American Influence is Way Up

Last night at the debate, Mitt Romney claimed, “Nowhere in the world is America’s influence greater today than it was four years ago.” That sounds like a typical vague statement that a politician might make because they know it can’t be countered. It’s a matter of opinion, right? Well, maybe in a world without policy nerd and Jon Cryer look alike Ezra Klein!

Last night over on MSNBC, Klein was doing what he does best: wonking off in public. Rachel Maddow asked him if Romney’s claim was checkable and for which there ware empirical data. Klein responded, “We not only have empirical data, we have a graph on it. This comes from a Pew Poll that was done in 16 different countries around the world. And it looked at a range of questions about American influence.”

Here is the graph:

<%image(20121023-foreinapproval.jpg|421|277|Approval of U.S. in 16 ForeignCountries)%>

I’m not suggesting that many Americans care about how we are viewed outside the country and how willing other countries are to work with us. But this is striking. This is why Obama was given the Nobel Prize. And it is a very good thing.

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

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