The United States on the global stage: good guys or bad guys?

You know, to a large part of the world’s population, America is not the beacon of reason and freedom you all like to think of yourselves as. You are the Bad Guys. Have been since the early 2000’s.

Yeah, but we’re the ones with the money*, so nyah.

*and bombs

Quod erat demonstrandum

Worse than Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, etc.?

Also my question. We’ve fallen a long way, no question, but surely we’re not as bad as that lot yet.

Arguably yeah. Let’s check some numbers shall we:,the%20highest%20rate%20of%20incarceration.

And then the majority of those imprisoned are of a different skin colour than those doing the imprisoning. Yeah that’s a good look guys.

Now how many wars did North Korea start the last 50 years? One (technically it started earlier, but they never ended it) Iran? None, though sure they have been bad players on many occasions. Russia? Ok, a couple. They are bad in that aspect. America? Four? Five? And the meddling the CIA did in middle and south America, Africa, all over the world?

But yeah keep believing North Korea is a horrible hellscape that is incomparably worse than the suburban heavens / crack-ridden ghettos / prison system you built. Oh Iran is brutally putting down dissent among its population, are they?

Y’all got a lot of fixing to do.

Come on.

“Jeffrey Epstein is a bad man.”

“Oh yeah? Worse than Hitler?”

That’s pretty much the subtext of just about every post in P&R.

Wow. I didn’t realise you were a straight up genocide denier.

Oh I didnt deny em, just didnt want to pull them into this. Or are you saying the USA has no genocides in her history?

He didn’t say “a Bad Guy” or I wouldn’t have responded, he said “the Bad Guy.” We’re certainly not good guys at this point in time (we’ve been alternately worse and better in the past) but I don’t think we’re the worst at the moment, at least. Now, give Trump another four years…


Yeah dude, North Korea is absolutely a horrible hellscape that is incomparably worse than life in America.

Like, this isn’t even remotely close.

Ignoring the fact that you don’t really have good data on the number of prisoners in North Korea’s horrific prisons, and the fact that they simply execute tons of people, there’s also the fact that for virtually everyone living in North Korea, they are essentially living in a prison.

TIL that the US is “worse” than North Korea.

Exactly. Trump may have made us a badder guy, but I think that can change with the right guy in charge. Or we can go full fascist with a scumbag in charge and become another very powerful destabilizing force in the world. Even a Moscow satellite.

At the risk of piling on (or perhaps getting piled on, or both), I’m not sure any action of the U.S. can strictly be called genocide. Our dealings with indigenous peoples in North America have been mostly bad-faith and sometimes violent, but I’m not sure the organized badness has ever amounted to more than “get them the fuck out of the way in places where whites are settling,” flaring up into occasional limited wars and massacres, and brutal forced relocations a la the Trail of Tears. All of which are awful in their own right, and can certainly shade into genocide given the right conditions (see: Germany, N.) but I don’t know that I would say it’s the same thing. Slavery meanwhile was a crime of historic proportions, but certainly not genocide, as the idea was to keep the enslaved population alive and even increase it to create more value for the slaveholders. We have had some brutal wars and occupations (Vietnam, Philippines, etc.) but not where the killing of whole populations was a deliberate goal, I think.

I confess I am not an expert in the international law definition of genocide, and the finer points of debate around it. I don’t think it’s a word to throw around lightly, though.

One important distinction to make when discussing the ‘badness’ of the USA vs., say, North Korea is that the DPRK’s badness is mostly confined to its own citizens. Which is horrific, no doubt. I’d certainly rather live in the USA than there. Not to minimize the quasi-genocide we’ve been committing against the black community since emancipation (and the actual genocide against them before that) or the kids we recently locked in cages, but broadly speaking, it is better to be a citizen of the USA.

However, the United States has had a deeply negative and destabilizing effect on several places in the world since about the mid-19th century (specifically thinking of that time we basically invaded Korea; no, not the 1950s, talking 1871 here, but there were earlier incidents before that as well) and continuing through recent times (coups, drone bombs, wars in the Middle East, etc.). Domestically, the USA is ‘gooder’ than North Korea, but internationally, definitely not.

I don’t know how helpful it is to say one is worse or better than the others. Both are bad. It’s great that we’ve had several cultural innovations the past century and of course that time we helped beat the Nazis was cool too, but we should not be under any illusions that we are, or have ever been, really, the ‘good guys.’

In short, people outside the US may view the US as “worse” in some respects than NK because they aren’t very worried NK might invade or engineer a coup in their country. NK lacks the capability even if it might arguably have the will. The US has the capability, and has at times clearly shown it has the will.

How very meta for this thread. Which is worse, a corrupt cop or no cop at all? US may be corrupted with capitalism and racism, but that cop role was pretty dang useful in some roles at least. Soviet deterrence being a major one.

Despite the rhetoric you may hear, there are a TON of immigrants in this country who have achieved a better life than what they had before, EVEN some with darker skin colors. I don’t know of any other country that could claim even a fraction of the same.

Maybe I’m just an optimist, but no, we are still the good guys.

I didnt say the us is worse than the norks. But it’s not as big a difference as you like to think.

Which is why I tried to tiptoe around that.

"Getting them the fuck away " is what all genocides are about. Rwanda, Armenia, Ukraine, Germany, etc ad nauseam.

And what’s worse? Do you really want to examine? Being enslaved or driven from your home? From a prison to a concentration camp is a sliding scale and fuck i do not wanna go there with this thread. Please.