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The Popularity Contest

Reuters has a story today about one of those international approval rating polls, in which respondents say whether each given country has a “positive” or “negative” impact on the world. 

The latest is that America’s positive rating rose five points to 40 percent while negatives dropped four points to 43 percent, and Russia’s negative rating rose eight points from last year to 42 percent while the positive view fell five points to 30 percent.

The gap appears to be closing thanks to the Obama effect, but with 43% of the world believing the U.S. has a negative impact and 42% believing that Russia has negative impact, one could fairly say that we both still suck.

Then again, Germany snagged the position of the most popular country while Israel yet again bottomed out, so dramatic reversals in reputation are quite possible.