This Infuriates Me

This is why I dislike my own.

I’m talking about broadcasters. I’ve been gone from the on air aspect of the industry for 15 months now and the more distance I put between myself and broadcasting, the more clarity I possess. And I wasn’t aware of that until I saw this a few days ago.

It’s a clip of an Australian reporter doing a typical Man On The Street interview. In this case, he’s trying to discern just how ignorant Americans are in terms of global politics but also as far as general American history is concerned.

What he did is far from unique. Jay Leno does it as a fixed feature on his weak ass show and other Journalists have been doing it for decades.

Here’s how the “Man On the Street In Search of Dumb People Who’ll Give You The No Answers Answers You Seek In Order To Give Your Piece That Ooomph It So Desperately Needs” works:

A reporter and a camera crew spends the better part of a day or two at a fixed location. They actually sort out people who fit a certain stereotype. Shall I be truthful with you? Want to know how this works?

OK: You spot your marks and after doing this for a while, you learn who’ll give you the best wrong answers. It’s not necessarily people of a particular ethnic persuasion–though in all honesty, it can be. There is a defined stereotype involved.

I always went for women with peroxided blond hair or in skimpy clothes. For male respondents, I’d choose overweight guys in T-shirts with slogans. While this wasn’t necessarily a sure fire method all of the time, it was MOST of the time.

Believe me, there were Armani suit wearing types who didn’t know the answers and by the same token, I encountered overweight, T-shirted men who knew the answers and sometimes fake blond women did too, but you never saw those Q &A’s. You never saw ANYONE who knew the answers, thanks to creative editing. And the finished product fit the reporter’s purpose beautifully. It was “Shame on Digital: UGLY, STUPID AMERICANS”.

See for yourself. Click here. Again, it’s nothing that hasn’t been done before–we’ve all seen MOS reports done a million times, but this one seemed to piss me off more.   Why?  I’m hormonal, mostly and maybe because it involved a foreign reporter  TRYING so damn hard to prove his point. You can almost see him orgasm when he got an answer he knew he “could work with”.

I am SO damn tired of other countries biting the hand that feeds. I am so damn tired of  countries that hang on the American teat to stay afloat,  then turn  around and shit on us…philosophically, politically and socially.  

Hey France, remember how much you hate America the next time you need “help” retreating.   Does “Vietnam” ring any bells, you vichy assholes?   

Remember that Germany when you cuss America, yet reap billions of dollars in economic aid because the U.S still has a military presence (via bases) strewn throughout your country.

Remember that Finland.  Why? Because you’re Finland, for God’s sake.

I’m so tired of it. 

And the ONLY way to fix this is to employ a little distorted quid pro quo. You know–payback.   I think I’m going to Melbourne with a decidedly American camera crew where I’ll hit the network TV studios.   I’ll approach the peroxided (and in this industry, there will be plenty I assure you) and the corpulant in their employ, and ask them a few esoteric questions, such as ‘who does my hair’ and when they don’t know the answer, I will in no uncertain terms, tell them to take that “shrimp off the barbie” and shove it up their collective asses.

Screw ’em all.

22 comments

  1. I think there’s a lot of envy in the world towards Americans. For all of our problems, this is still a great country, and they know that.

    I doubt whether trashing us really improves anything about their own life, so of course it’s a waste of their time. Too bad they don’t see that.

  2. One more thing…

    Imagine what would happen, the backlash and the names Americans would be called if an American reporter were to do a piece indicating how elitist Europeans can be, or how piggish and misogynist Australian men can be, or how ignorant and backward Middle-easterners can be.

    Yep.

  3. i wouldn’t have known that the “chaser” wasn’t the prime minister of australia. i certainly don’t keep up with who’s what in politics over there but that doesn’t make me a stupid person. i even noticed the interviews came from san antonio, in front of the alamo! why was this part of the u.s. chosen?

  4. Speaking of hormonal. Did you watch the National Geographic special on the group of young male teens called straight edge? Ay. Interesting. Sociology 101.

  5. Of course Jay Leno (and apparently this Aussie guy) SET UP these stupid interviews. But the fact these “interviewers” ever find ANYONE so ignorant is somewhat troubling, hand-picked for entertainment purposes, or not.
    For whatever it’s worth — when hubby and I vacationed in Australia, the people there absolutely LOVED Americans. We must have talked to hundreds of them and I’d say 90% had either been to America or were planning to come. Loved us! We felt an unmistakable aura of “kinship.” between them and us.

  6. Hmm… there is no such thing as truth on TV, in politics or in business. That said. He’s Australian, Australians take the piss out of everyone, it’s their national sport.

