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Dizzy says Barack Obama will become an equal hate figure but I say not

Dizzy, of Dizzy Thinks fame, recently made an interesting prediction, concerning the attitude of Brits towards the USA:

If Barack Obama becomes President-Elect next week, don’t expect any of the snide anti-american Brits, Aussie and others to change their tune. They’ve had a hate figure in Bush for the past eight years, and I don’t doubt that Barack Obama will become an equal hate figure within a short amount time.

I do doubt this. I think that much anti-Americanism is really anti- a particular part of America, and this hatred is felt with equal strength by other parts of America. President Bush, after all, is not only hated in Britain. Many Americans hate him too. And Obama is from a very different part of America to the part that gave us President Bush. Obama is from one of the parts that hates President Bush.

I recall the Clinton years. Had the (very large) part of Britain that now hates Bush wanted to hate Clinton, it would have had at least as much to work with as it has had with Bush. But it didn’t want to hate Clinton, and it didn’t. Likewise, it won’t want to hate Obama, and it won’t.

Well, we shall probably soon see.

43 comments to Dizzy says Barack Obama will become an equal hate figure but I say not

  • Bod

    Not sure, Brian. You may have a point. If Obama sets out by enacting some policies that are familiar to Brits, such as

    wall-to-wall surveillance cameras in all urban areas
    intrusive policing
    bureaucratization of health services
    mandating bad dental treatment
    appointing ad-men to his publicity office
    cozying up to third world kleptocrats

    I think he’d succeed in wooing the British population, becuase let’s face it, the US would then look just like home.

    Admittedly, some of that stuff’s already in place, but the proletariat are still resisting.

  • slick

    What kind of pathetic losers HATE leaders of others ountries (or their own)? Hate is such a strong thing. It’s poison. I think all these haters have severe problems having little or nothing to do with the people they hate. They may not have overtly hated Clinton (though I recall plenty of anti-Americanism during the Clinton years as well – though to be fair not nearly the level it is now), but there was plenty of hate nonetheless. As a Canadian, I did not like many of Bush’s policies, and many of the things he did, but I never hated the man or the Republicans. Never occurred to me to HATE.

    People who get so wound up over things that really don’t even effect them have issues unrelated to the target. They are scapegoating. I think that THAT is a much more important issue than anything the POTUS does. What a sour, cynical, hate-filled planet we are turning into. Welathier than ever before, yet unhappier than ever before, and intolerant of others. Very troubling.

  • Thomass

    They may not hate Obama, but they’ll still hate the US in general.

  • Bod

    Oh, slick, you’ll even see that kind of hate expressed even here from time to time. It’s usually very specifically directed.

    But coining a term used much by the american left, ‘low information voters’ become indoctrinated into these behaviors very easily. It’s human nature. The big problem I suspect isn’t hate per se but more a form of neotribalism. When you can spend 3 hours in the evening with your kulturbruden fretting over the indignities the tribe from the other side of the river have visited upon you time and time again, it’s easy to fall prey to demogogues who now, courtesy of the internet, have hitherto undreamed of access to willing, malleable brains.

    It’s all rather depressing really. Makes one pine for someone to – you know – control what people say and get people to be nicer to each other. 🙂

  • Bod

    Yeah, Thomass, I think you’re basically right. I emigrated to the US during the 90’s and I remember a lot of people asking why I’d want to go to the US.

    Despite the wall being down, there was still the view that the US would have just abandoned Europe if the Russians advanced thru’ the Fulda Gap, or that they’d just pulverize Eastern Germany with tac nukes, and that all Britain was being used for was as a firing platform, and that Americans were just crass moneygrabbers anyway, and barely better than the French. All nonsense of course, mostly spouted by ignoramouses who thought a vacation in Benidorm made them international jetsetters – but those *were* the people on the Clapham Omnibus.

    And who can forget the way Luck and Flaw egged on the public with Spitting Image. Oh no, BDS is ADS. America Derangement Syndrome, but I think it’s envy for the most part. Utter joy when the dollar is falling vs the pound because it shows those Americans are taking one in the pants, as they deserve, utter dislike when the dollar roars back because the WTO won’t let the UK impose trade barriers. It’s not healthy, but there’s a significant baseline hatred of the Former Colony.

