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How odd. I could have sworn he was failing because his economic policies are driving the American workforce and the small businesses that hire a large portion of them into the ground (usually something that garners you a fair amount of unpopularity with the electorate), or maybe it's his nonchalant attitude towards the war and foreign policy (which I realize it's hard for a lot of people to believe, but flyover America actually does pay attention to that, at least from the standpoint of how it may affect them...since they, and southerners, on average send more of their children off to fight this country's wars than any other area of the country, which brings up his rather troubling, blase attitude towards domestic security -- that's not very confidence inspiring for most), or maybe it's just all of the whinging he's been doing lately (not a positive trait in a president, at least from the redneck, hillbilly, hick point of view), or the rampant corruption coming from his Democratic majority (which rarely gets reported on, even from radical, right wing Fox News...and which contrary to what some might think, the yokels are canny enough to catch a whiff of and not like it much), or perhaps the blatant disregard for the laws of the country by the same (which they don't even have the good manners to be subtle about anymore -- that's usually a good way to tick off the electorate).

Clearly I was mistaken...and should heed the explanations laid forth in a German magazine as to what is causing my countrymen to think and act the way they do...or I'm just a hateful, gun loving cowboy and demagogue worshipper (although I'm not a registered Republican, so maybe that consigns me to merely the eigth circle).

Yup... pretty much what one can expect from Der Spiegel. Poor Obama, tsk tsk, poor baby.

Great interview with Carl Rove, though.

One thing is that Rove has gotten into a bit of trouble here at home with the comment that the Tea Party people aren't "sophisticated". The reason is because too many people don't understand his context, and he should have stated it more carefully, with a view to different ethnic views.

You see, to a Southerner-- and Rove is from Texas-- "sophisticated" is a pejorative term. It refers to people who are more concerned about using the right spoon to stir their tea than they are about substantive matters. Northern folks here heard about that and were annoyed at him.

Rove was on the Hannity show today, and clarified that he WAS using that in the Southern mode. He was saying that the Tea Party people are people who will call a spade a spade-- or a damn shovel, if that clarifies the meaning-- and are not concerned at all about "nuance" and other "sophisticated" methods of communication and accomplishing things. He was being complimentary to us, not critical. ;)

As for immigration - most Americans support LEGAL immigration - yet oppose ILLEGAL immigration. The author fails to recognize the obvious distinction. Further, Americans are generally more tolerant of immigrants and better at integrating them than are Germans.
I worked with a German national who grew up in South America, the son of an expat engineer.He went to Germany for university. He left Germany as soon as he had his degree. He told me he found Germans to be cold, reserved people who wouldn't have anything to do with you if your family hadn't been in town for five hundred years. If a German national had so much problem with living in Germany, I can imagine what problem immigrants have in Germany.

Ah, Der Spiegel. What to read when I can't find an old copy of National Lampoon. What I have noticed about a lot of foreign commentators on the US, and this is neither confined to German nor to Europeans, is that they often simply take the liberal line. We have talked to our sources in NY and DC, and this is what we have found out.

How hypocrite it is from Der Spiegel to denounce Americans who reject illegal immigration when Germans themselves are quite cold at LEGAL migration. You'd never hear an American official admitting that they were hoping on the foreigners going back "home" one day.

The DWI, the Handelkammer and people like Annette Schavan who think Germany needs more immigration simply have too little influence compared to the likes of Sarrazin, Seehofer who still dream of an Ausländerrein Deutschland!

And when I read articles in the Berliner Morgenpost on how qualified workers prefer other countries than Germany, I can't help but laugh and say "You get what you deserve!"

So einfach ist es

Watch out for "Das Erste Obama Fernsehen": ARD will have, on the night from Tuesday to Wednesday, a 5-hour special with Jörg Schönenborn named "Die Lange Obama Nacht". I'm expecting the same crap than in this Spiegel article!

"Zweites Obama Deutsches Fernsehen" has a couple of documentaries that night, including one called "Obamas Bilanz: Wunder dauern etwas länger".

It does seem Obama is to ARD and ZDF what Ulbricht and Honecker have been to Fernsehen der DDR.

