Monday, March 12, 2007

Middle East Vacation Preferred to U.S.

posted by Bill Arnett @ 12:10 PM Permalink

I want to quote a few lines from a story in the WaPo this morning that just about summarizes what America has come to represent to the world, or worse yet, what it does not represent: A decent place to bring the family for a vacation.

From the WaPo:
According to figures from the Travel Industry Association of America, the number of travelers to the United States -- not including Canadians and Mexicans -- has dropped by 17 percent since 2001.…Despite a record year for world tourism last year and a weak dollar against both the British pound and the euro, the number of visitors from Western Europe dipped by nearly three percent over the previous year.…The pinch has been felt by businesses from California to the sunshine state of Florida, which draws tourists with its theme parks and beaches.…According to industry lobbyists and analysts, the chief reason behind the decline is a convoluted visa process to enter the country and poor perceptions of treatment by pistol-toting and often stern-faced immigration officials on arrival.In a survey conducted by the travel industry lobby group the Discover America Partnership late last year, the United States' scored more than twice as badly as the next region, the Middle East, in terms of travel friendliness.…
How's that for a kick in the butt? In the government's misguided effort to go spelunking up the rear-ends of every visitor to "prevent terrorism" it has caused so much anger, frustration, and stress to visitors of this once great nation that the Middle East in all its turmoil and uncertainties is considered more than twice as good a vacation spot as America.

If that doesn't say a great deal as to what kind of society we have become, well…



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