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Some differences Europe/USA

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Whomp, May 29, 2008.

  1. Verbose

    Verbose Deity

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    My thought exactly.

    You probably end up with something like one in three Swedes being employed by "the state" if you in that "state" include people working for the municipality, i.e. are employed by their local community.

    Somehow I get the impression that maybe the author of the piece won't include people in the US working for their local community as "working for the state"?
     
  2. RedRalph

    RedRalph Deity

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    :lol::lol::lol:Yeah its as bad as the holocaust:crazyeye:
     
  3. Winner

    Winner Diverse in Unity

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    First part of the article makes sense, the second one is nothing but crappy stereotypical American explanation of why is America so great and the old Europe sucks.

    That is correct, especially here in Central Europe, which is still heavily influenced by the Hapsburg bureaucratic and highly formalized culture.

    Here comes the nonsense. I heard from people who lived in America for a while, that they were really suprised how stark are the class divisions in America. You see, here in Czech Rep. is is still possible to find rich people living in the same concrete blocks where lower middle class people usually live. Not as often as in the 90's, but it is nothing what would raise an eyebrow here.

    In schools, you find children of very rich people in the same classes as children from poor families. Various social classes are in constant contact with each other. They study together, they live next to each other, they talk with each other.

    From what I heard, something like that is not common in the US. Not because there are some formal barriers between classes, but because people of these classes deliberately choose not to socialize with each other.

    Yes, the article explains that in America, there is a greater class mobility, but once people leave the lower social class, they start acting like members of the higher social class and begin to pretend they have nothing in common with the poorer people.

    This might be a result of 40 years of Communism in this country, but if it is true, it's one of the good things.

    Now the article begins to sound like a total bullcrap. Again this "you're racists!" bottom line. Instead of objective analysis of why Europeans have different kinds of problems with certain minorities, the article basically says "if you don't act like us Americans, the champions of multiculturalism, you're old-fashioned snobbish bigots".

    This part totally ruined any good points mentioned before.

    I explained it above. Because in America the various social classes do not live with each other, only alongside each other is motivating people to move up. In Europe, where the social barriers between classes are not so big, there is less motivation for this kind of ambitions. Europeans don't believe that only the rich people deserve respect.

    It's not a bias. In Europe, politicans are supposed to be respectable, and we find it hard to respect comedians as political leaders. Not to say we don't have them here, but they usually belong to radical, extremist or just funny parties without any real influence.
     
  4. RulerOfDaPeople

    RulerOfDaPeople Emperor

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    Here's what I don't get. If Europe is so much alike in their thinking, and so enlightened, then why since the dawn of time have they continued to have catastrophic war after catostrophic war against each other? Especially in the last 200 years.

    We're talking in this thread about Europe like it's all the same nation. It's not. And they all have different interests from each other. Not to mention it makes me wonder who will be the next whacko to try and conquer the world, as Europe does have a history of producing those...
     
  5. scy12

    scy12 Deity

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    I got to agree with Winner . From a brief reading of the article it seems like mostly nationalistic BS. It raises some interesting points but the conclusion of each of the different points is always Go America , Europe sucks ! . Actually i do think that the US has several advantages regarding the differences of the two worlds and so does Europe. This article does nothing to further our understanding of them.
     
  6. Mirc

    Mirc Not mIRC!!!

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    "The last 200 years" as one period of time makes absolutely no sense in the European situation, and your usage of this idea might actually prove a bit of how much you know about Europe's contemporary history.

    Europe, and the world, have changed so much in 200 years that you can't compare anything from the mindset of then to the mindset of today. Things have changed so much that any common ideal to define the last 200 years is impossible to find.

    You can't use this as a valid argument in any possible way.

    I love it when someone comes from outside and teaches us what we are and what our interests are! :lol:

    How come it's always someone from outside Europe that says those things with different interests and someone from INSIDE that's contradicting him??

    Yeah, beware, we're just an incubator of dictators. I just yesterday mixed the genes of Emperor Nero and Stalin, I think my combination might just win.
     
