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Korean President's Visit to the U.S. and Media

The first summit between America and South Korea since the Korean Presidential Election was held in Washington in April. Current President Lee Myung Bak’s visit to the U.S. attracted the attention of netizens. Besides the contents of the conversation between the two representatives, the issue of how conventional media in Korea will present the news is of interest to netizens because of unfriendly news about Roh Moo Hyun’s visit to other countries during his governance.

A netizen puts a series of posts about how media could respond differently.

The first post:

한국 시각 16일 미국 뉴욕에 도착한 이명박 대통령이 교포들을 만났다.그 자리에서 여러가지 말들을 쏟아 냈다.보수언론은 상당히 우호적인 입장으로 기사를 쓰고 있다.만약 노무현이 그랬다면 신문사들 반응이 어땠을까 상상해 본다.

“기분 같아서는 선거가 끝나고 그 다음날 뉴욕을 오고 싶었다”
또 망언…대통령 자리가 그렇게 한가한가?

“뉴욕 분들이 100%라고 말할 수는 없지만 99%는 저를 지지했다고 생각한다”
===>선거민심 자의적으로 해석하는 오만한 대통령

“미국과 유럽이 (경제에) 어려움이 오더라도 대한민국은 극복하고 성공할 수 있다는 자신감을 가질 수 있다”
===>이 대통령, 우물안 개구리? 글로벌 경제 현실에 너무 어두워

“새 정부는 작은 정부를 지향하고 있기 때문에 정부조직은 줄여나가려 하고 있고 앞으로 2단계 조직개편도 있을 것”(재외동포청 신설에 부정적)
===> 한국 동포들의 열망 짓밟는 한국 대통령

“부족한 것은 내 임기중에 많이 바꿔 놓으려고 하며, 내 임기는 5년이지만 10년 내에 일류 선진국가 수준에 갈 수 있을 것으로 본다”
==> 이 대통령, 무리한 장밋빛 미래만 언급

“규제도 없애고 국내외 기업들이 모든 분야에 걸쳐 한국에서 활동하는데 불편하지 않도록 법도 바꾸고 빠른 시간 내에 많은 변화가 이뤄지도록 하겠다”
===> 의회 권력 무시한 오만한 태도….대통령이 지시하면 법이 그냥 바뀌나?

“올해 세계 경제가 좋지 않다고 하는데 FTA가 되면 미국이 동아시아 경제권에 진입하는 교두보가 될 수 있을 것”
===> 한국경제 죽어가는데 미국경제 걱정만

“남북관계는 특수한 관계로 다른 나라와 북한과의 관계는 매우 다르다. 우리 동포라는 점을 인정하지 않을 수 없다”
===> 다시 도진 온정적 민족주의

“외국인도 공무원을 할 수 있도록 법을 바꿔 기회가 많아졌다”
===>내국인 일자리도 모자라는데 외국인까지 꼭 데려와야 하나?

“교육.금융.과학기술 등 여러 분야에서 젊은 교포 2세들을 스카우트하려 한다.”
===>근거없는 낙관…오란다고 다 올까?

On the sixteenth (Korean time), President Lee Myung Bak met overseas Koreans in New York. He poured out several words. Conservative media made articles with friendly perspectives. If Roh Moo Hyun did it, I imagined how newspapers would react.

“In my mind, I wanted to come to New York on the next day after the election.”
===> Absurd remark again… is the position of President at leisure?

“Although I can’t say 100 percent, I think 99 percent of Koreans in New York supported me.”
===> Arrogant President who interprets people’s minds in his own way.

“Even though the U.S. and Europe will have economic difficulties, Korea has the confidence to overcome and succeed.”
===> Is he like a frog that lives in a well? He’s way too ignorant of the reality of the global economy.

“The new government looks forward to the small government. Therefore, we will cut down the government organizations and will go through the second reorganization of the government systems (he is against establishing overseas Koreans’ bureau).”
===> Korean President who tramples on overseas Koreans’ desire.

“I will try to change what is weak during my governance. Even though my governance will be five years, I am sure that Korea will be the first developed country within 10 years.”
===> President who guaranteed unreliable future.

“I will get rid of regulations which make hurdles for domestic and foreign enterprises in Korea and will accomplish many changes in the short term.”
===> Arrogant attitude that disregarded authority of the National Assembly … can the laws change with President’s orders?

“Even though it is said the world economy is not good, after the accomplishment of the FTA, America can step into East Asia’s economy boundary.”
===> Regardless of the demise of the Korean economy, he is worried about the American economy.

“Relations between North and South Korea are special. It is different from relations between North Korea and other countries. We should not disregard them as our brothers.”
===> Paternal nationalism again.

“I will give opportunities for foreigners to work as civil servants.”
===> In the situation that is short of jobs in domestic markets, do we have to accept foreigners?

“I will scout from among the second generation of young Koreans in education, finance, and science technology.”
===> Groundless optimism… will they come if we ask?

