04 Aug America and Britain. Winner-takes-100% versus Winner-takes-90% Capitalism.
America and Britain are very similar in thousands of ways.
US has more room so home spending is less, for more space. America has 1 million a year immigrant labourer class. USA has 330 million people.
UK has no gun culture, no compounds hiding arsenals, so Brits fear less and relax more, in public social spaces. UK has controlled immigration, unless you’re right. Britain has 70 million people.
The biggest difference between the two countries is subtle but fundamental, however, and impacts every aspect of American and British life:
America is a sink-or-swim competition to win. Americans face a lifelong high stakes contest for the best decent life. 100% capitalism.
Britain has the same competition to win. But there’s help for poor, support for defeats and guaranteed minimum lifestyle. 90% capitalism. 5% perpetual class. 5% social care.
In the United States, society is more raw and brutalist; but also more forthright, more strident and more currency to gain from group identity; which can be a leg up. Winner is rewarded. Losers are punished. There’s little or no safety net. America is an entrepreneurial society though successful business must converge with the plutocracy if it wants to get bigger than local. If you’ve made enough money, everything’s for sale. Lineage elite is ultimately based on agreeable exploitation of weakness, at scale.
Britain has free healthcare, senior care, child support, free school thru college, free housing, etc. It also has private health insurance, prestigious fee paying schools, etc. Britain is more small-c conservative than the United States. It’s entrepreneurial and full of plutocratic grift same as the rest of the Anglosphere but there’s a perpetual class of generational high status that resists the lower classes. Parallel societies. If you’ve made enough money but started low class, your children might integrate with the lineage elite; if they’re not odious dunderheads.
Nobody wants to lose in any capitalist competitive society but it hits different if the stakes don’t include starvation in the gutter without medical or community care; and the stakes are compounded by a rapacious modus operandi that’s woven through the fabric of American society for almost everyone but in the UK is only woven through the fabric of the working and lower middle class society (i.e. almost everybody but not quite..!)
AMERICAN REALITY – Competition becomes intense as one climbs in wins (becoming a target) or falls too many times (fighting not to be homeless and broke). Parks and beaches covered by 100,000 homeless in Los Angeles testify to the losers. Streets in the hills lined by10 million dollar mansions speak to the quality of life enjoyed by the winners. Contrast Jupiter Island with Patersen New Jersey.
BRITISH REALITY – Hello.