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» "Americans Could Care Less About the Rest of Humanity:" from Pajamas Media
That's the theme of a special on American history in the German magazine Stern; it has prompted Davids Medienkritik to write an open letter to the editor.... [Read More]

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"profoundly ignorant"

..and serving their own agenda keeping their readers ignorant, what a "flagship" of German media...

According to the Internation Red Cross Americans are the largest individual private donors in the world. 3.5 times the French, 7 times the Germans and 14 times the Italians. Plus I think the Romans probably dominated the world far longer and more thoroughly then the US. America's turn at dominance has only been in the last 50 years, so we are still relatively new at world hegemony. Much like the fact that Germany has only been a successful democracy for that same period of time.

When you go to that web page (http://www.stern.de/politik/ausland/index.html?id=501298&nv=sb), don't just look at the "Americans Could Care Less" caption -- look at the whole page, and at the events Stern whips up as representative of American history. E.g. "Massaker am Wounded Knee" or the United Fruit Company story, or the comparison between the USA and the Roman empire.

Stern's approach is to create anti-America propaganda. The people who write this stuff are opponents of America, pure and simple. This doesn't represent a good-faith disagreement between friends, it represents a profound antagonism toward the US. The US should forget about trying to make this (unfortunately large) segment of the German population like it. It's useless, and they're not worth the effort. They are not friends. The US needs to understand this and plan accordingly.

I, as a german, apologize for the blatant anti-americanism in the media. What the Stern does here is vile, unjust and ignorant.

I second gundee's statement and apologize to our American friends. The condition of the German MSM is just sad. Of course they will not get a single Euro from me for this constant spew of misinformation and outright lies. But worse is that so many people still believe them.

Apologize?! Oh goodness, no. At least not until someone on this side of the pond decides to grow a pair and prosecute the New York Times for treason.

;)

@ gundee and Mir

Thank you for your kind words. There is no need for you to apologize for the actions of Stern. Both Germans and Americans and people from other nations must reject this sort of hate wherever it rears its ugly head. That is what this letter is about.

The Stern will most likely ignore this letter, after all their readers need a regular anti-American fix, but it is very welcome. Thanks, David.

At this point I wonder (again) where the Medienkritik critics are? They keep blaming Medienkritik for inflating stories and they keep claiming that there isn't really any anti-Americanism in the German media. No sir, there is only anti-Bushism, and once Bush is gone the German-American friendship will flourish once again. Or will it...?

I read Stern's propaganda piece (and it is nothing else but propaganda) and I can't see how they would promote such a friendship. Are they even interested in such a friendship? It is obvious that they despise the entire American people, not only the current President.

Thanks, David, for taking on the "Stern" Goliath.

The American Embassy should lodge a complaint with the German Foreign Office.

Oops... American government, I mean.

Just thought I mention that not all of Stern’s readers buy their Anti-American crap.

Stern has a popular blog written by Milan Obradovic. Milan and his wife won the green card lottery two years ago. They have been working and living the last two years in Los Angeles. Every month or so, Milan writes a little story on his impressions of living in Los Angles. He tries to write from the prospective of “Toto, we are not in Kansas anymore.”

About three articles ago, Milan returned to Germany to visit family. He attempted to write an article on what he missed in the U.S. and what he missed in Germany. The blog discussion morphed into where is it better to live, the U.S. or Germany. There are a group of expats that vehemently defend their decisions to leave Germany and live in the U.S.

One fellow, Ulrich, started a computer business in Germany. The government taxed him out of business. He moved to Florida and applied for a good paying job as a Systems Operator. He is now living large and driving his dream car, a new Mustang with 390 HP. Many German true believers try to debunk Ulrich, but Ulrich is very eloquent and puts them back in their place with his sharp wit.

The point is, Stern has lost control of its own blog. The German expats defend the US with great passion. I think they have won the respect of some of the readers that still live in Germany.

Let's have a 'fill in the blank' game.

As Germany cannot forgive the Jews for Auschwitz, Germany cannot forgive America for _____________.

... its generosity after WW2? But as we know, Anti-Americanism existed before that. Maybe it's the fact that America proves that there is in fact a better and more successful way than the beloved Euro-Socialism.

Note: THIS IS A CANADIAN SITE

See this article on a study by The Frazier Institute, a premier Canadian think-tank.

http://www.570news.com/news/national/article.jsp?content=n122004A

"The Vancouver-based think tank also says 30.4 per cent of American tax filers donate to charity, compared with 25.4 per cent of Canadians.
The average U.S. donation is $4,012 (US), almost four times the average Canadian donation of $1,214 (Cdn)."

