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S/o Foreigners opinion of US politics
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Fox









  


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 2:58 pm
amother wrote:
When others such as teachers try to express their concern regarding an issue of any kind, they lash out. They deny that there is a problem, blame others, or try to make this about the teacher's lack of expertise.

Except that this is nowhere near the truth. In fact, if you read the stream of op-eds from U.S. news outlets and blogs, Americans do more soul-searching and self-criticism than virtually anyone except possibly for Asians.

Let's be honest: for a lot of people, including many self-hating Americans, ridiculing the U.S. and Americans is a way to demonstrate to others that they are sophisticated and worldly. These aren't people who have any interesting observations to make or who have any real knowledge to add to conversations. They are sad intellectual wannabes who sit around bemoaning the state of the world while lesser folks from Pig's Knuckle, Arkansas, and Hyena's Tail, Botswana, -- both the best countries in the world -- pursue happy, fulfilling lives according to the values of their cultures.

Yes, I know that American hyper-patriotism is annoying to people whose love of country is more reticent. But I'll let you in on a little secret: people from lots of countries and cultures do things that other people find annoying and obnoxious. In fact, mankind has a fairly rich history of going to war over such annoyances long before the first ugly American strapped on a fanny pack and pair of oversized sneakers.
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Fox









  


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 3:19 pm
Raisin wrote:
Oh, come on. I don't think my birthplace, the UK, is "the best country in the world". But its not the worst country either. It is a wonderful country with many wonderful attributes, and probably one of the more desirable places to live in the world, as is the USA. I'm proud of the contribution the UK has made to the world in many areas. Also they have done some truly horrible things. And some really stupid ones as well. (exhibit 1: brexit)

I think the USA is a wonderful country but to go on about being the land of the free sounds idiotic to anyone who has a basic knowledge of slavery and civil rights. It has only truly been the land of the free since the 60s or 70s when black people were finally treated like human beings. That makes it about as free as many 3rd world countries.

Nothing wrong with being patriotic. But this is not an Independence day party. It is a discussion.

Again, this is my point. Americans wear their patriotism on their sleeves. It is not wrong; it is just a different cultural expression.

Frankly, many Americans would find your lack of enthusiasm for living in the UK to be puzzling and sad. The birthplace of the Magna Carta? A monarchy dating back to the Middle Ages? Kings buried under parking lots? C'mon! That's pretty darned exciting!

I would love to spend time in the UK, and I relentlessly pester Brits for all kinds of details about life there. Just ask Strudel. She had to flee back to Manchester to get away from my endless nattering.

Americans -- even those hurt by oppression in the past -- generally don't consider their affection for their country to be a score, with points added or deducted for good behavior. It's just not the way we think.
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Culturedpearls









  


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 3:48 pm
amother wrote:
1. Canada's policies allows fathers to claim the benefit too, so you would need to discriminate against all men and women of potential new parentage:). Seriously though,statistical data disproves your theory that maternity protection policies disadvantages women of childbearing/ child raising age. In the early 90's, before Canada instituted it's maternity policies, the US and Canada had similar employment rates for women 25-54, about 77%. Currently, Canada's rate stands at 81% vs the US which has dropped to 74%.

2. There are many myths about how universal health care actually works. I think this has been clarified up thread. Universal healthcare means that every single citizen has access to excellent care by any facility/ doctor of their choice. Drugs are also heavily subsidized. If you want faster/ specialized treatment, you pay for it privately. As of 2016, 24 million Canadians (2/3 of the population) had supplementary health insurance policies. The industry spent 32.2 billion on health care in 2016. These policies are usually through the workplace and are cheap.


