What's wrong with YOUR country?

I’m from the UK. It’s rubbish. This is why:

[li]Awful transport (rail and road)[/li][li]One of the most expensive places in the world to live.[/li][li]Medieval health service[/li][li]Heading towards an economic depression[/li][li]We’re in the pocket of the US. Special Relationship my ass! [/li][/ul]

and a whole litany of other crimes, which I’m sure fellow UK dopers will fill in.

I often think to myself:

“I’ve gotta move from this country. It’s rubbish. There’s GOTTA be a better place where the tax is just right, and everything’s sorted. Australia or Canada are always getting a good write-up - they’ll do!”

But I reckon they can’t be all that peachy. I mean, every country’s got something wrong with it, right?

So come on then (not just Canadians and Aussies), what’s wrong with YOUR country?

Miss the Pit by a few forums?

Sorry all. Yeh - missed. Mods, do your worst.

Actually, I think this is more IMHO, myself. Too soft to be a rant.

The “special relationship” stuff is high on my list. There have always been Canadians who felt inferior to whoever was the “in” country of the day – France, Britain, the US – while I feel we’re doing better by being ourselves. We’re a unique country with a unique history and values, and our own contribution to make to the world.

I would love to see more money pumped into health care, the social safety net, ecology and cultural programs – less corporate welfare, higher corporate taxes.

My solution is not to move. It’s to get involved in politics and make a practical contribution.

A sawbuck says we don’t see Aldebaran in this thread.

<waving five dollars around the Board>

This should be interesting, stigoftdump, thanks for starting it.

<hightails her American butt out of thread>

Netherlands: Used to be laid-back. Is uptight.

Moderator’s Note: Moving to the Pit.

I’m a UK expat working over the pond in California.
UK Health Service, is a lot better than the UK press lead us to believe.
UK weather is just freekingly depressive for nine tenths of the year (though I hear this year has been remarkably good).

Yay! I get to trash the US! And probably get Pitted along the way. Here’s what’s wrong with the U.S.:

Our rigid, two party system makes it nigh impossible for third parties to do anything meaningful, though it does my heart good to see the Greens doing as well as they have been. For too long, it’s been one band of idiots vs. one slightly different band of idiots.

We seem to have a higher than usual number of Stupid People Per Capita.

We’ve developed an entire national culture of Not Giving a Shit.

We don’t have cool British accents.

Our paid vacations are ridiculously low. I understand some of you Euros get months(!) of vacation. Not that we’d take that time off, since there’s a huge element of workaholic culture.

Our health system is rapidly imploding and the politicians can’t do anything, lest they upset an interest group or lobbyist.

We have a very callous outlook regarding social welfare and favor “every man for himself.” to ridiculous extremes.

We’re the fumbling babe in the woods of the international scene. With good reason.


  • is always either on fire or under water.
  • is also not exactly a a cheap place to live (especially if you earn shitty Aussie dollars).
  • has shitty Aussie dollars (Pacific Pesos).
  • has shitty, potholed, single lane roads - often connecting major cities.
  • has shitty public transport.
  • has expensive domestic air transport (and you have to use it because everywhere is so fucking far from everywhere else).
  • has expensive international air transport (because Australia is so fucking far from everywhere else).
  • has no borders, so you have to fly (see last point).
  • has one cow of a timezone.
  • has cultural ambassadors like Paul Hogan and Yahoo Serious (no wonder people think we’re fucked up).


  • aren’t the happy-go-lucky lot we like to think we are.
  • are increasingly divided into rich and poor.
  • are angry, dopey, rude, uneducated, selfish arseholes (well the ones I seem to be forced to interact with are).
  • can be a little too self righteous in their opinions of, and interactions with, the outside world.
  • make loudmouthed, drunken fools of themselves overseas (yes, we share that one with the British - I think there must be some sort of treaty that we have the right to throw up on the footpaths of either country).
  • are lazy, inarticulate, and lack confidence:
    How are you?
    Aussie child (eyes downcast): [sub]good[/sub]
    How are you?
    American child: Hey, I’m great. Just today a really cool thing happened! Let me tell you about it…

Ahem excuse me TheLoadedDog, but isn’t the going rate 1$NZ = 0.89$AUS? So who’s the Pacific Peso now, eh? :slight_smile:

New Zealand

  • Every government department is underfunded while we try to do things that the US/UK/Aust. governments are doing even though we don’t have the economy to support it with a measly 4 million people.

  • Selling off all our fighter aircraft, leaving the airforce with transport planes and helicopters we can viciously crash onto the enemy.

  • Huge arguements over native land rights that are putting off investors, making Kiwis wonder who owns what, and generally pissing off over 80% of the population. At least we were training good pilots before.

  • Entire nation griping and whining about how they could better manage the national rugby team much better than the coach :rolleyes:

  • The whole stupid national past time of ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’, and celebrating sporting success while sledging the losers.

