Who Said It’s A Gift To See Ourselves As Others See Us?

It was Robert Burns, who wrote:

Oh, would some Power give us the gift
To see ourselves as others see us!
It would from many a blunder free us,
And foolish notion:
What airs in dress and gait would leave us,
And even devotion.

Well, seeing ourselves as others see us might not keep us from blundering, but it is clearly a path to humor. My son who lives in Amsterdam recently sent me this reaction to America’s 2016 election  from a Netherlands comedian, and it is just too good not to share.

Doom and gloom can wait until tomorrow…


  1. Thanks. Funny…yet sad that the orange buffoon is funny like Benito Mussolini was funny — Not so much. Fascism is real and growing world wide.

  2. Yeah. Well, ha ha. Watching Ken Burns’ new series, “The U.S. and the Holocaust” I saw all that American Nazi bullshit centered around “America First”. The very same words as the orange hairball spewed at his speech. For confirmation that Trump is the worst human being this country has ever produced, read Peter Baker’s new book “The Divider”. MY GOD!! What an utter beast!

    The question remains: How did 75 million sheep fall for this big con game? We’ve tried and tried to analyze this, but the end result is that Trump is a psychopath. That’s more than a sociopath, because Trump intended to kill and maim innocent people. He went past all our laws like they were fence posts and he was traveling at 100 MPH.

    Nothing funny about any of that, and yet… The media continues to spend hours feeding this madman’s ego with news coverage. And they feed the delusional folks who still show up to get paid $50 to cheer at his idiotic cult rallies. Is this kind of news coverage so critical to media corporate profits? I guess so. Meanwhile, a once great nation becomes the laughing stock of the world.

  3. While the skit is hilarious, especially the Trumpish vocals, it’s even more accurate when you look at the facts. I republished an article from a John Hopkin’s professor with all our international rankings “besides GDP,” which the western media likes to use because of its output.

    The truth hurts and we aren’t exceptional – not even close:

    “The United States may regard itself as a “leader of the free world,” but an index of development released in July 2022 places the country much farther down the list.

    In its global rankings, the United Nations Office of Sustainable Development dropped the U.S. to 41st worldwide, down from its previous ranking of 32nd. Under this methodology – an expansive model of 17 categories, or “goals,” many of them focused on the environment and equity – the U.S. ranks between Cuba and Bulgaria. Both are widely regarded as developing countries.”


  4. Thank you. That was truly funny and we need our senses of humor more than anything these days to keep us all from going crazy or maybe just to keep us from realizing we are already there.

    I happen to be one of those who admire the Netherlands, simply because they don’t seem to have difficulty putting forth resources to solve their identified problems. If we were willing to do that, the Mississippi Delta wouldn’t be so prone to flooding. Remember that much of the Netherlands is below sea level, just like the Delta. The difference is in the ability to use science as a guide and provide the resources to carry out an enormous and costly engineering miracle. We just don’t do those things anymore.

  5. Todd,

    Good analysis. Did you see the news that Cuba passed, in a referendum, the acceptance of same-sex marriage? And what are we doing? Oh. And Cuba also has universal health care. Not bad for a third-world nation. And what model does the U.S. use in caring for its citizens? Oh yeah. Profit before people. Never mind.

  6. Vernon,

    Cuba even sent their patent and manufacturing process for COVID vaccines to any country that wanted it. They have excelled in their healthcare endeavors, while the USA, as you claim, is bankrupting Americans for the high cost of mediocre results — a profit-driven model.

    Disease over prevention, like war over peace.

  7. I too watched The USA and the Holocaust. I am now reminded of how terribly anti-Semitic the USA was in the 30’s and 40’s. I have read about the people who rescued Jews and I really admire what the Danish did when they were invaded by Germany. I also read about 2 teenage girls in the Netherlands who hid 14-15 Jews in their attic! Such courage!!

    I was surprised and delighted by Cuba’s decision to marry same sexed couples and to allow them to adopt kids.

