Sunday, January 17, 2010

USA versus EU/the World

One of my arguments that I use when debating the issue with Progressives and Liberals (as if there were a difference between them) always want the USA to be more like Europe is what I call the T&T ratio. My argument being that why would anyone want our country to be like a country that does not have as many TV's and Toilets as we do, thus the T&T.

One of my favorite sites to visit and get an interesting presentation of data is Carpe Diem; wherein the good Mr. Perry is running a series entitled the EU vs USA in several parts. Here is a chart that illustrates not only my T&T ratio including other items as well.

My point is always that we enjoy incredible wealth here in the USA, even our poorest people have items that the poor in other counties can only dream about, in fact in most countries even the Average person does without items that our Poor enjoy.

Here is another chart that illustrates this with living area in the average homes:

The Poor here live with more than 25% more living area than the Average European. Now, I understand that Europe is a much smaller in size and that's what makes things in their society work that simply don't work here. Like small cars and Trains as mass transit.

But I always go back basics and that is why my ratio includes Toilets. In my travels throughout the Mediterranean countries (Spain, France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, Israel and England) this is the one item that I noticed that stands out.

Indoor Plumbing. We got it and the rest of the world is struggling to catch up. So why do we care about being like Europe so much? I haven't a clue.

BT: Jimmy T sends.


virgil xenophon said...

There is a site somewhere that lists all the material goods that those in the US living below the "official" poverty line enjoy in greater amounts/numbers than the European middle class. IIRC it includes # of TVs, garbage disposals, automatic dishwashers, wash & dryers, Stereo sets, micro-wave ovens,etc--a whole range of goods. All of which statistical comparisons can be used two ways: 1) to point out how good we have it here as compared to Europe, and 2) what general BS it is when complaints are made about the "horrible"poverty rates in this nation. Of course one ALWAYS wishes for improvement, but hard to shed tears for "the poor" when they go around living a life marginally better on average than the European middle class.

Buck said...

Hear, hear VX. AND Jimmy. Remind me to post about the day the rat emereged from, and dived back down, the bombsight toilet in our upscale apartment in Ankara, Turkey... and my Mom nearly had a coronary. ;-)

virgil xenophon said...

Speaking of rats, when we lived in the "Old Louisville " section ( midway between the CBD and the Univ of Louisville--the cities 1st "suburb" on what was an old Dairy Farm and now part of the inner city) of Louisville in the 80s a factory located on the periphery leaked combustible waste liquids into the sewer system and about 4am (thank God, no one was killed) about six entire blocks of Hill St. blew up sending up to Volkswagen sized chunks of concrete everywhere--a miracle no cas. It happened about half a block from our house on S. 3rd St and sounded to me like a 1000 pounder had gone off next door. We had a pre-Civil war 6,000 sq' 3-story monster sitting on a rock/boulder foundation in basement.and it rocked it REAL good. one might imagine , the sewer rats went everywhere. Our neighborhood was invaded.
As luck would have it one night when I was out of town on a business trip to Milwaukee my wife came down to the kitchen, turned on the blights, and there was a giant rat with his head sticking out of the stove burner grid. (We had an old giant period antique white porcelain 2-oven, 2-warmer-bin 6-burner gas stove.) You can imagine my wife's reaction--did I ever get an ear-burning call at my hotel in the middle of the night! No wonder--giant sewer rats the size of cats scare me too--I'm a 'fraidy-cat! And of course that old house was so "loose" it was almost impossible to seal.