  • Farmers on the national news bitching that it’s too cold/hot/dry/wet/snowing/average and that it’s too early/late/on time for this season.

  • Our Prime Minister looked like she fell out of the Ugly Tree and hit every single branch on the way down.

more UK

  • UK invented most of the worlds popular sports, but get beaten at them by countries with one tenth the population.

Ahhh… confessions of a jingo, okay, here goes:

What’s wrong with the greatest country in the world (eg: USA)

  1. We’re braggarts (see above)
  2. Our country is too big to have a consistent culture (hell, even California ought to be divided, and who the hell is like Texas? Or New York? It sure as hell isn’t Marceline, Missouri, I’ll tell you that!)
  3. Our two-party system sucks. The Demi-crats are controlled by a bunch of money-wasting, whiny bureaucrats, but the only option is the Republican party (of George W Bush fame), which has had its principles hijacked by a bunch of narrow-minded, self-righteous religious freaks and/or corporations. There is no viable option for someone who likes the economics of the republicans but the social ethic of (moderate) democrats. All I want is a government that doesn’t restrict us to death (limits on business translate into a gap between the rich and the poor - unless the poor can become business owners they’ll stay poor), who doesn’t tell me who I can or can’t marry (who’s harmed by two men pledging to stay together?), which doesn’t pretend to be “tolerant” of all religions while prohibiting or officially disapproving of anyone daring to express their religion (eg: Christmas displays at schools), and which doesn’t force me to carry a child if it’s against my will. Oh, and one that doesn’t create so many little programs that not a single one of them can be properly funded without taxing the living daylights out of the populous. Limit the number of programs, fund those ones better, AND lower taxes!
  4. We write excessively long answers to simple questions :wink:
  5. Our taxes may be some of the lowest in the world, but they’re still too high, with the return too small.
  6. Those taxes don’t even go to decent pay for our teachers
  7. Our government and legal system play to the Lowest Common Denominator
  8. We’re an overly-litigious society, similar to Rome just before it fell.
  9. Our culture actually encourages rebellion and unpatriotic acts
  10. We’re cynical enough to believe that we know better than to allow ourselves to be controlled while at the same time being controlled (media, pro-pot advocates, marketing)
  11. We’ve lost our innocence. Everything is laced with hints of sex, conspiracy, or greed. (movies, cartoons, tv)
  12. Our “shelters” still euthanize animals
  13. Our protestors think it’s okay to throw paint on people just because they don’t like what they’re wearing (fur)
  14. Our protestors are a bunch of self-righteous dorks.
  15. So are other special interest groups/lobbyists
  16. Unfit CEOs who have the board in their back pocket receive multimillion dollar bonuses while their company is losing money hand over fist, the stock is in the dumpster, and their employees are earning less than burger flippers at In 'n Out. (Eisner@ Disney)
  17. Did I mention our system plays to the lowest common denominator?
  18. Stupid people going for the lawsuit lottery are ruining things for everyone else, limiting our freedoms (because, heaven forbid we do something stupid and hurt ourselves… we’ll need someone to blame and sue!)
  19. Insurance companies. (See #18)
  20. We’ve gone overboard on coddling our kids - they’re more out of control than ever before (case in point: biggest problem faced by high school principals in the 60’s was kids chewing gum, biggest problem in the 90’s was kids shooting up the cafeteria)

And finally:
As a society/government, we’re so terrified of the wrong people taking advantage of benefits, that we’re willing to deny those benefits to the right people, just to make sure none of the wrong people get them. Why not make sure everyone who needs (whatever) gets it, and write off the fact that a greedy bunch of gits might also benefit?

As an American, I find it odd that the British, Canadians and Australians here do not complain about their monarchy. I mean we are in the 21st century, and we still have backward countries where a complete jackass with no qualifications whatsoever is chosen to become the head of state for the simple reason that one of his parents was a former head of state. Its ridiculous.

Thank God I live in the USA. That would never happen here. :slight_smile:

Bad things about my country

Our drunken loud mouthed fools never leave.
Budweiser “beer”
It’s ok to walk around with a loaded pistol, but God forbid you smoke in public.
Children who bug the shit out of you with how great everything is and want to tell you about it.

And ours didn’t? Shit, at least you don’t have George Costanza running your country. :smiley:
Ok, I’ll admit defeat. The Kiwis win by a nose (actually that photo of Helen Clark is one of the more flattering ones I’ve seen. She normally looks like she’s been chasing parked cars.

We don’t have Cherry Blossoms, Coffee Crisps, Burnt Almond, or Aero bars. Well, we can get Aero bars in a few specialty stores, but we can’t just walk into a gas station and get them.

Buffy DVDs are only on Season 4 here.

There are no really, really old buildings. Hardly any ruins. Everything got torn down that wasn’t European ages ago, just about.

The part I live in is too flat.

