A few weeks ago my comments on a blog were not only censored but actually blocked, which is the prerogative of the owner of the website. The owner of this site was in my opinion a top “Blogger” one of the best, an advocate of free speech, freedom of the press too I believe, well up to a point, who did state quite categorically to me that the publisher always retains the right to publish or not publish comments made on any article in the publishers pages, and that my comments were banned because they were considered denigrating to the United States of America. Which of course was absolute rubbish!
Now how and why did this come about? Well I shall try to explain.
It was during the aftermath of the massacre in Paris and when a large gathering of some of the so-called “World Leaders” and several hundred thousand mere mortals joined in a march which was basically against Islam, and the President of the United States of America, had the good sense (in my opinion anyway) to stay well away from this demonstration. I do believe that the majority of these leaders were the very people despised by the writers editors and the slaughtered staff of Charlie Hedbo, who jumped onto what they saw as a bandwagon for some good free publicity aimed at terrorists (Muslims) and President Obama had the good sense and decency to stay well away.
This is a position that I took when commenting on the site which banned my comments, so far hardly denigrating the USA or POTUS, in fact the very opposite.
However, my comments didn’t agree with the site’s owner who believed quite sincerely that POTUS should have attended this rally and the reason given? France is the United States of Americas oldest ally, and I have no argument with that, they fought and gave aid to the US when they aligned/allied themselves during the American War of Independence in 1778. But why the President of the US needed to go to Paris in 2015 still eludes me. The French were not under attack, it was a very inconspicuous satirical magazine with a circulation of some 6000, who delighted in insulting all religions and governments. They aroused the anger and resentment of some religious fanatics and the rest is history.
But the attack was on this magazine NOT on France, it just so happened to be on French soil. Had this been an English magazine and this had happened in England, would it have been deemed okay for POTUS not to attend any rally as England was Americas oldest and original enemy?
So having this oldest ally reason given to me I then had the temerity to ask some questions which I considered fair under the circumstance. It concerned the two “World Wars”; of which I do know little. I asked where then was the USA between 1914 and 1917 when France was at war with Germany and were suffering gigantic losses, and also where were they between 3rd September 1939 and 7th Decmeber 1941 when once again France was under the German heel? Not unreasonable questions I thought under the circumstances after having been left in no doubt of the special standing France has in the eyes of Americans.
I was told in no uncertain terms that the US had made a great sacrifice in WWI with some 300,000 US casualties (there was no split up between dead and wounded, KIA some 116,000 I think; 204K wounded. I pointed out that Australia had lost around 62000 killed which was approximately 1·38% of the population of Australias 4·5million and the US losses were 0·13% of the US population of 92 million; I never went into the losses suffered by the French and all the forces from the British Empire as it then was, I never had the chance to enquire/remark about WWII. I was barred.
Was I denigrating the US of A? Of course not; I believe the trouble is that Americans are not taught that the “World Wars” were actually raging long before being dragged into them, first with the sinking of the “Lusitania” and the second the attack on Pearl Harbor. It was the cry “Why should we get involved and fight in Europe’s wars ” on both occasions, I suppose one could have answered ” because France is your oldest ally”. Let’s face it; would the US have joined in both wars without that provocation. I believe the answer must be NO!
And that is not denigrating the United States of America, I actually have a very soft spot for somethings American and have a great liking for the people, well all those I know and have met at least, I have not met one that is not 100% genuine, and on that note I’ll finish this post!
20 thoughts on “Dedicated to PT!”
Brian, it has been my experience as a American, that the older generation think that WWI, WWII was OUR war. The pride is extreme. almost insane. Several years ago, I attended a WWII navy reunion, with my then husband, a Vietnam vet. His father was the WWII vet. Several of these men actually told him they were proud of his service, however it wasn’t like the REAL war they fought in. These were great men, i enjoyed the night and the stories greatly. However this generation of Americans, Only want to hear boast of how they save the world.
This comment of yours Lisa almosts begs a completely new and seperate post to address all of the remarks you make and I shall give it some serious consideration, you understand if I do of course I shall come in for some abse and be accused of American bashing and denigration.