The Canadians, widely regarded as "better" in every way than Americans by everyone that counts (ie. Germans), seem to have gotten their good reputation at a considerable discount! Americans give 4 times as much to charity?!

Or could it be that most Germans' opinions about Americans are based on resentment that is stoked by thier politicians, than on facts?

Wonder what thier figures for charitiable giving are?

Damn those Christian fundies, why can't they be progressive like Germans?
http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewCulture.asp?Page=/Culture/archive/200612/CUL20061219a.html

And you chintzy Neocons too! You have much to learn from your betters in Europe.

http://www.journalstar.com/articles/2006/12/20/living/religion/doc4583128bb9fcb866179155.txt

Look how they've got Bush once again with the arm in the air. Coincidence?

And why don't some of you stingey Yanks donate a few copies of this little number to our moral betters in the EU?

http://www.amazon.com/Who-Really-Cares-Compassionate-Conservatism/dp/0465008216/sr=1-1/qid=1167254616/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-4189347-9066855?ie=UTF8&s=books

As Germany cannot forgive the Jews for Auschwitz, Germany cannot forgive America for the Woodrow Wilson's magnaminity toward them at the Treaty of Versailles. They they deserved what the French and Brits laid on them, you see, AND EVEN BETTER, it provided a ready set up for millions of them embracing the warmongering of you-know-who, didn't it?

Then after we kicked their assess again, we were generous again (Marshall Plan), and have been rewarded with their undying gratitude.

There's a lesson here that the Germans (and their historical soul-mates, the Arabs) are trying to teach us: that it is a lot simpler, cheaper and more effective in the long run to be feared, than to be liked or admired. They better hope we don't figure it out.

"As Germany cannot forgive the Jews for Auschwitz, Germany cannot forgive America for _____________.

Posted by: Pamela | December 27, 2006 at 06:19 PM"

Well, if we use projection as a guide, then all the articles about Bush controlling the media, stamping out opposition, and starting an empire would mean they resent us returning their government to being a peaceful democratic republic / helping to throw out the NAZIs.

Pamela; Good question. Considering that before WWII the world economy was mostly still on its knees yet I can only offer one anecdotal story. When my grandfather and his brother returned from France in 1919 they landed in NY and were given a train ticket for Chicago and their discharge. They had both been coal miners, in Scotland then in the US and as young men probably never had any money. While waiting for their train they went to the Red Cross for donuts and coffee but found that they were being charged. Another soldier told them that the Salvation Army gave away donuts and coffee to servicemen without the feared sermon. From that point on, corroborated by other relatives, the two brothers always gave up their pocket change to any Salvation Army worker they saw. They told me when I was very young that there is always someone worse off and that those people would probably die if they waited for the government to help.

"As Germany cannot forgive the Jews for Auschwitz, Germany cannot forgive America for _____________."

I don't get it. Why is it, that "Germany can't forgive the Jews for Auschwitz"?

Not often, but every once in a while, a German posts here something to the effect that all this American posturing about Europe being able to prosper only because the the military defense 'umbrella' provided by the U.S. is just more self-serving American arrogance. The real story is that America simply used Germany as a pawn in it's Cold War against the Soviet Union.

So my nomination for 'fill in the blank' is.....

Stasi

What struck me in the stern articles was that they called Reagan "Rambo".
How did the Germans cheer at his speech in Berlin in 1987! ("Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!")
And not just his speech, but his whole policy towards USSR, which caused the german unification to happen sooner.

Now offtopic: I had a fight with a guy about the US vs. EU federalist policy. He said they were the same, I said that's impossible, because the federal government in US does not impose its laws on the states, as Germany does with its Laender, and, I'm sure, EU will do with the states.
Can someone help me with some links?

neocon
For the U.S. structure:
The Constitution of the U.S.

Federalism: National vs. State Government

For the EU:
The quickest thing probably would be to hop over to Eu Referendum. Scroll down a bit and look at the sidebar on the left. There is a category 'EU Documents' with links to the constitution and analysis.

The only thing I have on German Law probably won't be much help

German Law Journal

Thank you for pointing to this totally irresponsible headline.
Thank you for asking your readers to be "civil and respectful" when providing feedback to the editorial staff.
Thank you for doing good work in terms of observing German mass media.

"And its people could care less about the rest of humanity" (Stern)
"As Germany cannot forgive the Jews for Auschwitz..." (Blog comment)

Pot, meet kettle

@Amelie
"As Germany cannot forgive the Jews for Auschwitz..." (Blog comment)

Not a blog comment.

