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Disturbing links

Is Europe as poor as it seems?

Is America as dumb as it seems?

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( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
montyy0
Feb. 15th, 2008 10:58 pm (UTC)
interesting contast; I saw the "dumb" one earlier, but hadn't seen the "poor" one. Thanks.

the "3rd grade geography" video link was somewhere between funny and profoundly disturbing...
heron61
Feb. 15th, 2008 11:12 pm (UTC)
I've seen the first claim before, and have also seen a number of refutations, Here's the best one I've found, its only limitation is that it only refers to Sweden.

My only problem with the 2nd article is that anti-intellectualism is hardly new in the US, and the attitudes described there are sadly well more than a century old.
mindstalk
Feb. 16th, 2008 12:26 am (UTC)
Thanks for the link.

It's weird. GDP/capita numbers for non-US will be all over the place, and I've Sweden right up there with the US, indicating good international competitiveness. GDP-PPP/capita tends to be lower and flatter. I know I've wondered if this might be largely due to more egalitarian wages, i.e. less cheap labor but no one has to be the cheap labor, and got responses -- Dan? Randy? -- but don't remember where that was. And yeah, work less and get more vacation, and live longer. Still, $48 for a pizza sounds weird.
heron61
Feb. 16th, 2008 12:54 am (UTC)
I know from visiting the UK, that food is (from a US perspective at least) exceptionally expensive - a meal there usually costs the same in Pounds as the same meal would cost in the US in dollars. I think much of this is simply due to the fact that the EU has to import far more of its food than we do.
apokalypsetest
Feb. 29th, 2008 04:17 pm (UTC)
Food - especially eating out - is significantly more expensive in Europe on the low price end. Meaning we don't have that really cheap 5-6$ Fastfood category. Even McDonalds and BK are more expensive. Thsi is mostly due to the fact that people earn more money there then they do here. BUT the calculations in this article represent $ values - completely oblivious of the fact that the Euro at the moment is at about 1.5$ and has a similar buying power then the dollar.
I am not experienced with Norway or Sweden - but at least in germany I can not say that I felt a significant difference in live standards. PLUS

"They are driving wrecks"?? I have never seen a comparable amount of junk on four wheels in such a bad shape as here in the states. Even in the mid nineties in Croatia and Serbia cars where in a better shape then here.
mindstalk
Feb. 29th, 2008 05:05 pm (UTC)
"people earn more money" -- you mean that the McDonald's workers are getting paid more than $5/hour? That seems to support my "no cheap labor/no one has to be the cheap labor" explanation.

Thanks for commenting! I want to like the European model.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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