Posted by Jay Livingston
Remember “freedom fries”? The phrase was part of the spirit of France-bashing that the Bush administration and its friends in the media whipped up six years ago. France and other European countries were saying that invading Iraq might not be such a nifty idea. They even voted against it in the U.N.
The Bushies sure showed them who was right.
The Republicans still use France and Europe as synonyms for various forms of political wickedness. We Americans, they say, don’t want a “European-style” health care system (i.e., one that delivers health care at a lower price to all its people).
But the Americans-don’t-like-France idea is largely a figment of the right-wing imagination. These Republicans are speaking for a smaller and smaller portion of the US population. The Daily Kos poll recently asked the “favorable/unfavorable” question, and it turns out it’s not just us liberal, urban, coastal elitists who have a soft spot in our hearts for France.
QUESTION: Do you have a favorable or unfavorable
opinion of the country of France?
France is well-liked everywhere . . . except the South. The pattern was nearly identical when the places in question were not France but, respectively, Europe, New York, and San Francisco.
It looks as though what Sarah Palin referred to as “the real America” is merely one region of America. And if recent voting patterns in Virginia, North Carolina, and Missouri are any indication, that region is shrinking. Tant pis.