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The Ugly American

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Hello everyone my name is Andy Marsh and I’m an ugly American. This is part of the 12 step program that I’ve decided to put myself through after being called an ugly American the other day on this very site. It was revealed to me that I’m an ugly American after responding to a post about who the rest of the world thinks should be my president. Being the sensitive man of the new millennium that I am, this deeply hurt my feelings. I’ll give you a little background and lay down my thoughts on this issue and then you can decide if I am indeed, an ugly American.

I’m a Jersey kid that spent most of his school years in a Catholic school. I joined the U.S. Navy when I was 17 and spent the next 20 years defending my country in a relatively peaceful world. I was stateside for most of Desert Storm, so I was never involved in any conflicts in any of my time in the Navy. The only “action” I saw in 20 years was in 1993 when Husseins’ plot to assassinate the president was discovered and the ship I was stationed on at the time fired 14 Tomahawk missiles into downtown Baghdad to blow up the Iraqi intelligence center.

One quick not on that cruise: My job was security team leader for a boarding party. It was our job to board merchant ships bound for Aqaba, Jordan and inspect their cargo to determine if they were carrying anything to Iraq that was not on the approved UN list. I spent my days attempting to communicate with people of many different nationalities and I feel it was actually one of the most rewarding experiences I had in my 20 years. On one Russian freighter they were watching the movie Hot Shots with Charlie Sheen (dubbed in Russian) and actually asked me if that’s the way the US Navy really was! I laughed and said “of course!”

I am now “retired” from the USN and work in the technology industry as an instructor. Oh yeah, I’m a registered Independent. I tend not to vote down party lines. I don’t believe in the philosophy of ‘my country, right or wrong.’ Enough about me.

Anyway, there have been some articles written lately about polls taken in various other countries and who they think we as Americans should choose as our next president. I’m not sure how scientific these polls are, or what segments of the populations of these various other countries were actually polled, but for the most part, it seems, that the rest of the world wants John Kerry to be our president. What got me in trouble, or at least got someone to call me an Ugly American, along with a few other choice names, was when I asked why I should give a damn what the rest of the world thinks about who should be our president.

I have several reasons for thinking this way. First and foremost, I don’t really care what the rest of the world thinks about who should be my president. It’s one of those stones and glass houses kind of things. They can’t run their own countries, they shouldn’t be telling us how to run ours. That’s what probably makes me the ugly American. I mean, I don’t care who their presidents or prime ministers or premiers are so why should they care who I pick? Yeah, yeah, superpower and all that nonsense, I know, I know.

Second, I don’t read foreign newspapers, so I have no idea how politically biased they are and which way they “lean”. I know how bad the press is in this country, so I can only imagine what it’s like in the rest of the world. I have had the opportunity to see some news shows in foreign lands and they usually tend to be pretty anti-American. Some of them even have their respective governments looking over their shoulders to make sure they only print the current party line.

Third, I have been around the world and I can say this with a clear conscience: There is no better place on the planet than the good ole’ US of A! I have traveled to just about every country that has an ocean border and I know what I’ve seen everywhere else. I know that sounds extremely arrogant and I’m not going to apologize for it. I don’t want the things they have in other countries. I don’t want socialized medicine. I don’t want a state recognized religion. I don’t want part of my country having one recognized language while the rest of it speaks another (although that may already be happening). I don’t want even more of my money going to the government for BS social programs. I could go on, but you get the point. We’re not perfect, but you know what? we are the best thing since sliced bread!

Some will say that this is the attitude that caused the crimes against all of humanity on September 11, 2001. I say that’s BULLSHIT! Sorry for the language, but there really is no other word for that statement. These fanatics did what they did for some quantity of virgins (I don’t remember the number) wait until they find out it was Virginians!

Finally, I’ll say this (hooray, long winded bastard is gonna shut up). Like I said before, I have traveled the globe and I’ve always tried to be very respectful to the people of the countries I visited. The one thing I never did while I was there was tell them how I thought they should run their country or who I thought should be their next leader. I don’t think they should try to tell us how to run ours.

