As regular visitors to Anticant's Arena and the Burrow will know, Anticant is dedicated to the simple proposition that in a tolerable society worth defending, dissent and the freedom to criticise your country's government and its policies are core values which should be sacrosanct.
This is not universally the case, however, in the United States, where the still numerous neo-Con supporters of the Bush Administration appear to assume that anyone who questions the President's wisdom and the purity of his motives is a traitor and 'un-American' [a phrase with a chillingly McCarthyite echo]. A particularly glaring example of this cast of mind is to be found here.
Such extreme unreflecting 'patriotism', which is often accompanied by withering disdain and contempt for foreigners who disagree with US policies and behaviour in an increasingly dangerous world, puts those of us who regard the USA as a great but increasingly flawed nation into the uncomfortable position of having to be the 'candid friend'.
It is high time that these 'patriotic' Americans woke up to the fact that much of the criticism is justified, and that a revision of their attitudes and conduct is overdue if they don't want 'God's Own Country' to become the pariah of the 21st century.