Europeans Are Asking, What's Wrong With America?

There's little 'American Exceptionalism' in evidence right now.

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I am traveling in Europe and enjoying visits with relatives who live in Italy. So what I am doing pounding away at my computer?

Simple, really. There is a message that I am getting loud and clear: What is wrong with our country's political system that we can't confront the economic problems facing us? The distrust here for their government is well known but they expect more of Americans with all their power and economic might.

[See a collection of political cartoons on the economy. ]

It certainly doesn't appear that there is much "American exceptionalism" being exhibited at the moment. Why can't we adopt some common sense solutions to handling our long term budget problems and provide the necessary jolt to the economy to lift all boats?

Having just read In The Garden of Beasts about 1930's Germany and Ambassador Dodd's efforts to awaken our government, I wonder whether we are once again unable to lead in confronting a growing cancer on our world. By delaying decisions and failing to accept the reality starring us in the face, are we again not living up to our greatness as a world power and as an example to others?

[Rick Newman: How Politicians Are Wrecking the World Economy]

With all the problems that confront nations across the pond tied to ours, isn't it time for Congress, especially the Republican leadership, to look beyond the next election and face the implications of their failure to act? American voters, like those here, are furious and have taken to the streets to protest Wall Street greed. It is past time to act; it is time to exhibit some old fashioned American leadership. Is the U.S. government up to the task is the question people over here are asking?

  • See photos of the Occupy Wall Street protests
  • Brad Bannon: 'Occupy Wall Street' Picks Up Where the Tea Party Sold Out
  • See the month's best political cartoons.