    It seems to me that Europe is trending toward Fascism as is evidenced by Trevor Noah’s comic video and the video sent to us by Shiela. And it is interesting that Trump, Johnson, and the far right candidate in the Netherlands is also blonde haired. It’s so good to laugh in the midst of politicians who rise to power by inciting fear in people.

    Italy has elected a far right prime minister. I believe that they will come to regret their decision(well I hope they do).

    White people are a minority in the global population. There are far more Asians , black,and Latino people than us. So many white people are afraid of our race dying out. No doubt that created extreme bias against interracial marriage. Christians and I assume many Jews, are afraid of being overwhelmed by Muslims. Even Buddhists in Myanmar have become Islamophobic. Christian nationalism in America is on the rise due to the fact they don’t really like all the diversity of faiths in America.

    What the videos and the rise of fascism tells me is that what Karen Armstrong has said is true. Without compassion for one another(regardless of race, creed etc), the human race will not survive. We must extend that compassion to our Mother Earth if we are to survive as a species.

    May all sentient beings be well and happy.

  8. I’m proud that I don’t need much help from others to see what we are facing here. I see it by myself because my vision doesn’t come from others but from studying civics, especially the Constitution. It’s got great words in it. It’s true! Some of the greatest words ever. It was written by enlightened people. All white, Christian, presumably heterosexual, wealthy, guns at home, men to be sure but they gave the country to everyone else. They said, if not did, what the words aspired to. Equality for all people under the law of the land. Then they said, our government has to follow their words, not their actions. And, until recently that’s what we also aspired to.

  9. It just so happens that my friends and I landed in Amsterdam the morning of November 9, 2016. Since we had been flying overnight we were unable to learn of the election results until we were touching down. As we cued up in the immigration line for our passport check, many people (Americans) were crying and shaking their heads in disbelief. When it was my turn to have my passport checked, the agent said “Good morning. How are you?” I answered “I’ve been better.” His answer was “I understand.” And it went downhill from there. When we talked to folks in Germany, The Netherlands, France and Switzerland, they couldn’t believe what America had done. We told them “Neither can we!” I will never forget that experience.

  10. That bit is very funny, I had seen it a few years ago. And I just want to get of my chest that being Dutch, born and raised, I resent to no end that the color orange has been defiled by this worthless cretin.

  11. mejs.audio-player

    The First letter to the Corinthians at Corinth

    13 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels but do not have love, I have become a clanging gong or a clashing cymbal. 2 And if I have the gift of prophecy and understand all the sacred secrets and all knowledge, and if I have all the faith so as to move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 And if I give all my belongings to feed others,+ and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I do not benefit at all.

    4 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous. It does not brag, does not get puffed up, 5 does not behave indecently, does not look for its own interests, does not become provoked. It does not keep account of the injury. 6 It does not rejoice over unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth. 7 It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

    8 Love never fails. But if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away with; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away with. 9 For we have partial knowledge and we prophesy partially, 10 but when what is complete comes, what is partial will be done away with. 11 When I was a child, I used to speak as a child, to think as a child, to reason as a child; but now that I have become a man, I have done away with the traits of a child. 12 For now we see in hazy outline by means of a metal mirror, but then it will be face-to-face. At present I know partially, but then I will know accurately, just as I am accurately known. 13 Now, however, these three remain: faith, hope, love; but the greatest of these is love.

    So, how could anyone in this world not know who or what they are. We know exactly who we are! Whether it be liars, hypocrites, boasters, naysayers, intellectual bigots, religious fanaticists, con artists, flimflammers, deceivers, thieves, dishonest brokers, cheaters, conspiracy theorists, well, you name it!

    It’s all funny until it isn’t, Marv used to hit the nail square on the head! I believe him and I used to talk about the Nazi traits that were late 1800 and 1900 america. It’s no surprise, there are no secrets here, all anyone had to do is pay attention to history class, and or research just a little on their own, then you can see absolutely without a doubt who we are.

    Alas it seems that everyone wants to stay babes, ignorant babes at that, like there is some new revelation here!

    There is a fairly decent sized element that will always see themselves in a mirror darkly! Always claiming to see but never really seeing.

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