We too have parental leave. However, practically speaking it’s women who take it not men & we are careful with that as well. Additionally your data is flawed as opposed to the 90’s there are actually far more women employed because there are more part time jobs & job sharing available at least in Australia. This does not mean more full time work for women of childbearing age. I deal with other business owners on a daily level & we all do the same. Firing of employees is another issue we need to overcome creatively & sometimes we can’t give people a chance & fire them after a 3 months cooling off period so we don’t have “unfair” dismissal. Is it fair? That’s what government interference does!
We have close to a perfect health system in Australia. Everyone has access to excellent public health & everyone has an option for private. Public is through our tax contribution & private (around $5k for top cover for any size family) for those who want to private hospitals & no waiting time. No workplace pays it. It’s your own responsibility.
Canada has a political system which we Aussie’s call the “nanny state”.
No such thing as a free lunch. Someone is paying & that has strings attached.
As for Trump? Many Australians wish we had one too.
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amother




Copper


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 4:08 pm
Culturedpearls wrote:
We too have parental leave. However, practically speaking it’s women who take it not men & we are careful with that as well. Additionally your data is flawed as opposed to the 90’s there are actually far more women employed because there are more part time jobs & job sharing available at least in Australia. This does not mean more full time work for women of childbearing age. I deal with other business owners on a daily level & we all do the same. Firing of employees is another issue we need to overcome creatively & sometimes we can’t give people a chance & fire them after a 3 months cooling off period so we don’t have “unfair” dismissal. Is it fair? That’s what government interference does!
We have close to a perfect health system in Australia. Everyone has access to excellent public health & everyone has an option for private. Public is through our tax contribution & private (around $5k for top cover for any size family) for those who want to private hospitals & no waiting time. No workplace pays it. It’s your own responsibility.
Canada has a political system which we Aussie’s call the “nanny state”.
No such thing as a free lunch. Someone is paying & that has strings attached.
As for Trump? Many Australians wish we had one too.


Do you realize that you are openly admitting to violating the Australia Human Rights Commission Act?

Also, I'm not really following your other logic. Australia and Canada have very similar government and social systems (as similar as two countries on opposite sides of the world with a shared history can have!). The only significant differences between the two health care systems is that Canada's is administered at a provincial level and Australia has a much larger private health sector. The greater availability of private options is something Canada can learn from the Aussies. Also, I'm not sure why you are assuming that we don't "pay" for healthcare. The public sector is funded by our taxes and private options are paid for through our supplemental health insurance premiums. Exactly the same system as Down Under.
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Culturedpearls









  


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 7:31 pm
amother wrote:
Do you realize that you are openly admitting to violating the Australia Human Rights Commission Act?

Also, I'm not really following your other logic. Australia and Canada have very similar government and social systems (as similar as two countries on opposite sides of the world with a shared history can have!). The only significant differences between the two health care systems is that Canada's is administered at a provincial level and Australia has a much larger public health sector. The greater availability of private options is something Canada can learn from the Aussies. Also, I'm not sure why you are assuming that we don't "pay" for healthcare. The public sector is funded by our taxes and public options are paid for through our supplemental health insurance premiums. Exactly the same system as Down Under.


Nope, we violate no law. We’re allowed to employ the best person for the job. Period.
Do you know what it means to run a business?
Do you understand that paying someone 12 months parental leave means a business will have to pay 2 people? Or if they can’t the business can go under & everyone looses their jobs?
Do you know what it means to employ someone who doesn’t do their job, comes late, spends hours in the bathroom or running their own side business on your time??? And you can’t fire them without going to court!!! But they can leave any time & steal your clients.
No free lunch!!! No one pays my maternity leave. Why should they?
As to our healthcare. There’s no comparison.
Our private system makes the owner of the policy the consumer . We choose doctors and private hospitals. Not the other way around. No such thing as a doctor or hospital not accepting insurance. This is countywide.
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amother




Copper


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 8:09 pm
Culturedpearls wrote:
Nope, we violate no law. We’re allowed to employ the best person for the job. Period.
Do you know what it means to run a business?
Do you understand that paying someone 12 months parental leave means a business will have to pay 2 people? Or if they can’t the business can go under & everyone looses their jobs?
Do you know what it means to employ someone who doesn’t do their job, comes late, spends hours in the bathroom or running their own side business on your time??? And you can’t fire them without going to court!!! But they can leave any time & steal your clients.
No free lunch!!! No one pays my maternity leave. Why should they?
As to our healthcare. There’s no comparison.
Our private system makes the owner of the policy the consumer . We choose doctors and private hospitals. Not the other way around. No such thing as a doctor or hospital not accepting insurance. This is countywide.


