Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Ahovking, Jun 25, 2011.
US troops did not engage significantly until 1918
Damn us Americans. We reject science and live in old shacks without plumbing with guns and money stashed under our pillows...
I'm sure you don't believe the American stereotype as portrayed overseas to be typical of most Americans. I hope most people are smart enough to separate fiction and reality anyway.
I wasn't saying that. I was just saying there's a slight difference in culture and monetary expenditure. We tend to exaggerate it in our community. But that's just because we're the type of community that focuses on these things.
Yes. Due to chance, geography, and the people living here the United States has been incredibly exceptional. But in the past ~60 years more and more parts of the world have been catching up which is not a bad thing.
Yes. Why? Because America's so powerful. If the EU combined to form a country, or if China became a free country, then we wouldn't be alone. But until then, we different from all other countries. Whether this is good or bad? Anyone's guess.
However, I do wish more countries would become like the US. That's been a trend in the last 50 years, though.
I'm not certain I understand this point, that other nations have become more like the United States in the last fifty years? More accurately, the United States has become "more like the United States" in the last fifty years. Active American military and geopolitical power is a very new phenomenon. Unchallenged American geopolitical/military power is only as established as the past twenty years.
"Exceptional" means that something is set apart in a fundamental or essential manner, not simply that it's a bit ahead of the game.
By the 1860s, if that little scuffle you had about cotton tariffs is any indication.
Anyone who believes in American exceptionalism has clearly been through our less-than-exceptional education system. >.>
I don't think anyone in this world can avoid it.
I can't avoid Christianity, either, but that doesn't mean I subscribe to it.
I can't avoid you too. And that doesn't mean a damn thing I guess.
I think there are some different definitions or understandings of American exceptionalism going through this thread. Most people who are saying 'yes' appear to be saying that 'yes, America is quite an exceptional (in the 'awesome' sense) country', whereas those that are saying 'no' appear to be saying so on the basis of American exceptionalism implying something of their international standing and rights in that sphere, aside from any possible awesomeness. American exceptionalism isn't the same thing as USA #1, and I think that misunderstanding might be the cause of some confusion here.
I (and most Americans who agree with me) define American exceptionalism as the ability to do what other nations cannot, hence the word exceptional. Yes other cultures and people are proud of their country, and their country may be unique in a certain way, but that does not make it exceptional. As far as I'm concerned, there exists no "Chinese exceptionalism" or "Indian exceptionalism". If there is, it is no where near as prevalent as it is in America simply because America has a longer list of achievements and accomplishments.
Additionally, there are large portions of our populace here in America that advocate a strong national sovereignty, unlike Western Europe which for the past few decades has been slowly embracing globalism, which has resulted in a loss of national identity. Just look at France and Sweden and how the large influx of Muslims have changed their own culture and governance.
But you aren't defining 'ability' as 'right' though, are you? That's to me what American exceptionalism implies; that the US has a right to do things other nations do not. That does involve national sovereignty, but more so in the respect for the sovereignty of other states. American exceptionalism (using 'right' rather than 'ability') often means that the national sovereignty of other states is secondary to the US' interest, or exceptionality.
Those can equally describe China you know.
The thing about globalised trade in the world is that, if any big player in the global economy stumbles and falls, a good chunk of the world feels it to. That is why, when the Asian Financial started, Wall Street took a bashing.
There hasn't been, for a very long time, a single 'epicentre' of Global commerce and trade. Shanghai, New York, London, Moscow, Hong Kong, Chicago, Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore, Frankfurt and more. They are all centres of trade and they all affect each other. If one goes down, the rest tumbles along too.
China and India were accomplishing things for thousands of years before America was a gleam in the Founding Fathers' eyes.
As long as China continues to produce our happy meal toys with their underage and impoverished workers and India still remains the largest center of customer relation services for American products, America will remain the only truly exceptional country.
So not long in the big scheme of things.
I will admit, based on incarceration rates, America has an exceptionally high number of criminals.
As long as America continues to depend heavily on Arabian oil and owes China almost one trillion dollars. No country appears to be any less dependent on any other country.
I believe in American exceptionalism in the sense of the phrase that America has a highly different history and cultural background from any other nation, which makes America "exceptional". Which is what I believe the term refers to, not some sense of entitlement. The United States developed from the ground up (or at least from independence) with ideals and belief systems far ahead of its time. Besides the short-lived First French Republic and the short-lived constitution-based-Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth, it really set a standard for a liberal Western world.
America's culture also developed differently, with vast immigrant populations of foremost importance. America is a real melting pot, where immigrants from Russia, Hungary, Norway, and Italy alike all gradually integrated into American culture, and at this point it would take a good genealogist to determine that an American had that ancestry. America was generally free from the huge wave of nationalism that overran Europe in the 1800s-early 1900s, as a strong and homogenous "American nationality" didn't really exist.
Now, in modern times, this is all becoming less important. Globalization means more and more countries are following the model of America, and where once only American cities and major metropolises like London and Paris were the places to find immigrants, now any city or town has a sizable minority population. Of course, America would not be where it is now without this exceptional history in relation to the rest of the world.
None of this means that I believe that America is superior to other nations, or deserving of a pedestal or throne over the world. I just believe that the way in which America developed as a nation makes is different from say, the U.K., which slowly evolved from a absolute monarchy to a semi-constitutional monarchy to a liberal democracy. This gradual development from authoritarianism to liberalism is present all over Europe, but not in the US.
Separate names with a comma.