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Differences Between the US and the UK (podcast style conversation w/ my English boyfriend)


Hello my dudes. Welcome back to my channel. My name is Tiffany, and today’s video is a little bit different. We have a two-camera setup, we have a microphone, and we have my boyfriend Nathan. Hello there. Nathan is from Devon, England, and we have lived together in New York now for almost three years. So for today’s video, I wanted us to compare and contrast the United States and the United Kingdom because it’s interesting. Why not? For those of you who have been watching for a couple years, you may remember my study abroad era. I studied abroad in France. Tiffany: I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned that before. Nathan: You’ve never mentioned that. But anyway, back then I used to make quite a few videos about travel and comparing different cultures and I just wanted to go back to my roots for a moment. And most importantly, I wanted an excuse to bring Nathan into a video. So we have kind of prepared some questions and we’re gonna have a debate style conversation trying to defend our sides, so whether or not we believe our arguments, we have to argue for our country because patriotism. And you guys can participate by commenting down below for each question and letting us know who you think won the argument. Hey, so I didn’t intend for this video to essentially be a podcast, but that’s basically what it is. So sit back, listen, enjoy. But before we continue, I’ve got to give a shout out to today’s sponsor, which is Babbel, the number one language learning app in the world. So I’ve been learning French now off and on for 10 years and I’m currently ending my very last semester of college French So it’s a big priority of mine to make sure that I retain all the information I’ve learned and continue improving my French skills. I’ve tried a variety of different language learning tools and apps over the years but honestly Babbel is my favorite. I think the format just works really well for me. I like that there are no ads and when it comes to the example scenarios, I love that they’re actually relevant and simple things that actually come up in real life. So every day the goal is to do at least one lesson and one review. So you do a little pronunciation practice then you match translations to the phrases And then you do more grammar work, either filling in the terms that you just learned or more matching. I love that they do a variety of different exercises because it really prevents you from lazily doing it You do have to actively think about every answer. So if you want to improve your skills in another language You can learn so, so much in that amount of time, and it’s a limited time offer, so don’t miss out. Thank You Babbel! Let’s get back into the video. Ok, so to start, let’s compare American English to British English, and I’m gonna let you begin. Are you sure? Ladies first. Well, you guys had English first, I think. So, go ahead. So first, we gave you the language, so you’re welcome. Second… That’s aggressive. That’s very aggressive. Our language is older and much more sophisticated than the American English. I mean, could you even imagine a world where William Shakespeare’s great Romeo and Juliet play was written in American English? Just not great. Doesn’t sound great. What’s up, my dude? Yeah, yo Romeo? What’s up my dude? You know, however, I will concede that the way that the Americans spell the words as it sounds like organize is spelled with I – Zed – E. Not “Zee”. Zed. However, the French ruined that for us when they invaded in 1066, the goddamn French, so they’re to blame for colour. O-U-R. On the note about the French influence on English you really wouldn’t have English without French, isn’t it a combination of Germanic language and French? Yeah, there are tons of French words in English. *yeah, no I agree* Shots fired at the French? The language came from Germany over to England and when they invaded in 1066 they manipulated the language to make it sound a little like theirs. Bonjour. Colour. To clarify, when William the Conqueror became King of England So continuing on that note of how our languages have been influenced American English obviously began as British English with the colonists coming over and then their speaking was shaped by contact with the Native Americans, as well as immigrants… Germans, French… So slowly our language did evolve over time but especially after we declared our independence from Britain. We wanted to separate ourselves. Okay. We’re not British anymore. We are American. So there were a lot of things that we did to change our language including the iconic Noah Webster. Heard of him? Webster’s Dictionary. Okay, Noah Webster decided that quote, He wanted Americans to be independent. Not only politically, but also lexically, all right. So he was the one who decided to take the U out of words like colour or humour and to change tha I-S-E into an I-Z-E. Thank You Noah. I also wanted to point out another difference in grammar. British English tends to use the present perfect. As in, I’ve broken your vase. I’ve broken your vase. I’ve got the post. Would you say that? Post? Mail? Post. Compared to American English which tends to use the simple past. I broke your vase. I got the mail. And there’s also the difference in using words like leant or spoilt with the T, instead of leaned or spoiled. So those are just some more grammatical differences. You’re looking at me like this is useless information. *It is.