Do Americans only care about their self-interests or do they also care about each other?
Americans seem so obsessed about their own self-interests, with a capitalist ideology that says all is fair in love and war, that they seem to have forgotten how to simply live. In France and Mexico, you live for your familly. In America, you might spend time hiding from your familyl Is there any future for this goal-oriented meritocracy of scorekeepers?
It depends on the other's of which you speak. From experience, we care about certain people which is kind of sad. It is possible that we slowly go away from this theology but it will take some time and us adapting other societies and morphing with them.
It would depend on the situation because it can go either way.
If you get beyond the mass, mainstream media screaming headlines and talking heads, Americans do care about one another. Response to super storm Sandy and the Sandyhook shooting most recently by individuals shows this. Believe it or not, this country does not look they way it is portrayed on FOX News.
Those are enough questions for an essay. Not to generalize, but we are talking about the majority here. If people simply turned off the tv, computers, and iphones, their qualities of life would drastically increase with their families whom they would be forced to spend time with. The American culture in the United States is simply a dim, bland, and backwater version of British culture, which is essentially self-interested and hypocritical at its core. Americans do care about others, but they are too obsessed with money, hard work, and status to do anything about it. That's typical in a consumer-based economy. Americans have put money so high on their list of priorities that they think it rises above all other things. In other words, one person who works hard at more than one lousy job may have a great deal of money from their hard work, but that person doesn't realize how low he actually is on the ladder of this "meritocracy", where class is measured by education, species of labor, and work-life balance. It is not measured by money alone. It's more of a ratio between income and work-life balance that determines where one stands in real quality of life. Then, one has to omit the screens from their life as well. Is there a future in this? There could be one if people persist in working like slaves to generate high household incomes. It's certainly more efficient for people to live in large families under a single household, but our culture has never done that going back to the 1600s.
I don't think Americans can be lumped together any more than Australians can. There are those who care about family, those that don't.
We are millions of people, all different.
I have recently been researching cultures including our own and I read a great hub by crazyteacher that kind of brought things full circle, for me anyway. We have always measured success in this country in part by ensuring our children are better off than the previous generation. Crazyteachers hub shared as to how we have become this trophy society, giving trophies for everyone and ruining the idea of competition. Have you seen the newest huggies commercial, where there is a parade in honor of the little tike for making his first potty visit. We have created a generation of narcissist with entitlement syndrome. And, as you have pointed out, our capitalist society insists upon our irresponsible spending to obtain more, better, newer...your old smart phone is no longer the best, you need 4G, etc....This is a cultural issue that needs to be addressed unless we are to become as all great Empires before...extinct.
I'd like to thank everyone for all the thoughtful comments. I guess if Americans move beyond their fixation with money and think a little more about family--and shared national values--it'll all turn out OK!
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