I employ 50 people in my company. Every Western country thankfully has a sound system in place to protect employees from abusive or discriminatory behaviour. I sympathize with you if you have wound up in court due to a difficult employee. That sounds horrible, but does not negate the fact that these protections are vital. Do you know what life was like before these laws were passed?

Also, I do not understand why you are talking about you paying your employee's maternity leave and paying 2 people at once. It might be different in Australia, but here, parental insurance is a standard paycheck deduction just like employment insurance (0.548% by the employee and 0.767% by the employer). You are obligated to pay this even if your employees are all 70 year old men. Parental leave is then paid directly from the same government agency that pays unemployment insurance.
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amother




Plum


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 9:00 pm
Culturedpearls wrote:

Do you know what it means to run a business?
Do you understand that paying someone 12 months parental leave means a business will have to pay 2 people? Or if they can’t the business can go under & everyone looses their jobs?


Huh? When there is leave given, the money comes from the government, not the employer. Obviously the employer isn't paying two people at once.

But, you must know that if you are running business, because there's a certain amount of leave given in every country.
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Jeanette









  


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 10:28 pm
Fox wrote:


Outside of professional historians, I have literally never encountered a non-American who has any understanding whatsoever of the history, geography, and cultural forces that butt heads in the U.S. They watch some news reports, meet a few Americans, and watch a ton of Friends and Seinfeld re-runs. They have no concept whatsoever of the physical size, geographic and cultural diversity, and just plain ol' bigness of the country -- and the different challenges that presents to governance and social policy. Yet they act as if watching a lot of American TV somehow makes them experts on the U.S.

No Maternity Leave for Your Mule
There is also a significant cultural difference: Europeans (including most Commonwealth nations) emerged from the feudal system which promoted a central authority with responsibility for the welfare of the population. In modern times, the feudal lord has been replaced by a hopefully-benign government, and the serfs are the citizens who are cared for.

Americans, by contrast, want as little care-taking by powerful entities as possible. "Here's 40 acres and a mule. Best of luck to you," is more in line with their ideal lifestyle.

There are pluses and minuses to both of these cultural paradigms. Having the government provide you with more benefits means not only higher taxes, but more importantly, having the government making a lot of decisions about your life. Keeping the government away from your personal business means you keep more of your money and make your own decisions, but you and your mule are on your own!

The "We're #1" Mentality
This is a source of enormous misunderstanding. Americans are hyper-patriotic and wear their patriotism on their sleeves. This is obviously annoying to the rest of the world. However, it is not a logical argument; it is more like PinkFridge said up-thread, finding chein in your hometown. It is the equivalent of cheering for your local sports team.

In fact, Americans find it a little odd that non-Americans seem so apathetic about their own countries. Most of us have no difficulty reconciling the idea that every country is the best in the world. We expect Italians to believe that Italy is the greatest country in the world and Brazilians to believe that Brazil is the greatest country in the world.

BTW, this is not a new phenomenon corresponding to the U.S.'s 20th century dominance. It was noted by both Alexis de Tocqueville and Oscar Wilde.

The proper response, when an American claims that the U.S. is the best country in the world, is not to pull long faces and cite statistics about lyme disease, but to treat the occasion like a summer camp assembly:

"Woo hoo! Go Canada!"
"Rockin' it Down Under"
"Yay! Uzbekistan!"
"Let's hear it, Burkina Faso!"
"West Sudan can't be beat!"

This kind of boosterish display pleases Americans inordinately -- it's as if we've now exchanged social pleasantries and everyone can move along. You may balk at pleasing us by participating in this drama, but it does serve the function of shutting us up.