* I think it’s interesting! And the last thing that was on my notes was Zee versus Zed. That threw me off for forever. I was familiar with Zed from French. I didn’t know that British English says Zed. Don’t Canadians too? Are Americans the only ones who says Zee? It’s “Haych” vs “Aych” as well. That threw me off too. “Haych” DMI cord. I remember you saying that when we first met. We were just talking about cords. Yeah. So anyway. Wow that ended up being a longer discussion than I wanted. Let us know your opinion. What’s better American or British English? You know there are a lot of other countries that speak English. We have Canadian English. *I know, I know* We have South African, New Zealand, Australian English, but we don’t have time and we don’t have representatives for them. You will thank us. Thank you. Thanks Brits… for being colonizers. Now that’s the tea. And America is great right now? Okay. We were bad also… still pretty bad. Yes. Moving on. So then the next thing I wanted to touch on was regional accents And I guess first I want to talk about the American accent in general. I would argue that it is the most popular English accent. That’s actually backed up by facts. And it is considered the easiest for most people to understand, whether you’re a native or non-native English speaker. So, we’ve got that. I would also argue that the American English accent has become so popular because of our influence on media and pop culture so I think that just naturally people are more likely to perhaps watch more American media than British media. *Where are you getting this information from?* Where am I getting this from? I keep hitting my teeth. Ouch. Where are you getting information from? I have my sources. I will say it’s funny how you do, like, your little English twang comes out when we go visit my parents and family back in the UK. I can’t control it. I start to say like quite, or like lovely. *Lovely* Lovely. Well, it’s because I hear… *Would you like a cup of tea?* I hear your parents and siblings saying it and it just feels like it’s more natural to start picking up on it than to continue using my terrible American voice. Yeah, I find it very difficult to change between like gas station, petrol station. Trash, bin. Like, bathroom, toilet. What is that called? Code-switching? *Whatever switching it is is very hard and difficult. So you should sympathize.* No, but you’re pretty good at it. Continue. I wanted to give a shout out to some American accents. I think I think American regional accents, though there are many, there are a handful that are the most iconic. Including the southern accent of which I’m gonna attempt right now. Louisiana. Mmm, well you get a little bit of a Southern drawl. You get a Southern drawl. You have a little bit of gumbo. *Do you remember the woman who read my palm in New Orleans?* Mm-hmm *I can listen to her all day.* Such a low, comforting tone. *It was amazing.* Mm-hmm. And then you have the Bostonian accent. Remember when we went to Boston and everything said Harvard Yard? *Yeah.* Harvard Yard. I love that. You get Marky Mark. *Little twang of like some Irish in there, which is…* uh, yeah, that’s true Irish Catholic. *Uh-huh.* Mm-hmm. Now we have New York. New York. Coffee. My daughter. My daughter and I went to get some coffee. Stop. Please. Even in New York, there’s a lot of different accents. And then we have California which is like totally gnarly. Which is my native accent in case that explains the horrible uhh… People are always like, what is it the vocal fry? They’re like “It’s so annoying,” I don’t talk like that anymore. Much… It’s just there still. I’m like, I don’t talk like that. And then you have the Midwestern accent which I don’t know how to do really. But what do you say? You say “Ope” and uh Just that? There’s some great Midwestern comedy videos on YouTube. Moving on. *Well you gotta talk about the UK accents!* Fine. *I mean you have the great Scottish* — Great Scott! Sorry that wasn’t anything. *Wait, hang on.* *Hagas in Scotland! That’s great!* Was it? *Hagas in Scotland* *With my bagpipes and my kilt and the Loch Ness monster around the corner.* Wow. *Then we have the Welsh accent* In the valley, in the valleys in Wales, you have the valleys in Wales. *Northern Ireland’s I mean “top of the day to you. Top of the morning to ya!”