Small Business

Stars and Swipes


Columnist Lisa Bergson stirred readers' passions with her critical look how Washington's actions are perceived beyond America's shores (see BW Online, 4/15/03, "Old Glory in a Distant Prism"). Here are a handful of representative responses:

GOD bless you for being so sensitive to the outrage your governments actions are causing people all over the Earth. These are dark days, and they may get darker. Your column showed a lot of class and something of the true American spirit, which I still admire. I see it also in my New York-born wife as well. As a Canadian, the war in Iraq was another murder of innocence by a criminal regime. Strong words, yes but let us see how history judges these actions. You, and millions of other Americans, still have your personal integrity and humanity intact. Good for you for showing such class. -- R.D., British Columbia

I LAUGHED my ass off when you claimed that Bill Clinton's best strengths were his empathy and willingness to apologize! It never ceases to amaze me that otherwise intelligent women fall for the old I-feel-your-pain routine. How can you not comprehend that he makes such statements mostly to endear himself to the international community? Obviously, the death of those two 14-year-old girls in Seoul was tragic. However, I surmise that you believe it's better to melodramatically apologize for our government's actions rather than have a rational discussion of the incident. I realize that you must act as a bit of sycophant to maintain relations with some foreign clients, but I am dismayed by your decision to usually side with the opinions of the French and the Germans. Thanks again for the comical statement. -- J.J. Cedar Rapids

GREAT article! Please repeat this point as frequently as your editors will allow. Isolated, ostrich-like Americans need to hear this message over and over again. -- J. McC, Cincinnati

WHY do you even listen to such crap? The history of every country is laced with accidents, mistakes, and misteps. I have traveled all over the world, both for business and pleasure, and I would never bring up an incident like the Seoul accident that cost the lives of those two young girls in front of guests who came from that country. The people you were dining with and doing business were being rude to you! They had no right to bring it up. I'm sorry, Lisa, but you should have got up and walked out. -- M.G., Ohio

BusinessWeek Online Small Business is always keen to hear reader's opinions, be they damning or delighted. So, if an article or column strikes a chord, drop a line to feedback@businessweek.com and share your views with fellow readers.


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