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You Americans....


Ken
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I was happy to hear Canada was sending aid for those affected by hurricane Katrina. What really fries my cheese though, is where is everyone else? Didn't you guys just lead the entire globe helping those affected by the tsunami? The following is old, dates back to the early '70's, but still as relevant. By a Canadian.

The Americans

written by Gordon Sinclair

The United States dollar took another pounding on German, French and British exchanges this morning, hitting the lowest point ever known in West Germany. It has declined there by 41% since 1971 and this Canadian thinks it is time to speak up for the Americans as the most generous and possibly the least-appreciated people in all the world.

As long as sixty years ago, when I first started to read newspapers, I read of floods on the Yellow River and the Yangtse. Well, Who rushed in with men and money to help? The Americans did, that's who.

They have helped control floods on the Nile, the Amazon, the Ganges and the Niger. Today, the rich bottom land of the Mississippi is under water and no foreign land has sent a dollar to help. Germany, Japan and, to a lesser extent, Britain and Italy, were lifted out of the debris of war by the Americans who poured in billions of dollars and forgave other billions in debts. None of those countries is today paying even the interest on its remaining debts to the United States.

When the franc was in danger of collapsing in 1956, it was the Americans who propped it up and their reward was to be insulted and swindled on the streets of Paris. And I was there. I saw that.

When distant cities are hit by earthquakes, it is the United States that hurries into help... Managua Nicaragua is one of the most recent examples. So far this spring, 59 American communities have been flattened by tornadoes. Nobody has helped.

The Marshall Plan... the Truman Policy... all pumped billions upon billions of dollars into discouraged countries. And now, newspapers in those countries are writing about the decadent war-mongering Americans.

I'd like to see one of those countries that is gloating over the erosion of the United States dollar build its own airplanes.

Come on... let's hear it! Does any other country in the world have a plane to equal the Boeing Jumbo Jet, the Lockheed Tristar or the Douglas 10? If so, why don't they fly them? Why do all international lines except Russia fly American planes? Why does no other land on earth even consider putting a man or a women on the moon?

You talk about Japanese technocracy and you get radios. You talk about German technocracy and you get automobiles. You talk about American technocracy and you find men on the moon, not once, but several times ... and safely home again. You talk about scandals and the Americans put theirs right in the store window for everybody to look at. Even the draft dodgers are not pursued and hounded. They are right here on our streets in Toronto, most of them... unless they are breaking Canadian laws... are getting American dollars from Ma and Pa at home to spend here.

When the Americans get out of this bind... as they will... who could blame them if they said 'the hell with the rest of the world'. Let someone else buy the bonds, let someone else build or repair foreign dams or design foreign buildings that won't shake apart in earthquakes.

When the railways of France, Germany and India were breaking down through age, it was the Americans who rebuilt them. When the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central went broke, nobody loaned them an old caboose. Both of them are still broke. I can name to you 5,000 times when the Americans raced to the help of other people in trouble.

Can you name to me even one time when someone else raced to the Americans in trouble? I don't think there was outside help even during the San Francisco earthquake.

Our neighbours have faced it alone and I am one Canadian who is damned tired of hearing them kicked around. They will come out of this thing with their flag high. And when they do, they are entitled to thumb their noses at the lands that are gloating over their present troubles.

I hope Canada is not one of these. But there are many smug, self-righteous Canadians. And finally, the American Red Cross was told at its 48th Annual meeting in New Orleans this morning that it was broke.

This year's disasters... with the year less than half-over... has taken it all and nobody... but nobody... has helped.

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I have been listening to the news a lot on the radio lately (I am a self admitted news junkie) and have heard that the following countries have offered help:

Venezuela! (they were 1st...)

Canada

England

Germany

France

Saudi Arabia

The thing that bugs me, but does not suprise me, is that the insurgent type people who we are having problems with in the mid east, have said that God had sent Hurricane Katrina. They even gave Katrina the rank of "Private" to Katrina in their Jihad Army. Whatever....

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Its a hoary old chestnut, this one. I'm convinced that regardless of wishes of populations, Governments don't give aid to other countries unless there is something in it for them. The old adage about the 'free lunch' rings true IMO. We as individuals give money with no calculated return, but Governments do not.

What probably gets up the noses of non-western countries is the scale of media attention given to this particular disaster, in comparison with disasters in their own countries that kill many more, but receive little attention from anybody. The 1000 people killed in Iraq recently when worshipers stampeded on a bridge fearing a suicide bomber springs to mind. Compare the amount of media coverage.... I'm in no way belittling(?) the effect of the hurricane on the (particularly poorer and less mobile) people of the deep south, just trying to understand why the perceived lack of support from other countries has happened.

Regards

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I don't know about the BBC, but the news here played the heck out of the stampede in Iraq, and that there will be a 3 day mourning period.

On a side note, an Iraqi version of "Idol" is getting ready to kick off on Iraqi TV. There will be no studio audience (too dangerous) but there will be an Iraqi version of Simon, Paula and Randy!

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It was a news item for a couple of days over here, with no mention I can recall of the 3 day mourning period. Perhaps Iraq is a bigger subject in the US than in the UK?

I got to thinking about the foreign aid question, and couldn't work out what other countries could do except express sympathy. Financial assistance would be a drop in the ocean to the US, and practical assistance would be impractical given the problem is immediate and requires helicopters to fly in food/water and fly people out to transit points. I wonder how quickly all the people trapped could be picked up if the thousands of helicopters in the US were 'requisitioned' Dunkirk style for a day or two?