Am I an “ugly American”?

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About Andy Marsh

  • http://www.rodneywelch.blogspot.com/ Rodney Welch

    I think you’re a very long-winded American.

  • http://eclaire.wsmcafe.com Claire Robinson

    You are NOt an Ugly American…welcome Andy to your first post…and it was a good one. I agree with you. I don’t frankly, give a flying **** who the citizens of France think our next President should be. They have THEIR best interests at the core of their opinions, not ours.

    Sounds like you are a pretty reasonable guy…with a wealth of experience.

    I have appreciated your comments on my posts, and look forward to many more of yours.

    Claire

  • andy marsh

    Rodney – I’ll try to keep them shorter in the futer…but I just kept addin to this one whileI was waiting to post it…it kept gettin longer and longer…

    Claire – Thank you for the compliments, you are to kind. I’m sure others will agree with that statement!

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    I can’t figure out why, if an American votes for Bush honestly thinking that he is the only one who’ll act in favor of American interests, he’s called an “ugly” American.

    The “ugly American” used to be the culturally insensitive jackass you’d see in the shops of a foreign country, hollering, “What? What do you mean you don’t accept American money here?”

    Now it’s been extended to anybody who votes the wrong way. How convenient!

  • SFC Ski

    Don’t listen to Rodney, that column was just fine.

    Might I add “Amen Brother!”? Uncle Sugar has sent me all over this planet, and for that I am eternally grateful. I am a much wiser man because of the travels I have taken, voluntarily or not.

  • andy marsh

    Mark – One of the comments that started me thinking about this whole thing was about going to Germany and ordering a budweiser. I totally disagree with that of course, I’m not a bud kinda guy!

    Thanks Ski – I did reread it a few times and I think that’s exactly why I put the comment in the piece about being long winded. And I to feel very fortunate to have travelled the globe, like you not always of my own free will.

  • Eric Olsen

    very fine job Andy, excellent introduction to yourself and your perspective. Thanks and welcome!

  • andy marsh

    Thank you, Sir!

  • SFC Ski

    “going to Germany and ordering a budweiser.”

    Here in Germany, you can get a real Bud, from Budowiece, Czech Republic. I t is about 1000% better than American swill.

    Sure, you can find more than a couple of ugly Americans over here, but many more American servicemembers that I know love the overseas tour, and learn the language, and get out on the economy.

    Question: How many of the non-mil critics have spent more than a month outside the US? For what reason?

  • Shark

    You forgot to list your “turn-ons”.

    …zzzzzzzzzzz…

  • andy marsh

    I’ll get my turn ons in the next one for you shark.

    Unlike some others on here and I won’t mention any names, I am not embarrassed to let you know exactly who I am. I use my full name and figured I’d share a little history with you. Maybe help you understand my perspective.

    But hey, I’d be pissed if my parents named me shark too!!!

  • Eric Olsen

    I spent about 6 weeks in Japan in ’79 with a study group from college, and I spent about 5 weeks in Spain in ’92 around the Barcelona Olympics. Those are my only extended stays. I learned a lot and enjoyed both trips immensely, but I was also very happy to go home.

  • andy marsh

    It’s always good to come home!!!

  • Claire Robinson

    I am so gratified to see so many comments on your first piece, Andy. It makes me wonder if I shouldn’t have done an introduction to myself….good instincts…and good piece…

    Claire

  • andy marsh

    I am feeling all the love here at blogcritics…ain’t life grand???

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    SFC SKI: “Here in Germany, you can get a real Bud, from Budowiece, Czech Republic. I t is about 1000% better than American swill.”

    I was actually thinking about the Czech Budweiser when I read Andy’s comment. It’s available here in England too. Though, believe it or not, I’ve seen many Englishmen downing American Buds in pubs.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Oh yes, good debut, Andy. Good to have you here. And your debut was considerably more welcoming than mine was.

  • andy marsh

    It’s early yet Mark…I think, and I say this lovingly, the nuts, just haven’t fallen from the tree yet…but I’m hoping!

  • Sean

    I wonder if the citizens of other countries spend quite so much time meditating on how people from other nations percieve them.