You start off by saying that Europeans cannot possibly understand a country as vast and diverse as America. Then in the very next paragraph you demolish your own argument with sweeping overly broad pronouncements of the "European mentality" versus the "American mentality." You gloss over the fact that within America itself there is a wide diversity of opinion as to the ideal degree of government regulation or involvement in the public good.

Yes, there are some Americans stuck in the tween stage of cheering for their camp color war team. There are also Americans who find many great and admirable things about their country who are also capable of having sober discussions of the country's weaknesses. Boosterish displays please some Americans and make other Americans roll their eyes. Anyone who is aware of the bigness and cultural diversity of the US surely realizes this already.
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Jeanette









  


Post  Thu, Jan 11 2018, 10:38 pm
Fox wrote:
Except that this is nowhere near the truth. In fact, if you read the stream of op-eds from U.S. news outlets and blogs, Americans do more soul-searching and self-criticism than virtually anyone except possibly for Asians.

Let's be honest: for a lot of people, including many self-hating Americans, ridiculing the U.S. and Americans is a way to demonstrate to others that they are sophisticated and worldly. These aren't people who have any interesting observations to make or who have any real knowledge to add to conversations. They are sad intellectual wannabes who sit around bemoaning the state of the world while lesser folks from Pig's Knuckle, Arkansas, and Hyena's Tail, Botswana, -- both the best countries in the world -- pursue happy, fulfilling lives according to the values of their cultures.

Yes, I know that American hyper-patriotism is annoying to people whose love of country is more reticent. But I'll let you in on a little secret: people from lots of countries and cultures do things that other people find annoying and obnoxious. In fact, mankind has a fairly rich history of going to war over such annoyances long before the first ugly American strapped on a fanny pack and pair of oversized sneakers.


Clearly it isn't possible for anyone to be seriously worried about the direction America is going in right now. No American could possibly have any genuine concerns about things like maternal mortality or racist rhetoric coming from the highest office in the land. There is no possible motivation for criticizing the president other than self-hatred. Anyone who suggests otherwise has nothing to add to the conversation and is just a sad intellectual wannabe.

Meanwhile the people living in s----le countries should stay there and work to may them less s----y instead of trying to come into our country. What we really need are more people from Norway.
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amother




Orange


Post  Fri, Jan 12 2018, 12:28 am
cultured pearls - I am Australian and know no one who thinks like you. Of course no system will satisfy all who live within it, but overall the quality of life in Australia is extremely high.
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Raisin









  


Post  Fri, Jan 12 2018, 4:25 am
Fox wrote:
Again, this is my point. Americans wear their patriotism on their sleeves. It is not wrong; it is just a different cultural expression.

Frankly, many Americans would find your lack of enthusiasm for living in the UK to be puzzling and sad. The birthplace of the Magna Carta? A monarchy dating back to the Middle Ages? Kings buried under parking lots? C'mon! That's pretty darned exciting!

I would love to spend time in the UK, and I relentlessly pester Brits for all kinds of details about life there. Just ask Strudel. She had to flee back to Manchester to get away from my endless nattering.

Americans -- even those hurt by oppression in the past -- generally don't consider their affection for their country to be a score, with points added or deducted for good behavior. It's just not the way we think.


I don't live in the UK. Sorry. I do visit pretty often so feel free to pester me with me questions. I still hold a British passport although seriously considering applying for citizenship of the country I live in. (thinking of asking my family members who voted for Brexit to pay for this because it is expensive. Mad But I guess I will see if it proves necessary)

But, I am probably one of the more patriotic of my friends and acquaintances. I love history and yes, I am proud of things like the magna carta and the abolition of slavery and random things like the fact that we had a Jewish Prime Minister in the mid nineteenth century. Honestly, many of the people I went to school with would have no idea what I was talking about if I mentioned these things and could care less about being British. (Although I do have one friend who has furnished her NY house with little union jack pillows and sets off fireworks every November 5th. Laughing ) One of my biggest pet peeves is British people who somehow develop an american accent after living in Brooklyn for 3 weeks. (they don't realise that outside the frum world a british accent is way cooler then a brooklyn one) Or worse, british people who use american words even not having lived there.
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imasoftov