    There are smart Americans and dumb Americans just like there are smart and dumb people anywhere else. That said, as a frequent visitor to the US, I’ve never visited a non muslim country quite so rigid in its application of rules and regulations… so… um… black or white, although again, I could imagine this varies hugely from state to state and my experience is confined to the South.

    I’m looking at the reflex “it’s jealousy” comments here… and at risk of Laurie banning me from her blog for ever I feel I should maybe try to shed a bit of light on how other countries see the US or at least how some aspects of US behaviour can come across.

    It might… explain some of the lampooning.

    Sometimes America and Americans can come over as VERY serious about themselves. There is also a slight tendency to say things like “We’re the biggest, we’re the best…” and to call the national base ball league the “World” series when it involves what, five countries?

    Marketing smarketing, nothing more. But on the other hand, it’s ok in the States to claim – actually teach in some schools – that “World War Two” didn’t start until 8 December 1941 – even though countries on all five continents, all over the world were involved from 1939. Ie it wasn’t a WORLD war, even though countries all over the world were involved and the naval battle extended around the world and across the Atlantic, until the US joined in.

    I suspect the difference with the war thing is that Americans see it economically while Brits, since a quarter of the world WAS Britain, at the time, see it geographically. Would that figure?

    But, to me that view is like me deciding that although I was born in 1968 since I didn’t learn to walk and talk for two years, I was actually born in 1970. It’s… weird and it’s a lie. It’s also insulting to the soldiers and civilians who died before 1941, like their sacrifices and their fight was somehow less valid because without the US they weren’t going to win anyway.

    It sends a message that THE WORLD in the eyes of the average American is the bit with the US in it and the rest of it is… The other bit. Not the world. THEM and US.

    Now, the US might be the best bit for a lot of people – many of whom are not Americans – but it’s not THE WORLD. That’s the big green and blue orb thing containing lots of other countries, too and some of them find the whole America is the world thing a bit insulting. Semantics schmantics I know but do you see the difference here?

    What do you do when you think somebody’s a bit above themselves – especially if they actually ARE top dog? Yeh, you take the piss.

    Ok. On to Jealousey.

    Nope, I’m not jealous. I love visiting the States, I love the dynamism, the way everyone just believes they can do stuff and often can, as a result.

    I like the way no one is cynical but even so, I would hate to live there, there are just too many hard and fast rules for me to break in a non-germanic, there-ARE-grey-areas-in-life way. I’d offend everyone within a few months of arrival, merely by existing and probably spend most of my time in prison for things like jay walking, having wine with a picnic in the public park, or swearing and generally being myself in a way that would be considered morally louche by my new compatriots.

    However, like many people in Britain, I AM FRUSTRATED!

    My country used to have an empire. We had our good bits but for several hundred years we also lied, cheated, stole and meddled in international affairs – often to the detriment of the nations and people involved. We shot peaceful protesters in India, we invented concentration camps in South Africa, we did unspeakable things to further our national cause and worse, often thought we were doing good.

    We had the opportunity to do so much for the world but most of the time, despite the fabled sense of fair play and a great deal of effort, we truly fucked it up – right down to deposing the democratic rulers of Iraq in the 1920s (WE needed the oil then, you see) and supporting and establishing the Taliban in the 1890s (a freak cult 150 members strong at the time) to ferment unrest in northern India. And then at the end, when we finally began to get some national morals and began to understand how we might be able to use our power to do some good… we weren’t top dog any more.

    Enter the US. Now the US is top dog in the world, with China snapping at its coat tails. British people see the US involved in international affairs, trying to help – sometimes, itself, sometimes others – and making the mistakes successive British governments made all over again!

    “Why haven’t they learned anything from the mess we made!” We shout!

    It’s like watching a train crash. It’s the equivalent of that moment in the horror film where the bloke with the gun leaves the lady in her slip and high heeled furry mules and GOES INTO THE CELLAR ALONE! We’re up close to the screen shouting “Noooo! Noooo! Don’t! THE MONSTER is behind the curtains in her bedroom!” At the TV. But he does. Every time. And it drives us fricking buggy.

    I hope this doesn’t come across as too much of a rant, I just wanted to try and shed a bit of light on how different nations perceive things in different ways… and why it is that people might feel they want to take the piss out of the generic “American on the street” who isn’t really generic.

    And as for the hoo ha if the US retaliated, yeh, I hear you. Unfair for deffo. It’s like feminism, we’re allowed to but they can’t. I don’t think that’s fair either.

