Sunday, 14 September 2008

Dare We?

In a previous post i suggested that Americans and Europeans both view each other as arrogant. I then was reminded about the Guardian newspaper's attempt to sway the 2004 American election. The idea in 'Operation Clark County' was for Guardian readers to write to undecided voters in the crucial state of Ohio. Here is some of the brilliant reaction to the project received by the Guardian:

Have you not noticed that Americans don't give two shits what Europeans think of us? Each email someone gets from some arrogant Brit telling us why to NOT vote for George Bush is going to backfire, you stupid, yellow-toothed pansies ... I don't give a rat's ass if our election is going to have an effect on your worthless little life. I really don't. If you want to have a meaningful election in your crappy little island full of shitty food and yellow teeth, then maybe you should try not to sell your sovereignty out to Brussels and Berlin, dipshit. Oh, yeah - and brush your goddamned teeth, you filthy animals. Wading River, NY

Consider this: stay out of American electoral politics. Unless you would like a company of US Navy Seals - Republican to a man - to descend upon the offices of the Guardian, bag the lot of you, and transport you to Guantanamo Bay, where you can share quarters with some lonely Taliban shepherd boys. United States

I am a student and life-long resident of Clark County, Ohio. I just wanted you to know that this is a wonderful idea you've initiated; people here love and respect the United Kingdom, especially the prime minister. I hope this campaign will be successful for your newspaper and for us voters. Springfield, Ohio

KEEP YOUR FUCKIN' LIMEY HANDS OFF OUR ELECTION. HEY, SHITHEADS, REMEMBER THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR? REMEMBER THE WAR OF 1812? WE DIDN'T WANT YOU, OR YOUR POLITICS HERE, THAT'S WHY WE KICKED YOUR ASSES OUT. FOR THE 47% OF YOU WHO DON'T WANT PRESIDENT BUSH, I SAY THIS ... TOUGH SHIT! PROUD AMERICAN VOTING FOR BUSH!
Real Americans aren't interested in your pansy-ass, tea-sipping opinions. If you want to save the world, begin with your own worthless corner of it. Texas, USA

Thank you, thank you, thank you! What a wonderful idea! I am a US citizen who is scared to death that Bush and Klan will get back in. We need all the help we can get to ditch this bunch of maniacs..United States

My dear, beloved Brits, I understand the Guardian is sponsoring a service where British citizens write to Americans to advise them on how to vote. Thank heavens! I was adrift in a sea of confusion and you are my beacon of hope!
Feel free to respond to this email with your advice. Please keep in mind that I am something of an anglophile, so this is not confrontational. Please remember, too, that I am merely an American. That means I am not very bright. It means I have no culture or sense of history. It also means that I am barely literate, so please don't use big, fancy words. Set me straight, folks! Dayton, Ohio

Hey England, Scotland and Wales, Mind your own business. We don't need weenie-spined Limeys meddling in our presidental election. If it wasn't for America, you'd all be speaking German. And if America would have had a president, then, of the likes of Kerry, you'd all be goose-stepping around Buckingham Palace. YOU ARE NOT WANTED!! Whether you want to support either party. BUTT OUT!!! United States

Please be advised that I have forwarded this to the CIA and FBI. United States

THE AMERICAN TAXPAYERS HAVE SPENT TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS PROTECTING THE PEOPLES OF THE EU, AND WHAT DO WE GET IN RETURN. BETRAYAL, BETRAYAL, BETRAYAL. I HAVE BEEN TO YOUR COUNTRY, THE COUNTRY OF MY ANCESTORS, AND I KNOW WHY THEY LEFT. MAY YOU HAVE TO HAVE A TOOTH CAPPED. I UNDERSTAND IT TAKES AT LEAST 18 MONTHS FOR YOUR GREAT MEDICAL SERVICES TO GET AROUND TO YOU. HAVE A GREAT DAY. Harlan, Kentucky

Keep your noses out of our business. As I recall we kicked your asses out of our country back in 1776. We do not require input from losers and idiots on who we vote for in our own country. Fuck off and die asshole!!!!! Knoxville, Iowa