    So, cultural envy, I think, but it’s unrelated to US foreign policy.

  • lucklucky

    The hard left will always hate America. But the mainstream left hates America only when there is a Republican there. Clinton & Gore could bomb Serbia, lob missiles to every place, sign Iraq Liberation Act, say that Iraq was in path to aquire nuclear capability and cumplicity with terrorism that mainstream left will follow him to the end of the world. Bush could save thousands to Malaria, implement No children left behind, destroy one of worse dictatorship in the world, get rid of the regime that killed more muslims in late XX Century and another that murdered homossexuals and womens that the Mainstream Left will hate him forever.

    Since the mainstream left are those that rule the Mainstream Media expect loft of softball and silence.

  • milo

    I agree totally with Bod… I left a message concurring with Dizzy… but it’s purely envy. I’m an ex-pat Brit who lives in the US with a slight diversion to Germany… Clinton wasn’t that well liked (counter the NYT) while I was in Germany, though I was always given an extensive list of goodies to bring back from my next trip to LA… I’ve come to the conclusion that all the wild projections about the US (notwithstanding there are always valid, reasoned differences) seem to me to be projections of what the “spouter” would do if they were in power. It pains me to say that the anti-war rally I’ll march on will be when one single American soldier is asked to risk his life to fix any future European conflict.

  • TSOL

    Obama is from the America-hating (i.e. self-hating) part of America.

  • newscaper

    I just wonder what the late noght talk show hosts will do. Leno is non-stop McCain bashing as well as Letterman.

    It’s pretty bizarre that SNL of all people finally started being a little more equal opportunity with the barbs.

    When (if) Obama’s in the comics will be desperate for material — anything satirizing that’s innocuous enough to be totally immune to getting smeared as racist by the usual suspects will be thin gruel indeed.

  • DensityDuck

    I also disagree. They won’t hate Obama; they’ll just keep on hating Bush. Anything that goes wrong during Obama’s Presidency? Well, that’s just fallout from Bush. Obama does something awful? Well, he HAD to do it that way because of how badly Bush screwed it up. Obama calls for infanticide and immediate submission to the Caliphate? Well, it’s ABOUT TIME, we’d have been there YEARS ago if it hadn’t been for Bush!

  • guy herbert

    It seems unlikely Obama or McCain could be an equal figure of hate with George W Bush. The international received wisdom of the left has been to hate Bush even before he was elected. This was fixed in the culture in the course of his narrow victory in the 2000 election. There is a well-established anti-Americanism in a lot of places, but I don’t think that is wholly independent either of personalities or of American policies.

    I imagine either of the current candidates could be a better president than Bush from my point of view, based on my dislike of specific Bush administration policies. (I quite liked his first 6 months.) I will continue to like the elements of American culture and politics that I do like, and dislike the things I don’t. To the extent Obama pursues policies that I approve of I will like him more; to the extent he does the opposite I won’t.

    In general I find it hard to hate foreign politicians, though, as I do people who have worked dilligently and directly to destroy my liberty. I’d much rather Blair had been hanged than Saddam. As I’ve pointed out many times before, the most left-wing practicing US politicians would find themselves regarded as rightists if they tried to push their beliefs within the British Conservative party, and would be alarmed by the statism of the European right, Christian Democrats and Gaullists.

    I already find both candidates personally sympathetic, but my warmth towards Obama has increased as a result of the sort of mad reactionary attacks on him that have often received approval on this blog.

  • Shawn

    The attitude of Brits to the USA in general says more about the Brits than it does about America. When your country is being carved up by Muslims and the average Brit citizen is a welfare addicted binge drinker with multiple children to different mothers/fathers, then pissing on the US is a convenient way of pretending that you still matter in the world.

  • Sam

    I also have doubts about that prediction. If Obama proceeds to destroy America through radical left policies and fundamental changes, they will love him for it. But it will be temprorary. Because a weakened America will mean their own demise.

