america

TSA Agent Hides Behind American Flag

A TSA agent is filmed calling a passenger an idiot, then attempts to hide behind an American flag to avoid being caught on camera.

A poetic metaphor for the United States of America today.

From the Tumblr TSA Security Theater.

 

Six Ways America Is Like a Third-World Country (Rolling Stone)

We all know the U.S. criminal justice system is flawed, but few are likely aware of just how bad it is compared to the rest of the world. The International Center for Prison Studies estimates that America imprisons 716 people per 100,000 citizens (of any age). That’s significantly worse than Russia (484 prisoners per 100,000 citizens), China (121) and Iran (284). The only country that incarcerates a higher percentage of its population than we do is North Korea. The U.S. is also the only developed country that executes prisoners – and our death penalty has a serious race problem: 42 percent of those on death row are black, compared to less than 15 percent of the overall population.

Six Ways America Is Like a Third-World Country (Rolling Stone)

Control and Plunder

I have evidence satisfactory to myself, that there exists, scattered throughout the country, a band of men, having a tacit understanding with each other, and calling themselves “the people of the United States,” whose general purposes are to control and plunder each other, and all other persons in the country, and, so far as they can, even in neighboring countries; and to kill every man who shall attempt to defend his person and property against their schemes of plunder and dominion.

Lysander Spooner

No Treason

American Propaganda Slogans

One goal of propaganda is to derail or hijack public discourse on an unpopular policy. The conversation surrounding the troops detracts from the conversation on war policy. It is used to marginalize critics, because any criticism of US policy is taken to be an affront by proxy on the collective troops. This works because the American cultural mythos post-Vietnam War has shifted from perceiving soldiers as complicit in acts of war to viewing soldiers as brave, sympathetic and oft romantic figures.

Another goal of propaganda is to perpetuate a shared cultural belief. In this case it is that the US Armed Forces are fundamentally virtuous. The average soldier is depicted as someone serving the cause of freedom, protecting the homeland, making personal sacrifices, and living a generally clean life. This cultural mythos makes it a near-taboo to criticize soldiers as individuals.

Here are common pro-military propaganda slogans of the last two decades. If any others come to mind please leave a comment and share your knowledge.

yellow support the troops ribbonCoerced or Superficial Gratitude

Thank you for your service.
Thank you for your sacrifice.
Thank you for serving your country.

Formula Using “The Troops” as a Slogan

Thank the Troops.
Support the Troops
God Bless our Troops

Actual Bumper Stickers

Proud Air Force Grandfather
Proud Father of an American Soldier
If You Enjoy Your Freedom Thank A Vet
I Heart My Sailor
I love jet noise. The sound of freedom.
My son’s heart is purple. Support our troops.
God bless our troops. Especially the snipers.
My best friend is the US Army.
Land of the free because of the brave.
If you don’t stand behind our troops, please feel free to stand in front of them.

Gallup: USA Is World’s Greatest Threat To Peace

The Win/Gallup International End of Year Survey found that the United States of America is viewed overwhelmingly as the greatest threat to world peace. Almost a full quarter of respondents indicated that they viewed the USA as the world’s biggest threat. The sentiment is strong – Pakistan lagged at 8%, China at 6% and North Korea at 5%.

usa worlds greatest threat to peace

Win/Gallup International – USA World’s Greatest Threat to World Peace

Among Americans surveyed, Iran was viewed as the greatest threat to world peace at 20%. Afghanistan came in at second place with 14%, but the United States of America still tied with North Korea for third place at 13%. Yes – as many Americans view their own country as the greatest threat to world peace as they do North Korea.

In response to the question, “If there were no barriers to living in any country of the world, which country would you like to live in?”only 46% of American respondents indicated that they are happy where they are and would prefer to live within the United States of America. To contrast, 70% of respondents in Morocco indicated that they are happy where they are and would prefer to stay in Morocco.

About the End of Year Survey:

The End of Year (EoY)™ survey is one of the longest standing traditions of our Association. This survey is compelling and is undisputedly the world’s first and longest global survey of its kind.

WIN/Gallup International Association’s End of Year survey is a global study that collects the public’s view on the challenges that the world faces today. Ongoing since 1977, WIN/Gallup International has always considered that giving a Voice to the People is one of the responsibilities of market researchers and at the core of the founding philosophy of our Association. The purpose of WIN/Gallup International’s End of Year is revealed in the own words of its founder, Dr. George H. Gallup:

‘If democracy is supposed to be based on the will of the people, then somebody should go out and find out what that will is. The right to speak out vigorously on governmental and corporate policies is one of the most staunchly defended freedoms of the World.’