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The movies the world watches, the television shows they tune into, and the music
they listen to are, for the most part, produced in the United States. For
instance, the U.S. exports more than 25 times the number of movies and television
shows than it consumes from abroad, a fact that causes Ben Wattenberg to observe
quite correctly that America is "the most culturally potent nation in the world."
Even the virulent America-hater Saddam Hussein reportedly spent a good portion of
his time watching American-made movies such as The Godfather and Enemy of the

9. Immigration
During the hundred years ending in the 1920s, a majority of the world's immigrants
came to one lone country: the United States. Today, the U.S. takes in more
immigrants than at any point in its history. Yet, the Left portrays America as a
bastion of xenophobia and bigotry. Alexander Hamilton (the first Secretary of the
Treasury), John Jacob Astor (America's first multimillionaire), Alexander Graham
Bell (invented the telephone), Louis B. Mayer (Hollywood pioneer), Selman Waksman
(cured tuberculosis), and Ralph Baer (invented the video game) are among the
immigrants to America whose lives belie the Left's premise. Just as those who
complain about "oppression" in the U.S. would never entertain the idea of living
anywhere else, the people around the world we allegedly oppress flock to come
here. This contradiction between leftist theory and real-world practice
illustrates just how delusional the central tenets of leftist thought really are.

8. Technology
Nothing disproves the Leftist mantra that "all cultures are equal" more than
technology does. Americans have given the world motion pictures, the telephone,
the television, the computer, the Internet, the airplane, the VCR, and a host of
other machines and devices that have vastly improved the quality of life on the
planet. Ironically, the terrorists who hate the U.S. give America a tacit
endorsement every time they turn on a light, escape the heat through air
conditioning, monitor their exploits on television or the internet, or communicate
via telephone.

7. Creating Wealth
America is the sun around which the world economy revolves. The typical creator of
wealth in the world is an American. Foreigners benefit from buying better products
from American companies and working better jobs manufacturing such products. Take
America's $9 trillion dollar economy out of the picture, and the economic well
being of the rest of the world nose-dives.

6. Generosity
With great wealth comes great generosity. In 2000, Americans gave more than $200
billion in charity, dwarfing the amount donated elsewhere. Since World War II, the
U.S. government has given well in excess of $500 billion (not adjusted for
inflation) in foreign aid. Last year, our government distributed more than $20
billion to 130 countries. While American taxpayers have a right to gripe, what are
we to make of foreign beneficiaries who return our favor by burning U.S. flags and
chanting "death to America"?

5. Human Achievement
Americans have stretched the bounds of the possible. The first transatlantic
flight, putting a man on the moon, breaking the speed of sound, constructing the
Hoover Dam, and building the Panama Canal serve as testimony to American courage
and ingenuity. It wasn't Danes or Bolivians or Iranians or Koreans who achieved
these feats. It was Americans. This is significant.

4. Enlightened Power
The Soviet Empire ruled over Eastern Europe. The Ottoman Empire claimed dominion
over vast stretches of the Islamic world. The Empire of the Sun sought dominion
over the Orient. The American Empire rules...only Americans. America is an
historical curiosity. It is the most powerful country in the world, yet it eschews
imperialism. Instead, it has used its military might to liberate. Nazi Germany,
North Korea, Soviet Russia, Hussein's Iraq, and Communist Vietnam are among the
nefarious states we sought to prevent from increasing their totalitarian control
over others. The world is a better place because America, and not some other
country, is the sole superpower.

3. Medicine
Will Nigerian doctors make the blind see? Will Cambodians cure AIDS? Will
Pakistanis eradicate cancer? The answer is probably not. Why? The reason is that
non-Westerners have had no discernable impact on modern medicine. This year, like
45 of the last 60, an American won a share of the Nobel Prize in the field of
medicine. Americans cured polio and tuberculosis, developed vaccines for hepatitis
B and yellow fever, pioneered modern chemotherapy, and produced the CAT scan and
MRI. What's there to hate about that?

2. Democracy
Leftists harp that American democracy is tainted because not everyone possessed
the right to vote at the Founding. Denial of the vote in the 18th century,
however, was universal. What made America unique was not that some people could
not vote, but that anybody could. More than 215 years after the Constitutional
Convention, most people on the planet still do not have a right to vote. Every
Arab country, more than three-fourths of African nations, and many of the most
populous nations in the Orient still deny their citizens the right to choose their
own leaders. Despite the continued rejection by many foreign leaders, the ideals
of the American Founding became contagious. Our example served to topple regimes
far from our shores. Pro-democracy activists don't quote the founding documents of
Saudi Arabia or appropriate the cultural symbols of China. They cite passages from
the Declaration of Independence and hoist replicas of the Statue of Liberty.

1. Freedom
America has shined as a beacon of freedom in an unfree world for more than two
centuries. To this day, for instance, most people living outside our borders
reside in countries where the private practice of broadcast journalism is illegal
and where the state is the dominant banker. Americans can say anything they want,
worship any god they choose, and associate with any motley crew around. Our legacy
is not slave chains, Wounded Knee, and the murder of James Byrd, but American GIs
liberating a Nazi death camp, an immigrant's first glance of lady liberty's torch,
and Ronald Reagan exhorting the Soviet's to tear down the Berlin Wall. If nothing
else, America means freedom.

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