Regards

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There is one thing a lot of people don't realize. It's fine for other countries to offer thier help. Wonderful in fact. The thing is, unless the US extends a formal plea for help(we have to ask for it)we are prohibited from accepting any. So no matter what the citizens think, no matter how much the legislators may want it, until the President makes a formal plea, thier will be no help from anyone. This was discussed on one of the news shows(I'm right there with you marc, with news)and I was really shocked. What the heck is wrong with Bush? I'm sure it's not his decision alone, but c'mon!

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Don't forget us Aussies! We may be small population wise, but we were there in Paris 1944, freeing the city alongside the Brits and Americans.

Australia has answered the call to arms numerous times and we have always stuck by the British and especially the Americans of late.

Edna, I can tell you that if the Americans did not get into the war, the Japanese would own Australia today. In Papua New Guinea, Australian troops were fighting the Japanese but were loosing on numbers. The Australian prime minister at the time drew an imaginary line from Brisbane across the top half of the country, and if the Japanese broke through the forces in New Guinea we would give them that half of the country and try to defend the bottom half. The Americans arrived and helped the Australians defeat the Japanese on the Kokoda Trail, stopping them from reaching the Australian mainland.

My grandfather was liberated from a Japanese prisoner of war camp in Burma by the Americans.

Americans are a great race of people and Australia would certainly be a sorry place without them.

We've sent aid to America before, for example, when bushfires were ripping through the country we sent our fire fighting experts as we have a lot of experience in this area.

So, in the words of the Little River Band (also Australian) Hang on...help is on its way.

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I am sorry, Katie for leaving out Australia, another good friend of the US :stars: They too deserve to be remembered.

NEWS UPDATE:

I have heard on the radio that the US will now accept some of the offers of aid from other countries. It is believed that someone told W that he should get over himself and accept what we need. Their reasoning is that if we can help everyone else who asks in their time of need, who are we to saw that we are better than them and do not need their help when we have need?

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"Bout dern time Marc!! This is Friday - 5 days later!! That's exactly how I felt, that W should just get over it. People are willing to help, accept it!

Thanks to you all, the countries chiming in! I have to agree with Harry Connick. It's tough hearing your own countrymen being called refugees. :crazy:

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WASHINGTON — In a turnabout, the United States is now on the receiving end of help from around the world as some two dozen countries offer post-hurricane assistance:

Russia

Japan

Canada

France

Honduras

Germany

Venezuela

Jamaica

Australia

United Kingdom

Netherlands

Switzerland

Greece

Hungary

Colombia

Dominican Republic

El Salvador

Mexico

China

Singapore

South Korea

Israel

United Arab Emirates

Sri Lanka

NATO

and the Organization of American States.

Heavily edited from a FOX News article, click here for the entire clip:

http://www.foxnews.com

Edited by Guest
dummy forgot the link
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Castro offered 1100 doctors today . Cuba may not have much , but I've long heard it's quality of medicine was top-notch .There's a lot of potential for good here, if this announcement is sincere , but I wonder how this offer will go over , however .

Edited by Guest
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The Australian Government today has announced a donation of $10 million to assist the victims of Hurricane Katrina in the United States. The funds will go to the American Red Cross which is at the forefront of assisting those displaced and left homeless by the tragedy.

As announced yesterday, the Government is also sending a small team of emergency management specialists who will work through our Embassy to identify areas where Australian assistance can be most effective.

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I've always thought that alot of the world looks at us like we are sooooo wealthy, we don't need help.

I may be wrong, but let's say you lived down the street from the Gates' or the Trumps' and say a tree falls through the roof of one of their many, many... MANY rooms, would you send them a check? Probably not. But out of courtesy, you might at least show concern for their situation.

In addition, what about the media, the AMERICAN MEDIA (yes, a whole topic on it's own) oh how they spin, edit, paint-the-picture how they want it with the news.

Are we hearing/reading everything that is said or printed?

As an American, I am become increasingly uneasy with the image we represent world-wide. I drive to work in my li'l Honda and see humungous Expedition, Esclades and bohemoth rigs, hey, I don't care if you have money to fill those 50 gallon tanks... what about "conservation". Look at what we waste and throw away... I could go on and on... It's time we stop being America and start being people again. Just ordinary people. We think we own the whole damn world, and we don't. We are too egotistical, self-righteous. We are becoming too big for our britches, so to speech. All this does it create more of a gap between us and everyone else.

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I've always thought that alot of the world looks at us like we are sooooo wealthy, we don't need help.

I may be wrong, but let's say you lived down the street from the Gates' or the Trumps' and say a tree falls through the roof of one of their many, many... MANY rooms, would you send them a check? Probably not. But out of courtesy, you might at least show concern for their situation.

In addition, what about the media, the AMERICAN MEDIA (yes, a whole topic on it's own) oh how they spin, edit, paint-the-picture how they want it with the news.

Are we hearing/reading everything that is said or printed?

As an American, I am become increasingly uneasy with the image we represent world-wide. I drive to work in my li'l Honda and see humungous Expedition, Esclades and bohemoth rigs, hey, I don't care if you have money to fill those 50 gallon tanks... what about "conservation". Look at what we waste and throw away... I could go on and on... It's time we stop being America and start being people again. Just ordinary people. We think we own the whole damn world, and we don't. We are too egotistical, self-righteous. We are becoming too big for our britches, so to speech. All this does it create more of a gap between us and everyone else.

Standing up and thoroughly applauding Mike. As long as there are people like him in this world, and I suspect there are many, there is always hope for humanity.

Ken.

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