Gringo -- Yes! That is one of the most smug, intolerant, condescending statements made.

Illegal immigration is a huge slap in the face to legal immigrants, and that is one of the problems most Americans have with it -- the unfairness of it all. Plus, while I (and I believe most Americans) would be lenient with those one in a million illegals who actually come here in hopes of assimilating and becoming full citizens, the reality is most illegals are not here to assimilate, or support themselves, and many are involved in some very nasty criminal activities (including the support of terrorists). Why on earth should any American desire to have them here, much less welcome them in with open arms? And why on earth should any American put up with being lectured to by self-righteous people who are completely ignorant of the facts on the ground and insinuate that failure to accept these illegals with open arms is tantamount to racism?

[Which is even more annoying because, well, not all of us are rich, white, Anglo Saxon, Protestants -- some of us are pretty far removed from that (shocking, I know). I think Der Spiegel and its readership would do well to get their opinions about America from east/west coast champagne liberals and their own little echo chambers.]

edit: Der Spiegel and its readership could do well to get their opinions about America FROM SOME OTHER SOURCES than east/west coast champagne liberals and their own little echo chambers.

Don't even get me started on the "gun nut" quip -- I'll remember that while I'm up in the deer stand this month.

PJM has an article about the treatment that the Tea Party got in the European media, including the German media.

Now I'm totally confused... Years ago, when this site was buzzing with activity, defenders of the German media kept repeating their (only) argument: "there is no anti-Americanism in the German media, it's all because of Bush's wars that you see/read the venom". OK, Bush is gone, "his" wars are not an issue in those elections, and yet you read biased reports in the German media. I keep asking myself what the reason could be and can't find an answer...

Hmmm, could it be that there is a streak of anti-Americanism in the German media after all...? I don't know...hard to answer...that question keeps me awake at night...

Of course it was all just Bush - that explains why the SPIEGEL covers have gotten so pro-American of late:

The last two pictures in the second row are from supporters of Lyndon LaRouche who generally support Democratic candidates. I suppose that the few posters that compare Obama to Hitler do exist but I doubt if they match the numbers that were made available by the SWP and ANSWER.

Hit Post instead of Preview. The next sentence would have read, the latter posters not only showed GWB morphing into Hitler but used a bold graphic of "Bush=Hitler." Maybe the difference is that the attack against Pres Bush was factual but the same for Pres Obama is racist. It's hard to take such logic seriously.

I'm German. I have read a few articles and especially the comments on this site. I have to say, you have a weird imagination about Germany, just build a German stereotype out of a few German media sources.

It's like i would believe all Americans are such ignorant like the foxnews readers.. but i know it's not like that.

Ami Lee

.It's like i would believe all Americans are such ignorant like the foxnews readers.... but i know it's not like that.

After the 2008 election,Wilson Research Strategies polled voters on their political knowledge.

Thirty-five percent (35%) of McCain voters got 10 or more of 13 questions correct. Eighteen percent (18%) of Obama voters got 10 or more of 13 questions correct.

Respondents were asked which party controlled both houses of congress before the past election, Republicans or Democrats.

McCain voters knew which party controls congress by a 63-27 margin.
Obama voters got the “congressional control” question wrong by 43-41.
Those that got “congressional control” correct voted 56-43 for McCain.
Those that got “congressional control” wrong voted 65-35 for Obama.

The poll also asked voters to name all the media sources which they used to get news and information about the presidential campaign.

Those “exposed” to Fox News got “congressional control” correct 64-25 (+39).

Those “exposed” to CNN got “congressional control” correct 48-38 (+10).
Those “exposed” to Network news got “congressional control” correct 48-39 (+9).
Those “exposed” to print media got “congressional control” correct 52-37 (+15).
Those “exposed” to MSNBC got “congressional control” correct 55-35 (+20).
Those “exposed” to talk radio got “congressional control” correct 61-29 (+32).

Voters for McCain were more knowledgeable than voters for Obama. Your so-called ignorant Fox readers/viewers knew more on the Congressional Control question than patrons of any other media source.

Guess your German media wasn’t as good as you thought it was, if it led you to believe that Fox News viewers were so ignorant.