    Cheers

    BC

  7. PS Patti, didn’t see your comment before I posted mine. It’s true, the Americans in my family are brilliant, I love ’em to bits and the ones who come here are great, too, it’s the image that’s terrible… that and we’re all a bit scared of G Dublyah! 😉

    Cheers

    BC

  8. Dear Laurie,

    Please contact me at your earliest convenience, privately, so that we can figure out the most efficacious way for me to have your children. Great rant.

    FUCKIN” A!!!! as we used to say when I lived in Boston. I am so glad to have a place like this to vent, because I try to run a G-Rated site, for the most part, but I am going to link this excellent, instructive post at my blog later when I have time to think up something witty to say about.

    I swear to God, I am peroxiding my hair and getting a slogan T-shirt (I will not do the overweight part)….and then I’m going on the prowl, to find some of those son-of-bitch media bastards who are looking for Person-on-the-street dupes. Think of it as “Stuttering John” in reverse. Great post!
    D

  9. Ok, the straight edge scene has been around for a while now. Wiki ‘Minor Threat’ and you’ll get a better glimpse. The ideas are decent: no drugs, alcohol, tobacco, etc… But when they start running around beating the piss out of smokers, drinkers, junkies, that’s when it all falls apart. I’ve had friends that have been stomped by a few of these assholes and let me tell you, it wasn’t cool. At all. I’ll take my vices, hold the facism please.

  10. “I am SO damn tired of other countries biting the hand that feeds. I am so damn tired of countries that hang on the American teat to stay afloat, then turn around and shit on us…philosophically, poltically and socially.”

    And if the U.S. economy and U.S. banks ever did fail and the United States went bankrupt, no troops, no military, no hand outs, no welfare for structureless countries, no purchasing of oil and goods, no outsourced jobs sent overseas…the majority of the world would be up shit creek without a paddle for one reason or another. Whether it’s lack of financial backing and support or being left as a sitting duck for terrorist regimes to take over, there would be a world of hurt.

  11. I was going to comment–but after reading above comments I forgot mine and I realized a full 3 hours had gone by. 😉 (just kidding fellow commenters–but not really)

  12. It is the opportunity to curse on the Internet with wild abandon that keeps me coming back here. Well, that and the sitcom trivia. Sorry, sorry, sorry, forget that I brought that up. Just stop, right now.

    It is so cool to hear an insider’s take on the MSM, and to see LK give them a collective kick in the gonads. By the way, did you know that April is “Kick a Hippie in the Nuts Month?” Do your part.

    Rachel Lucas started it as a single, memorial day (“Punch a Hippie in the Nuts Day,”) but I started the whole month-long project thing, and I am trying to expand it into a “Have your Rhodesian Ridgeback Attack a Hippie Year” after I get some legal advice.
    See this: http://www.amusedcynic.com/?p=713

  13. I was never taught in my American schools that WWII didn’t begin until December 1941. I was only taught that America didn’t get involved until then. We know it was a full scale war prior to us being drug into it. Gosh, you know what? I even had a university professor that said we were partially to blame for it being drug out so long. OMG!

    I’m sure all schools in all other countries all teach every single thing the very same way. Only the U.S. doctors things up.

  14. Well here’s something that shows not all Aussies thinkwe’re a bunch of materialistic idiots. Sorry it’s so long, but well worth the time.

    A must read from an Australian whose son is in Iraq:

    Gentlemen I am an Australian and my son is an Australian – as far as we are concerned there is not place on God’s earth better than Australia, and there are no people better than Australians.

    That was until the past week or so.

    My son is in the Australian Army and he is currently on deployment in Iraq. I can not go into his duties in great depth, but shall we say that he and his fellow army buddies are on a glorified guard duty looking after the Australian Embassy. They don’t go out looking for ‘action’, though it is a different story in Afghanistan, there the Aussie troops chase the baddies over the hills and into the valleys.

    My son and I just ended a long ‘phone conversation and here are some of his comments, believe me this is what he said. We have all seen the bullshit emails written by some clown in his lounge room pretending to be at the coal face, but this is what was said.:

