Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Off-Topic > Off-Topic > International affairs/politics  
View Poll Results: Americans: How do you feel when foreigners want to discuss politics with you?
It's nice that they are interested, and I welcome the opportunity to talk about my country. 29 42.65%
I find it ill-mannered and annoying. 5 7.35%
I find it amusing, and rather enjoy baiting them. 9 13.24%
I tolerate it with good humour, although I'd rather talk about other things. 25 36.76%
Voters: 68. You may not vote on this poll

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #41  
Old 05.06.2011, 22:15
phdoofus's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: City by the Bay
Posts: 2,357
Groaned at 96 Times in 56 Posts
Thanked 3,205 Times in 1,227 Posts
phdoofus has a reputation beyond reputephdoofus has a reputation beyond reputephdoofus has a reputation beyond reputephdoofus has a reputation beyond reputephdoofus has a reputation beyond repute
Quote:
Not necessarily, but it's fair to assume that republicans tend to keep their mouths shut when behind enemy lines.
Oddly, I know a couple just in my office....
I had to keep from snorting 'Wait..you left the US because you hated the direction it was going to come...here....land of Das Rool Book????'

Quote:
View Post
I can't remember meeting a US republican in switzerland. Is it fair to assume that most expat US in CH are democrats?
Not officially affiliated with any political party, thanks. Never have, never will.
Hate them, I do.

Quote:
Sport? Latin, I think.

Ask Faltrad - he's good at this sort of thing.
I could be wrong, but I'm pretty sure it was the part about 'getting on your tits' being the phrase in question.

Last edited by economisto; 07.06.2011 at 11:14.
Reply With Quote
  #42  
Old 06.06.2011, 02:48
Wollishofener's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Glattbrugg
Posts: 18,978
Groaned at 332 Times in 257 Posts
Thanked 11,715 Times in 6,858 Posts
Wollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
Most of the time, the discussion is a one-way critic of American policies.

Most of the people have no clue as to how the American society
and politics play a role in the lives of the average American.
Totally wrong, sorry but this is to be said straight on . When talking this my TX/LA relatives, upon my acceptance of the superior wisdom of the capitalistic TX ways and the LA wisdom of the LA socialist ways everything was perfect It was the same in military service in Graubründen
and is the same wherever
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 06.06.2011, 09:00
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 32,516
Groaned at 2,578 Times in 1,840 Posts
Thanked 39,652 Times in 18,690 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
I can't remember meeting a US republican in switzerland. Is it fair to assume that most expat US in CH are democrats?
No, I don't think so. Most I know are Republicans.

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 06.06.2011, 09:01
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Zurich
Posts: 51
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 31 Times in 20 Posts
Raechel has earned some respectRaechel has earned some respect
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

As an American who is actively involved in politics "back home", I am not against talking politics. What I don't like is the attitude that America is evil and all Americans drive F450s and play with guns. Most of these people have never been to the US and often never even met an American.

When I've tried to discuss politics and explain my beliefs (which in the US are considered pretty leftist) I'm told "Well you're the exception." Ugh. It just gets frustrating.

Anyway...sometimes I'd rather just drink a beer and talk about something trivial
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank Raechel for this useful post:
  #45  
Old 06.06.2011, 23:22
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 11,810
Groaned at 611 Times in 517 Posts
Thanked 21,741 Times in 11,421 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
As an American who is actively involved in politics "back home", I am not against talking politics. What I don't like is the attitude that America is evil and all Americans drive F450s and play with guns. Most of these people have never been to the US and often never even met an American.

When I've tried to discuss politics and explain my beliefs (which in the US are considered pretty leftist) I'm told "Well you're the exception." Ugh. It just gets frustrating.

Anyway...sometimes I'd rather just drink a beer and talk about something trivial
As an ignorant Old Worlder I would never dream of discussing American politics with Americans, for example,
Sarah Palin on Paul Revere's ride: 'Hey British, we're coming'.
Might be tempted to have a little private laugh with other Old Worlders

I see some people are trying to revise Wikipedia’s Paul Revere entry; who said you cannot learn from the Russians & write revisionist history?
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 07.06.2011, 08:16
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Lutry, Switzerland
Posts: 148
Groaned at 4 Times in 3 Posts
Thanked 133 Times in 45 Posts
Scarsdale has earned the respect of manyScarsdale has earned the respect of manyScarsdale has earned the respect of many
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

One of the most significant differences to me between living in Suisse and France has been that in France, people always wanted to talk politics. For fun. For a good debate. To laugh and exchange perspectives and learn something about one another and each other's countries. Yeah, people would frequently ask why in the world Americans voted for George Bush. But in asking me the question, I didn't usually feel put off. It gave me a chance to laugh and share my mutual bafflement.

