Thank you to John Oliver for bringing this discussion to his viewers with  hopes more people will understand.  As Jay Nixon, governor of Missouri, says in the video  “The eyes of the world are watching.”  Sadly Governor Nixon clearly does not seem to understand his state’s inhumane treatment of the citizens (and the press) has not impressed Human Right WatchAmnesty International, or the press.  More on how the world views this situation.

Why I Will Never, Ever, Go Back to the United States by Niels Gerson Lohman

America you are losing your battle for the hearts and minds of the world.

(thanks/via: Huffington Post)

No politician will admit that the United States is no longer number one. But other nations do a lot of things better — and we need to learn from them.

When Americans travel abroad, they are often surprised at how well other countries do the things we used to think America does best. In fact, one reason so many American businesses still lead the world is because they benchmark the competition and emulate best practices. But suggest to an American politician that we should try to learn from other countries, and he will look at you like you are from Mars. It is somehow unpatriotic even to raise such comparisons.

Imagine if a politician were to say, “France has a better health care system than we do.” I can almost guarantee that politician would suffer electoral defeat — even though the statement, in most objective respects, is true. The U.S. is, for too many, the only country that matters; experiences anywhere else are irrelevant. Remember, we have many members of Congress who boast they have no passport. (read the whole article)

The Atlantic has an opinion piece titled To Make America Great Again, We Need to Leave the Country by Elliot Gerson.  This is an EXCELLENT article so read it!  

Traveling I’ve made this same discovery. Dining with a pilot in Germany he looked at me bewildered wondering how Americans can possibly think they are the best in fields like education or health care. A very, successful European banker told me he wouldn’t dream of NOT paying taxes because he gets so much for his investment. I’ve had emergencies traveling in several countries and walked away amazed with bills laughably low.  (I’ve driven across the border into Canada and never seen lines of patients lined up to get into America for healthcare.) I recently posted this comparative chart regarding the issue of child poverty.

Before you vote put yourself on a plane to someplace unfamiliar. 

A recent returnee from long travels abroad sent me this which is directly related to the Atlantic article.

TimeScapes 4K (by Tom Lowe)

Watched these dropdead, gorgeous images of America. right after reading this:

New court documents offer more proof of Obama’s birthplace. Predictably, the birther queen still says it’s forged.

Orly Taitz’s birther suit backfires - Birthers -

Somehow these two disperate ideas came together in my thoughts; it seems ironic, with all of America’s potential and beauty, we are still debating birth certificates. Sadly, stupid is the new smart.