Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Korean gave an interview with UCLA Radio about our new president.

The Korean realized he hates his own voice. (But it sounds so great once it reverberates through the Korean's cranium....)

14 comments:

  1. Uh, so, you're going to give those of us here a heads up, if your prediction about NK, China and SK seems to be, you know, beginning... right?
    ha ha *nervous laughter at what seems to be eerily possible*

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  2. AAK,

    I would rather listen to you than Darth Vader - your voice is more melodious.

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  3. And I agree with what you said about the DPRK - it could easily be a tragedy if the succession goes badly.

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  4. So basically, according to your obvious allegiance to Korean nationalism, you would have preferred that McCain the scary neocon market fundamentalist had been elected, since he would have been "better" for South Korean interests?

    I'm not entirely sure if you're a Democrat or a Republican, but if you are a Democrat, which seems likely, you are allowing the interests of another nation to trump your own political interests as an American.

    I find this kind of conflicted logic rather troubling, to be quite honest.

    Are you an American or a Korean?

    Do you want to have your cake and eat it, too?

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  5. scott,

    If you had bothered to scroll down a little bit and read the four posts in a row on the same topic of Barack Obama, you would have avoided making an ass out of yourself. The Korean has clearly expressed his support for Obama since the end of the Democratic Primary. His radio interview said nothing about supporting McCain.

    Regulars of this blog knows that the Korean is polite, but asking questions like Are you an American or a Korean? is completely out of the line. That's an automatic ban -- please do not return, and please, go fuck yourself.

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  6. Dear AAK,

    You clearly have a second career as a diplomat. The 'please' was quite the topping to the dish of bon mot ordinaire.

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  7. @korean:

    I didn't hear the full interview because first, I also hated your voice ;) and second, I only have a very superficial interest in politics. Correct me if I'm wrong, but reading your previous posts on the presidential election I was under the impression that while you supported Obama and thought he was the better fit candidate to run the nation you also thought that his views on external politics might not be in the best interests of South Korea.

    So I'm guessing you probably expressed the same views on the interview. Now, due to your obvious Korean background, scott chose to attack you and contest your americanity. I wonder if he'd react the same way if you were, for instance, Caucasian.

    I may be stretching the subject a little but this reaction is typical. We Asians are still viewed as foreigners in this country, regardless of how many generations we've been here. Our loyalty to this country is questioned at the first opportunity and our racial background is brought into the limelight in any convenient situation.

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  8. "I may be stretching the subject a little but this reaction is typical. We Asians are still viewed as foreigners in this country, regardless of how many generations we've been here. Our loyalty to this country is questioned at the first opportunity and our racial background is brought into the limelight in any convenient situation."

    Ksoje, you're reading far too much into my comments.

    1. The title of this blog is "Ask a Korean" not "Ask an American" or "Ask a Korean-American" is it not? I think I asked a perfectly valid question considering how The Korean chooses to identify himself on this site (and in that interview).

    2. I was not making a comment about race but rather nationalism, of which I am a strong opponent (including American nationalism). It just so happens that in Korea the distinction between nation and race is virtually non-existent. That's merely a coincidence in the case of the question I asked.

    3. If you're going to complain about racism, please don't make comments about how I'm a "typical American" of white ancestry or some such and am therefore predisposed to act and think a certain way. For the record, I'm from the SF Bay Area where whites are actually a minority at this point. And that's perfectly fine with me because actually whites stole California from the Indians and Mexico a long time ago.

    To reiterate, I simply remain baffled that an Obama supporter could even begin to offer pro-McCain arguments given how radically different they are, and how terrible McCain and Palin would have been for the US and the world. I am so extremely grateful that we are not going to be bombing Iran on Jan. 21st.

    I think it is easy for pro-Korean arguers to talk about how McCain would have been better for South Korea, but a more interesting interview would have been for The Korean to go against conventional wisdom and argue more aggressively the benefits of an Obama presidency for the Korean Peninsula, and thereby help sell his policies in Korea which would in turn be of benefit to a pro-Obama supporter like The Korean himself.

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  9. -NOTE- Scott and the Korean talked it over on emails, and provided that the discussion progresses in a civil manner, the ban is lifted.

    Scott,

    1. There is no need for the Korean to call himself anything else. The term "the Korean" is not mutually exclusive of "Korean American". (Also, imagine the burden that would put on the third person-speak!)

    But lest there should be any confusion, the Korean clearly identifies himself as a Korean American on the right sidebar, under "About Me" section. Again, all you had to do was scroll down and read. For any questions about who the Korean is and where he stood on the election, all the answers were right there for you on the front page.

    2. Your question may be valid, but you have to approach it with greater caution in such a sensitive subject.

    3. ksoje may have read a little too much into what you wrote, sure. No one knows if you are white, black, or Korean American even. (In fact, the Korean thought you would most likely be a self-righteous Korean American until the Korean realized you were King Baeksu from Marmot.)

    But look what you have done to the Korean. The Korean's statement on the interview, again, contained absolutely nothing about whether the Korean supports McCain. So reading too much into what you wrote is foul, but reading too much into what the Korean said is fair? That cannot stand.

    3. a more interesting interview would have been for The Korean to go against conventional wisdom and argue more aggressively the benefits of an Obama presidency for the Korean Peninsula

    The interview question was: is there anyone who might be unhappy about Obama presidency? The Korean was only there to answer that Korean people have some reason to be cautious. Korean people were not the intended audience of that interview. You want the Korean to make an ass out of himself by giving a completely irrelevant answer to the question on a completely unintended audience? (a la Sarah Palin?)