Here in Vaud, I find people seem to feel it would be impolite to discuss such matters. Maybe specifically because I am American, I don't know. I have tried bringing up politics with my Swiss athletic team, but no takers. They seem to get uncomfortable. For instance, no one wanted to talk about DSK, or know about it, even in the height of the drama.

Most of the political discussions I've been able to stir up have been with French, Italians, and Dutch. As someone who is half Jewish American, half Dutch maybe the traditions I come from are different. Some cultures treat political discussions as an engaging past time. Others, many from EF apparently, seem to find political talk delicate and potentially unsettling.

I find talking about work and sports goes over well, and discussing one's weekend activities. But sometimes I am searching for another topic, and can't seem to hit upon something that works with folks here. It's funny.
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 07.06.2011, 09:12
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
...As a child it used to be fun. People loved the States, they thought that everything American was interesting. People were curious about us and there was a feeling of empathy......Then in the 90s the emotion started to change, slowly at first as those who could remember WWII were no longer there or had been too young at the time.
The feeling was precipitated with the happenings on the world scene from 2001 all the way until Obama came to office.....
Actually imo the rot set in with Reagan and continued with Bush 1 as far as much of the rest of the world was concerned.

Quote:
I'm married to an American, and am gradually learning to love the immense hidden depths of culture that lie behind European stereotypes of the New World, but one thing I have learnt is this: don't even attempt to understand - or, for that matter, express an opinion about - their politics.

That is their business, and many Americans - even those with right wing tendencies - might well take offence at a foreigner trying to tell them what's right and wrong about the way they do things.

Best to stick to the wonderful music, the delicious food and the fascinating complexity of their nation, and leave the politics to those who actually have a right to vote there.
Going back to this post on the other thread (more appropriate here, I believe), this is only partially true. The rest of us have a perfect right to comment on US politics to the extent it affects us and our lives, not only in the obvious area of foreign policy but also for example in things like economic affairs which has possibly a stronger impact on all of us.

What we don't have the right to do is blame individual Americans for the policies of their government. Unless they voted for Bush 2 of course!
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank for this useful post:
  #48  
Old 07.06.2011, 09:14
Jimmy Bee's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Zurich
Posts: 676
Groaned at 8 Times in 8 Posts
Thanked 383 Times in 211 Posts
Jimmy Bee has earned the respect of manyJimmy Bee has earned the respect of manyJimmy Bee has earned the respect of many
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Isn't the saying, never talk politics and religion?

I have american mates and tbh I don't think I have ever discussed politics with them. They're nice and I dont want to scare them away

Plus I know bugger all about america anyway, just their influence on everyone else
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Jimmy Bee for this useful post:
  #49  
Old 07.06.2011, 09:32
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
This is a genuine question that has sprung out of another thread.

The United States has a pretty big political footprint compared to most other nations in the world, and almost everyone has something to say about it, wherever he comes from.

As a US citizen, do you find yourself constantly being invited to talk about politics when you'd much rather enjoy a quiet beer and talk about cooking? How do you react when you are approached by foreigners who wish to discuss US foreign policy with you? Are you grateful for their interest? Do you find them amusing? Do you find them irritating? How often does this happen to you?

Citizens of other parts of the world about which foreigners like to express their opinions are also invited to contribute (although I'd be grateful if the poll was reserved for Americans). I'm sure our Northern Irish, Icelandic and Israeli members have plenty of experiences to share.

Anyway, about that George Bush...
Who talks about f+*king cooking at the pub!? Plus the yanks don't 'own' politics what Bol*cks is this? It is true that the Americans have a uniquely fair and representative system conceived by the greatest philosophical minds of the enlightenment, Thomas Pain, etc it is always interesting to see how such a system built on such lofty ideals has been thoroughly corrupted and hamstrung by the very people it was designed to protect and serve.

