Evan Osnos is a New Yorker staff writer who lives in Beijing
I’ve seen his name before but don’t rightly remember where! Today I learned that he writes for the New Yorker, one of my faves and lives in Beijing. But what got my attention today was the quality of his analysis of the US political scene during this mid-term election period, to whit:
Bottom line: All in all, the Chinese have been left puzzled by the midterms, which appear, from afar, to be defined by a kind of cognitive dissonance. From the Chinese perspective, Americans appear to be thrashing against the realities of a new era: faced with a sudden sense of weakness and global changes in power, Americans look unable to summon the energy or unity to make even the simplest self-sustaining choices, and instead, are seeking refuge in the tinny appeals and false comfort of demagogues. “Americans are feeling quite contradictory,” as a piece in the Southern Daily put it recently. “[T]hey want to build more railroads, train stations and schools, they want to use clean energy, but they don’t want to pay higher taxes in order to do all of these. They are the offspring of immigrants and feel very proud of that, and yet they also oppose the idea of immigration.”
I especially liked the last point about being proud immigrants to the US but being against immigration! The US mood these days is truly a mess of contradictions!
- 2010 Midterms: The View From Beijing (andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com)
- New Yorker Launches on iPad (online.wsj.com)
- Beijing cathedral restored to former glory (cathnewsasia.com)