As an exexpat (duplication intended ;) ) I still follow the German press out of curiosity and today it's even much easier than it has been when I returned thanks to the intertubes. I frequently following this blog because I find it funny how it portraits the German media based on selected examples of left magazines and newspapers.
It's like reading HuffPost and saying after that we are socialistic here in the US.

So Da vid, do you really understand the German language and the media landscape? I may agree that there are sometimes some negative views on the American conservatives, but there are some points you got totally wrong in general:

- public television: Like the BBC, the ARD (including its many regional channels) and ZDF are not state-run. They are public companies funded only by a TV fee that the Germans have to pay if they own a TV, radio or computer. These corporations are thereby mostly independent from politics (i say mostly because the ZDF has an Executive Board, which partly consists of politicians - most of them are conservatives (CDU) btw - and elects the director every few years). This independence can be observed by watching the political magazines like Panorama, Frontal21, Monitor, etc, which love to criticise any politician despite their party (actually nearly every politician avoids interviews with them since he/she knows that when they ask for one they found some inconvenient truth about his/her political decisions). So when it comes to German politics the public TV channels are overall unbiased (I admit that some regional ones lean a little bit to the conservative (BR, MDR) or the leftish side (RadioBremen)).
Due to this extreme love for criticism they have also a program called "Zapp" which points out faults of the media itself. It thereby doesn't avoid to criticise the public media (-> e.g. "ZDF scandal" last summer). So if you love this blog because you are interested in media critics, give "Zapp" a try. We definitely something comparable here in the US.


- bias against USA in media: First thing you have to learn is that Germans LOVE to criticise EVERYTHING. It's in their nature. This would be obvious if David would show all the other covers of "Der Spiegel" instead of restricting his analysis to the "Anti-US" ones. This is not restricted to the US. I think the toughest time have their own politicians. When it comes to foreign politician I must admit that the US politician get their fair share, but this is not unexpected since the US as the last remaining superpower dominates world politics. The US politicians also always claim to stick to high moral standard (Christian beliefs, human rights, etc) which makes it easy to criticise them when they don't meet this promise. If a self-proclaimed bad boy like Saddam, Amadinejad or China does something evil it's hardly news since everyone expects them to behave like this. It is the same here in the US. If you claim that you are a family guy and are caught in a brothel, this would be news. If a bon vivant like Bill Clinton would do this, this would be hardly reported.

Finally I would like to comment on this "It's like i would believe all Americans are such ignorant like the foxnews readers.... but i know it's not like that". As I pointed out this statement is in general true but the example "FoxNews" is chosen poorly. As a regular FoxNews viewer I don't agree that ALL foxnews viewers are ignorant. I think that the audience is comparible to the readership of the German "BILD" (also rather conservative). There are intelligent recipients that just want to get "another view' on certain topics, but there are also MANY du mb as ses (good, that this site is anti-PC ^^). Just stay a few minutes on a comment page of the FoxNews website and you find so many ignorant people that want to nuke or assassinate every opponent they don't like and believe that human/civil rights only apply to US citizens. The same is true for BILD. But I agree that this doesn't mean that all of them are.

@ GermanByNature,

Read our mission statement to get an understanding of what our site is about. Here's a key quote:

"It is important to keep in mind that the examples documented on this site do not reflect the entire German media landscape. There are numerous highly professional, relatively unbiased news sources to be had from Berlin to Bavaria. That said: The biased, anti-American media coverage that we document here does reflect a large and influential segment of German media."

If you don't believe there is a problem from looking at our site - talk to members of the German media - many will openly admit that their outlet's coverage of the United States is both biased and anti-American.

@David:

You don't get my point. You could also claim the German media is Anti-German, Anti-French, Anti-Left, Anti-right, Anti-Media, Anti-Life, Anti-Death, Anti-Anything because they normally criticise EVERYTHING, ESPECIALLY the public companies. There is a German saying that no news are good news. Says it all. In Germany it is considered as a duty of a friend to criticise you and you should doubt any German friendship if this doesn't happen quite often. This is the reason why you will find nearly no German today who denies Israel the right of existence and wouldn't agree that Germany is a close ally. But at the same time he/she will also tell you what is going wrong over there (long-time occupation, possible war crimes). Nobody is perfect, but we Americans just believe that it is polite to make everyone feel that he/she is instead of telling the truth in a polite but clear way.