  7. RulerOfDaPeople

    RulerOfDaPeople Emperor

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    Look at history. Europe is the most war torn continent in the entire world. Are you saying wars such as the ones involving Russia (vs Sweden/Prussia and beyond), the Napoleonic wars, World War I, World War II, didn't happen? :rolleyes:

    And yes I fully realize the war with Sweden was beyond 200 years and the one against Prussia before that, but I did say since the dawn of time in my previous post.

    Speaking of, Hollywood must love Europe. It's where half of their movie ideas come from.
     
  8. Winner

    Winner Diverse in Unity

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    Americans exist as a nation for about 230 years, but you managed to wage a catastrophic Civil War with terrible casualties, wipe out Native Americans in the name of your "destiny" etc.

    The two world wars started in Europe simply because it was the center of the world's economic, social, technological and political progress. Europe ruled the world, so it's logical that the most devastating conflicts started there.

    Name 3 except Hitler and Mussolini :p

    The fact that Europe was the first continent where totalitarian regimes appeared is not a proof of some inherent European tendency to live in a dictatorship. These regimes appeared as a result of the WW1, they were a product of the social unrest mixed with revolutionary ideas. What's important is that Europe managed to overcome them, unlike other parts of the world, where authoritarian and totalitarian rule is still firmly entrenched.

    No. But what does that prove, exactly? I say it only proves that Europe was the most advanced and progressive continent, which inevitably caused wars. Besides, the rest of the world warred too, we just don't learn about their wars in history classes because they're Eurocentric.

    You know what really interesting? When you count all the casualties, the years Europeans spent fighting each other and you relate it to Europe's population and number of independent countries, you'll find that Europe was, relatively speaking, less warlike than the less developed cultures.
     
  9. Lillefix

    Lillefix I'm serious. You can.

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    I don't have a source for this buth take my word on it. Interacial(stupid term in the first place) marriage are far more usual in great britain than in the US.

    I believe people are far more concious at race in US than in Europe. In europe people are first and foremost from somalia or angola, in the US they're simply black.
     
  10. Winner

    Winner Diverse in Unity

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    In Europe, black people are either migrants or their descendants. In America, they are mostly descendants of slaves. This fact alone explains many differences about how people see the racial question in America and Europe.
     
  11. RulerOfDaPeople

    RulerOfDaPeople Emperor

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    Napolean, Julius Ceasar (And subsiquentially many Ceasars' afterwards), and most recently... Slobodan Milosevic.

    I could've said Alexander the Great, but then what fun would that be? :p

    I don't feel like debating anything. I'm out. ;)
     
  12. Fetus4188

    Fetus4188 Deity

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    The number of unfounded assumptions made by either side in this thread is rather astounding. I wish you could all step back and look at yourselves. It seems our memories are so short that we do not even remember the article we just read about how Europeans try to examine America with European values and Americans try to examine Europe with American values, and so turn around to do the same a minute later. You're all missing the point because all anyone ever wants to do on this forum is say "my side is better than your side" or "I'm right because your wrong".
     
  13. scy12

    scy12 Deity

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    Julius Ceasar ? :lol:
     
  14. EnlightenmentHK

    EnlightenmentHK Emperor

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    The differences in the wealth between rich and poor are smaller in Europe. That doesn't necessarily translate into the social class differences being smaller. That's a matter of perception and mentality that wealth plays a part in, but isn't the only decisive factor. America's social class distinctions tend to be more culturally than monetary based. And to join one, all you've got to do is look and act the part. (granted looking and acting the part can be more costly for some social classes than others)

    Further I have seen first hand the differences in 'easy and relaxed comaraderie' and so have many other Americans who have traveled. Americans in general are open, friendly, and talkative to perfect strangers in most settings. These characteristics are rarely exhibited by Europeans. The places people eat, drink, and gather tend to be full of all sorts of backgrounds whether you base it on wealth, race, upbringing or ethnicity. Some areas more homogeneous than others, but most of the major cities tend to be extremely cosmopolitan.