Plus YOU are the foreigner here son...
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank for this useful post:
  #50  
Old 07.06.2011, 10:00
simon_ch's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Zürich
Posts: 2,390
Groaned at 128 Times in 76 Posts
Thanked 3,488 Times in 1,377 Posts
simon_ch has a reputation beyond reputesimon_ch has a reputation beyond reputesimon_ch has a reputation beyond reputesimon_ch has a reputation beyond reputesimon_ch has a reputation beyond reputesimon_ch has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
Not necessarily, but it's fair to assume that republicans tend to keep their mouths shut when behind enemy lines.
Switzerland seems to be the favourite country of several US Republicans though, Ron Paul (libertarian) being among them:
http://www.primarilypaul.com/2007/08...she-responded/

But also when it comes to gun ownership Fox News likes to cite Switzerland. In terms of social liberties I would like to think that the mainstream in CH has probably more in common with the Dems, but that doesn't stop the Reps from seemingly admiring Switzerland, its independance and federal institutions.

edit: oh and sorry for the OT, won't happen again.

Last edited by simon_ch; 07.06.2011 at 10:23.
Reply With Quote
  #51  
Old 07.06.2011, 10:02
grumpygit's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: geneva
Posts: 1,476
Groaned at 29 Times in 16 Posts
Thanked 1,508 Times in 695 Posts
grumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

If I was a Septic, and some ignorant pommie git started to get on my case about "what a moron that george bush is " or "how many of you lot have actually got passports " I think I would probably be redirecting my nukes pretty bloody swiftly. After all where is the justification for the holier than thou attitude ? Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling? Cam and Clegg ?
Which European or for that matter any other nation can claim moral high ground over the USA? well none . Not even Iceland.Even the Swedes, those peaceful ,women in charge bastions of fairplay dropped the ball over Wikiwhatisname. So I reckon its a very American " No Mate, No No No No. Its very annoying for them.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank grumpygit for this useful post:
  #52  
Old 07.06.2011, 10:08
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
If I was a Septic, and some ignorant pommie git started to get on my case about "what a moron that george bush is " or "how many of you lot have actually got passports " I think I would probably be redirecting my nukes pretty bloody swiftly. After all where is the justification for the holier than thou attitude ? Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling? Cam and Clegg ?
Which European or for that matter any other nation can claim moral high ground over the USA? well none . Not even Iceland.Even the Swedes, those peaceful ,women in charge bastions of fairplay dropped the ball over Wikiwhatisname. So I reckon its a very American " No Mate, No No No No. Its very annoying for them.
Ah but you're not a septic so you can't decide for them either. There's Americans who are quite happy to discuss politics, others who prefer not to. Just like the rest of us really.
Reply With Quote
  #53  
Old 07.06.2011, 10:10
grumpygit's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: geneva
Posts: 1,476
Groaned at 29 Times in 16 Posts
Thanked 1,508 Times in 695 Posts
grumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
Ah but you're not a septic so you can't decide for them either. There's Americans who are quite happy to discuss politics, others who prefer not to. Just like the rest of us really.
Just sayin` thats all
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 07.06.2011, 10:11
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
It is true that the Americans have a uniquely fair and representative system
Now this one does get on my tits. There is nothing uniquely fair or representative about the US system. Better than some, sure (the UK for example), worse than others because of the lack of PR. Remind me again, what % of the vote did GWB get first time round?
Reply With Quote
The following 4 users would like to thank for this useful post:
  #55  
Old 07.06.2011, 11:09
amogles's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Zurich
Posts: 12,361
Groaned at 338 Times in 274 Posts
Thanked 26,263 Times in 11,000 Posts
amogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond reputeamogles has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Speaking as a Brit, and one who first visited the USA only 4 years ago (and that on a business trip), I have to say that I think the US is a great country, at least from a tourist perspective and have gone back three times since. I won't attempt to pass judgement on what it's like to be there all the time as I do realise that being in a vacation mood tends to make things appear nicer than they are to those who have to put up with them every day. Whenever I visit a foreign country, I'm not the type to go and see all the tourist stuff but I try and see what is typical and everyday. So I've never been to New York or San Francisco or Las Vegas or the Grand Canyon but have been to a fair number of smaller maybe less glammy places.

One of the things that makes the USA so instantly likeable is that it isn't really totally foreign. Ever since I was a kid I was confronted with pictures and scenes from America in movies, on TV etc and it's quite interesting to see that a lot of that is real, and not some sort of caricature or setup (which would put it in contrast to a lot of what you see of Britain or Europe portrayed in British or European movies which in my opinion is often constructed, exaggerated, romaticised or caricatured rather then the real thing).