    ‘Before I came over here I thought we (the Australian Army) were pretty shit hot….. was I ever wrong!….The Yanks (I hope you don’t mind me using that word) are so professional from the top to the bottom that it is almost embarrassing to be in their company, and to call yourself a soldier….don’t get me wrong, we are good at what we do but the Yanks are so much better…..they are complete at what they do, how they do it and their attitude is awesome….they don’t complain they just get on with the job and they do it right…..I carry a Minimi (SAW) so I am not real worried about a confrontation but I tell you I feel safer just knowing that the US Army is close by….If we got into trouble I know that our boys would come running and we could deal with it but they would probably be passed by a load of Hummers. No questions asked, no glory sought, the Americans would just fight with us and for us because that is their nature, to protect those in need of protection…..We use the American Mess so you could say that we are fed by the Americans…..they have every right to be pissed at that but they don’t bitch about that they just make us feel as welcome as possible….what gets to me is that the Yanks don’t walk around with a ‘we are better than you attitude’ and they could because they are, they treat us as equals and as brothers in arms. If nothing else, coming here has taught me that the Americans are a truly great Nation and a truly great bunch of people…..Let’s face it they don’t HAVE to be here, they could stay in America and beat the shit out of anyone who threatened them, BUT THEY ARE HERE because they believe they should be here, and the Iraqis would be screwed if they weren’t here…..When I come home, you and I we are going to the US, we will buy some bikes and we are going riding….’

    The reason why I am sharing this with you is because I realize that you (as a nation) must get pretty pissed with all the criticism you receive by the so-called ‘know it alls’ who are sitting at home – safe. The reality is that they are safe, just as I am, because of America. If the world went arse up tomorrow there is f**k all we (Australia) could do about it, but I know that the Americans would be there putting themselves on the line for others. That to me is the sign of greatness.

    The most precious thing in my life is my son, I look at him and I thank God that I am fortunate enough to be able to spend time in his company. We laugh, we discuss, we argue, we dummy spit, we have the same blood. I am not happy that he is where he is but that is his duty. He joined the Army to protect and to defend, not to play games. I mightn’t like it but I accept it. My reasons for not liking it are selfish and self centered. I felt assured that he would be safe because he is in a well trained army with an excellent record, BUT NOW, I feel a whole lot better knowing that he is with your sons, daughters, brothers and sisters.

    Whilst he was growing up. I was always there to look after him, I would not let harm befall him and I would always put myself before him to protect him. I can’t do that now. When it comes to looking after him now he and his mates will do the job, but also THANK GOD FOR AMERICA.

    Gentlemen, I have rambled on for too long. but as I finish I say to you, as a foreigner and outsider, a nation is only a collection of its people and its attitude is the attitude of its people, collectively and as individuals. I am really glad you are here on this Earth and I respect you as a nation and as people.

    Stand up and feel proud because you deserve it, there is no one else who will do what America does without question. The next time someone howls you down, take some comfort in the fact that America is defending their right to act like an idiot.

    Finally, thank you for looking after my son.

    Peter Turner

  15. Well now, the above comment tops them all.

    Thank you, Mr. Turner for summing this all up and you, too, JJ, for submitting it.

  16. We have a defense alliance with OZ; which country do you reckon stands to benefit the most from this arragement? Maybe that proves we’re dumber than doorknobs.

    My youngest son lives in Australia–he’s doing his bit to prevent the extinction of the indigenous population by creating beautiful women in the form of three lovely daughters–because, according to him, the Australian blokes aren’t up to the challenge.

    This son of mind would tell you the population of OZ has about the same % of effete eunichs as the US, and that we should never take anything we read in their media seriously. He’s a psychologist, so he is, and if you ask him why a country whose motto is “no worries mate” would require the services of a psychologist, he would point you to Oz’ small gene pool–and, from what I have seen during my visits, he’s spot on.

    By the way, Ms Kenderick, on the subject of effete unichs, how do you feel about Sir Elton John interpreting our distrust, distaste, and general dislike of Hillybean as being misogynistic? To be honest, I am more offended by that one than this business in OZ.

  17. Hey France, remember how much you hate America the next time you need “help” retreating. Does ”Vietnam” ring any bells, you vichy assholes?

    See also, WWI, WWII…and a soon-to-be-necessary beatdown of their Islamotard invasion. (Actually, that goes for all of Europe)

  18. Andrew, no, our education system is shit (yeh, I know you were being ironic but…) I’m glad to hear you say that though – I know of three instances but bear in mind apart from a notable East Coast section, my family Americans mostly come from quite strange seeming and conservative areas down south.

    Also, I should point out that America is bound to get more flack by din’t of being top country – the higher over the parapit you put your head, the more people shoot. I think the world does appreciate American’s efforts usually. I really hadn’t thought about how much flack the US gets until Laurie brought this up.

    I do know how it feels to come from a country which you feel like everyone else in the world loathes and to be honest, I’m pretty sure we Brits are still most hated ;-).

    And ignore Elton John, bless him the man’s a gumbee.

    Cheers

    BC

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