Friday, July 15, 2005

On the iPod: Anti-Americanism, by Jean-Francois Revel

Here, in a cool, reasoned missive to his fellow Europeans, is a French intellectual's thorough exposure, analysis, and debunking of the phenomenon of anti-Americanism. Here are a few myths that the author explodes:

1. MYTH: Americans are ignorant of the "rest of the world," and Europeans are well informed about goings on in America.
2. MYTH: Americans are crass and uncultured, they worship money above all else, and they are crime-ridden and violent.
3. MYTH: Americans are reflexively unilateral and ignore the reasoned pleas for cooperation from their European allies.

The root cause of all anti-Americanism, in the author's opinion? Nothing less than an ongoing war against free-market liberal democracy, one that has been waged by the far left and far right (which, combined, constitute more than a third of the electorate in France) since the early part of the 20th century. America draws the most heat not only because it represents the summit of achievement of free-market democracy, but because it is its most passionate advocate. Dispense with the notions that brash America is rubbing up against our more seasoned and even-tempered European cousins' sensibilities; the fact is that it is who we are and what we represent far more than what we do that galls the heart of the unrepentant socialist of both the National (right) and International (left) varieties.

This book is available from Tell them Audible user kezekiel sent you, and you and I will both get a free book if you sign up for a AudibleListener membership.


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