Monday, July 7, 2014

All My Stuff is Here


"Okay, so it's a deal.  We keep the colonies, but we'll send you Madonna.  You can have football, but we're gonna call it soccer.  That's okay, though, because nobody will watch it.
Now...I hate to ask this, who gets France?  Oh, efff.  Hey, what if we give them Jerry Lewis?"
    On Independence Day (I don't prefer to call it the "4th of July" because every country has the 4th of July), Pickleope wrote a very entertaining post called "Give Me Freedom or Give Me Pickles." In it, he castigated those who would wrap themselves in the American flag under the guise of patriotism.  To him, this was a ridiculous way of saying, "My country can beat up your country. Nyah, nyah, nyah!"  Or something like that.

    Far be it from me to hawk his (or her-did we ever figure that
Tell you what...when you figure that out,
let me know what I am."
out?) post, but if you haven't already, go ahead and check it out.  He/she (whatever) also mentions pickles so it's worth a look.  I mean, c'mon...pickles!!


    I agree with the esteemed Pickleope that there are those who blindly wrap themselves in the flag and who do think they're better than anyone else.  If you don't believe me, watch NASCAR or a Larry the Cable Guy special.
"'Murica."
    Oh, my, that was a gross stereotype.  How 'bout a Boston Pops concert?  They're probably there, too. 

"Hahahahahahaha...that's hilarious!
Hey!  What's that black dude doing here?"
    But, where I disagree is that I am a patriot who loves his country, but not blindly.  And certainly not from a "my country, may she always be in the right.  But, my country, right or wrong."  standpoint.  Okay, I'm paraphrasing, but I didn't feel like looking it up.  This is what's known as "lazy."

 
Yep, more than this.
But this is enough.
  The United States certainly has its share of warts over the course of its history.  The US hasn't been perfect by any stretch.  I know this and readily acknowledge this.  By the way, Pickle (may I call you Pickle?), spot on about Washington and the Revolutionary War.


    But, I do love my country.  And, by my "country,"  I mean my family, friends, and the good people who live here.  I don't mean our government.  They're just a bunch of empty suits pandering to this special interest or that.

"Oh, yeah?  Well, you suck!
Plus, I got more action than you did.  Winning!"
"You suck."
    
For every Obama, there was a Bush.  Suffice to say there are weasels on both sides of the aisle.  But, since I don't want to get drawn into a long tiresome debate, let's try people who've been dead almost 200 years...for every John Adams, there was a Thomas Jefferson.
"Who's getting some action??"
   That being said, I'll tell you this....I'll bet that had I been born in another country, I would have loved it too.

Exhibit:  A
    Because of my time in the Navy, I have traveled to many lands.  I've even lived in one-Iceland.  I've found good people there and something positive about each.  Of course, I've also met some real scumbags and seen some awful things.  Then again, I could say the same thing about the New Jersey Shore.
Yeah, even Spain.
They were probably Red Sox fans, so it's cool.

    

There isn't one that I wouldn't like to visit again.

    To sum up, I'm proud to be an American.  

    But, I sincerely hope you're proud to be British, Australian, Canadian, Mexican, French (no, really), and New Zealanderish, too.

    Oh yeah, I also hope you're proud to be Russian.

    I see "Russia" on my "Audience" stats a lot and I don't want to hack you guys off.   
"Here's lookink at you, Al.
24 hours a day."

    Tell Pickleope I said "Hi!"

34 comments:

  1. Clap, Clap, Clap, Clap!!! (Hey I spelled them all correctly without looking!)

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    1. Not nearly as erudite and scholarly as your essays on the War to End All Wars, but thanks!!

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  2. :-)

    You and me both, baby.

    Pearl

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    1. I wish we could all find common ground.
      Maybe what we need is a good old fashioned invasion from outer space to pull us together, huh?

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  3. Amen!
    I often wonder when I hear people say that America is the greatest country in the world. How do they know? Have they lived in all of them?
    It's good to love your country, but be realistic.

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    1. I think Pickleope put it best: accident of birth. People who were born in Mozambique probably think Mozambique is the greatest country on Earth.
      Hope it's drying out where you are!!

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    2. The rain last night totally missed here and I may have a chance of walking in the garden without having to walk across boards.

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    3. Thank goodness for that, huh?

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  4. Your post reminds me of a quote from Samuel Johnson: Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel. I think about this line when I hear politicians wrapping themselves in the flag while voting to cut spending for our injured warriors. I'm a firm believer in my country when right, and when wrong to be put right. So glad you're posting again. Take care.

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    1. I think certain people, when they want to turn off discussion, accuse their opponent of not being patriotic. I firmly believe patriotism is shown by what's inside, not by what you wear on your lapel. And true patriotism is fixing what's wrong.

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  5. As you may remember, my husband was born in Portugal. Long after he was a legal resident (they cam here legally, he met and married a citizen, then divorced 8 years later) he chose to become a naturalized citizen of this country. Why? Because he loved it and all it's flaws. One of his biggest pet peeves is when other Portuguese people come into the PO, spouting off about how terrible this and that is about this country and how the mother land is so great. His question... why don't they go back then. Oddly, they never have an answer.

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    1. Portugal will always have a soft spot in my heart. Not because of the wine (although there is that), but because that's where Al Penwasser was "born" (well, in the Azores which is part of Portugal, after all). I loved the Azores.

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    2. The "real" Portuguese will tell you that it's not. :) Kind of like Puerto Ricans saying they are Americans. They are Azorians first, Portuguese second. :) Drives Tony CRAZY. It's rare to find anyone around here that is from Lisbon, most immigrated from the islands.

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    3. That's really what I thought about the Azores. It was a beautiful place, though (presumably still is).