  • If Obama does end up being hated as much as Bush has been it may be a good thing. This is of course relying on the fact that the people doing the hating actually go and find out what the man stands for, ie theft, parasitism and the definition of need as a virtue higher than any other.

    (Yes I’m getting through Atlas Shrugged quite nicely thank you, I’m staggered that I had never even heard of it till I stumbled across this site some years ago.)

  • Gabriel

    As I’ve pointed out many times before, the most left-wing practicing US politicians would find themselves regarded as rightists if they tried to push their beliefs within the British Conservative party, and would be alarmed by the statism of the European right, Christian Democrats and Gaullists.

    I wish I was Guy Herbert, then I could say things that weren’t even vaguely true and haven’t been for about 40 years and because I’m so darned reasonable, it’s all OK.

    To take one example among many, if any British politician suggested replicating American abortion laws in this country he would, quite properly, be taken to town as a deranged hardcore leftwinger. Same goes for corporate taxes, the CRA, prayer in schools, immigration policies (amnesty for 10,000,000, are you guys out of your f**king minds?). Imagine if some guy said that your kid had to be bussed to school in some hellhole Comp in Brixton to further integration.

  • Gabriel

    And in Europe we at least have the decency to pretend to have a commodity currency.

    (None of this is to say that the U.S. isn’t doing better than Britain, but it should militate against the ridiculous complacency that can greet an Obama Presidency with anything other than horror.)

  • bandit

    If Obama helps run the US into the ground they’ll like him more – maybe adopt him as their little mascot

  • Geo Michalopulos

    Does not follow. Clinton was from the same area that Bush is from (the South). Clinton wasn’t hated (for the most part) and Obama won’t be if they don’t prosecute any wars. Bush is hated (for now) because he’s whupping ass in Afghanistan and Iraq. The Euroweenies are so pussified that they can’t stand militirazation.

    You want proof? Clinton was hated when he bombed Serbia by Eastern and Southern Europeans (and disdained by many Western Europeans). Nobody cared about Bosnia in Europe. But because it was such a low intensity war, the hatred wasn’t all that pervasive.

    Besides, Bush will be appreciated in the future because he confronted worldwide Islamic terrorism. If it becomes obvious that the pacific policies of any of his successor do nothing to stem the tide of this violence, and in fact, exacerbate it, then Bush’s standing will markedly improve. Just as did Truman’s.


  • sunscreen

    As an American who has lived in Britain for 12 years I can assure you that there is a fundamental and comprehensive antipathy to any and all Americans which ranges from mild dislike to outright hatred. But never less than mild dislike.

  • willis

    I’m sorry to hear the UK won’t be hating the US if Obama is elected. What in the world will you have to occupy your time? I mean besides Friday prayers at the mosque and every night at the pub until closing time. You may be disappointed that the UK is not at all hated in the US. We still think you’re a great people, that is, those of us who know what and where the UK is.

  • Lamont Cranston

    Geo –
    If you think Arkansas and Texas are remotely the same, you’re mistaken.

    Hell, while Southerners may LIKE Texans (as they tend to be our kind of crazy), Texas isn’t a Southern state. Despite it’s location on the map relative to New York and Los Angeles, Texas isn’t really a part of the South. They are Texans, and therefore, unique.

    Interestingly, while Arkansas may be lumped with the South, they actually have more a a Midwestern culture, having more in common with Missouri and Ohio than with Georgia and Alabama.

    But ignore what politicians say; watch what they do. Bill “Bubba” Clinton was no Southerner. How do I know? No real Southerner would have signed the Brady Bill.



  • tdh

    If joining and fighting for the CSA didn’t make Texas southern, nothing could.

    I wonder how Bushified Texas has become. Maybe we can persuade drooling anti-Americans with: Nah, that wasn’t American; it was Texan.

  • RAB

    It’s all a lot more complicated than hatred.

