Thursday, September 18, 2008

Soft Power and the US Elections

Check this out: the majority of respondents in every country in a recent BBC poll say that their respect for Americans would increase if we elect Obama rather than McCain this Fall.

Perhaps this has something to do with the fact that McCain not only can't tell the difference between Sunni and Shia, but apparently thinks Spain is a country in Latin America.

If Americans put this guy in office after eight years of Bush, who can blame the rest of the world for associating us with the policies of our government?


hank_F_M said...

Since he is more likely to win than not, I hope I’m wrong.

But when they find out they do not have the idealist they think but a Northeast Illinois (Daley) Demican machine hack they might be rather disappointed. I rather doubt that good governmentis a change he believes in.

Please excuse my cynicism, I lived near Chicago to long to have any confidence in someone, whether they have an R or D by there name, if they come out of that bipartisan organization.

But sometimes people who were political hacks have done well away from there home base, for example Truman.

Diodotus said...

Hank, you make valid points about Obama... no candidate is without his flaws. But that's all beside my point, which has to do with the perception of the difference between the two in other countries. This perception is what will increase or decrease US soft power in the years to come, which had a direct bearing, I think, on our national security.

hank_F_M said...

I agree, my main point that got lost in the vergage, is that the difference between what they expect and what they get will impact their perception of the US and thus national security.

Diodotus said...

You could be right.

Although my wager is what they will get from Obama is still much more than what they expect from McCain. The question is whether they'll continue to perceive that as the relevant gap after the election.

Diodotus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LFC said...

I'm for Obama, but I think McCain does know that Spain is not in Latin America. I've listened to the interview and it seems to have been a case of, for lack of a better phrase, faulty auditory processing. He either didn't hear the question properly or 'heard' but didn't get the question and subsequent efforts at clarification. I'm not sure what if anything this implies about his sharpness (or lack thereof).

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