Thursday, August 4, 2011

Jingoism and More About Why Japan is a Better Place to Live than the USA

My good friend, Andy in Akita (formerly Andy from San Francisco) recently posted and excellently written and succinct article talking about one of the true foibles of America today, namely jingoism, and comparing that with the peaceful attitude of the Japanese.

In spite of what many are going to reply, Andy's sentiments, while not usually put this well, are pretty much agreed upon by most ex-pat American's in this country that I have met.

This lack of aggressive nationalism, Andy says, makes Japan a better place to live... Here he cites one good example of USA jingoism that paints the USA as an extremely nationalistic country...  You won't hear any arguments from me:

The Olympic spirit is profoundly dead in America. Remember the Olympic oath, that the competitors are there to participate and the goal is not necessarily to win? But what is the reality? USA - USA - USA chanted out the wazoo. It's sickening, the epitome of jingoism.

On the contrary, Japan's women's soccer team just won the World Cup. Barely anyone here cares. Few people watched, perhaps due to the game being played in Germany and the time zone differences, perhaps because it was a woman's game and not a man's event, but my opinion is that people here are just less jingoistic so they don't care quite so much if Japanese people or teams win a sporting event. 
Sure, people here would probably enjoy seeing a Japanese person or team winning a sports event. The big difference is that Japanese people are far far less likely to act in a jingoistic manner about winning.

On the contrary, when the USA woman's soccer team won in their semi final game, they saluted the government's war jets as they streaked over the stadium. It looked like some propaganda film from Nazi Germany.

Surely, if, as Samuel Johnson says, "Patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels" (1775) then the USA has much more than her fair share of scoundrels. 

Read the rest at Andy's Japan Adventures Blogspot. If that link doesn't work, try this one:


Jimbo said...

Well to be fair, it is women's soccer. It's hard for anyone to get too excited about that outside of the players' families. And the USA would probably fly jets over a pie eating contest.(which it would invariably win)

The USA loves to show itself off while Japan is much more subdued in it's national pride. Yet another reason why Japan is better. :)

mike in tokyo rogers said...

There's a hilarious Twiiter account that is run by "Mahmoud Ahmadinejad" that I highly recommend. He once wrote something like:

"Great Satans! In order to deal with your obesity problem, perhaps you should enforce a 'No-Pie Zone'?"

Check it: @M_Ahmadinejad

Anonymous said...

"Aggressive nationalism" no doubt, it's a freaky thing.

Your blog post reminded me of this other blog post:

The 10 Commandments of the American Religion

"If I stand in the center of Times Square New York City and said something like “Moses didn’t part the Red Sea” or “Jesus never existed” everyone would just keep walking around me, ignoring what I said, etc. Whatever, they would be thinking, I have things to do, very important things that have to get done. And this guy is clearly crazy so not worth my time.

But if I stood there and said, “going to college is the worst sin you can force your kids to commit”, or “you should never vote again” or “World War II was not a holy war” or “never own a home again”, I would probably be lynched on the spot..."

And OMG, if you write those words on a comment section on the internet you will likely get flamed badly, a virtual internet lynching. People seem to me to be getting more and more ferocious lately.

However, I have noticed a decrease in the number of, "Support The Troops" yellow ribbon magnetic stickers on the cars in my area.

Most of the bumpers have no message. Devoid of thought, I think. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing, maybe they're mulling things over?

- clark

Mr. Blather said...

Just for the record, the team USA women have won the world cup twice and have never finished lower than third place.

I must have missed the parades and jet fly-overs.

mike in tokyo rogers said...

Unknown? Perhaps Unschooled would be a better moniker. Canada had it's genocide and, in spite of not being taught in schools, even the Canadian government has finally admitted it.
Telling the Untold Story of the Genocide of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada.
It is obvious also, that Uneducated hasn't ever been to Japan. He wrote, "waiting for the next order to fly their planes into ships and buildings"!!!?? So, when did the Japanese ever fly planes into buildings or are you referring to 9/11 (hint: supposedly those were middle easterners - but not sure!) It's obvious that Unschooled, Untraveled and Unawake has never left his little burg... Thank god. Let's hope he stays there. The rest of the world need educated, international minded people... Not Mr. Hick from under a rock.
Canadian genocide goes was before 1837. Look it up.

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