Warning: Rant touching politically charged subjects ahead.
So the European press - Germany’s SPIEGEL for one, which is pretty much the biggest mag in its sector - are laughing at the new course of America’s Republican party on how to deal with foreign affairs,or rather, at the fact that the blatant ignorance actually appeals to the American voters. And while it’s true that it is rather comical that people aiming to become the world’s most powerful man (or woman, in Bachmann’s case) are not only throwing out what appears to be a cross between a pledge to, and evidence of, limited knowledge, but are doing so to such great success, this is a) not new (anybody remember Palin and her “one of the people” appeal?), and b) no different from how the very same press and target audience that is now reading such articles and laughing handles foreign manners themselves.
The whole rhetoric of “why send money overseas, we’ve got enough more urgent problems ourselves” is actually very similiar to the often touted lines on how to deal with Greece’s money problems: “I don’t know much about it, and neither do I care, but fuck ‘em anyway, this is our money.” This is of course a perfectly valid opinion - it stands to reason if it is a politically wise course to take, but as a sheer opinion, the “let’s take care of our own business first”-approach is understandable (if somewhat naïve in an intertwined world). Opinions don’t neccesarily have to be well-formed, because although in the aftermath of the French revolution it was argued that the very principle of democracy depends on informed opinions, not mere affectual ones, as of now, the good ole opinion-card’s “that’s my opinion, who are you to argue?” has long substituted such idealistic plans. And this is why the rags are full of abridged takes on the whole subject matter, to the point where it is closer to an amputation, and is effectively an abomination - nonetheless very much influencing the stance of “the common man” and building the basis - however small - on which their opinion stands.
Either way, the point is - if you look at the whole matter on a more abstract level, then the very same people who are bitching about America’s blatant ignorance concerning foreign problems, no matter how much they might affect oneself, have no problem taking the solitary position themselves. The real distinction is who “the rest of the world is”: If it includes one’s own country, it is unacceptable, if it is some foreign country, it’s a totally valid path to tread. And that is still an opinion, but the inner logic is faulty, and one that can only be called hypocritical. Because the official criteria and reasons cited are not the same as the critical one. And that’s what really bothers me - this is not about whether it’s right to be for the interventions in Greece or not, this is about that you can’t have it both ways without talking out of your ass.
PS: The title is a Journey - the band - reference in case anybody is really wondering.