Skip to comments.San Antonio's contribution to national humiliation
Posted on 05/26/2010 5:12:32 AM PDT by Racehorse
In 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tapped San Antonio lawyer José Villarreal to be the pavilion's commissioner general -- essentially the manager of the U.S. presence and the public face of the U.S. government at the World Expo. . . .
While the opportunity to take part in an event that Villarreal's staff modestly calls "the largest event in world history" is certainly understandable, the early reviews of the U.S. pavilion and the U.S. presence are less than stellar.
Liberal blogger Matthew Yglesias writes at his Think Progress blog that the U.S. pavilion is "a national humiliation":
T]hey really only managed to assemble what amounts to a series of advertisements for the U.S. brands who put up the money plus a couple of barely coherent movies. The mightiest nation on earth probably doesn't need to brag, but it would be nice if one of those films said something--anything--about the actual achievements and history of the country. Instead, we get kids talking about the importance of innovation and a bizarre parable about a group of people coming together to build a community garden.
Most problematic of all, at one point Hillary Clinton appears on screen on says the pavilion will highlight "core American values" and then doesn't mention democracy or anything resembling democracy. I can see making the decision that you don't want to try to talk about democracy in China, but if that's the decision you make then I think you can't talk about core American values.
. . .
A discussion forum at The Archinect, whose goal "is to make architecture more connected and open-minded," asks, "Is the U.S. pavilion the very worst in the Shanghai Expo?":
It's competing with the Romanian. God, what a sorry state American architecture is in if this is the best we can muster.
(Excerpt) Read more at blogs.mysanantonio.com ...
This shoddy display portrays BO’s core Progressive (aka Communist) belief: The U.S.A is not exceptional.
I bet this idiot doesn’t know the word “democrat” entered the American political lexicon as a accusation, not a word many applied to themselves.
Rather, the U.S. absence seems to have been an oversight on the State Department's part, which Hillary Clinton took upon herself to correct when she took office. Consequently, the U.S. pavilion came about through corporate sponsorship (nothing wrong with that).
Now, the concept of a public-private partnership for public diplomacy is one that has merit. The private sector is certainly more creative and usually far more efficient than the U.S. government. And it often has the means and the flexibility that the government lacks. Yet, in the absence of proper planning, thinking, and coordination, the result can backfire.
What is far more problematic is the evidence of hasty planning. As reported by The Washington Post the outcome looks something like a convention center in a mid-sized American city, a square, windowless construction that houses three movie theaters.
Worse is the absolute lack of a coherent public message to go with the US attendance at the World Expo. While the Obama administration is pursuing a dialogue with China that has confined any controversial mentions of human rights abuses to closed door meetings, the U.S. Secretary of State could this weekend be found in Shanghai connecting with Chinese children by handing out teddy bears. "It's like a coming out party for countries and cities," Clinton told reporters according to Reuters. "There is a real historical significance to them doing this."
Yes, indeed, but what is the message when not only the teddy bears, but every item in the gift shop from the bison to the pink cowboy hats marked "Made in China"? Perhaps the "historical significance" being implied is not what Americans would want the world to understand about their great country, nor reflecting its real role in the world.
A strong, proud vision will have its counterpart in its architecture. A soppy, muddled, ambivalent vision will be similarly reflected.
I’ll leave it to you to figure out what kind of vision is behind this pavilion.
We need more press and pics to ridicule bo and hil with, ah to alinsky the fools is so sweet.
They should do a model of one of Obama’s planned “re-education camps” for conservative Christians. All they need is a little barbed wire and some bibles to burn.
Depends on your definition of "is", I guess...