Thursday, May 31, 2012

European culture

Victor David Hanson has an interesting article about the role of culture in European development and the ongoing European crisis:
Do average passersby throw down or pick up litter? After a minor fender-bender, do drivers politely exchange information, or do they scream and yell with wild gesticulations? Is honking constant or sporadic? Are crosswalks sacrosanct? Do restaurant dinners usually start or wind down at 9 P.M.? Can you drink tap water, or should you avoid it? Do you mostly pay what the price tag says, or are you expected to pay in untaxed cash and then haggle over the unstated cost? Are construction sites clearly marked and fenced to protect pedestrians, or do you risk walking into an open pit or getting stabbed by exposed rebar?
By coincidence, my Lindenwood colleague, Mike Mathea, sent me this chart today. It presents the results of a survey of Europeans about Europeans:

My favorite part is that Greeks consider themselves the most hardworking and the most corrupt. Corruption must take a lot more effort than it looks.