dmoelling landed immediately on the Monopoly square adjoining mine in discussing how the American regions relate to each other, noting that New England/northeast doesn’t hesitate to tell Texas that it is doing things all wrong. I had not wanted to create a self-fulfilling prophecy by announcing my own suspicion, but I had immediately thought of New York telling Texas what to do, unrequested. Pretty similar. This covers what Texas should do about public transportation, how they should run their schools, how they should talk, dress, eat, vote. It’s the strongest cultural line of giving advice unasked-for in the country, the distillation of what happens everywhere.
Texas says that it’s great, but they mostly say that to each other, which is parallel to America bragging on itself. That torques everyone else off, so the other states go looking for ways to tell Texas what to do. New York/New England, on the other hand, pretty much tries to tell everyone else how they should act. Most regions do this, but we are more intense about it. That’s the stereotype, anyway, and I think there is some reason for it. That would make Northeast America a lot like Northwest Europe.
California also tells everyone else what to do. They do some of this via the entertainment biz, but they do seem to have some of that attitude in their character in all interactions. New England settled the top of the country, and this is nowhere more pronounced than in the Pacific Northwest. Ecotopia also tells everyone else what to do, but nowhere near as intensely or obviously. (Maybe just as smugly.)
Looking back at Europe there is a nuance I didn't quite describe in Part I: Scandinavians and NW Europeans dislike individual bragging and wouldn't quite say out loud that they are Best Nation, they do very much take collective credit for having figured out just about anything you name - how to handle the Russians, how to do healthcare, how an economy should be run, what the relations between men and women should be. They humblebrag very well.
I hadn't thought I was going here when I set out, but we seem to have come around to some very usual stereotypes. The regions line up pretty closely with political persuasions. Conservatives tell each other that they are great, which irritates liberals who are then very quick to point out that "they" (Americans/Western Civ/Texans/Christians) aren't, really. Liberals tell others what to do, unasked. which torques off conservatives, who would never go into your house and do that.
And it's the defensive/offensive pattern between them again, liberals on offense, conservatives on defense. I certainly notice this in my FB feed and my own FB behavior. Liberals on offense tend to be general, even when they are being vicious. They complain about gun owners, or Republicans, or whatever, then seem shocked and offended when they get called on it. Yet at one level, I get that. They have themselves convinced that if you aren't being mentioned by name you have no right to be offended. If the shoe fits and all that. But when I am calling someone out for a bigoted remark, that's personal, that's individual, there's nowhere to hide. It is an escalation of a sort.