The Sexiness Of American Politics

You know there’s something seriously wrong with Jordanian politics when someone is more interested in who wins the New Hampshire primary than about both the municipal and parliamentary elections we held last year. Yes, I am speaking about myself. And this is coming from someone who followed both elections closely and invested a great deal of thinking, writing, reading and discussion when it came to dissecting these elections piece by piece, if nothing more than out of personal pleasure. Elections, which some would argue, have an enormous impact on my life as a Jordanian.

And yet, Clinton winning the New Hampshire primary seemed so much more, riveting; so much more, politically sexier? I even wanted to know who would win Dixville Notch at 12 in the morning, six hours before the rest of the polls opened. It’s the difference between watching the final match between Faisaly and Wahdat, versus the final match of the World Cup.

It makes me wonder what gives American politics so much prestige, what makes it so much more interesting than elections anywhere else in the world? Is it the superpower thing? Is it the culture? Hell, we had candidates buying votes for 50JDs during the last elections and the government transporting military personnel to flood the ballots in competitive districts. If that’s not good TV then I don’t know what is!

Is it the years of culturalization: from TV shows, to Hollywood, to CNN and Time Magazine; have we all been conditioned on an international scale to believe that American politics are so important? That their role in world history has mattered immensely in the past century? Is it impact?

Even with us, the majority being Arabs and Muslims, the majority believing that the ultimate lesson to be learned from American elections is simple: whoever wins, we lose.

And yet, I remain addicted.

Maybe it’s just me.


  • “what makes it so much more interesting than elections anywhere else in the world?”

    Frigid White woman, eloquent Black man, defensive Mormon, Guilliani, potty-mouthed wives, laughable president, miserably failing war(s)……….why not ya3ni?

  • hmmm … so that i wouldn’t take too long in answering your question, i am gonna venture and say “crude understanding of it”
    cause interesting would be the last word anyone would use to describe it, save for the people on oprah and ET. hell even cnn and fox would shy away from using that word ……

  • In this time and era, where the United States are playing the role of world’s police, American politics, and these days, elections, are extremely important for every nation. Whether we like it or not, and specially this one, because it represents a beginning of a new era after Bush’s second reign. Expectations of change in foreign policy, regarding politics and economy, both inside the states, and other countries. Palestine, Israel, Iraq, Iran, Syria, Venezuela, North Korea. You name it.

    You’re not alone, I’m with you. I find following Ron Paul’s campaign extremely entertaining.

  • You are not alone, but let me ask you this: Was it her tears or her husband bashing obama that brought her back?

    Another question, who’s you favourite?

  • Nas,

    It is very obvious that you would be interested in the Presidential elections. First you majored in political science, second you lived for a considerable number of years next door in Toronto, and third you have an innate interest in politics. Remember in 2004 when we were debating Bush versus Kerry and almost everyone in the group was rooting for Kerry and I was the only dissenting voice in the bunch as I’m on record rooting for Bush, and Bush did come out on top. I remember you hinting that Bush would win but you were never very clear about your position.

  • bambam: well being the pro-american-zionist-ultra-liberal-hollywood-luvin-godless-infidel that I am, “interesting” was the best word I could conjure up. sue me.

    Mohanned: maybe a mix of both. i’m not much of a “favorite” person. i’m much more interested in the play and the story than the actors. if a gun was put to my head though, i would say i’m of the obama camp. slightly.

    hatem: upbringing may have something to do with it. i know others however of a different background who share the same interest. as for ancient discussions: i remember arguing in favor of bush under the guise of the devil you know being better than the devil you don’t.

  • it’s messed up North of the Border of the US too… generally a lot of Canadians like Obama (he is a charming dude), but his protectionist stance scares the shit out of the Canadian Free trade promoters… I like mitt Romney (i’m bit of a mind changing conservative too), Hillary boooo… Huckabee God he’s like Bush just a better public speaker (I suspect dumber too) anyways the US politics effect Canadians so it’s plastered on Canadian media everywhere…

  • Because American elections are so damn unpredictable! It’s so exciting 🙂 Jordanian elections are…well…predictable! (and boring, and pretentious, and irrelevant to most Jordanians, not to mention the rest of the world)

  • “alurduni: i’m sure somewhere in there you were trying to make a point. at least i hope so.”
    OK Nas,,,what’s your point?
    أولا،انامغموس وبسبح في السياسه والله وكيلك باكل وبتعشه سياسه ثانيأ،مدونك ليست الوحيده التي اكتب تعاليقي ورؤيه نضري موجوده ومكتوبه في العدبد من المدونات الامريكيه

  • LOOOL…ur def not the only one! I watched the Dixville Notch results live, while on the phone with hubby, laughing and cheering at the TV.

