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Old 06-06-2009, 05:57 PM
 
2 posts, read 3,893 times
Reputation: 18

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cpg 35233: Like your BIL's family practically everyone I know who has taken a vacation in america, takes virtually nothing just enough for the first couple of days and then shops like crazy there!

5 Lakes: Sure there are some vibrant cities but just like in US most people are priced out of them. The only advantage could be that it's quicker to get there as comparatively the UK is tiny!

radraja: Yes, the tax is 40% on anything over Ł40K. Having said that the majority of people earn way less than this with the average salary at a meagre 23K or so which is taxed at 20% (exluding national insurance contributions)

Hoarfrost: We are plagued by the same disease of materialism in europe (after all both sides of the pond are controlled by the same media!). And the better social structure is a bit of a misconception: In UK we have the NHS but thats falling apart where you have to wait months for anything to happen. Also in most of UK (i.e.excluding london), people have to use cars as the transport system is very unpredictable.

Yes, the cost of higher education in the US is huge but compare that to the pay-off, the starting salaries mostly over $40K from my understanding and just shoot up from there compared to here where if you earn Ł40K+ you are part of a priveleged few (something like 5-10% i think).

And the large houses and fancy cars with private education is the perfect way to spend the extra cash as thats what the moajority here is aspire to aswell
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Old 06-06-2009, 06:16 PM
 
Location: SATX
305 posts, read 1,161,706 times
Reputation: 238
I agree with what is being said here, but would also like to add that I see much of the disparity in feeling like "they" do not have enough is a generational thing. This has come to my attention as a Gen Xer, having grown up in the eighties and early nineties seeing so many people struggle to hang on, unlike this next generation, "the Millenials" or whatever it is they call themselves, who have been brought up not only without the context, but with much more coddling parents, often referred to as "helicopter" parents, because they hover over their youth to ensure they don't make mistakes. Their day will come to learn how it all goes down, maybe just a little later than some of us who were left to fall on our faces (a few times, at that).

With that being said, there is a social context that is much larger than what I have said here. We, as Americans are a little spoiled (and most of us don't know it).
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Old 06-06-2009, 06:36 PM
 
184 posts, read 783,688 times
Reputation: 127
greyUK: I'm so glad you started this thread and I hope a lot more people contribute to it. I'm going through the US immigration process right now and should there by the end of the year. While reading through this forum I have often been struck by similar questions to you.

For me personally, I only have two major concerns about life in the USA. Firstly, understanding the health care/insurance system. It is just so different to anything I am use to, there is a lot to learn. I can understand how it can work if your job is with a large company that provides a group health insurance plan as part of your employment package. But how do small businesses do it? What about self employed people?

My only other concern is the number of annual vacation days. Many jobs I have seen advertised only offer two weeks vacation per year. The legal minimum where I'm from is 4 weeks per year, and even that doesn't usually feel like enough, so that will be a bit of an adjustment.

Despite these two concerns though, I am looking forward to the move. I believe the advantages far outweigh disadvantages. No country is perfect, but the USA has a lot more going for it than I think many people give it credit for.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:22 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington
2,317 posts, read 6,885,296 times
Reputation: 1701
Quote:
Originally Posted by greyUK View Post
Yes, the cost of higher education in the US is huge but compare that to the pay-off, the starting salaries mostly over $40K from my understanding and just shoot up from there compared to here where if you earn Ł40K+ you are part of a priveleged few (something like 5-10% i think).
You do realize that UKŁ40,000 is equal to US$64,000? And UKŁ20,000 is equal to US$32,000? So the discrepancies between incomes before taxes, while appreciable, aren't really as great as you may think. Most Americans are NOT making $64,000 or more per year, and US$32,000 is not really all that much to be making.

America has a lot of things going for it, including rights and freedoms that are not guaranteed, even in other free democratic countries. I am aghast at some of the things I've heard are legal and occur in the U.K. Even so, many Americans are very materially oriented and are inclined to complain, but I think some of these are very major concerns.

For example, I myself cannot afford a college education right now because my parents make too much gross income for me to be eligible for Federal financial aid grants, even though ONE-THIRD of their income goes to medical expenses and they really cannot afford to help me with my education. If education were taxpayer subsidized, or if we had a better medical system, either way I'd be able to afford to go to school right now. I'm sure I'll find a way to do it (go into unimaginable debt that I'll go bankrupt over?), but it will be difficult for sure.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:26 PM
 
254 posts, read 428,475 times
Reputation: 229
We have different standards for our country and don't accept anything less than superb. That is what distinguishes America from all other nations and certainly mediocre Europe.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Sanford, FL
598 posts, read 1,521,226 times
Reputation: 295
Quote:
Originally Posted by NYC1DAY View Post
Because America has a moron for a president
Wow, I knew most conservatives were ignorant, but this takes the cake.
Typical, the Republican president runs the country into the ground during two terms and the Democratic successor is on the hot seat after a few months because he's not cleaning up the mess fast enough.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:38 PM
 
28,905 posts, read 46,717,705 times
Reputation: 46025
Quote:
Originally Posted by backdrifter View Post
You do realize that UKŁ40,000 is equal to US$64,000? And UKŁ20,000 is equal to US$32,000? So the discrepancies between incomes before taxes, while appreciable, aren't really as great as you may think. Most Americans are NOT making $64,000 or more per year, and US$32,000 is not really all that much to be making.

America has a lot of things going for it, including rights and freedoms that are not guaranteed, even in other free democratic countries. I am aghast at some of the things I've heard are legal and occur in the U.K. Even so, many Americans are very materially oriented and are inclined to complain, but I think some of these are very major concerns.

For example, I myself cannot afford a college education right now because my parents make too much gross income for me to be eligible for Federal financial aid grants, even though ONE-THIRD of their income goes to medical expenses and they really cannot afford to help me with my education. If education were taxpayer subsidized, or if we had a better medical system, either way I'd be able to afford to go to school right now. I'm sure I'll find a way to do it (go into unimaginable debt that I'll go bankrupt over?), but it will be difficult for sure.
Why don't you just get a job and attend a public university? Millions of college students have done it, and they don't wind up in the hole when they graduate. Heck, I managed to do it attending a private college by cobbling together a partial scholarship, student grants, and a job. It wasn't exactly easy, but I never thought somebody was going to pay my freight, either.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:38 PM
 
3,277 posts, read 4,614,354 times
Reputation: 1913
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeattleWA View Post
We have different standards for our country and don't accept anything less than superb. That is what distinguishes America from all other nations and certainly mediocre Europe.
We apparently don't have superb standards for education.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:38 PM
 
Location: Sanford, FL
598 posts, read 1,521,226 times
Reputation: 295
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeattleWA View Post
We have different standards for our country and don't accept anything less than superb. That is what distinguishes America from all other nations and certainly mediocre Europe.
"mediocre Europe"...??

The Swedes, Danes and Norwegians must love reading this stuff.
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Old 06-06-2009, 07:41 PM
 
28,905 posts, read 46,717,705 times
Reputation: 46025
Quote:
Originally Posted by niceguy19125 View Post
"mediocre Europe"...??

The Swedes, Danes and Norwegians must love reading this stuff.
He might be talking about their pop music. Mediocre is the only way to describe it.
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