were a number of convert military initiatives to overthrown the PRC. And the "Danger" China pose for the rest of the world were magnified 10 fold to justify DoD and Pentagon's annual budget.

The Pentagon should send a taxpayer Rebate to China for all these years of healthy budgets.

It is not until Sept 2011 after when it became more sexier to attack Arabs. So if anyone who actually saved China from an American attack, is Osama and Bush. One for setting up 9-11, the other for stupid enough to launch two wars on it. I still find it humorous in Rumfield's last days, he was said to glaze over hearing the word "Iraq" but become completely animated hearing about "China."

-----

As for Putin. Aren't you guys attacking the messager rather than the message? Just because he is who is, does not mean what he said is wrong. If Putin said coal is black, will you say coal is actually white?
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Last edited by monir; 2013-09-19 at 22:53.
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Old 2013-09-19, 16:07   Link #30725
sikvod00
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Well we disagree. Nothing Putin said about the U.S. was profound or hasn't already been said dozens of times by others with no blood on their hands and much better motivations. As you said, some of the the greatest people have voiced a similar opinion. The difference is that they walked the walk and would have also criticized Putin and Russia's wrongdoings. I despise hypocrisy, especially when it comes to politics and those with the most power. It's a very popular past time for dictators to condemn (true or not) the U.S. while conveniently ignoring their own misdeeds, sometimes far worse than the U.S.

So for me, it is about the messenger. I agree with you and what most have said about the potential problems of American exceptionalism. But that discussion can and will continue without the inputs of hacks like Putin.

As for McCain's piece, I haven't read it so I have no opinion. He's probably part of the problem anyways.
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Old 2013-09-19, 16:10   Link #30726
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Let me make an analogy with Joe and John.

Joe is an alcoholic. He has a serious drinking problem. It has caused great destruction to his life, as his wife left him because of his out of control alcoholism. Joe is barely making ends meet, and is living in a dump of an apartment.

John is a heavy-duty smoker. The last time he saw a doctor, the doctor told him if he doesn't stop smoking soon, it will completely destroy his lungs. John is happily married with a good family, but his wife is concerned both about John's personal well-being and also about how second-hand smoke might be harming their children.

Joe and John are co-workers, and meet at a bar together one evening. Joe tells John that he has to cut back on smoking for the sake of his health.

Is Joe a total hypocrite? Yes. But more importantly, is he right? Yes, he is.

Should John simply brush off Joe's advice since Joe's a hypocrite? Or would John be better off taking Joe's advice in spite of how Joe is a hypocrite?
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Old 2013-09-19, 16:29   Link #30727
sikvod00
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John should take the advice and continually call out Joe for being a hypocrite and not fixing his own similar issue. Furthermore, Joe is not the only person in John's life who knows that smoking is unhealthy and he should stop (e.g., doctor, wife). There are countless individuals who never smoked or quit smoking that could give the same advice. So Joe being right about this one particular matter says nothing about who he is as a person. The hypocrisy being committed in this analogy isn't so severe though, so it's hard to compare the two. That's why I emphasized my disdain for hypocrisy in politics, because these individuals have considerable influence over other's lives.

My issue here isn't that what Putin said is invalid because it came from Putin. I believe I made that clear in my first post. I agree with much of the sentiment about American exceptionalism. But having Putin throw in his two cents is absolutely absurd and shows nothing but his own grandstanding.
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Old 2013-09-19, 17:22   Link #30728
Bri
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sikvod00 View Post
My issue here isn't that what Putin said is invalid because it came from Putin. I believe I made that clear in my first post. I agree with much of the sentiment about American exceptionalism. But having Putin throw in his two cents is absolutely absurd and shows nothing but his own grandstanding.
Personally I think Putin is too much a proponent of realpolitik to care much about America's flaws or sending a message. It's clearly meant to support his stance on Syria.

Yet, while the man and his politics are flawed, as the leader of Russia it's hard to deny him the right to to be sensitive on 'exceptionalism'. The last time a global power felt they were the chosen ones, the Russians ended up with 30 million people dead.
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Old 2013-09-19, 17:42   Link #30729
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sikvod00 View Post
My issue here isn't that what Putin said is invalid because it came from Putin. I believe I made that clear in my first post. I agree with much of the sentiment about American exceptionalism. But having Putin throw in his two cents is absolutely absurd and shows nothing but his own grandstanding.
I apologize, then, because it seemed like you were trying to invalidate what Putin said by criticizing him. I think you are right in criticizing him, but I'm wondering why so many people had the immediate reaction to criticize him instead of to think about what he said. Why did he become the subject, instead of the country?
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Old 2013-09-19, 18:08   Link #30730
NoemiChan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Should John simply brush off Joe's advice since Joe's a hypocrite? Or would John be better off taking Joe's advice in spite of how Joe is a hypocrite?
I'm a hypocrite when I advice my patients to avoid oily, fatty foods. They should just follow my advice since like... as if they care if something happens to me.. anyway, they know already the effects and reasons of my advice, so it's on them whether to follow me or not....

