Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The End of American Exceptionalism …

Exceptional hypocrisy
Would be a good thing.  I wish more leaders on the Democratic side would look an ignorant belligerent know-nothing like Sarah Palin or Sean Hannity in the face and repudiate the idea that we should be held to a lower standard than any other country on the planet.  

The doctrine of American Exceptionalism is a disgraceful beard for conducting ourselves in whatever manner suits us at any given moment, other people and stated values be damned, simply because we say so.  It's nonsense. It excuses the participants of a representative democracy in advance and across the board for any acts, regardless of actual malice, recklessness, negligence or wanton indifference.
"The deeper threat that leakers such as Manning and Snowden pose is more subtle than a direct assault on U.S. national security: they undermine Washington's ability to act hypocritically and get away with it. Their danger lies not in the new information that they reveal but in the documented confirmation they provide of what the United States is actually doing and why. When these deeds turn out to clash with the government's public rhetoric, as they so often do, it becomes harder for U.S. allies to overlook Washington's covert behavior and easier for U.S. adversaries to justify their own. Few U.S. officials think of their ability to act hypocritically as a key strategic resource. Indeed, one of the reasons American hypocrisy is so effective is that it stems from sincerity: most U.S. politicians do not recognize just how two-faced their country is. Yet as the United States finds itself less able to deny the gaps between its actions and its words, it will face increasingly difficult choices -- and may ultimately be compelled to start practicing what it preaches."
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