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08:27 AM on 08/20/2012
You have to ask yourself ; In which direction would the Republican party of today like to take the labor movement, the women's movement, civil rights, peace, consumer and environmental movements? Forward or back? Even immigration. Are they looking to further develop these narratives or unravel them?

I believe the world looks on in astonishment today.......where is this going to go?
Buying USA Feeds USA, Supports/Preserves USA
10:32 AM on 08/20/2012
The same place the democrats have taken it, importing more jobs overseas!

That said, the democrats would like to import United Nations law into the USA; Obama can't support unions and UN law, especially Human Rights Law, in that Iran heads it, but this doesn't bother Obama a bit.

He signed a free trade agreement with pacific nations that will allow all foreign corporations of those nations to skirt USA Law, and fall under UN law.

Obama is not only exporting Jobs, he's is ready willing and able to sabotage USA law, and the democrats don't speak against him.

So now you know who democrats are.
12:07 PM on 08/20/2012
The NAFTA Treaty started under Bush I and was signed into law by Bill Clinton. Bush II pushed the CAFTA Treaty and signed it. Yes, Obama has signed further treaties in South America and also the one with South Korea. So I think the blame is equally split between the two and it has been aided and abetted by BOTH political parties. You make the point that Mr. Zogby has written about here. You could be the poster child for an American who would rather fight with your own countrymen on a partisan political basis rather than unite for the good of this country and her future. American is a great country but we are no greater than our "collective" sense to improve things in this nation for all and not a select few.
12:18 PM on 08/20/2012
This article was published in Forbes June 2012:
In order to capture this talent and support our economy, we must reform our H-1B visa program. As it now stands, we are systematically turning away individuals with top-shelf brainpower and allowing them to stimulate another nation’s economy. At no cost to taxpayers, an immediate solution to provide relief for the H-1B category would be to recapture unused H-1B visas from previous fiscal years, exempt U.S. educated workers with advanced degrees from the H-1B cap, and raise the cap to 100,000, providing for a market-based escalator if the cap is reached during the previous fiscal year. The long-term fix is simple: there should be no quota on H-1B visas. Market conditions will dictate how many H-1B employees are necessary. It’s time our companies stop suffering, while the arbitrary cap on H-1B visas continues damaging our economy.

* Matthew S. Dunn is a partner in Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP’s Business Immigration practice. He serves as Co-Chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Immigration and Nationality Law Committee.

These are the ideas that your beloved Repubs are promoting and Forbes in the forefront. You have a narrow lens and that perhaps suggest that dogma, rather than truth, is just easier for you to absorb and swallow.
sorry to see humanity repeating errors ad nauseam
08:23 AM on 08/20/2012
To America's right wing becoming better is only through becoming rich. That is what degrades this nation, its worship of money as the sole arbiter of personal worth. No accomplishment is of value unless it yields wealth.
08:20 AM on 08/20/2012
That last sentence sums it up for me. The results caused by recent policy decisions are so blatantly wrong in light of what America should stand for, that only by the grace of God will we remain a great nation.
We can be so much more than a bunch of mercenaries with an "all for me" philosophy.
08:19 AM on 08/20/2012
I can appreciate the article but it bothers me to know there are people out there particularly Americans who think our beginnings are something we should be ashamed of. You're wrong.

The 13 colonies did not start out with the policy of "...lets enslave people and wipe out these natives..." It simply never took place like that.

The philosophy to continually ramp up armed conflict with native people came from multiple sources into a government series of acts.

The part most people don't get is that for hundreds ("hundreds") of years native people slaughtered and won every military conflict in North America hands down and rarely took prisoners or applied mercy to the survivors. That level of distinction draws a certain perspective that we can all witness today happening overseas.

The native peoples were not all delicate flower picking peace lovers. Just a few tribes were willing to relax their aggression.

Our founding fathers, mothers, children and our Constitution is almost entirely based on native American idealism, religion, peace and trade. We left out the part about not owning land which may have been a huge mistake but time will tell.

Progress of a sophisticated society came in conflict with a primitive rural way of life and war. The results were inevitiable.
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11:57 AM on 08/20/2012
The American history you're referring to never happened.
05:20 PM on 08/20/2012
Good counter post..................should get you about a -D in the 3rd grade.
08:08 AM on 08/20/2012
As a western non american i alway say and think america is a great country, it's people are great and friendly, so is it's culture.
One thing is rotten to the bone however, and that is it's foreign policy. America doesnt bring democracy or freedom, it brings war and seem to help only dictators.
Also look at the repression and hate toward gay people. Other countries like Thailand are much more evolved.
America thinks it is so great, it has trouble learning from others. It has to come off it's high horse.
sorry to see humanity repeating errors ad nauseam
08:25 AM on 08/20/2012
When you are taught that you are the apex of creation by virtue of the location of your birth how can you accept knowledge from anyone who was born elsewhere?