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  6. The Russians are in your stats because they're would-be hackers. I was raised (by a military man) to love my country and not bad-talk the President in public; however, I have no problem saying that we can do better. What the hell is with this Hobby Lobby crap? It opens us up to all sorts of potential garbage. I'm very fond of Pickleope, who is extremely intelligent. I can answer the he or she question, but I shan't. It's something you must learn on your own to become a Jedi Master. Or whatever.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. So the Russians aren't coming to Penwasser Place for hilarious comedic commentary (if so, they're probably disappointed). Huh.
      Hobby Lobby.....oh my, there's a ball of yarn which is going to unravel into all sorts of problems.

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    2. I don't think Hobby Lobby wants anyone discussing "balls" (of yarn or otherwise) on their behalf. :)

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  7. haha yeah the so called elected are nothing but bimbos for the special interest group. An updated version of the blow up doll or wind up toy.

    The blind are the ones I flip off. Oh my country is so great it beats every other country on the planet. Don't care if they are american, canadian or russian. The blind patriotism nuts can choke themselves with their flag for all I care. The rest are fine at my lair.

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    1. I'll let you in something....the friendliest folks I ever met in four trips to the Mediterranean were French! Yep, I met Nathalie, Chantal, and their mom when my ship visited Marseilles. It was NOTHING like you think; they were like sisters to me and even sent my kids Christmas presents. Friends are people you haven't met. Even if they speak with an accent.

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  8. That's how I feel about patriotism. I can love my country, but I don't have to love my government. I don't. I hold my country up to it's mistakes. Like creating America.

    I kid, I kid. I love America too.

    What I don't like are people who blindly support everything their leaders do, or every action their country takes. There are people who blindly support war and blowing the shit out of everything. Those are the people I'm not big fans of. Love your country all you want, but don't shove your president's dick down my throat thanks.

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    1. War...what is it good for?
      I hear nothing.

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  9. Ben Franklin was probably more of a womanizer than Jefferson.

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    1. Probably?
      Old dude was a horn dog and a horrible husband to poor Deborah. He's lionized here in Philadelphia, but he certainly wasn't perfect.

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  10. You can call me whatever you want, you commendable man, you. "Pickle", "Lope", "Internet Idiot", "Magnificent Nimrod", whatever you want to call me after such a thoughtful response that actually echoes my thoughts. You have a nuanced view and thus, I agree with you.

    There are different types of patriots. I was using the broad stroke of the term "patriotism", referring to the overarching stereotype of people who cry when they sing that Toby Keith song about "putting a boot in your ass 'cause it's the American way," mainly because "jingoism" isn't as readily understandable a term, and many people who are jingoists call themselves patriots in order to use their flag and pride to thinly camouflage their xenophobia.

    That doesn't mean I'm backing off my point that patriotism is strange. What happens to those whose countries disappear overnight? What about those Ukrainians who were proud to be Ukrainians until they suddenly became Russians? Should they stop being patriotic Ukrainians and start being patriotic Russians? (I'm just trying to help you drive page views here.)

    I see your point too. People should like where they live, the people by whom they live adjacent and within the same abode. Otherwise, why live there? Fighting for and being proud of your community is understandable and commendable. When that extends to being so proud that you end up hating other communities and considering other communities as sub-communities, is where patriotism mutates into jingoism.

    Reading your retort, I believe you and I are on the same page, I truly do. Our source of friction is a minor quibble over terminology. I enjoy a thoughtful and reasoned disagreement. Thank you for that.

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    1. Growing up, we had neighbors who were Ukrainian (presumably still are). Even though The Ukraine (I think that's like saying "The Batman") was part of the Soviet Union, they always considered themselves Ukrainian. I never met any Russians, unfortunately. That I know of.
      "Jingoism"-that's PRECISELY the word I thought of! And I personally don't like that Toby Keith song.

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  11. If Putin isn't the source of all your Russian blog hits, he should be. I haven't ever seen him smile until he toasted to you, Al.

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    1. I hear he's really a cuddly guy. Like that dude in the Peanut M&Ms commercial.
      "I have no idea what you're sayin', but count me in!"

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  12. I'm all for patriotism as long as it doesn't blind us to the wrong-doings of our own governments. And by the way, as a UK citizen I'd just like to remind you that we leased the US to you guys, so make sure you look after it, otherwise we wont return your deposit!

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  13. All the great Americans I admired are dead, including Neil Armstrong and Evel Knievel. Only Meadowlark Lemon remains, and I don't know if he's in good health. Could you check up on him for me?

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  14. Does drinking Sam Adams count for patriotism?
    Bummer on the Russian thing. I thought they were reading my crap too. At the very least I thought some vodka soaked bimbo was sizing me up for a mail order spouse.

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  15. I just want to say thank you for making me laugh till I coughed and cough to I wet my pants thank you so much for that

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  16. Like a dutiful follower, I went over to see Pickleope, and liked what I saw! Though I didn't have quite the same reaction as Jo-Anne, I enjoyed your patriotic post as well! Robyn's right. Any guy that can put a smile on Putin's face is worth his weight in pickles!

    Julie

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  17. I love my country! But...
    I don't like a lot of the things my country does, I hate our political process, I hate the radicals in our political parties, I hate the huge gap between the rich and the rest of the country, I hate that most people think that everybody else wants to be like us.

    What I hate most are the bastards who scammed us into believing that if South Vietnam falls to the communists, then all of South East Asia would fall, and more.

    I hate the bastards who scammed us into supporting our "war" in Iraq.

    I hate the bastards who have somehow convinced most people that it is unpatriotic to not support those wars. These are the same people who get rich off of war. NOBODY should get rich off of our young men and women dying.

    I'm sorry that is so dis-jointed, but I don't have the time right now to do a proper rant.

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