    The European Left always have, and always will hate America. It is, after all the richest most successful Capitalist nation in the history of the world, so naturally they hate it.
    There is also the cultural cringe factor too. Many Europeans really believe that Americans are culturally inferior to themselves , having produced nothing(in their opinion) in the way of high culture, be it Art, Music or literature, even food. This is particularly prevelent in those who actually describe themselves as “Intellectuals” e.g. The whole French Nation.
    This is not a new phenonemon. It goes way back. The likes of Dickens and Wilde were happy to tour the States earning huge amounts of money for Lecture Tours, then on returning home, have a damn good sneer at these “Dumb Hicks”
    This may be a generational thing, but my generation loved America. It invented the “Alternative Society” and produced Rock n Roll and Jazz. Both of which I consider culture in anyones book.
    Only Britain out of all Europe “got” rock n roll and could actually play it and take an updated version and sell it in the land of its birth.
    The French and Germans especially like Jazz because it is seen as “difficult” and intellectual, oh and is mainly produced by black Americans who are decendants of slaves, and therefore not really “American” at all.
    Which brings me to Obama. There was a story in the New York Times yesterday (sorry no link) which argued that Europeans dont see him as an American at all, because of his colour and because he is an intellectual like them.
    Apparently if the French and Germans could vote Obama would win by a 90% landslide.

    The European statist Left believe that apart from a few sophisticates like themselves on the East and West coast, the rest of America is populated by dumb, know nothing inbred knuckle dragging hicks, who naively still believe in a Christian God, playing banjos and firing heavy calabre weaponary in all directions, who have never left the farm.
    They just dont get America do they?

    For my part, I love America and would live there like a shot. Several of my British friends do, but they too dont get America, despite living there since about 1975.
    They think it would be much improved if it was more like Europe. That is why they will be voting Obama. They are looking for more Welfare statism, NHS etc etc.

  • ak

    I lived in England during the Reagan and in Ireland during the Clinton years. I saw no real difference, in extent or intensity, when it came to anti-Americanism. If anything, it was slightly more obnoxious during the Clinton years. But I attribute that partly to the Irish, some of whom seemed like the most childish and provincial people I’d ever met.

    I agree that this seems most likely: “They won’t hate Obama; they’ll just keep on hating Bush. Anything that goes wrong during Obama’s Presidency? Well, that’s just fallout from Bush. Obama does something awful? Well, he HAD to do it that way because of how badly Bush screwed it up.”

  • jaed

    No, Thomass is right. The only difference is that there won’t be Obama-hanged-in-effigy displays at the anti-America street demonstrations. And the editorials will say things like, “Despite Barack Obama’s best efforts, America remains a force for evil in the world.” The suggestion to offer Obama refugee status and nuke the rest of the country will become a standard joke.

    (In fact, I think the anti-Americanism is likely to get worse because of it. And Americans in Britain won’t be able to escape it by claiming most Americans hate Bush any more.)

  • Watcher in the dark

    Early in Obama’s presidency – should he win and I am not certain it is a given – there will be some crisis (perhaps manufactured by anti-American nations), and despite a lot of promises and theories about him currently he will almost certainly not act in the way anyone (especially the darling left) think he should.

    Now I am not sure there will be hatred for him when he say, orders troops in or some similar right-wing horror, but there will be a lot of careful examinations of his motives in the MSM and a ton of slightly anxious excuses offered.

    The post-Bush factor will be huge, of course, and the US military machine will be roundly blamed once more. But as events unravel there may be a gradual distancing from Obama if not actual hatred.

    We will hear from his supporters on the left that “it couldn’t be any other way” or “he knows what he’s doing” for a while, slowly replacing that with: “I never really trusted him anyway.”

    So I’ll say it here: I don’t trust him much right now.

  • OSweet

    Europeans and Canadians, when a Republican’s president, say, “I don’t hate America, I just hate (Bush/Reagan).”

    When a Dem’s president, they say, “I don’t hate America, I just hate its government.”

    This will hold true under an Obama presidency, though the hate-meter will be dialed down. A bit.

  • Stephanie

    I don’t know what effect Obama’s election will have on anti-Americanism abroad, but I just wanted to say that I don’t think most “Red State” Americans and “Blue State” Americans hate each other. (I don’t really like the whole red state/blue state analysis, by the way, because I think there’s a lot of purple in America.) It’s important to remember that much of the “hate” is between activists on both sides (some of whom get paid to be hateful), and most Americans don’t live and breathe politics as they (the activists) do.