Gentle folks at the Guardian,
In your plea to get your non-American readers to write to voters in Clark County, Iowa, you are correct that events in the US have had, and will have, effects on world events. For example, we have pulled your chestnuts out of the fire in two world wars that were occasioned by European diplomacy.Maybe you'd like a vote in which American president will oversee the next rescue. The next time you have elections in Great Britain, I shall endeavour to send names of your citizens to people in France, Iraq, India, the United Arab Emirates, Botswana, Pakistan, China and Argentina so that they may attempt to influence your election. It's only fair that everybody in the world should have a say in the selection of the prime minister. California

Who in the hell do you think you are??? Well, I'll tell you, you're a bunch of meddling socialist pricks! Stay the hell out of our country and politics. And another thing, John Kerry is a worthless lying sack of crap so it doesn't surprise me that a socialist rag like yours would back him. I hope your cynical ploy blows up in your cowardly faces, you bunch of mealy-mouthed morons! United States

I used to visit the UK every year. I love the history and culture of your country. But after I heard about your campaign to influence our elections, I've decided that neither myself, nor my family will ever visit again. I'm offended by your campaign and because of it, I'm remembering more of the negative aspects I've seen in the UK than the positive ones. Though I still love the castles! Detroit

I suggest that if a particular reader of the Guardian would like to vote in America - would really like to influence the American election, say - that reader should move to America, become a citizen of the United States. Everyone is welcome here. Even the readers of the Guardian. But if you don't wish to be an American, to live in Ohio, for instance, and participate in the American political process, that is too bad. Perhaps there is something wrong with you. Perhaps it is your teeth. New York

Go back to sipping your tea and leave our people alone. Ohio


Great stuff but disappointingly the Guardian are not running it again this election but i wonder if...hmmmmmm, can't be that hard to find the email address of the media outlets in Ohio. Dare we?

9 comments:

Cody Bones said...

So should I get rid of my "Cameron Now" T-shirt?

Lucy said...

Nope, keep it and i will forward you the email for all the left wing newspapers, groups and Labour voters we have here. Only fair.

Noah "Nog" M. said...

Being a linguist sort, I always love to see how the American ear takes a British dialect.

Cheezy said...

Cody: Hahaha! You might have to print those t-shirts yourself though - I don't think even Tories walk the streets of England in David Cameron paraphenalia. They enjoy having kneecaps too much :)

Obviously some of those people who reacted to the campaign in that way are real drop-kicks, however I think the whole idea was an incredibly bad one.

The guy who was my manager back in 2004 joined this campaign. I tried to explain - as subtley as I could - the counter-productive nature of such a plan (not to mention the arrogance of course) but to no avail... Him being my boss, I didn't conclude by saying "Well I think you're being a twat". But I did think it.

People regard their vote as being their's and their's alone, and don't take overt attempts to influence it kindly - let alone from people who are from another country.

Lucy said...

I agree Cheezy, it was incredibly insenstive and arrogant of the Guardian and its readers to try and tell people how to vote but it did what newspapers always try to do, generate interest.
I imagine that if an American newspaper did the same thing it would get some emails of the same type in its inbox, only with worse spelling.
I do love the 3rd from bottom one though that sticks the boot in and then tells us they love our castles.

Anonymous said...

I think the comments to the Guardian show clearly just how stupid humans really are. It's merely a question of degree.

lettersA2Z said...

now that i think about it, why dont people/governments around the world have some sort of say in a large world powers elections..it surely does affect the rest of the world. with mccain it could mean world wars.

Anonymous said...

Lucy,

I think it is perfectly fine for anybody to try and pursuade the voting of anyone else through the use of words.

It is even a right in the nasty old U.S.A. Of course, it is also the right of said voters to respond with silence, to agree, or to disagree (even be vile about it)...

With there being 300+ million people in this country, just about every conceiveable response should be expected in any situation.

I do find it odd that our school curriculum leads some Americans to carry a grudge because of the actions of a Monarch over 200 years ago...

Q

Anonymous said...

Lettersa2z,

If you check U.S. history you will see that Democrats got the U.S. into war with Germany and Japan. Ditto Korea and Vietnam. By the way, neither Korea nor Vietnam attacked us... pre-emptive strikes by the U.S.

The Democrats and Obama are quite capable of using the war machine when it suits their needs...

Q