    4. Even more troubling was this statement you wrote: I simply remain baffled that an Obama supporter could even begin to offer pro-McCain arguments given how radically different they are, and how terrible McCain and Palin would have been for the US and the world.

    The trait about our president that the Korean admires the most and tries to emulate is his keen ability to see the nuances of the situation instead of painting things black and white. (His speech on race relations was a manifestation of this ability.)

    There are always two sides of things, and that applies to this past election as well. While the Korean supported Obama, supporting McCain is still within the realm of reasonability. Voting for McCain was not insanity. To that extent, being able to fully articulate a good argument for your opponent -- and proceeding to defeat it -- is the most important skill for a rhetorician.

    There is no reason why the Korean must turn himself into a blind partisan for Obama just because he voted for him. Again, the Korean said nothing about supporting McCain. Understanding why McCain may have been a good choice at least on some level is crucial in engaging those whose political views differ from the Korean.

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  10. Hello The Korean, thank you for clarifying your position. I spent much of Sept. and Oct. on ROK Drop arguing the campaign with mostly GOP supporters so, yes, I can appreciate the value of looking at the other side of a debate. It's actually more interesting than preaching to the virtual choir.

    My alternative interview suggestion was merely hypothetical, although after advancing the arguments in support of McCain during your interview, it would have been interesting to hear more of a critique of those positions. I've been to North Korea myself and my guides and the military commanders I met there really hated Bush; McCain would have been more of the "hostile policy" that the Northerners despise, and I know that they prefer Obama for his much less belligerent approach to diplomacy.

    I apologize if I haven't had time to read your blog thoroughly, but your position is relatively clearer now. However:

    " While the Korean supported Obama, supporting McCain is still within the realm of reasonability. Voting for McCain was not insanity."

    There we'll just have to disagree.

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  11. @scott:

    "1. The title of this blog is "Ask a Korean" not "Ask an American" or "Ask a Korean-American" is it not? I think I asked a perfectly valid question considering how The Korean chooses to identify himself on this site (and in that interview)."

    Why can't a Korean or a Korean-American have the opinion that McCain might have been better for Korea?

    "3. If you're going to complain about racism, please don't make comments about how I'm a "typical American" of white ancestry or some such and am therefore predisposed to act and think a certain way. For the record, I'm from the SF Bay Area where whites are actually a minority at this point. And that's perfectly fine with me because actually whites stole California from the Indians and Mexico a long time ago."

    Maybe now you're reading too much into what I wrote because in no moment I addressed you as a typical American of white ancestry. I said the reaction was typical in this country. There's a significant difference.

    I'm not one to cry racism to any shit that happens but you have to admit that your comment had some of the characteristic signs.

    "To reiterate, I simply remain baffled that an Obama supporter could even begin to offer pro-McCain arguments given how radically different they are, and how terrible McCain and Palin would have been for the US and the world. I am so extremely grateful that we are not going to be bombing Iran on Jan. 21st."

    I confess I'm not qualified to discuss this since I didn't hear the interview.

    "I think it is easy for pro-Korean arguers to talk about how McCain would have been better for South Korea, but a more interesting interview would have been for The Korean to go against conventional wisdom and argue more aggressively the benefits of an Obama presidency for the Korean Peninsula, and thereby help sell his policies in Korea which would in turn be of benefit to a pro-Obama supporter like The Korean himself."

    A more interesting comment from you would be if you had said Ksoje is the master of the universe, but you didn't because that's not your opinion.

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  12. "Why can't a Korean or a Korean-American have the opinion that McCain might have been better for Korea?"

    They can and no doubt many do, but coming from a Democrat and an Obama supporter I stand by my argument that this would be Korean nationalism trumping American political ideology. I must confess that having seen many of The Korean's other views on The Marmot's Hole, specifically about the beef protests, it was my assumption that he is a strong supporter of Korean nationalism, which in turn colored my reaction to his interview on Obama/McCain.

    Anyway, Korean McCain supporters would be wrong. South Korea needs to wean itself off the great tit of the U.S. military, which I believe Obama is far less likely to support. It is in the long-term interest of Korean unification to reduce the US military footprint on Korea as much as possible. McCain, on the other hand, is a firm believer in the corrupt, wasteful gravy train that is the US military-industrial complex, so he would merely support the status quo here in Korea.

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  13. ah you sound like my friend Minje. I'm presuming he's the case of an immigrant who came with his parents at an extremely young age and had his naturally acquired Korean in one ear and out the other. He says he can understand, but can't speak.

    The other thing I noticed is I sound a bit like that too -_________- It saddened me a bit because I had this nice delusion in my head that with my voice, no one can presume my ethnicity. In Korean I have an accent, in English I have an accent. Is there no language out there in the entire universe that I can speak accentless? ><

    haha such mission-impossible-like challenges worry me so much. I should probably get cracking at my own summer plans. BTW, I decided to try third language acquisition using the method that you used for English. The fact that I learned four years of Spanish and do not know how to assemble a sentence together is pathetic.

    kudos!

    eagerly following your blog,
    medstudent

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  14. Hi!
    I am curious to know something about greetings. When you greet a co worker and he doesnt answer just because he has superior superior status is that korean culture?

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