This guy really chaffs my ass. This is a letter to the editor to the English version of El Pais about Condoleeza Rice's visit to Madrid. I know everyone has a right to express their opinion, but why not disagree with Bush at home where it could do some good? Where we vote! This letter seems almost ... disloyal. This guy says , "He is EMBARRASSED by the actions of Condoleeza Rice"? What? Did she pick her nose in public or something? Did she make a pass at Moratinos?
Of course, I have never seen any editorial piece or letter to the editor (or actual story for that matter) even remotely positive about the U.S. in El Pais, so I won't bother to write a rebuttal. I understand the score. They are the left in Spain and they hate us - no problem. If I had a problem with that I would read ABC. But what is this guy's purpose in writing this letter? Why write a letter to a foreign newspaper to list everything wrong in the U.S. and say you are embarrassed by your country? It seems to me the only reason is to preach to the Choir, to ingratiate himself with the Spanish press. It goes down a virtual laundry list of things they always say is wrong with America. And there is NOTHING they love more than a real American agreeing with them. But is he real? The letter is almost too perfect! (his syntax is a little screwy too). He lists all the big hits, like from a manifesto:
- The U.S. is the axis of evil.
- The U.S. is not really "ideal". (What?)
- We're corrupt.
- We're religious fanatics
- Bush wasn't really elected.
- The rich man keeps you down
- They control you with fear.
- Only the rich benefit, everyone else is screwed.
- Tax cuts screwed everybody.
- We get no vacations.
- We got no medical insurance.
- Oh, and Miguel Angel Aguilar (with all the correct accents) is totally right.
Of course, in Spain there is no corruption (except in Marbella). Religion plays no part in anything (except the state funds all kinds of Church programs and abortion is officially illegal). Bush wasn't really elected (except for that second time). There are no rich in Spain (except you have a much better chance of becoming "the Man" in the U.S. than in Spain because the rich keep you down so well). Only the rich benefit in America (that's why everyone wants to immigrate to the U.S.). There is no fear in Spain (except for global warming, immigrants coming to get you, globalization, and THE AMERICANS!). Who needs tax cuts in Spain? (everybody needs them and they are coming - it looks like they'll start in France). Iraq? (well, he's got me there. At least we tried). Lots of vacation in Spain (except that they really can't afford that anymore. Employers are afraid of hiring anybody because they can't fire them). Spain has "free" medical insurance (except that most of my friends in Madrid go to private doctors and brag about it). But Miguel Angel Aguilar - with all the correct accents from El Pais - is a genius!
I am not saying we don't have problems, of course we do. Let's just not whine to the foreign press about it. We can bitch and moan at home.