As far as I can tell, Great Britain is doing better than most of Europe; if it weren't for a few healthcare and gun issues, it'd look a lot like the US, only with saner attitudes towards people who aren't "typical," which I greatly respect.
Well for obvious reasons Britain and the US are very close culturally speaking, and whilst we have more of a socialist system here, even that is relatively recent historically speaking. Our health service has only been around for 50 years after all.
And there's no way I'm getting into the whole gun law issue, nobody ever wins one of those arguments. And besides, you're wrong :)
Right now, if I want to pay for superior medical care in some way, I can; this is as it should be.
And as it is over here, the leading candidate for private health care being BUPA. You're not forced to rely on the NHS if you don't want to. OTOH I personally think it's a good idea. YMMV, and probably does.
These people(France, Germany, Italy, etc etc) have a nasty habit of banning things they don't find comfortable.
Yes, which I don't agree with at all. One of the things that is good about the UK is that we have a strong press. Sure it causes problems, especially with regards to certain invasions of privacy, but it is an essential tool for exposing corruption and scandal in government. Despite a lack of any "right" to free speech, our press has managed to get away with publishing all manner of stuff the government would rather they didn't.
As for the censure of American interventions abroad, well there aren't that many people who approve of the methods America uses, and its somewhat gung-ho attitude towards such action. Whilst almost no Western country has a spotless record with regards to foreign actions (and France has a particularly brutal one) America has been the most recent offender, and things like the Helms-Burton Act really pissed a lot of countries off.
My beef with Europe, such as it goes, is that Europe is full of perfectly nice people whose democratically elected governments can and frequently DO ignore freedoms of speech, property, free association, privacy(they talk big, but look at the scope of government "investigative" powers,) and so on. They then make it worse by trying to talk about the "horrible" human rights record of the US.
Yup, Europe isn't perfect, and there is a distinct Big Government tendancy that doesn't do it a lot of favours IMHO. And there have been, and still are, human rights abuses in Europe, as there have been in America - segregation and the eugenics movements spring to my mind first. Both have their good points and their black spots.
For a VERY good example of the attitude problem(it is an attitude problem, not a specific issue,) that I'm trying to convey, look at this French dumbass at the climate convention going on right now. He blames the US, tells us we have to fix our "problems," and neglects to mention that the easiest way to do so would be to quit exporting so many vital goods to nations that can't produce them.
Not really, American companies have very little incentive to move to less polluting processes or treatments because they generally cost more. The American government has very little desire to attempt to force corporations to spend their profits on environmental issues, they'd rather buy carbon credits from other countries.
Sure, if we quit feeding half a billion foriegners daily, quit exporting medical supplies, medicines, and so on, we could cut our pollution down to French levels.
I don't think foreign aid has a significant impact upon the amount of pollution America produces.
Of course, France would soon be run over with refugees, along with the rest of Western Europe, and the standard of living would be hellish, but we can do it.
Why would Western Europe be overrun? Much of Western Europe has already clamped down on the number of refugees they're allowing to enter their countries, I doubt they'd take many more.
And besides, you can't really use the amount of manufacturing that America does as an excuse for your high level of pollution - you have had a trade deficit for some years now, so the majority of your goods are manufactured abroad.
You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey
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