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Why are you so interested in another country's politics?

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  • Why are you so interested in another country's politics?

    I'm a pretty regular listener to BBC World News. At least two or three times a week I listen to their broadcast, and I've listened for quite a number of years. This year more than I can recall in the past, US politics has dominated their content. Today, after a solid 90 minutes, they've spoke of nothing but yesterday's midterm election. To be frank I can't recall any British or European election getting this kind of coverage from the Beeb. What gives? Are you blokes more interested in our lousy politics than you are with your own? Or are you just voyeurs by nature?
    I was married for two ******* years! Hell would be like Club Med! - Sam Kinison

  • #2
    I can barely recall the meeja here reporting on US midterms before - must be the Trump factor.

    Having said that the meeja are a bit obsessed with what's happening in the US in general, in contrast what's happening in Europe appears to be of far less interest to them.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Gooner View Post
      I can barely recall the meeja here reporting on US midterms before - must be the Trump factor.

      Having said that the meeja are a bit obsessed with what's happening in the US in general, in contrast what's happening in Europe appears to be of far less interest to them.
      Perhaps my map reading skills have deteriorated with age, but aren't the British Isles just a wee bit closer to the European continent than they are to the US?
      I was married for two ******* years! Hell would be like Club Med! - Sam Kinison

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      • #4
        The British media want world politics to be working in the way they think it ought to be working. The facts of Brexit in the UK and the US electing Trump run exactly opposite of how they belive the world should be working and are extremely upsetting to them and they are desperate to find any sign no matter how faint that the last year has been a demented nightmare and things are going to get back to what they would class as normal.
        "Sometimes its better to light a flamethrower than to curse the darkness" T Pratchett

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        • #5
          British media have become really a big pile of garbage in the last decade. The only point ot read them is to have a good laugh.
          There are no Nazis in Ukraine. Idiots

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          • #6
            Originally posted by slick_miester View Post

            Perhaps my map reading skills have deteriorated with age, but aren't the British Isles just a wee bit closer to the European continent than they are to the US?
            Not for much longer!

            Nah, it's been like that as long as I can remember. Euro news just occasionally gets a mention. Big scary fire that kills a couple of people in California, near the top of the bill here, big scary fire that kills dozens in Portugal, tucked away somewhere. :shrug:

            As regards film or television, once a week in a regular slot on BBC4, will you get a European TV show.

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            • #7
              The establishment always wants to stay established and they always think they are the end of history.

              Who has the most to lose if the old media is being replaced by internet pundits? It certainly isn't the average working class person. The people that voted for Trump and Brexit were supposed to have been relegated to the dust bin of history and they certainly were not supposed to have an opinion.

              I have never figured out how the new society was supposed to function without the racist, misogynistic, homophobic, xenophobic working class. The people that opposed them don't really produce much in the way of tangible wealth. Nor are the establishments slaves in China likely to be slaves much longer or at least the Chinese government not Europeans will be exploiting them. The immigrants who were to be the new working class seem more inclined to be a criminal class than workers. The dystopian nature of it all escapes the people at BBC because they are ideologically possessed. Unfortunately you can't eat Marxism even the watered down "democratic socialism" version. But hey at least in the U.S. the little people may get their marijuana to console them as the entire infrastructure collapses.
              We hunt the hunters

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              • #8

                USA is a superpower with global presence in more than one way. What happens there affects us, what happens here has no effect on you.
                Wisdom is personal

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                • #9
                  You were listening to the World service which by definition is going to give much greater prominence to overseas news.
                  That said US news is nearly always given much greater coverage than Euro news, even on Radio 4 or 5. You speak the same language so are seen as not being as alien as those across the Channel.
                  "To be free is better than to be unfree - always."

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Karri View Post
                    USA is a superpower with global presence in more than one way. What happens there affects us, what happens here has no effect on you.
                    USA's invading Finland? Again, my map reading may be deficient, but if Europe stands to take a pasting, isn't it more likely to come from Russia than from the US? I mean, wasn't that Finland's experience?