Perhaps I’ll just come back and give a long reply to your comment; it’s certainly got the old grey matter buzing. 😛 🙄
Brian, all comments are welcome. You know your history much better then I. But I know Americans better, being one myself. Also I have always enjoyed the older generation, and paid attention to what they would say. And as always I have complete respect to your opinion.
Thank you Lisa, I do think I shall expand on this post because it does go a lot further and deeper, I really only touched the surface. I’m just disappointed that PT to whom the post was dedicated hasn’t read and commented which seems to indicate that PT is only interested in the American versions of history, not what has really happened out in this big wide world. 😛
Hear, hear Bro., I totally agree with your article. Now that MUST be a first.
You’re probably correct Baby Sister, and what’s more you haven’t corrected my English 🙂 Perhaps you thought it was well written; says he fishing for a compliment. 🙄
Ah . . . interesting reading. Personally, I could care less what heads of state do, but I do recognize a photo-op when I see one.
I was not bothered by the lack of POTUS in the show of solidarity, but it did seem strange other administration officials who were in Paris at the time could not be bothered to attend.
Incredibly embarrassing was the Kerry/James Taylor show . . . painful, even.
The only thing I fault POTUS for, and why I suspect he did not attend, is the stubborn refusal to admit religion, and in this instance, Islam, played a role in that and other massacres. Conversely, he had no problem slamming “Bible-toting” christians during his run for office.
It still seems a bit hypocritical to me, but what do I know. Republicans are having a field day pointing out some of his top advisors are Muslims. I know little of said top advisors, so I’m only judging on my own perceptions, but judge I do.
Just in case it’s not clear, as an atheist I would very much like to see the government, all governments, remind religious folks of the separation between secular and religious matters. Say! Look at that! A split infinitive. Good on me!
It doesn’t worry me one way or the other what heads of states do as long it doesn’t bring my country into disrepute, then I’m inclined to get up in arms and start writing to the press. Trouble is the press stopped publishing my letters which of course means I must have being doing something properly.
Anyway this post that you’re commenting on was dedicated to PiedType, (I don’t know if you still follow her posts you are still listed as one of her followers) and she censored and then banned me from her website for the reasons given. So much for freedom of speech; only applies to Americans in PT’s eyes obviously. Somehow I don’t think she read the blog but I’d have loved to see a comment or two from her; seems like she stopped visiting.
Would I be safe in assuming that she is narrow minded?
I’ve been tempted to send her a link but it would be like talking to a brick wall methinks! 🙄
You have ~23M people; less than a tenth of what we have here. Currently, about half the people vote . . . I pretty much think that is too many as a large number of them vote based on very superficial criteria (religion, race, wealth, education, etc).
It can be fun tweaking the religious (there is so much material offered up on a platter that it’s hard to resist) but I indulged for nearly 40 years. The level of stupid fluctuates within a narrow band and after a while I just lost interest.
I rather talk about Natarsha Belling’s fashion choices (poor lady).
I think a greater % of the Oz population has had a better education than in your country Emilio, I don’t mean that in a derogative manner also a greater proportion of the population of this country list themselves as atheist or no religion at each census, and I’m delighted to say that the % gets bigger at each one. We are extremely aware of politics too and by and large rich and poor unlike seem to be of a somewhat socialist bent. And I of course am a great red ragger. 😀
Perhaps you should rethink having anything to do with me . . . I’m very far away from being a red ragger.
In addition to knowing quite a bit about the idealized versus the real-world aspects of it, my family has direct experience with it. Let’s just say it was not a positive experience in any sense or stretch of the word.
Frankly egad I don’t care what colour rag you fly, I like you and thats what matters, by the bye isn’t the GOP the red in the US of A and the Donkeys the blue it really doesn’t matter. I used to be a rabid right wing tory all for the death penalty and I suppose that is where I should be but I decided that I was wrong and I’ve swung 180° I’m ashamed to admit that I was a right wing bigot and had no time for the less fortunate or gifted which I was , Im a firm believer now that the strong shall carry the weak. I’m all for socialised medicine and healthcare, I believe that here in Oz we have a system that is a model for the world. Having read your early history I can see and understand your point of view and I intend to carry on enjoyng the pleasure of our acquaintancy and not let these matters intrude.