Many Americans I talked to (and many of these were salt of the earth working class types who maybe didn't have a top education or knowledge of world affairs) were quite happy to discuss their politics and mostly it was them that started it. Also, I had the impression many of them (and this includes people from both sides of the political spectrum) were often apologetic about the USA, and more apologetic than they needed have been towards me because they often saw their own country more negatively than IMHO was objectively appropriate and aplogised that certain things weren't as well organised or as nice as maybe I was expecting (although I wasn't at all critical and actually liked what I saw) and several also warned me about "other Americans" who were maybe not as friendly or open as they were who I migh meet later, but I never did meet any of these nasty Americans I was warned about. So on the whole my impression was that they were very open and liked to discuss their politics (regardless of their party affiliation) and often overly apologetic of things hat they perceived as being wrong or badly managed.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank amogles for this useful post:
  #56  
Old 07.06.2011, 11:18
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 11,810
Groaned at 611 Times in 517 Posts
Thanked 21,741 Times in 11,421 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
Speaking as a Brit, and one who first visited the USA only 4 years ago (and that on a business trip), I have to say that I think the US is a great country, at least from a tourist perspective and have gone back three times since. ................... So I've never been to New York or San Francisco or Las Vegas or the Grand Canyon but have been to a fair number of smaller maybe less glammy places.
.............................
About "the US is a great country, at least from a tourist perspective " I agree I just figured out I first visited around 40 years ago & many times since. I have visited New York, San Francisco, Las Vegas & the Grand Canyon & many many more great places.
Reply With Quote
  #57  
Old 07.06.2011, 12:56
Lejoker's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lausanne
Posts: 576
Groaned at 20 Times in 12 Posts
Thanked 285 Times in 181 Posts
Lejoker has no particular reputation at present
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

As somebody mentioned earlier, it is seldom a discussion between an American and non-American. Rather, it is a critique of American policy and of the person's values, family and mentality. Oftentimes they ascribe violence to the American before them.

But not only, as I find myself sometimes confronted with what seems to be a series of accusations of having an imperial agenda to conquer the world etc etc
In brief, Americans are the people of the wild wild West who are blood thirsty and wish the world ill.

Dougal's Breakfast: what we get from non-Americans isn't their opinion, but rather a reproachful approach.
__________________
ça m'est égal
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Lejoker for this useful post:
  #58  
Old 07.06.2011, 17:01
miniMia's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: romandie
Posts: 9,971
Groaned at 101 Times in 92 Posts
Thanked 9,106 Times in 4,522 Posts
miniMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
Oftentimes they ascribe violence to the American before them.
Ignorance more often than violence.

Sometimes we go out with a group of people where French is the common language. I'm the only American and I'm the ONLY one new people will ask "Oh, but do you speak French?" when we are introduced. It makes me want to kick them especially since I speak more languages than most of them!

And the Argentines love to say "Oh, but you don't know that your gov't was involved in.... " "Yeah, I knew that before YOU did!" Grr!
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank miniMia for this useful post:
  #59  
Old 07.06.2011, 19:56
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
lord alone knows what
Huh? Did you read the OP or did you just imagine what it said and proceeded from there?
Reply With Quote
  #60  
Old 07.06.2011, 20:20
esto's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: CHE
Posts: 1,361
Groaned at 76 Times in 58 Posts
Thanked 3,225 Times in 1,406 Posts
esto has a reputation beyond reputeesto has a reputation beyond reputeesto has a reputation beyond reputeesto has a reputation beyond reputeesto has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Quote:
View Post
I'm the only American and I'm the ONLY one new people will ask "Oh, but do you speak French?" when we are introduced. It makes me want to kick them especially since I speak more languages than most of them!
Do it, show 'em you're really American

As for me, I'm American, and I don't even want to talk politics within my own family, much less with strangers in a different country who have never even visited the US . I just smile, agree with whatever their viewpoint is, and change the topic as quick as possible .
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank esto for this useful post:
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Correct term - is it Americans or US Americans? Guest General off-topic 80 14.06.2011 01:52
Boring! ITPro Complaints corner 33 07.06.2010 17:13
Americans hanging out with Americans in Zurich! nommysoup01 Social events 209 07.04.2010 15:12
Two foreigners...are their children foreigners too? alessione Family matters/health 15 28.02.2008 12:33
Debate about drugs and other substances - harmless or not? Guest General off-topic 112 28.02.2008 09:46


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 12:35.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0