                    Originally posted by Surrey View Post
                    You speak the same language so are seen as not being as alien as those across the Channel.
                    You jimmies play cricket: can't get more alien than that.
                    I was married for two ******* years! Hell would be like Club Med! - Sam Kinison

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by slick_miester View Post

                      USA's invading Finland? Again, my map reading may be deficient, but if Europe stands to take a pasting, isn't it more likely to come from Russia than from the US? I mean, wasn't that Finland's experience?
                      It's not about invasions, even if that is the hot topic in USA. World economy, legislation(war on drugs is a perfect example, LGBT rights a second one), politics, etc. For example if USA decides to put sanctions on Iran it's gonna have an affect on Finland. If Finland places sanctions on Iran USA doesn't even know it doesn't notice.
                      Wisdom is personal

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Karri View Post

                        It's not about invasions, even if that is the hot topic in USA. World economy, legislation(war on drugs is a perfect example, LGBT rights a second one), politics, etc. For example if USA decides to put sanctions on Iran it's gonna have an affect on Finland. If Finland places sanctions on Iran USA doesn't even know it doesn't notice.
                        I hear what you're saying, and I agree -- to a degree. Yes, as the world's largest market, US can impose an outsized influence on some issues -- but not all. You mention LBGT rights. If US emulates the Third Reich and mandates that LBGTs affix purple triangles to their jackets, how does that effect any outside the US? Is Finland* compelled to follow suit?

                        I submit that the US' influence is actually overstated, at least by some, for a very simple reason: it absolves them of responsibility. "Our country country sucks because of US influence -- therefore all I have to do is bitch about the US and that will substitute for doing anything substantive about the condition of my country." That's been a plank of Iranian policy for near four decades now.

                        So from where does trouble in a place like Finland most likely and most often emanate: far from Finland's borders, near to Finland's borders, or from within Finland's borders?

                        *Feel free to substitute the country of your choice in place of Finland.
                        I was married for two ******* years! Hell would be like Club Med! - Sam Kinison

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by slick_miester View Post

                          I hear what you're saying, and I agree -- to a degree. Yes, as the world's largest market, US can impose an outsized influence on some issues -- but not all. You mention LBGT rights. If US emulates the Third Reich and mandates that LBGTs affix purple triangles to their jackets, how does that effect any outside the US? Is Finland* compelled to follow suit?

                          I submit that the US' influence is actually overstated, at least by some, for a very simple reason: it absolves them of responsibility. "Our country country sucks because of US influence -- therefore all I have to do is bitch about the US and that will substitute for doing anything substantive about the condition of my country." That's been a plank of Iranian policy for near four decades now.

                          So from where does trouble in a place like Finland most likely and most often emanate: far from Finland's borders, near to Finland's borders, or from within Finland's borders?

                          *Feel free to substitute the country of your choice in place of Finland.
                          I don't think it's a multiple choice question. Rather, the trouble comes from within, from borders, and from far away. You are the far away part. I wouldn't necessarily call it problems/trouble though. And it's more of a butterfly effect than direct influence. Finland is part of the world and USA has a massive effect on the issues of the world. So of course, if something that you do might have an effect on us we follow it in the news.
                          Wisdom is personal

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Karri View Post
                            I don't think it's a multiple choice question. Rather, the trouble comes from within, from borders, and from far away. You are the far away part. I wouldn't necessarily call it problems/trouble though. And it's more of a butterfly effect than direct influence. Finland is part of the world and USA has a massive effect on the issues of the world. So of course, if something that you do might have an effect on us we follow it in the news.
                            Is it not possible -- I'm arguing probable -- that non-Americans overstate US influence in their countries, mostly as a means to absolve themselves from responsibility for their own countries' condition? Just because a glorified wh*re like Madonna became a hugely successful and famous celebrity in the US, does that de facto mean that any other country's society has to follow suit? Just because we were dumb enough to elect a carnival barker like Donald Trump to the highest office in our land, does that mean that his inane rantings exert real influence on any other country's condition? Sometimes, yes, but lots of times no.

                            An Egyptian journalist many years ago, whose name currently eludes me, once quipped that if Israel did not exist that Arab political leaders would have to invent her. Likewise, it's all too easy to attribute this or that issue to outsized US influence when things in such-and-such country are f*cked up for reasons all their own, owing nothing to US influence. I rather suspect that that's what's behind the BBC's obsessive coverage of this year's US midterm elections. It's just a little overdone. "The lady doth protest too much methinks."
                            I was married for two ******* years! Hell would be like Club Med! - Sam Kinison

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by slick_miester View Post

                              Is it not possible -- I'm arguing probable -- that non-Americans overstate US influence in their countries, mostly as a means to absolve themselves from responsibility for their own countries' condition? Just because a glorified wh*re like Madonna became a hugely successful and famous celebrity in the US, does that de facto mean that any other country's society has to follow suit? Just because we were dumb enough to elect a carnival barker like Donald Trump to the highest office in our land, does that mean that his inane rantings exert real influence on any other country's condition? Sometimes, yes, but lots of times no.
                              I think you have been listening to too many conservatives here. People are not walking around going "hey, this trash hasn't been emptied, DAMN USA!" or "damn immigrant caravans from USA invading our country!". It's more like "oh that idiot decided to continue his trade war, guess that's gonna have an impact on world wide economy".
                              Wisdom is personal

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