Now if you want to take me to task for that little rave fine but you’re a fair dinkum decent human being and I like you I was going to say growing quite fond of you but ……………………… 🙄 😛 😀
Not flying any flag . . . things are taken as they come, on an individual basis. On some things I lean left, on others, right. Mostly, few things are either or.
On most matters, it’s a question of execution, not ideology. Universal health care is a great thing . . . excerpt the way it was instituted here hurt a great many people. Some numbers suggest more than it helped.
I am very much for the strong helping the weak, the fortunate helping the less so . . . I’ve just not seen it done well, at least not here.
So, before I agree to anything, one has to convince me of the details.
Few things proposed by either the left or right make any sense to me; invariably, it comes down to who you want to hurt in order to maybe help.
Increasingly, regardless of party or ideology, it’s the middle class that takes a hit.
And, no fear; no animosity on my end for your well-intentioned, if misguided, red ragger views. Why, I can even put up with your poor attempts at the English language, smiles and all.
Then you need to visit Australia here the strong do help the weak, a few years back our right wing government started proposing tax cuts it may be hard for you to believe but the population at large became up in arms and decried the proposal telling the pollies to keep the tax cuts and spend the money on hospitals and schools. We didn’t want or need the tax cuts and the money could be spent better elsewhere. The only ones who opposed were the uber rich but what else can one expect. I’m delighted to say that common sense prevaileed and the idea was dropped.
I think you have your numbers about belief a bit off; the percentages are not that far off, with the younger population in the US 36% irreligious (versus about 24-26% of population overall – per recent studies).
As for education, the world literacy ranking has the US at 99% and Australia as 96%.
I think you guys rank slightly higher in scientific literacy, which was surprising since there is so much woo down there (http://www.intstudy.com/study-in-australia/subject-guide/alternative-medicine). Then again, we have a lot of woo here as well.
We currently have a large influx of individuals with low education (a bad combination but supported by the red raggers of this country). I suspect this will eventually show up in the rankings.
The idea that education translates into making informed decisions at the voting booth is, in my opinion, a fantasy.
I have met many educated individuals who I would not trust to work at the local Pizza joint, let alone make informed decisions about governmental and world politics.
As far as I can see, in the big picture there is little difference between the practical and real world running of modern countries. They all suck. If there were outliers, I would move there.
Poor old PT if only she could see what this blog of mine has started. 🙄
Is been my experience few people are generous with their time and effort on other people’s blogs. Perhaps a sign of the times; everyone doing their own thing.
There are several bloggers I follow and I’m forever commenting on their blogs that I no longer have time to write my own 🙄
One of the ways you could have let her know was to mention her blog in the post; she would have gotten a pingback notice. A little late now, as it would be a bit obvious.
That said, my first foray into her blog got me a smackdown because, apparently, I came across as a troll (it’s that humor and irreverence thing). I thought I was joining a discussion, I thought I had something to contribute, but instead it was like high school; the new kid is looked upon with mistrust for trying to join in.
I do still follow her blog, but I don’t comment much. Nothing against her, but both she and her followers tend to be a bit cliquish, and I don’t particularly want to walk on egg shells trying to “break” into the group. Frankly, I don’t need more people in my (virtual) life that I have to worry about offending or otherwise getting riled up.
PT shares some followers with RoughSeas, and those same followers are people I stopped interacting with – I just ignore their comments. Frankly, I’m the better for adhering to the two notes I have posted on my screen: “No More Political Discussions” and “No More Religious Discussions”.
That’s a rule I usually follow in real life, and it seems to have made my online experience a tad better.
Why, I’m even getting better at resisting educating poor uninformed, misinformed, and just plain wrong individuals on the subject of guns. Yes, it’s difficult, but it’s paying off in peace of mind dividends.
Pity I didn’t know about that shows what a tyro I am when it comes to blogging.
I must admit I do get involved in politics, it’s very hard not to in Australia where voting is compulsory. Yes indeed we all HAVE TO VOTE, and I’m in full agreement with this believe it or not and as for religion it’s such a farce I get a kick out of getting stuck into the holy roller nutters it brightens my dull existence and I can always get a bite from them which allows me to tear right into them.