Last edited by NoemiChan; 2013-09-19 at 18:56.
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Old 2013-09-19, 18:24   Link #30731
ArchmageXin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sikvod00 View Post
Putin is the leader of a country. When he criticizes another nations' beliefs, customs, or traditions, and etc., I don't immediately reject the judgement. But actions speak louder than words and I think it's important to know how he does things differently in his own country. Plenty of people can criticize aspects of the U.S., but not someone like Putin.
Also, just to spike the ball home, McCain's article was published in the Pravada,

http://english.pravda.ru/opinion/19-...r_pravda_ru-0/

Which ironically, used to be the iconic mouthpiece of the USSR

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pravda

IF Commissar Putin really control Russia as McCain other accuses, then this article should never made off the press, no?
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Old 2013-09-19, 18:29   Link #30732
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArchmageXin View Post
Also, just to spike the ball home, McCain's article was published in the Pravada,

http://english.pravda.ru/opinion/19-...r_pravda_ru-0/

Which ironically, used to be the iconic mouthpiece of the USSR

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pravda

IF Commissar Putin really control Russia as McCain other accuses, then this article should never made off the press, no?
CNN had a little news story on this - apparently there are two Pravdas in Russia. One is the newspaper, which is probably what you're referring to. The other, established in the mid- to late-1990's, is a web-based news source. McCain's letter was published on the website, not in the newspaper.

Your point still stands, but it's easily countered. Assuming Putin really did have control of the news sources, what better way to make McCain seem delusional than to allow his letter to be published? (For what it's worth, I don't think that Putin has a direct say in what the news outlets publish. If the US government can put pressure on American news sources, though, then it stands to reason that Russia can do the same to their own.)
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Old 2013-09-19, 18:33   Link #30733
Jinto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
I apologize, then, because it seemed like you were trying to invalidate what Putin said by criticizing him. I think you are right in criticizing him, but I'm wondering why so many people had the immediate reaction to criticize him instead of to think about what he said. Why did he become the subject, instead of the country?
The real problem is, that if the USA was a country in the hands of kryshas and oligarchs and a chronically corrupt bureaucracy - with a large gap between the rich and the poor - it would need a similar person as president to stay somewhat stable as a nation.

The truely sad, yet ironic part of the story is, that the GOP has the very people that would turn the USA into something like Russia rather today than tomorrow (if they possibly could). And those are the ones who are most offended by what Putin had to say.
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Old 2013-09-19, 18:34   Link #30734
Anh_Minh
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Plus, I'm sure a lot of Russian, if they read McCain's piece, will have the same reaction as Americans reading Putin's. Outrage at the hypocritical foreign busybody daring to criticize their leader. Emphasis on their.
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Old 2013-09-19, 19:50   Link #30735
ArchmageXin
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Originally Posted by Anh_Minh View Post
Plus, I'm sure a lot of Russian, if they read McCain's piece, will have the same reaction as Americans reading Putin's. Outrage at the hypocritical foreign busybody daring to criticize their leader. Emphasis on their.
But that is not Putin's fault, is it?
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Old 2013-09-19, 19:56   Link #30736
sbg711
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But no one in Russia really reads neither McCain nor Pravda. That paper is like a cheap ads leaflet no one wants to take even if it's given out for free.
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Old 2013-09-19, 20:18   Link #30737
Urzu 7
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America faces the danger of government shutdown again. It is high stakes and the republicans are trying to get a bill that needs to pass that also happens to gut Obamacare. Yet again, the damn republicans want to throw the nation under the bus for their political goals. They figure, "we've done it for five years with Obama, fuck it, why not do it for the full eight years?".

If they get a republican president in the white house in 2016, things could go this way: Democrats aren't as big of assholes as them and don't filibuster as much, some progress actually gets done, things actually get done, the republican party claims they are saving the country, the consersative Americans that vote republican will herald them as champions. They possibly win the election in 2020. I will rage so hard if things go this way. And it's not like I don't want things to actually get done again, but they will hijack the government.
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Old 2013-09-19, 20:23   Link #30738
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Such an amusing thread.
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Old 2013-09-19, 20:40   Link #30739
ganbaru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Urzu 7 View Post
If they get a republican president in the white house in 2016, things could go this way: Democrats aren't as big of assholes as them and don't filibuster as much, some progress actually gets done, things actually get done, the republican party claims they are saving the country, the consersative Americans that vote republican will herald them as champions. They possibly win the election in 2020. I will rage so hard if things go this way. And it's not like I don't want things to actually get done again, but they will hijack the government.
It's a interesting possibility but there's one issue: could Republican make progress ? It's much obvious than a Republican President would have it easier to pass law and make change, but change isn't always progress ( especially in the good way for all ) .
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Old 2013-09-19, 20:44   Link #30740
NoemiChan
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^ As long as they vote an American to be president.....nothing will change.
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