random memes }

American influence

From Thomas L. Friedman: An American in Europe

That sense that America is now so powerful that it influences everyone else's politics more than their own governments - so everyone wants to vote in our elections - is something you hear more and more these days.

Elizabeth Angell, a 23-year-old American studying at Oxford, told me that a Pakistani friend at school had asked her if he could just watch her fill out her absentee ballot for the U.S. election. "He said to me, 'It's the closest thing I am going to get to voting. ... I wish I could vote in your election because your government affects my daily life more than my own.' "

Oddly enough I got the same sense (from an entirely different perspective) from reading about the last dictator of Romania.