    I grew up in rural Oklahoma, and while I admit I had some unflattering stereotypes of people in other states (Californians were flaky, Northeasterners rude), I never hated them. Also, I now live in Austin, Texas, a blue city in a red state, and most of the people here do not strike me as America haters either.

    RAB: You are saying that your English friends—who have lived in the U.S. since 1975 and apparently thought well enough of the place to obtain citizenship—are going to vote for Obama because they want to make the U.S. more like Europe. Out of curiosity, have you ever asked them why they didn’t just move to a European country in the first place?

  • RAB

    Stephanie, sorry, slip of the foot there. My friends are, as far as I know, still Green Carders, so have not even had the bottle to take up proper citizenship.
    So they cannot vote at all. But they do support Obama(indeed any Democrat out of hand, whatever horrors they get up to).When you complain to them that all Democrat Presidents in our lifetime (we are all mid fifties) have been ineffective at best, and bloody disasterous at worst, like mentioning that JFK started the Vietnam war, but Nixon (evil little shit that he was), ended it, they stare wide eyed and change the subject.
    They left not just Britain, but Wales which in 1975 was a Socialist, proto communist enclave. The economy was on it’s knees and they were looking for new adventures and pastures to play in. But like I said, continue to hedge their bets. Come back over here if it gets too ugly over there. Also as old time hippies, they havent managed to pick up the American spirit of free enterprise, and as a result remain as relatively poor and resentful as they were when they lived here.
    Basically they are stuck in that past age, as far as their political thinking goes.Oh they live in California by the way.Which doesn’t help.
    They are friends for many reasons, and I love them dearly, but politics is certainly not one of them.

    Off to Cardiff for the weekend so will be out of the loop till Sunday night.

  • Sam Duncan

    Early in Obama’s presidency – should he win and I am not certain it is a given – there will be some crisis (perhaps manufactured by anti-American nations), and despite a lot of promises and theories about him currently he will almost certainly not act in the way anyone (especially the darling left) think he should.

    That was the reasoning behind my comment at Dizzy’s.

    On the other hand, there’s certainly something in the idea that they’ll continue to blame Bush for anything else. And no matter what he actually does, Obama will be given the benefit of the doubt where Bush hasn’t been.

  • Vinny Vidivici

    Obama will be far too useful to America’s antagonists and enemies to be demonized like Reagan and Bush II, or humilliated like Carter, or, maybe, even ridiculed like Clinton.

    To the degree Obama is an American ‘little Englander’ committed to diminished U.S. influence and deference to the UN, etc., his global media cheering section will do everything they can to make him look good and the international Left will applaud.

    Insecure Americans who worry more about being well-regarded in Europe that whether their nation is doing the right or necessary thing will be reassured by cooing approval on BBC-America. ‘See how much everyone hates you’ will be replaced by ‘see how much more pleasant it is when you do what we want’.

    Hollywood will go back to making movies about likeable American presidents like they did throughout the 90’s.

    America’s military challengers, who saw a neutered Carter replaced by a muscular Reagan, and saw two governments toppled in the wake of 9/11 will want to make Obama look good, too, and will want him in office as long as possible. The quid pro quo for refraining from public challenge will be getting much of what they want from a president more suspicious of his own nation than any other.

  • Nick Nightingale

    Obama is bound to become hated. He is divisive. His entire message is predicated whites being “nicer” while AA is ramped up even further. Tax redistribution awaits also.

    The AA thing is already stretched to breaking point. A month ago figures emerged showing that 32% of blacks of college age had found a place. Only 44% of whites, which includes all manner of people of middle-eastern origin as well as the real target group of European-Americans, found a college place.

    That means, in effect, that the IQ requirement for college entry among blacks is about 91, and among whites about 110. A substantial proportion of blacks subsequently drop out, while the white who should have had their places are denied a college education.

    That’s racist enough, but it’s all about to get much worse.

    Two years should be enough for the shine to come off The One, and the “hope” to dwindle.

  • Confucious

    No matter what the European left might come to think of Obama, they wont dare to OPENLY hate him as much as they might privately, because of the racism angle.

    Just to be clear: No disliking or even hating Obama is not automatically racism, but the left sure believes that disliking anyone who is not white is automatically racism.

  • Atreus

    Bush is an incompetent hypocrite. The fact he is the most socialist President ever seems to be conveniently forgotten by conservatives here.

    I like how posters here gloss over his $700 billion dollar welfare handouts to banks who strangely can still afford to give huge bonuses.
    The bailout is an insult to every working American, why are US taxpayers paying for CEOs bonuses?

    As Jim Rogers said; let the banks die, let capitalism do its job and kill the failures.

    Bush has presided over obscene corporate welfare, wasted taxpayers money on the fat overfed pig that is the Pentagon. The amount of taxpayers money wasted on America’s absurd military budget is offensive.

    Iraq has been a colossal waste of money, where are the benefits for ordinary Americans? Personally, my feeling is the most cost-effective way to defeat terrorism is to leave Muslim countries to their own devices and not get involved; if you’re not involved they have no reason to attack. The Swiss have always had the right approach to foreign policy.

    Real conservatives should argue for the abolition of taxes and privatisation of the military (there’s a good argument that mercenaries make better soldiers as they have greater motivation to fight).

    BTW I’m delighted my bank is owned by Santander. I’d never want ot be part of a British or American bank.

  • jb

    After McCain wins on Tuesday, the USA will start to turn inward. We will no longer give a rat’s ass about the rest of the world that hates us while we save them from the savages. The UK and western Europe will continue their descent into savagery, and then it will be too late. Too bad for the minority of decent Europeans whose civilization (and possible existence) will no longer be assured. You had a nice run while it lasted, but now you get to live under sharia. It’s been nice knowing you.

  • Stephanie

    Thanks for the clarification, RAB.

  • llamas

    Sunscreen wrote:

    ‘As an American who has lived in Britain for 12 years I can assure you that there is a fundamental and comprehensive antipathy to any and all Americans which ranges from mild dislike to outright hatred. But never less than mild dislike.’

    and that is my exact observation also. As I’ve said here before, more than once, vocal and visceral hatred of Americans is a common currency in the UK – it’s the last acceptable racism.



  • Bod

    Just to provide a counterpoint on Sunscreen’s quote, and llamas’ followup,

    As an Brit who has lived in the US for the last 15 years I can assure you that for all the previous years I lived in the UK up until 1993, I saw consistent dislike, envy and pissyness about the ‘overpaid, oversexed, over here’ Americans, regardless of what their government did.

    And that’s why I’m here in the US. Any nation that upset the all the whiny, self-obsessed British ‘left’ , and so many of the whiny, self-obsessed British ‘right’ so consistently had to be doing something right.

    Oh – RAB – you need to get your ass over here to the states. There has to be some way we can get you your green card. IanB too. Claim political asylum if you have to.

  • RAB

    Well as I have mentioned before Bod, I am available for extradition.
    Alas I am sodding useless at computers(my knowledge extending not much further than turning them on), so the possibility of me being caught hacking into the Pentagon computers is pretty remote. 😉

  • Bod


    In your case, you need to hope Obama gets in over here, and Cameron in the UK.

    At that point, you might be able to claim that you’re fleeing a Pinochet-like dictatorship and you yearn for the freedom that only a nation which really cares for the ‘little guy’ can provide, and that Venezuela’s out ‘cos the climate’s too hot.

  • JAK

    “If joining and fighting for the CSA didn’t make Texas southern, nothing could.

    I wonder how Bushified Texas has become. Maybe we can persuade drooling anti-Americans with: Nah, that wasn’t American; it was Texan.”

    The second worst mistake Texas ever made, the first was joining the Union (1845) in the first place- we were an independant nation once…
    The last battle of the Civil War was fought here (Confederate victory) and I can assure you the Bush clan are no better liked here than anywhere else.
    Obama is a continuation of the same policies only worse and he will be ultimately reviled even more than W is now.