And about your relatively unbiased news sources. Do you really believe that Der Spiegel is unbiased ? - because you cite it quite often and ignore more serious press (Zeit, SZ, FAZ).

Shorter GermanByNature: "Dear Israel, if you use effective means to defend yourselves, then you are genocidal fascists. But I mean that in the nicest way. Love and kisses."

@pst: this is one of the most fascist comments I read for a long time (and I am a frequent reader of FoxNews)

So in your opinion, a country is allowed to use any means for their defense as long as they are effective? So where is the moral limit? chemical agents deployed at the Mexican border -> very effective. pre-emptive tactical or even strategic nuclear strikes against Iran -> also quite effective. putting all political opponents into nice "work and reeducation camps" -> most effective. And by the way. History has proven more than one time that dictatorship is the most effective form of government in war times. So who cares about democracy and human rights. With them you can hardly defend yourself.

What I meant by being honest is reminding a friend of e.g. propagating human rights and high moral standards and failing to live by them. The "Axis of Evil" never claimed to believe in such moral issues, but Israel do as a "civilized" country. So its our duty as friends to remind them, that if they want to be credible they must apply to their own and international legal standards (e.g. either officially annexing or leaving the westbank - first one would force them to grant the inhabitants full citizenship. there is no right to occupy a foreign country for so many decades). And the reason to give such an advice is because I CARE for Israel and not only due to my (partly) jewish roots.

Hey German, friends who go around hammering their friends for not upholding moral/ethical values and the necessity thereof, all the while they fall desperately short in those very same things are not really friends.

I believe the applicable terms might be hypocrite or perhaps moral scold.
Although given the context of banging one's own little tin drum at the same time might also warrant the inclusion of the term pompous ass.

Sorry, Germany and Germans have many wonderful things to recommend themselves (really, truly), but this puritanical preachiness (all the while engaged in some mighty shady dealings under the guise of realpolitik) is...frustrating to say the least.

...and while I'm at it:

What's with this "friends" business? Individual people are friends; countries can be allies -- but allegiance is a far cry from "friend" and to be honest, it's really not the wisest thing to think of anyone or anything with which you enter into a contract as a friend. It's business, pure and simple -- best to leave the emotional aspects out of it (that would include the "I gripe and snark at you because I'm your friend" concept of international relations).

GermanByNature

What I meant by being honest is reminding a friend of e.g. propagating human rights and high moral standards and failing to live by them. The "Axis of Evil" never claimed to believe in such moral issues, but Israel do as a "civilized" country. So its our duty as friends to remind them, that if they want to be credible they must apply to their own and international legal standards (e.g. either officially annexing or leaving the westbank - first one would force them to grant the inhabitants full citizenship. there is no right to occupy a foreign country for so many decades). And the reason to give such an advice is because I CARE for Israel and not only due to my (partly) jewish roots.
This statement would have some credibility if there were also criticism of those seeking to destroy Israel. For example during the 2006 Israel-Hezbollah conflict, there was a lot of criticism about Israel having a "disproportionate response." Hezbollah has made it clear that its goal is not just the destruction of the state of Israel, but killing Jews wherever they are and regardless of what passport they hold, such as the bombings in Buenos Aires. Minimal criticism of that from those who cried "disproportionate response." Recall what Nasrallah said: “If they (Jews) all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide." And some idiots- by no means only Germans- talk about "disproportionate response."

unnown jane:

Sorry, Germany and Germans have many wonderful things to recommend themselves (really, truly), but this puritanical preachiness (all the while engaged in some mighty shady dealings under the guise of realpolitik) is...frustrating to say the least
Such as German companies selling tunneling equipment to Iran, a country which has on numerous occasions stated its intention to destroy the state of Israel.But if there is money to be made, no problem.

