Tucker Carlson, Ilhan Omar, and Loving America
Here's the video, from last week:
One laughs in amusement at Tucker Carlson's litmus test for our politicians: "do they love America?" Lost to Carlson, of course, is any discussion of the other big litmus test, "will they do good things for us?" Should I admit my guilty pleasure, that of asking politicians to do good things for us?
Also it's amusing to consider Tucker Carlson's portrayal of America, which of course leaves out anything William Blum ever said about those who act in America's name.
William Blum was the son of immigrants. He documented, quite thoroughly, some rather egregious misdeeds of those claiming to act in America's name. Google "William Blum Rogue State PDF," and you will find a PDF of Blum's book Rogue State, on the CIA's website (of all places). This is, of course, weird, given Blum's damaging critique of CIA actions, but I guess since Osama bin Laden endorsed Rogue State, the CIA can say "this is what the other side says of us." Are we to believe that America is merely a nation of kind, cute teddy bears who would never harm anyone?
Tucker Carlson again: "For all of our country's flaws this country is the best place in the world. Most immigrants know that."
Jeez, maybe they come here because they can't get into the EU, and the EU doesn't count as a "country"? The EU has 28 countries in it, each of which might count as the "best place in the world" for at least a few days each year.
Tucker Carlson again:
"The US is the kindest, most open-minded place on the planet. The US has done more for other people, and received less in return, than any nation in history by far."
I'm sure that some parts of the US have been generous. Carlson's statement above is, of course, a way of dignifying a global hegemon, but it is also a way of allowing the many unkind people who claim to represent America but only succeed in giving it a bad reputation to piggyback upon those Americans we should in fact respect for their kindness, open-mindedness, and generosity.
The key to asking whether or not individual people "love America," as Carlson does, is to trick them into unwittingly acquiescing in the notion of America as a homogeneous, universally-friendly entity, rather than as a nation of fools, wise people, and bystanders, or as a nation of Ferguson, Missouri, San Marino, California, and Quantico, Virginia, all of which broadly differ in their effects upon the world but which are are nonetheless America. I would move that we all agree to love America, and then start in on substantive issues, distinguishing wisdom from folly for instance.