    There is also a populist mentality that some might say is self delusion that says the ditch digger is just as valuable as the CEO. Yeah the super rich probably don't mingle with us 'lesser beings', but the moderately and semi-rich do on a number of occasions. They can be seen at the same restaurants, drinking at the same bars, and interact at a more or less equivalent level. Not saying there aren't wealth based class distinctions in America, but that they're much less severe here than in Europe.

    1 day on this board would tell you this is BS. Or a little bit of traveling through Europe with a black friend. You do not see such open and overt racism nearly as much in the US anymore. It is Europe that's lagging.

    On the male thing, I've got several European female friends who would love to have US sexism versus the crap they have to face in Europe.
     
  15. Brighteye

    Brighteye intuitively Bayesian

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    This article is a load of rubbish. I was expecting an interesting analysis of cultural differences with an interesting historical slant, and all I see is nationalist propaganda spouting lies and disinformation.
    This is merely confirmation of the American misconception that the American dream is reality, whilst Europe is stuck in the middle ages. If we're going to analyse middle-aged Europe, we had better compare it to mediaeval America, famed for its technology and ability of anyone to own companies!

    I can't help but wonder what Europe you've been to. I've seen more latent racism in the US, from Atlanta to Boston, than I have in England (London, Cambridge and Oxford). Race simply is not an all-pervading concern here, whereas it's in people's minds all the time in the US.
    Similarly, I haven't encountered sexism in either country, over and above the usual jokes made by men about women and vice versa, which I have heard in both countries.
     
  16. Winner

    Winner Diverse in Unity

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    That's all you can come up with? :lol: First, in case you don't know that, Caesar died more than 2000 years ago. Napoleon is barely in the 200 years limit. Milosevič was hardly an important dictator, you can find dozens of men like him everywhere in the world, Latin America is clawling with them.

    Yeah, that will be best for everyone.
     
  17. EnlightenmentHK

    EnlightenmentHK Emperor

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    Better than half of it west of Poland.
    London is the closest thing I've found to a major US city in Europe. They do tend to be more cosmopolitan about such things. Paris. Rome. Eastern Europe. Not so much.
    Its because race is a concern...and has been a concern for much of our history, that we've made the progress that we have on that front. Much of Europe is still decades behind on this. You would never catch elected officials, prominent people, or even simply educated people talking about a minority group the way some in Europe do about...say...the Roma.
    Every professional woman in Europe I've talked to (and I keep in touch with a fair amount) disagrees. And I'm not talking the macho, semi-backwater former Soviet/Iron Curtain states. We're talking Sweden, Norway, Italy, Denmark, etc.
     
  18. MamboJoel

    MamboJoel Cool.

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    I can hardly think of a French historian writing such a thing :
    I mean there's such a consensus on laïcité (say secularism) in this country even a populist like Sarkozy has a hard time using religious semantics. I don't think he even bothers with it anymore. But for the vast majority of French people the simple fact of asking a question that qualifies a portion of them with their religion rather than their citizenship sounds absurd.
     
  19. Brighteye

    Brighteye intuitively Bayesian

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    It's because race is a concern for you that it remains so. Wherever I've been, people have ignored race entirely. I've been to every (major) country in Western Europe.
    London is indeed closest to being like a US city because there are places where London has racial tensions; where people form ghettoes of skin colour and make outsiders feel unwelcome, and where social stratification separates people of differing skin colours. Everywhere else I've been the populations have mixed freely and easily. The US is behind, as far as I can tell.
    Every woman I've spoken to, and as I live here I've spoken to a great many, either has no complaint about sexism (except from specific individuals, not as a culture), or has a general complaint about the glass ceiling.
    The glass ceiling, and annoying individuals, are things that afflict both Europe and America. The glass ceiling is a feminist myth, and is probably due to things such as different job preferences, maternity leave and perhaps not being as pushy as some men. It's not sexism.
     
  20. Gigaz

    Gigaz civoholic

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    Sexuality is a bit less private in Europe. Walking along the coast of Europe you will probably see 10 million girls with naked breasts. Some beaches are for completely naked people only. Sexism is legendary in southern Europe but I guess that most girls learn to say ". .. .. .. . off!" a bit louder then they would in America ;).
     

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