America = arrogance + ignorance in large measures
08:03 AM on 08/20/2012
We seem to be royally screwed right now when it comes to greatness. Could it be because one political party has coopted both religion and the military and used both to conn people into voting against their own best economic interests?
Dead Che
Where there's a will, I want to be in it.
07:46 AM on 08/20/2012
Zogby is right to point out the flaws of America and its history. However, he looses me when he fails to compare the history of America with the history of the world and its many nations. When compared against utopia, America fails. 'Whe compared to with history of other nations, America shines.
Forward, not backward
11:08 AM on 08/20/2012
"When did liberty become a four letter word?" When the Republican Party gained control over our wombs.
Grumpy Old Dude
My screen name forms an Acronym
11:43 AM on 08/20/2012
My ethics professor taught me that people who make their intellectual case with moral equivalencies, do so because they don't have a case to make. He was correct, and you did not disappoint.
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Tom Pumroy
practical dreamer-artist Man Ray
07:02 AM on 08/20/2012
This is truly an exceptional piece Mr. Zogby and it hits the spot in pointing to the rabid ravings of a mentally unbalanced populace spurred on by an equally unsane leadership. Some sixty years ago the psychologist Erich Fromm analyzed our culture in a book called “The Sane Society” where he saw the direction we were going and the pertinent factors leading us in that direction.

Not surprisingly he saw a nation where the majority were so maladjusted that they became unable to see through the fog of delusion that envelops them. And so the norm that was established was mentally incompetent, emotionally stilted but due to the widespread acceptance of this modern madness it has gone unnoticed and untreated.

The combined forces of capitalism and the naturally attendant consumerism has created a society where human beings are not recognized as individuals deserving respect and have been forced to see themselves are mere commodities; things with a value only in so far as they can sell themselves on the open market. People are not things and when they are inclined by circumstances to adapt that view they are on the way to the state of dehumanized mental illness that we see now in the country.
06:35 AM on 08/20/2012
You make some good points I agree that the constant chest thumping by politicians about the greatness of the US reveals a deep insecurity in our country.But you muck it all up with simplistic statements like "we are the only coutry to use atomic weapons".That's because we developed atomic weapons before Nazi Germany or imperial Japan did.They never had the chance to use them first or without a doubt they would have done so.Certainly the war aginst Mexico was unjustified but you,like the rest of the country,have enjoyed the results.Without the conquest of the west the US would have never risen to super power status.Also,women have had the right to vote in this country for going on a hundred years now so that hardly seems like a burning issue.Slavery was purged in an avoidable bloodbath that took upwards of 600,000 American lives and wrecked half the counrty..The civil rights movement had its fair share of death and violence but compaired to the American Civil war it was a schoolyard brawl.
Constantly beating ourselves up for past crimes,real or not,is about as bad as always boasting about how great we are.What matters is the future.
06:07 AM on 08/20/2012
America should now search for alternative politics like alternative medicine. That will be the most inspiring thing for its people and those beyond its shores.
Go ahead. Tread on them.
05:57 AM on 08/20/2012
Our country is "The United States of America" not "America". It is singularly reflective of our outrageous hubris that we co-opt the name of TWO CONTINENTS as short-hand for our country's name.

"Magical Giant Person in the sky (God), Through your magical powers bring success to every war, invasion, economic exploitation, and human indignity (Bless) perpetrated by a militaristic geo-political juggernaut with no respect for international law or the Geneva Convention (America)
08:53 AM on 08/20/2012
Actually, there are no two continents called 'America' only North America and South america, unless I missed something in geography class? your point is ridiculous.
And while I agree it is probably a massive violation of the Geneva Conventions to fly in to Pakisatn and murder Bin Laden, so what? Can you really say it was wrong?
see biography
05:44 AM on 08/20/2012
“the greatness of America”
is a function of its people. Not political PR.

“the model nation that is envied by the world”
One that escaped insidious strangulation by an over-class. Only to be eventually tracked down and enslaved.

“I wonder why we are so insecure that we need to engage in endless self-praise.”
When the reality doesn’t match the rendition, a deal of mental re-rendering is required to shore up the illusion?

“this is the story that is worth telling.”
By those that come after. Because the living were too busy living it.

“politicians end their speeches with "God bless America"
As they have no intention of doing it themselves?
Thomas Paine Reincarnated/guarding the guardians
05:44 AM on 08/20/2012
It really has to do with leadership, both citizen leadership and political leadership. There aren't many leaders out there who are actually pushing for changes that would benefit all Americans.

We have divided ourselves into these facades, these parties, these political groups - and now everyone thinks of gov't as something it is not. Aka altruistic.

If we want to restore the ideal, we must restore reform and an active and educated citizenry who sees the big picture. But, this just isn't likely to happen.
04:33 AM on 08/20/2012
As an outsider I can confirm that the ideal of America is more appealing than it's reality. The shootings, the self-serving foreign policy, the cruel inequality we see in the headlines most days.
Would we have angry Muslim militancy to deal with in the western world if the US hadn't treated the middle east so arrogantly for it's own ends?
(we lost 3 soldiers today supporting you in Afghanistan)
One good thing about telling yourselves you're the greatest is that it may keep the rednecks from immigrating down this way. I have been hearing a lot of American accents lately...
What time is it ? Same as usual
06:57 AM on 08/20/2012
Speaking of rednecks.
New Zealand pakehas are some of the most parochial and intolerant people on the planet Earth forever bellyaching about foreigners.
Confirmed by above comment
07:38 AM on 08/20/2012
You miss my point.
Most Americans that relocate here view American "exceptionalism" pretty much as I do.
In my experience that is.
So it's not the people I object to. It's the attitude. Of some.
If that's bellyaching then...guilty as charged.
Wf Hun
03:23 AM on 08/20/2012
There is a lot of positivity in this piece, but the negativity against expressing pride hurts the positivity.
Let's say this is balanced, but could have been more positive. We are envied; that is true.
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Civilization is for weaklings.
05:46 AM on 08/20/2012
I am afraid you have mistaken arrogance for pride.