…those are the things that annoy me the most on a daily basis.

That’s because Americans are used to a system where the roles of head of the state and head of government are merged – unlike Commonwealth nations where the roles are quite distinct. It’s quite irrelevant to the day-to-day lives of most Australians that our head of state (there is, incidentally, some constitutional argument whether the Queen is in fact Australia’s HoS or whether the Governor-General is HoS) may be foreign-born and unelected. Further, what power the Queen does hold over Australian affairs is strictly bound by custom and exercised only on “advice” of our head of government.

Sure most of us would prefer an elected Australian HoS, but we’re not exactly losing sleep over it.

TheLoadedDog: the $A is at $US 0.6574 as of yesterday. It was 0.6816 two Fridays ago, the highest the Aussie has been in four or more years. Believe it or not, very significant sectors of the Australian economy – rural, mining, importing, manufacturing, tourism – would much prefer a weaker Aussie dollar. The dollar isn’t a simple scorecard of national performance; we don’t all have to barrack for a higher exchange rate.

Then again, I’m off to the US in a few weeks, so I’m enjoying it. :wink:

My complaints:

(1) In this enormous land populated of past immigrants and the stock of immigrants, we persist with a xenophobic “border protection” policy aimed at locking out refugees. Our annual quota of 12,000 refugees is below the international average for a developed nation, which is particularly poor considering our below-replacement birth rate, economic wealth and the historical origins of this nation. The mandatory detention of refugees in Australia is anachronistic, internationally isolated and a huge disgrace.

Then again, it’s also a very popular policy, so what do I know?

(2) I’m sick to fucking death about hearing about the nobility of the fucking Australian Outback. Yes, farmers are very brave, very Australian, the very soil of the fucking earth. Without them we degenerate city folk would surely starve to death (never mind the fact that it’s a two-way street… or that the rural sector is continually propped up by government intervention). Country folk are so kind, so decent (ignore the rampant homophobia and racism), unlike us unfriendly, wicked yuppies living in the city. But enough of the outback, already! Australia is a overwhelmingly urban, coastal society. Let’s hear it for the cities and suburbs, the highways and office buildings. I’ve had enough of our cultural beating off over the dreamy myth of an outback life that is utterly irrelevant for most Australians.

<puff, pant>

Oh, and it doesn’t snow on this side of the continent.

We have a right to posess firarms, supposedly because a “well-regulated militia” is essential to the maintenance of a free country, yet no one ios reallt required to train as militia, nor have we any clear chain of command under which to fall out for duty in the event of an emergency. Thus, we have an enormous number of incompetant people stockpiling weapons with no guarantee that they will not, in an emergency, be more dangerous than was the original threat.

Although I believe the USA is fewer in flaws than other organizations, I still have my pet peeves:

Nobody takes responsibility for themselves anymore. If I fell in the super, it’s not because I’m a stumblebum, it’s because a gnat peed on the floor. Payme. If I fail to get the grade I think I deserve, it’s becaue my teachers were throwbacks, and my counselor winked at me in a knowing way. Payme. :rolleyes:

Tolerance does not mean what it implies. Those who wave the banner will bash your skull in if you don’t accept their version. Somehow I grew up with the notion that you and I could disagree while still maintaining mutual respect, yet that concept has retreated to the shadows of a long forgotten Civics textbook.

We’re all about equal rights, right? Well, my ancestors are not the rightful owners of this land, and neither are yours, unless you’re an Indian. I know, I should say Native American, but that’s a bunch of crap, too. The white people screwed the indians out of everything they could, and slaughtered those that they couldn’t screw. Everyone arriving since has their own spin on that original equation, but after 200+ years, you’d think we’d be equal, right? According to some, no.

Sorry folks, but my great-grandfather, my grandfather, my father, and I are not the sole source of social ills. Before GGF, they were across the pond.

In closure, the words of Theodore Roosevelt: There is no room in this country for hypenated Americanism. . .The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin, of preventing all possibility of its continuing to be a nation at all, would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities.

A Parliament that’s been steadily growing more and more detached from reality, and an electorate that’s completely uninterested in doing anything about it.

We’ve had:

  • One member (Seiichi Ota) who claimed that because they’re proving their virility, gang-rapists are more normal than guys who don’t get married.

  • Another (Yoshiro Mori, former PM but still Diet member) who said women who don’t have kids should be disqualified from social security,

  • Another (Minister of State Yoshitada Konoike) who wanted to see Japan return to its days of beauty, then added his desire to see the parents of a teenage murderer dragged through the streets and publicly beheaded.

  • One more (Takami Eto) claimed that the Rape of Nanking was a complete fabrication, the annexation of Korea was perfectly legal because it had been sanctioned by the UN in 1910 (yes, he said the UN. In 1910.), and that the crime rate in Japan is all because of Koreans, Chinese and other foreigners.

All of these comments were made just in the last week, by senior lawmakers.