    Is this a sign of mental health or narcissism?

  • Sean

    go ahead and make that “perceive”

  • andy marsh

    Sean…I’d say it’a a mental health issue…but hey…I’m freakin crazy!!! what do I know!!!

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    I have spent literally HOURS in Canada at the Boblo Island Amusement Park when I was a young lad. Great stuff. Canada is great, if only you could first euthanize all the Canadians…

    (Just Kidding!)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    Oh, and I’ve gone on a fishing trip to Goat Lake in Ontario as well. Super place, if you’re a survivalist-type who enjoys dysentery and frequent bear attacks…

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    So, another Blogcritic without a blog, eh? Pathetic.

  • andy marsh

    No blog..just lot’s of opinions. Nice to meet you too.

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    So, why are you defrauding the public by pretending to be a blogger, Andy?

  • andy marsh

    I’ve never pretended to be a blogger…I’ve only pretended to have opinions.

  • andy marsh

    But you Diva, don’t seem very open to anyones opinion but your own. Of course, I’m just a fraud, but you know what? I did ask nicely.

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    Bloggers worth their salt work hard on their blogs, Andy. For you to just wander in here off a virtual street corner and fake being a blogger insults our hard work. I may be the first one to confront you directly, but your contemptuous behavior has been noted in communications among members. We realize that Eric Olsen should be the one to prevent nonbloggers from joining. But, it would also help if you had the respect for yourself and others that would preclude passing yourself off as a blogger, which you are not.

    And, no, running out and founding a blog is not sufficient. There is a learning process. If I ran a group blog, I would not consider anyone who had been at it for less than three months.

  • andy marsh

    Well then, Teach me dear Lady!!! Teach me what opinions I’m supposed to have.

    And like you said, if Eric didn’t want me here, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be here.

  • andy marsh

    I have noticed that you sure do think pretty highly of yourself…

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    Indeed, too highly to try to perpetuate the public fraud you are trying to pull off. You must have really low self-esteem, Andy. There is no out. You are not a blogger and you should not be pretending to be one.

  • andy marsh

    I get the feeling you don’t like me!!!

  • andy marsh

    You know what? I don’t even know what a blog really is…I know that I found this place and I liked some of the things I read and wanted to argue about some others. It’s been a lot of fun

    I’ve been called some crazy names and I’ve had some nice things said about the bullshit I believe. I think my opinion is relevant. And I happen to agree with everything I say. most of the time. I’ve even apologized for being a dick once or twice.

    But hey, we can let the people decide.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    If you’re a BlogCritic, you really should have your own personal Blog. Even if you don’t post there much…

    That being said, MD doesn’t like you because you are conservative. That’s the only reason. Don’t bother taking offense.

  • Eric Olsen

    like others before him, Andy demonstrated his abilities and commitment making comments, I have no doubt he will establish a blog of his own shortly

  • andy marsh

    Eric, thank you for your support. I am in the process of creating one right now.

    And because of your support I WILL CONTINUE TO RUN MY MOUTH!!!

    Diva, if i knew how to stick out my tongue on line, I would..it’s something like this isn’t it?….:p

    HA!!!

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    Some of the people who emailed me about this blatant fraud were not liberals. In regard to Andy’s content, they were more concerned that it is so pedestrian and that he is obviously manic. He dominates the comments so completely that visitors will think his less than informative comments are all there is. ‘All Andy, all the time.’ But, the thing that unites the complaints is that this is the most blatant example of someone showing up and ignoring even basic rules since your arrival, RJ Elliott. (For those not in the know, RJ did not have a blog when he arrived and barely has one now.)

    It is true that the people who abuse the requirement of having a blog often to seem to be what some have referred to as “freepoids.” Another recent example would be True Focus. But, if someone drops in from IndyMedia doing the same thing, I will respond the same way.

    As for Eric, he has demonstrated time and again that he could not care less that much of the content of the site is utterly mindless. If he could post the alphabet over and over again and link it to multiple Amazon ads, I believe he would do it. He sends me email asking if I will consider editing the numbskulls he invites to participate. The answer is absolutely not.