It's a slight paraphrase of a comment made by Israeli psychiatrist Zvi Rex - 'Germans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz'.
European Anti-Americanism and Anti-Semitism:
Similarities and Differences
An Interview with Andrei S. Markovits

The comment has been known for quite a while, I would say..

Yes I know it has.
But is it any less a blanket statement about a people than the Stern comment (which I strongly disagree with)?

With each month that passes, I become more convinced that the U.S. needs to make these unruly, rebellious adolescents in much (although not all) of Western Europe grow up. We bailed them out of two wars. We rebuilt their economy with the Marshall Plan. We prevented millions of them from being shipped off to Soviet gulags. For all that, what do we get? This bit of immature silliness about "could care less."

In a decade or so, several countries are likely to have both nukes and the missiles to deliver a payload to Berlin or Paris. When that time arrives, I hope the US government tells the Germans and the French, "You say we 'could care less about the rest of humanity.' Well, so be it. You want protection from the crazies in Iran and North Korea, then you must pay through the nose for our fully functional, Reagan the cowboy-inspired anti-missile system." I'd love to see them pay so much money, every American could get a "holiday" from income taxes for an entire year.

After all, we've paid taxes to protect them for over 60 years. It's time they paid our taxes.

--Mike Perry, Inkling Books, Seattle
Editor: Dachau Liberated

@Inkling
Dachau Liberated: The Official Report (Hardcover)
by U S. Seventh Army, William W. Quinn (Editor), Michael W. Perry (Editor)

It took until 2002 to get this published? What's up with that? (How did I live w/o Amazon 'one click'?)

@gundee
I don't get it. Why is it, that "Germany can't forgive the Jews for Auschwitz"?

gundee, read the article I linked to above about the differences and similarities between anti-semitism and anti-americanism.

@Amelie
But is it any less a blanket statement about a people than the Stern comment (which I strongly disagree with)?

I'd like to respond, but I think I've forgotten how to be that stupid.

Stop whining.

Well maybe that's not a stupid answer but definitely a very poor one.

ya gets what ya pays for

Obviously arrogance is dime a dozen

stimmt Amelie,
vielleicht sind sie ein Besserwessi?
tut mir leid, ich habe vergessen, dass das deutsche Volk voller Demut ist.

amiexpat
amelie is a troll.

My reaction to Stern:
Your portrayal of the American people as not caring about the world is not true and is probably predicated on prejudice from your editorial staff.
My wife is a Berliner and we both have friends and relatives living in Germany. I am 74 years old and have lived through the WWII years. There was a time when bad feelings where present but you have to realize that there were German immigrants here before and after the war. Thousands of war brides embraced this country and had children here. Do you suppose that they despise Germany? Ordinary people here have generous hearts and give freely of their time and money to world poverty and needs. But the American people love freedom and justice and want others to have it also.
You are unjust in your article and justice may be slow but it surely must come. Do the right thing and print a retraction and say that you have heard from many who disagree with your characterization of the American people.
You will gain respect by doing so. It may interest you to know that our local library has the Stern magazine renewed every month.

Nothing worse than waking up in Germany with the insight, thanks to the folks at "Stern," that as an American I am the scourge of humanity, and then reading this:

(Begin quote)

More than 100 villagers had gathered on June 24 to celebrate the summer solstice in Pretzien, a village south of Magdeburg in the east German state of Saxony-Anhalt, with a dance and a bonfire. Details of the evening have only emerged this week.

According to the 'Tagesspiegel' newspaper, three local far-right extremists present in the crowd, aged 24, 27 and 28, threw both a US flag and 'Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl' onto the pyre with one man saying: "I commit Anne Frank to the fire."

The scene was evocative of the infamous bonfires organised by the Nazis in 1933 in Berlin and across Germany to rid the Third Reich of "degenerate books".

(End quote)

Source: European Jewish Press

If Americans don't care about humanity, then....

Why do US donations to Africa outstrip Europe by 15 to 1?
http://news.scotsman.com/international.cfm?id=730652005

Why does the US donate four times more food aid to the world than Europe despite the fact that Europe has more people and higher GDP than US?
http://tim.2wgroup.com/blog/archives/000803.html

Why does The U.S. donate logistical support, weapons, NATO flights, intelligence, ships and manpower to U.S. peacekeeping operations while virtually all other countries are reimbursed for such goods and services?

Why is the U.S. the largest donor to most of the U.N.'s independent agencies, such as UNICEF and the U.N. High Commissioner on Refugees?

