As long as I remember, around Reagan’s appearance in Spitting Image, I found American politics way more interesting than our own. In the Netherlands there is also happening a lot but on the world stage the impact is like a mosquito bite compared to America’s elephant foot on a to. Reagan became president when I was around 8 and we only had two Dutch speaking TV-channel, every week they had Spitting Image on and my young mind was confronted with those crazy characters. My mother made us also aware at that young age that if those crazy characters, American and the Soviet Union started shooting atomic bombs at each other and us that we would go to the biggest city, so we would die instantly instead of slowly, heavy stuff for a 10 yer old boy.
There was that kind of fear in the beginning of the eighties and my mother was no communist, but she was also no fan of Reagan, who according to most leftists started bumping his chest and provoking the Soviet Union after the relative peaceful 70s. Luckily the Soviet Union imploded under its own weight and failure, so America could unload their frustrations somewhere else and disturb central America instead of kids in Holland. After Reagan you had Bush the first who I don’t remember besides the war with Iraq over Kuwait, I guess he left no impression and maybe that’s for the best and why he only stayed for one turn. Then there was flashy boy Clinton who also accomplished nothing beside showing what Americans are good in and that his hypocrisy. But for the rest I don’t know, for Europeans these so-called democrats are like what we call the right wing. The economy was booming but there was no improvement of (economic) justice. But when Bush the second stole the presidency I started paying attention. I remember Bush as a comedic figure and a puppet that, in mine opinion, should be locked up for mass murder together with his cronies. For me, America was becoming this big fat general that for some reason thinks it can bully the world. Imagine if Russia or Germany had military basis all over the world like America has, it’s crazy. I don’t mind America as a big power but with a little bit more intelligence please. Well, after comedic Bush and the decapitation of the economy we got Obama. Obama seems to me a genuine decent guy that was somewhat naïve in thinking he could do anything good in a country that still has one foot in the wild west. Because of his stalemate with congress his presidency was pretty disappointing to me. The thing that sticks in my memory is the killing with remote controlled drones, something a decent person would see as the first step in desensitizing warfare*. After Obama I thought that Clinton the second would win, and America would go on standing still like it is doing since the seventies. Bernie Sanders was off course in my eyes a good guy that was more genuine than all the other suits you see shuffling around in American politics, but I have my doubt if America is willing to change… And off course they won’t, they elected Trump. I don’t want to offend my American Family and friends any more, but I really start to doubt the general level of basic education in that country, it’s like you need lots of money to get a somewhat decent education over there. Americans are proud, like children of their new drawing, of their country and like to say that they live in the “land of the free”, or in other words: I don’t give a fuck about others. Bush might be a war criminal, but he could make fun of himself and that quality shows that he knows that we are all stupid and ignorant and trying. The Trump as president has nothing genuine or humble about him and that is the greatest crime you could do as a human being.
No one on earth has a user manual for living on planet earth. We are all figuring it out, and it’s ok if you think what that button does but that doesn’t say you know what that button does.
Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance. Confucius
Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance. George Bernard Shaw
The greatest enemy of progress is the illusion of knowledge. John Young
*After Vietnam, the people back home complained about the more than 50 000 deaths and that let to the first gulf war where mush more was accomplished with less cost. The problem is that the millions of Vietnamese that died will never be an argument for not going to war. Look at the second gulf war where there were also relative view casualties on the American side but several hundred thousand casualties among Iraqi civilians. If you have drones that fight for you, and you have only the cost of bullets that stops you from going to war, the chance is that there will be more wars.