Another example of hypocritical German puritanical preachiness has to do with the death penalty. Germans who self-righteously condemn other countries for the death penalty either have conveniently forgotten or have never learned the origins of the prohibition of the death penalty in postwar West Germany.From the Washington Post:

Contrasting their nation's policy with that of the Americans, Germans point proudly to Article 102 of their Basic Law, adopted in 1949. It reads, simply: "The death penalty is abolished." They often say that this 56-year-old provision shows how thoroughly the postwar Federal Republic has learned -- and applied -- the lessons of Nazi state-sponsored killing. (Communist East Germany kept the death penalty until 1987.)
But the actual history of the German death penalty ban casts this claim in a different light. Article 102 was in fact the brainchild of a right-wing politician who sympathized with convicted Nazi war criminals -- and sought to prevent their execution by British and American occupation authorities. Far from intending to repudiate the barbarism of Hitler, the author of Article 102 wanted to make a statement about the supposed excesses of Allied victors' justice….

Germans began the formal process of writing the new Basic Law in August 1948. Initial drafts submitted to a 65-member Parliamentary Council contemplated retention of capital punishment. It was not until a meeting of a special subcommittee on Dec. 6 that a single delegate, Hans-Christoph Seebohm, surprised everyone by proposing to get rid of the death penalty. Seebohm, who ran various industrial enterprises under the Nazis, led the tiny, far-right German Party -- which also advocated using "German Reich" instead of "Federal Republic."
Addressing the council, Seebohm equated executions "in the period before 1945 and in the period since 1945." As British historian Richard J. Evans notes in "Rituals of Retribution: Capital Punishment in Germany, 1600-1987," the rightist politician was "thinking above all of the execution of war criminals, to which he and his party were bitterly opposed. Preventing Nazi war criminals from being sentenced to death would certainly help the German Party in its search for voters on the far right."
Both Social Democrats and Christian Democrats initially rejected the Seebohm initiative but gradually began to see its advantages. To the Social Democrats, it offered right-wing political cover for an idea they dared not pursue on their own. And for more than half of the Christian Democrat delegates, Evans reports, the political advantages of trying to shield Nazi war criminals trumped their belief in the death penalty for ordinary murder cases. Social Democratic arguments about turning the page on Nazism, belatedly made, were not decisive. Rather, writes Evans, "only the hope of being able to save Nazi criminals from the gallows . . . persuaded conservative deputies from the German Party and the Christian Democrats to cast their votes in favor of abolition in sufficient numbers to secure its anchorage in the Basic Law. Had it merely been the question of common homicide that was at issue, the vote would never have been passed."

Another example of German puritanical preachiness is Herta Daubler Gmelin,who in 2002 decried the American justice system and who compared George W. Bush to “Adolf Nazi.” Given the background of her Nazi father, who facilitated the Holocaust in his wartime position in Slovakia, her criticisms of the US appear to have a hidden message: “In an attempt to expiate my guilt feelings over my father’s conduct in WW2, I will attempt to show that the Amis are as bad as the Nazis.” Herta, I would much prefer that you come to terms with your father’s wartime conduct- you are NOT responsible for how your father behaved when you were an infant- so that you would stop dumping on the Americans.

Conclusion: when Germans criticize the US, there is often something with which they are not willing to come to terms, something which they have swept under the carpet.

@GringoTex: Regarding your comment about the death penalty and Article 102. It's true that some laws in each constitution have some background that has changed today, but are still in use. Take for example the 2nd Amendment. It was written due ensure that the states have the right to maintain militias so that they can still defend themselves against enemies foreign and domestic (i.e. King of England or home-grown dictators) without the support of the federal government (which may have fallen to this dictator). Today in the lack of aggressive British Kings and other invaders, it is used as a justification to personally bear weapons in order to defend your own home/family (how effective this is show the rates of accidental family-related homocide with guns). And most of us believe in this right regardless its outdated original purpose (and negative effects like fueling the Mexican drug war).
In the same way, Article 102 may have been written by someone who just wanted to protect some Nazis (I doubt it would have worked since the war crime trials were performed under allied jurisdiction), but the strong support for this law today is very unlikely based on this same motivation. There is not political party (except maybe the far-right ones) even daring to suggest to appeal it.