  


Post  Sun, Jan 14 2018, 2:10 am
Make America America Again
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amother




Plum


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 11:02 am
I didn't want to hijack the current thread with this comment though just want to point out that a middle income family only being able to afford rice for supper is definitely a US disadvantage. Of course it's due to the high cost of a frum lifestyle though this wouldn't happen in most other countries.
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mommy3b2c









  


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 11:32 am
amother wrote:
I didn't want to hijack the current thread with this comment though just want to point out that a middle income family only being able to afford rice for supper is definitely a US disadvantage. Of course it's due to the high cost of a frum lifestyle though this wouldn't happen in mo
st other countries.


Except that is not the reality.
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amother




Silver


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 11:34 am
amother wrote:
I didn't want to hijack the current thread with this comment though just want to point out that a middle income family only being able to afford rice for supper is definitely a US disadvantage. Of course it's due to the high cost of a frum lifestyle though this wouldn't happen in most other countries.


A middle income family that can only afford rice for dinner is spending money on tuition. This is not an American problem.

The US has more food safety-nets (WIC, SNAP) then say - "socialist" Canada.
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keym









  


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 11:53 am
Tuition is a clincher in America. Someone correct me if im wrong. But the big reason is because separation between church and state is so strong that yeshivas, (and church schools and midrashas).cant get federal and state funding for anything. A few dollars for transportation, textbooks, security etc. But yeshivos are on their own to provide everything substantial that cost the department of education an average of 18k per child.
So yes in America. A family of 8 (6 kids) making 150k pretaxes is struggling. 30k taxes, 50k tuition (with breaks), 20k housing (mortgage, rent for a teeny place), 15k health insurance, 8k utilities,4kcar insurance, gas, repairs etc. We havent touched food, clothing, holiday and simcha expenses, savings, retirement etc.
But this family is not eligible for government programs.
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amother




Beige


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 3:51 pm
amother wrote:


The US has more food safety-nets (WIC, SNAP) then say - "socialist" Canada.


little known fact:
Canada (or at least quebec, don't know about other provinces) has the OLO program for low income pregnant women, to receive free eggs, milk, orange juice, and vitamins.

I got my cholov yisroel milk paid for when I couldn't use the regular milk coupons.
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amother




Copper


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 4:03 pm
The family in the rice thread is definitely above the poverty line in any Western country. But, if they wouldn't be paying 15k a year in health insurance, that money would be available for food. Also, they would be eligible for universal benefits such as child care and the universal child benefit in other countries.
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amother




Silver


Post  Mon, Jan 22 2018, 4:16 pm
amother wrote:
little known fact:
Canada (or at least quebec, don't know about other provinces) has the OLO program for low income pregnant women, to receive free eggs, milk, orange juice, and vitamins.

I got my cholov yisroel milk paid for when I couldn't use the regular milk coupons.


Quebec.
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amother




Saddlebrown


Post  Tue, Jan 23 2018, 10:42 am
keym wrote:
Tuition is a clincher in America. Someone correct me if im wrong. But the big reason is because separation between church and state is so strong that yeshivas, (and church schools and midrashas).cant get federal and state funding for anything. A few dollars for transportation, textbooks, security etc. But yeshivos are on their own to provide everything substantial that cost the department of education an average of 18k per child.
So yes in America. A family of 8 (6 kids) making 150k pretaxes is struggling. 30k taxes, 50k tuition (with breaks), 20k housing (mortgage, rent for a teeny place), 15k health insurance, 8k utilities,4kcar insurance, gas, repairs etc. We havent touched food, clothing, holiday and simcha expenses, savings, retirement etc.
But this family is not eligible for government programs.

Yes, yes, yes!! We moved away because we couldn't survive because of tuition.
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