    And I was (and still am) annoyed at Hillary for winning the Nwe Hampshire primaries, yes I know it doesn’t mean anything but honestly, it does NOT BODE WELL for the people of New Hampshire.
    Were they truly stupid enough to be given a change of heart by a few tears? Excuse me? WOuld you have shown the same support if a male candidate had shed those tears?
    And its not like shes even crying over someone *else’s* pain and suffering, she’s crying for herself, for the way she’s losing, for the way she’s been treated by other candidates.
    Boo Hoo. What if (GOD FORBID) she gets elected? “Oh no, the economy is in trouble, sniff sniff… this is personal to me, sniff sniff” and people will just forget that?

    Hell, she woulda been better off showing some cleavage again.
    Ok, rant done 🙂

    But yea, I can’t explain this obsession with US elections either. I’m surrounded by American’s who couldn’t care less, and yet here I am, setting my tabbed homepage to election coverage.

  • As a semi-regular reader of this blog, and a woman who pays attention to both American AND Jordanian elections (as well as elections elsewhere in the world) I am appalled by the hypocritical nature of your readers who are commenting here and on your post regarding women in the sharia3 court. There, they talk about how there’s no reason women shouldn’t sit as judges; here they complain about Hillary Clinton as “frigid” as if her sexuality has anything to do with her ability to be president; condemn her for her tears and comment that she needs to show “cleavage”.

    Furthermore, if people are confused by her win in NH it’s because they are not aware of the kinds of domestic policies that sway voters as much or more than do foreign policies. The American political landscape is much more complicated than most people are willing to believe– and not entirely filled with idiots (though I do think we have more than our fair share).

  • re lifexhistory: When I commented on Clinton’s tears, I was merely referring to the fact that she should not break down in tears when something is not going her way. That is not the quality one wants in their president, and yet (as experts have commented, not me) her tears appeared to have had an effect on the voters of New Hampshire.

    As a female, I would LOVE to see a woman President of the US of A. However, I do not think that tears are the way to go, that is the defense of a weak woman (ask any husband who has been emotinally blackmailed by his wife’s tears).

    Not that I claim to know much about American politics (or any country’s politics for that matter), but from what I understand at the moment, the primaries are supposed to be the voters choice in a candidate for each party. Since the Democratic candidates and the Republican candidates are generally in agreement over The Big Issues within each party (with some room for variety of course), the voters here are swayed by the PERSON. As in who do you like better, Obama or Clinton? Huckabee or McKain? And so on. The Issues will only come to be viewed with importance later… and as such, would you vote for a President who succumbed to their tears, because it seemed people did not like them as much as their running mates? For a PERSONAL problem? Forget the fact that it was Clinton for a moment, would you repect Obama more if he was moved to tears by coming in second in NH? I think not. And THAT is where I take issue. Why is she suddenly seen as “more human” for shedding some tears while the same would not be afforded of a male candidate? And why is it that no one noticed she was crying OVER HERSELF and not over something of importance, such as the people who are still suffering in New Orleans or the millions of people without helath insurance or those living in poverty? Would you really trust someone like that to lead your country (regardless of gender, again)?

    As for the cleavage, it was a sarcastic comment, meant to be read with a sense of humor 🙂

  • LifeXhistory- “they complain about Hillary Clinton as “frigid” as if her sexuality has anything to do with her ability to be president”

    That would be me, the reason I called hillary “frigid” is because SHE IS FRIGID! In the majority of candid shots of her she looks pissed at something.

    I don’t see how calling her frigid isn’t an implication that “her sexuality has anything to do with her ability to be president”, perhaps you had a problem with the word “woman” in my description of her. Well, I also used the terms “black”, “white”, and “mormon” in my 2 lines yet you didn’t voice any grievances over that. So it looks like YOU are the gender-biased one here.

Your Two Piasters: