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Name: Antony Loewenstein
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Friday, September 30, 2005

Get out the measuring stick

"It would be interesting to do a word count for mentions of the word "hero" in American public life, as compared with Britain, France or Germany. A hundred years ago, conservative nationalist Germans used to characterise the "true" Germans as heroes and the Jews as wheeler-dealers: Helden against Handler. Today, we have a different stereotype: true Americans as Helden and limp-wristed Europeans as Handler. Yet in practice, of course, you had the same mix of true bravery and, as one journalist on the spot noted, "real raw panic" in the response to Rita and Katrina as you would in most societies."

Timothy Garton Ash, The Guardian, September 29

An Australian suggestion: a word count for mention of the words "un-Australian" and "anti-American" and an examination of their disproportionate use.

11 Comments:

Blogger Glenn Condell said...

I have made the comment elsewhere that Iraq has produced plenty of heroes, very few of them American and those, like Marla Ruzicka, either engaged in antiwar or NGO relief activity.

Thursday, September 29, 2005 6:14:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

How so? Or are you stating that the typical heroic efforts put forth by the typica; American soldier has become so routine as to longer be considered heroic?

Or that the Iraqis, who have done little but kill each other over power, who show the least bit of initiative to do anything, that does not directly benefit them in the short run, by comparison to the rest of the Iraqis, is heroic?

Friday, September 30, 2005 12:15:00 am  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Ibrahamav, the suggestion Glenn makes is that heroes need not have guns, nor be members of the world's most powerful military force. Which part do you disagree with? It sounds like a balanced view to me. I suspect you disagree only because you can.

Friday, September 30, 2005 9:09:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

I disagree with Glenn's opinion of the number of heroes, what comprises a hero, and why antiwar events are heroic.

Friday, September 30, 2005 9:18:00 am  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Fair enough. Care to define?

Friday, September 30, 2005 10:10:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

Care to define what?

Friday, September 30, 2005 1:21:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

What, Ibrahamav, is your definition of a hero?

Friday, September 30, 2005 5:08:00 pm  
Blogger Andjam said...

A hundred years ago, conservative nationalist Germans used to characterise the "true" Germans as heroes and the Jews as wheeler-dealers: Helden against Handler. Today, we have a different stereotype: true Americans as Helden and limp-wristed Europeans as Handler.

It's going to end with the USA murdering 6 million Europeans before the century is out. Advise Tim Dunlop to get out while he can.

Friday, September 30, 2005 6:06:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

Andjam, Why do you say that? Or is it tongue and cheek?

Friday, September 30, 2005 8:14:00 pm  
Blogger Andjam said...

Tongue in cheek.

Friday, September 30, 2005 8:33:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

The standard definition applies.

Saturday, October 01, 2005 12:58:00 am  

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