Why do Private donations to foreign aid equal 2.2% of the American GDP?
http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/

Why did American private donations for the tsunami relief total 1.2 billion?
http://www.philanthropy.iupui.edu/tsunami_relief_giving_1-18-05.html

The list could go on and on. I am American; and, I know we care. There is an old saying that comes to mind. "There are those who talk; and, those who do". Stern Magazine 'talks'; America 'does'.

Thanks to all those German citizens who don't buy in to propoganda. There are generous and caring people all over the world. America is not excluded from that list.

"According to the Internation Red Cross Americans are the largest individual private donors in the world. 3.5 times the French, 7 times the Germans and 14 times the Italians. Plus I think the Romans probably dominated the world far longer and more thoroughly then the US. America's turn at dominance has only been in the last 50 years, so we are still relatively new at world hegemony. Much like the fact that Germany has only been a successful democracy for that same period of time."

I mentioned that fact on a recent internet discussion. It was stated that the majority of Americans are dumb fat egoists, so I wanted to know how egoists can donate such a huge amount of money each year. The answer was that Americans think that every problem in the world can be solved by money and that they want to buy the whole world.
Conclusion: Americans can do whatever they want, it will always be wrong and selfish.

@Maniac

"Americans can do whatever they want, it will always be wrong and selfish."

For the Germans who write articles like Stern's, it doesn't matter what Americans do, but what they imagine Americans are.

You can cite facts and statistics endlessly, but you won't persuade them.

Even the question of your politics, whether you are right-wing or left-wing, isn't crucial in the end--what counts is that you are American, and they hate America and Americans.

@Pamela: thanks for the links
@Frogg: according to Timbro, Europe does not have a higher GDP than US.
Maybe certain countries (Luxembourg, Switzerland, Norway)

I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to write another "Stern's right you know" post. One has to consider the average German's enormous capacity for caring about humanity in comparison to the rest of the world. It's this huge and vast tracts of German caring about humanity that makes other's appear so trivial. A recent trans Atlantic flight I took illustrates this. While I only seems to manage a paltry 3 minutes and 27 seconds of caring, the German seated next to me managed over eight hours straight of caring about humanity. No breaks for inflight movies, meal service nor lavatory visits. Just straight caring for humanity. And that was a crystaline and pure 5th level caring. Much more intense than my measly level one caring. He was a caring for humanity machine. I mean caring was oozing out of him and filling the entire aircraft compartment. Some of this no doubt seeped through cracks and when hit the rarified air, condensed into to conrails that covered the entire Atlantic ocean. Can your caring about humanity do that? I know mine can't.

Ah, neocon! I popped back over because I found another piece you might be able to use.
EU - Friend of Foe?

In addition, there is to be an extension of quali­fied majority voting in the European Council, which will end the national veto in a number of areas including justice and criminal affairs. One consequence will be that the protection enjoyed by British subjects for centuries as a result of habeas corpus and the presumption of innocence may dis­appear. As Simon Heffer wrote in The Daily Tele­graph on September 20, 2006:

If we surrender our veto on these matters, EU-set penalties could be imposed on British subjects in Britain, and for breaches of laws that are not crimes or punishable in Britain. Equally, according to some legal opinion, matters that are criminal offences in Britain could be decriminalised by a decision of the EU without any recourse to the will of the British people.

The other horror is that, as EU competence increases, so the ability of member states to propose their own laws for their own people shrinks until it is extinguished. That is the ultimate goal of the ever-closer union: but it entails a stark and anti-democratic removal of sovereignty from this area which impacts directly on our most basic freedoms and liberties.

Brief an den STERN:
Liebe Stern-Redaktion!
Gratuliere Ihnen zu der gelungenen Formulierung:
"Die Geschichte der USA. Noch nie hat eine Nation den Globus so dominiert wie die USA. Und dem Volk ist der Rest der Menschheit egal."
Der große Josef Goebbels hätte es nicht besser formulieren können.
Weiter so, dann ist der Führer nicht umsonst gestorben!
Danke auch im Namen von Horst Mahler und den Volksgenossen mit dem Herzen auf dem rechten Fleck.
Freundliche Grüße von F. Hoffmann

Neocon, according to Wikepedia (which got its info from the International Monetary Fund)....Europe has a bigger GDP than America:

World GDP
44,454,843

Europe GDP
15,706,725

European Union GDP
13,502,800

United States GDP
12,455,825

However, Europe has a larger population. Maybe the source you reference is talking about GDP per capita or something.

Either way, it is a close GDP.....yet US private charity is greater than EU several times over. My point remains that there are many charitable people the world over.....and the US is definately on that list.

@F. Hoffman
Der große Josef Goebbels hätte es nicht besser formulieren können.

Oh, I hope you actually sent that.

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