(Second-rate "journalists" frame attention-grabbing but uncertain claims as questions. Now that I've used that same tactic to get your attention...)
Umair Haque argues that the U.S. is uniquely poor among developed countries in many ways -- not just financially for many Americans, but in public health; in a hateful, foolish "Culture of Idiocy"; in time (working hard to barely survive, with little to no opportunity for most to build a fulfilling career); in emotional life; in trust, goodness, and decency; in human potential itself -- all fed by the many people convinced by the oligarch class to vote against their own best interests, over and over and over again.
(I could do without his "American Idiot" framing that blames the victims, though.)
How the American Idiot Made America Unlivable
America is a Poor Country Now, in Ways that are Likely to be Permanent
Excellent write up.
Such a scary dystopia, and I can't find a single argument to contradict it. It also makes me think back to the US neighbour who sought our friendship, then started spreading jealousy, hate and unrest. At the time I thought she was seriously disturbed, but she could have been a 'normal' American. I'm glad to be at this side of the Atlantic...
Then again, how come you US atheists seem to be such normal people? Or aren't you? Were you lucky enough to escape the poverty trap by marriage or winning the lottery? Or are you hiding the misery? Perhaps I shouldn't ask such things, but I can't help wondering.
I think a large portion of the problem with the US is that it gets too full of itself too often, the whole "American Exceptionalism" crap which gets promoted to the nines by the right wing, while simultaneously ignoring all the social and economic problems that they mostly have foisted on this country. The left isn't innocent as it comes to this, either, with its tendency to make the perfect the enemy of the good, the whole "woke" culture trip, and its penchant for nit-picking. If we could ever get past that, we might actually accomplish something, and at the risk of sounding partisan, I think Joe Biden may at least be able to bootstrap that process.
I'm hopeful, anyway.
Loren the US isn't the only country that falls for the Exceptionalism trap we Brits have been prancing about the world thinking we were much better than anybody else hence the Brexit fiasco. I often wonder what other people's think of us. Sadly I know what many Londoners think of some Americans because we have an American school nearby in St Johns Wood and the students, teenager's mostly, and even the teachers use the local amenities, parks, gyms and shops etc. I'm afraid the air of entitlement they affect can be quite annoying.
Doone actually mentioned this article in March; I think I learned about it from someone else, and started this topic without having carefully read the "Humans of Earth News" comments. Thanks for originally bringing it up!
(And it's still good to have a space where comments about this topic won't disappear into an undifferentiated mass of past group comments.)