  • Shark

    Tough crowd and a real tough criteria:

    A blog?

    Wow.

    A monkey with a keyboard can start a friggin’ “blog”. I refer you to millions of them as evidence. That’s like saying you can’t get your own TV show unless you can write your name in the snow.

    (Well, okay, that might be hard for the gals in the bunch, but you get the picture, eh…?)

    Anyway, Andy, I enjoyed your ‘bio’. I’m sure it’s all true — and I welcome your contributions; it’s always great to know what a 12 -year-old Chimpanzee might think about politics and world events.

    Just sign off the modem before returning to your cage.

    xxoo
    Shark

  • andy marsh

    You know diva…I may be manic…as you say…but you’re just bitter…

    Do you ever get any???

    And I can just see now how you would edit the conservative or moderate opinions that show up around here…probably with the delete key…

  • andy marsh

    Thank you Shark…I always enjoy reading what you have to say also.

  • Claire Robinson

    I’m basically ignoring all the comments on this but one, which I take exception to. A blog is a web journal. Its content is not dictated by the intelligencia, it is feelings, thoughts, opinions, critiques, art and DRIVEL, if that is the style of the blogger. I think Andy did a fine job of introducing himself and will make valuable contributions.

    If you diss his as not being a blog, then you must also include mine in that. My “journal” on my site isn’t always relevant to the world, it is rarely anything but my thoughts…I do that elsewhere. I enjoyed getting to know him, and look forward to what I know are considered opinions (whether I agree with them or not)….

    Claire

  • SFC Ski

    “As for Eric, he has demonstrated time and again that he could not care less that much of the content of the site is utterly mindless. ” But you, MD, are that one shining diamond in a mountain of shit, thanks for being there for me.

  • Eric Olsen

    my nefarious scheme to foist drivel on the world has been found out: I am the Ugly American

  • andy marsh

    Eric…Shouldn’t you have finished that with a recitation of the alphabet???

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    Claire, Andy does not have anything. Nothing. Zilch. It is not a question of good blog/bad blog. It is a matter of no blog. He just wandered in from a virtual street corner. I have read your blog. You demean it by comparing it to nothing.

    Blogcritics asks very little of members. (At least for those of us who ignore the pitches for money.) The very least a person can do is not violate the most basic requirement. Andy was free to express his opinions (endlessly, unfortunately) in Comments. To try to pass himself off as a blogger is just plain wrong.

    Furthermore, there is nothing wrong with being a commenter. I was one for months before I became a blogger.

  • http://eclaire.wsmcafe.com Claire Robinson

    by SFC:

    “As for Eric, he has demonstrated time and again that he could not care less that much of the content of the site is utterly mindless. ” But you, MD, are that one shining diamond in a mountain of shit, thanks for being there for me.

    I disagree with your assessment of Eric’s judgment, for surely he would have never accepted me, I am sure I fall in the “mindless” category you suggest. I agree that Mac is a valuable and considered contributor.

    Claire

  • curt

    hey andy,
    looks like the honeymoon’s over.

  • andy marsh

    There was a honeymoon??

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “(For those not in the know, RJ did not have a blog when he arrived and barely has one now.)”

    That, as usual, is a lie. I have had a Blog for well over two years. And I have been a member of BC.org for under two years.

    In other words, I had a Blog well before I became a BlogCritic.

    Got any more lies for us, MD?

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “Do you [Mac Diva] ever get any???”

    Well, she’s

    S T I L L

    S I N G L E

    if you’re interested… 😉

  • andy marsh

    Shame on us RJ…for we are not worthy!!!

  • http://don'thaveone Dee marsh

    Was just wondering why no one ever mentions the crap that the immediate family goes through while you guys are pumping out your proud chests, like a rooster about all that you do for your country while serving in the military, Ya know, the wife and kids that stick it out with you for 20 years. Wheres our medals of honor. Don’t you think we bite our nails while you’re in dangerous situations during war time? Travel the world, see the sights, have some beers with the buddies,…….not a bad gig.