@jane:

friends who go around hammering their friends for not upholding moral/ethical values and the necessity thereof, all the while they fall desperately short in those very same things are not really friends.

-> what do you call hammering and what would qualify to be just criticism? and how did the "hammering" European countries fell desperately short in those very same things (at least in the last decades)?

GermanByNature:
Article 102 may have been written by someone who just wanted to protect some Nazis (I doubt it would have worked since the war crime trials were performed under allied jurisdiction),but the strong support for this law today is very unlikely based on this same motivation.

You are quite correct that current support for Article 102 is not based on the motivation "to protect some Nazis." The war ended 65 years ago. You are also quite correct that there is little support today in Germany to repeal Article 102 and bring back the death penalty. To have or not have the death penalty is not an international mandate, but the choice of each country.

My point is that given the sordid origins of Article 102 -the desire of Hans-Christoph Seebohm to stop the further execution of Nazi war criminals- that Germans should be a little more circumspect in getting on their sanctimonious high horse when they condemn the US for still having the death penalty.

If Germany does not wish to have the death penalty, that is their choice. Similarly, it is the choice of many states in the US to have the death penalty- not all do.

@jane:

friends who go around hammering their friends for not upholding moral/ethical values and the necessity thereof, all the while they fall desperately short in those very same things are not really friends.

GermanByNature-> what do you call hammering and what would qualify to be just criticism? and how did the "hammering" European countries fell desperately short in those very same things (at least in the last decades)?

I previously gave the example of Germany selling all that tunneling equipment et al to Iran.

My comment got eaten, but I'll try again, and maybe it will be a better response.

By "hammering" I mean this unceasing anti-americanism that seems to flow nonstop from some of Germany's news sources and some of your popular culture -- you may call it "constructive criticism", but I beg to differ. It appears as though Germans are far more willing to accept these gross and often uneducated generalizations about Americans at face value and add their voices to the chorus.
At the very least when Americans engage in that sort of thing (which some do, and they shouldn't) nobody has the gall to consider it anything more than what it is: bashing. Like as not, most people won't pay that much attention to it anyway, and when they do it is dismissed by many (even out here in hillbilly-ville...you know, where we is all just so stupid and stuff). Yeah, I'm from the great, unwashed middle of flyover land -- and I rather resent being categorically written off as some toothless neanderthal...kinda like I'm sure some Germans get tired of being categorically written off as...PS. most of those movies about you all; they're written by those liberals you seem to have a higher opinion of).

If the majority of the population of Germany is also doing much the same thing (calling it for what it is and not paying it much attention) then that's great. Could you please show my proof that is the case? I'll gladly be happy to rescind my statements.

first of all. maybe you are confusing me with a German. I have nonetheless German heritage (like 40-50% of the American population) and spent some time deployed abroad (Heidelberg). I also learnt the language (unlike many of my comrades) on that occasion.

Having followed their media closely during my time there and still doing it using the internet, I would not say that there is this a general anti-Americanism. sure, there are some leftish news papers and magazines like the Spiegel and Stern (those "credible" sources David always love to cite and that are in fact just anti-conservative and therefore anti-american-conservatism - btw they hardly critize any leftish American), but restricting your judgement by this would be like saying that the US is anti-American judged by the articles posted on the huffpost site or in the NY times. maybe you should start doing research before believing in David's dumb generalization - at least if you are really not one of those hillbillies in flyover land (like Greenwood, IN, where my family actually lives).

to your request of proofs that German take this for bashing... many Germans I knew would approach any statement with caution and discuss it (they really love to discuss everything for hours and hours even if it seems for anyone else that it is obvious) and not just ignore it as bashing (see e.g. "sarazin debate" this summer which would surely qualify as mus lim bashing by your standards). I think that is one of their strengths. While we tend to make early decisions on a subject (e.g. in business) and deal with problems later, these Germans tend to discuss every possible or even less possible aspect before making a decision (and then unfortunately stick to it). If you have other personal experience I would like to hear it.

AND you referred with the hammering of Israel by European countries that "fell desperately short in those very SAME things". can you please give examples for these SAME things?

Now we all know that around Easter, Obama sold out his pastor just like Jesus was denied by Peter.
AuraVie

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