The second post:

이명박이 줄리아니 전 뉴욕 시장에게 한 농담이 화제다.
“Why don’t you ask me how to win the primary?”
이를 두고 동아일보에서는
“사실 ‘예비경선에서 이기는 방법을 내게 물어보지 그랬어요?’라는 의미라면 ‘Why didn’t you ask me how to win the primary?’라고 해야 정확했겠지만 미국인들의 웃음을 자아내는 데는 아무 문제가 없었다.” 라고 썼다. 만약 노무현이 그랬다면 어땠을까? 아니면 동아일보가 이명박에게 노무현만큼 반감을 가졌다면 어땠을까? 다음과 같은 몇 가지 헤드라인들이 예상된다.

- 역시 상고출신…영어 문법 엉망
– 대학나와 영어 잘하는 번듯한 대통령이 그립다
– 공사판 콩글리쉬, 대한민국 품격 떨어진다
– 대한민국 국가원수가 왜 영어로?
– 당사자에 대한 외교적 결례…겉으로 웃지만 속으로는 부글부글
– 한글 맞춤법도 모르는 이 대통령, 이번엔 영어망신
– 부시와도 ‘막말'할까 비서진들 안절부절
– 국익 걸린 외교무대에서 왜 어설픈 영어로?
– 국익보다 우선하는 콩글리쉬 자랑?
– “솔직히 창피하다” 일부 교민 분통
– “서툰 영어는 오히려 손해”…익명의 미 고위 관료
– 외교의 기본도 모르는 대통령…한글 맞춤법부터 배워야
– 이 대통령, 한국말이 그렇게 창피한가?

A joke that President Lee Myung Bak told the previous New York mayor Giuliani became the talk of the town.
“Why don’t you ask me how to win the primary?”
About this, Dong-A Newspaper wrote,
“As a matter of fact, if he wanted to express, “Why didn’t you ask me how to win the primary,” he had to ask like that. But what he said didn’t have any problems of misunderstanding and led to laughs from Americans.” If Roh Moo Hyun did this? Or if Dong-A Newspaper had antipathy toward Lee Myung Bak as strong as they had toward Roh Moo Hyun, how would the article be? I can imagine several headlines.

- As expected, he’s from a commercial high school… English grammar is messy
– We miss the President who can speak right English with a college degree
– Konglish, dignity of Korea went down
– As the President of the Republic of Korea, why did he speak English?
– Diplomatic mistake toward the other side… even though they laughed outside, they must have been mad in their minds
– President who doesn’t speak Korean well… messy English this time
– Secretary team had jitters if he would speak roughly with the U.S. President
– Why did he speak in coarse English at a diplomatic meeting to talk about national interests?
– Bragging in Konglish rather than considering national interests?
– Honestly it’s embarrassing,” some overseas Koreans said
– “Coarse English bring damage”…. An American high positioned official said
– President who doesn’t even understand the etiquette of diplomacy… he should learn Korean first
– Is he that ashamed to speak Korea?

The third post:

미국에서 쇠고기 협상 타결 소식을 전해 들은 이명박의 일성이란다.

“양국 대표들이 어젯밤에 한숨도 안 자고 밤을 새서 협상을 했다고 들었다”
“새벽에 두 사람이 잠결에 합의한 것 같다”

보수언론은 한결같이 이 ‘조크'에 좌중의 폭소가 터졌다고 난리다. 한국 국민들은 미국산 미친 소를 먹게 생겼는데 그게 지금 조크가 나올 상황인지, 그리고 그게 지금 대통령의 뛰어난 조크 감각을 찬양하고 떠받들어야 하는 상황인지, 도대체 한국 언론들은 똥인지 된장인지 구분도 못하나?
만약 노무현이 그랬다면 언론의 1면은 이렇게 장식되지 않았을까?
– “잠결에 합의”? 대통령, 잠꼬대 하나
– 대통령 또 막말…농민들 부글부글
– 밤샘 협상 했다면서 무조건 항복…협상단 뭐했나
– 대통령, 미국 소 먹어보긴 했을까
– 국민 생명 댓가로 캠프 데이비드 하룻밤…대통령의 화려한 외출
– “청와대부터 미친 소 먹어라” 네티즌 항의 빗발
– “솔직히 이렇게 쉽게 타결될 줄 몰랐다” 익명의 미 고위 관리

President Lee Myung Bak said, while he stayed in America after he heard the negotiation of beef trade between Korea and America completed:
“I heard that representatives of the two countries had a negotiation staying up whole night yesterday” “It seems that they completed the negotiations while asleep in the dawn.”

Conservative media said that due to such jokes from him all people around him burst out laughing. In the moment that Koreans had to start eating any American cows, including crazy cows, how come he could tell a joke and how come they praise the sense of his humor?

If Roh Moo Hyun reacted like that, how would the media react?
– Agreement while asleep? Is he talking in his sleep?
– His blunt remark again… peasants are mad…
– Surrender regardless of the negotiation the whole night… what did the negotiation team do?
– President, has he even tried American beef?
– With the cost of peoples’ lives, a night at Camp David… luxurious outing of the President
– “The Blue House should try the crazy cows first” Netizens’ continual criticisms
– “Honestly speaking, I even didn’t expect it will be solved so fast,” An American high-positioned officer said

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