|Perl: the Markov chain saw|
Nations don't have viewpoints, people have viewpoints. While a large group of people may tend to exhibit a certain characteristic as a class, to say that "America's egocentric vision as a nation" is a load of crap.
If I live in Australia and put up a poll saying "What's your favorite part of the Outback?" am I suddenly suddenly part of an egocentric Australian nation? I don't think so.
And if vroom wants a poll about how people feel about a particular American holiday, that his business. Maybe next week he'll ask what you favorite part of Passover is. If he fails to put an option "I'm not Jewish", does that suddenly make him part of an egocentric religion? I don't think so.
Polls and writings reflect the viewpoint of the writer. To make an idiotic statement that one poll is suddenly representative of an entire nation sounds to me like the person who made that statement has a problem, not the poll writer, or the nation of the poll writer.
Most people have little time or reason to think outside of their region. They're busy living *their* day to day lives, trying to make ends meet, feed the kids, pay for school, the house, the car. While we may live in a global economy, it rarely effects the average citizen at a day to day level. If Canada goes out of business, I still have to make my monthly car payment. So, naturally, I'm more concerned about what occurs near me, than anything happening 3600 miles away (unless you're planning a nuclear war).
A poll I saw not that long ago asked Russians how often they thought about American during the cold war. The answer was (not so surprisingly) infrequently. They were too busy trying to find food, heating oil, spying on each other, and the like. In fact, a number of them mentioned that the only time they thought about it was when they heard news on the radio.
I'm all for cultural awareness, global participation, blah blah blah, but until my house payment is made, I'm not going to worry about changing the way you perceive America. If you have enough time and money on your hands to worry about such things, more power to you. Wish I had your job.
By the way, all these sites that end in .NL and don't have English text on them really annoy me. How dare you publish web pages that cater only to Dutch speaking people. I think that just goes to show what an egocentric nation you Netherlanders are.