* you’re doing the most stereotypical quotes possible. London Landon, Landon cockles I can’t even judge whether these are good or not in that. Next, I wanted to talk about culture and with the United States I want to talk a little bit about diversity. You got to appreciate the immigrants. They have literally built and created American culture. There are so many different cultures here. We live in Queens. Which is literally the most diverse county in the whole country. So much good food, lots of stuff going on. But when I ask like what exactly is American culture? I feel like that’s very hard, if not impossible to define because I think it’s really more regional. In terms of like the way you would celebrate holidays or what kind of traditions you have. I personally feel like I have very few traditions. Like when I first met Nathan’s family his mom was asking me like, what does your family do for Christmas? I was like, well we go to my grandma’s house. We eat, we drink. That’s it. He has like this whole plan that his family always does on Christmas, and Boxing Day. So I also want to say that some people in this country view American culture to be essentially white, Christian culture, which is not true, okay? It can represent white Christians, but that doesn’t mean that that’s America. It’s like the people who get mad when you say Happy Holidays to be inclusive of other people who celebrate different holidays or don’t celebrate holidays. When they’re like, “you’re erasing Christmas!” I love America. So for me and Britain, the UK as a whole, we have a much richer history than America so therefore I feel like we have a lot more traditions and a lot more like special holidays, you know even in like Scotland you have St. Andrews Day, and with the whole traditions that come with like Scotland with the kilts and the bagpipes. You head on over to Wales. Wales interestingly have their own language the Welsh language and well the Welsh love their rugby sports as well That is something like, they’re like massively like hooked on over there, and then you move on over to Ireland. Northern Ireland, which is part of UK, which is something that a lot of people get very confused on. Ireland is not part of the United Kingdom. Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom. Some choose to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day there. And by the way, the whole Northern Ireland Irish thing is like There’s some great history there You should definitely read up on about it’s very interesting and then of course you’ve got things like Poppy Day You have Guy Fawkes Day. Remember, remember the fifth of November. Where I’m from we have like a tradition called tar barrels Where you literally have — and you’ve been to it before — you have children, men, women like carrying a hot burning tar barrel through like the streets of Ottery Saint Mary. where they believed back in God knows when that the smoke and the flames are burning away ghosts, and like, people haunting the town. And yeah, you know traditions as well within England something that is like ingrained in our culture, is soccer. You just said soccer?! I was just about to say, no disrespect to Americans, but you do kick the ball with your foot, so it is football. Our fans of football are just some of the most passionate fans in the world, and like people’s lives are devoted to football. Football is so ingrained in so many different families around the whole of the United Kingdom whether that’s people in Manchester, people in Liverpool, Newcastle, Cardiff, Belfast… You’re showing off your geography again. *Yeah, I know.* I mean as an outsider again coming from my perspective where I personally feel like I don’t have a very distinct connection to any like American culture, coming and visiting your family in England does feel way more culturally and traditionally rich than I’m used to So that’s something I really enjoy like learning Like the only thing I want to suggest is like when I told you about Boxing Day you weren’t too sure What the hell that meant? Well coz we don’t celebrate it here and even like Easter He said you don’t have easter eggs. Do you? Yeah we do. Well, you have chocolate Easter eggs. Yeah Well, we do Easter egg hunts and things but… We have Easter All right So continuing with culture we’ve got to talk about food and you may be wondering what even is American food? Processed shit like American cheese, which yes, that’s a big part of our culture. Unfortunately. What are your thoughts? There’s nothing special or unique about American food You have burgers small burgers burgers even more burgers fries wings you have pancakes you have hot dogs or Can I tempt you with a roast dinner with healthy vegetables and a Yorkshire pudding? May I add can I tempt you with fish and chips? there’s nothing better than sitting in a seaside town along the beachfront diving into a bag of fish and chips or Would you enjoy a full English breakfast which by the way there is no argument about what breakfast is better England or America? In America, your breakfast is sugar sugar sugar. let me explain we’ve taken him and his family to some American diners like IHOP or Denny’s or Other ones where they do have those decadent like pancakes and french toast waffles covered in syrup and sugar And with chocolate whipped cream chocolate sprinkles, that’s not our standard breakfast, but that is pretty American you can indulge in a Cornish pasty if you’d like. Or, would you like to come with me and sit down And have a beautiful wonderful tea With finger sandwiches with some lovely cakes With some nice scones or scons. However, you’d like to pronounce that I’m from Devon and there’s this heated debate between Cornwall and Devon on how you should have your scone. So the Cornish way is jam first with cream on the top Mmm, clotted cream or the Devon way is the reverse which is cream at the bottom and jam on top I mean personally, I think I’m not too sure where I lay I will say though, it’s funny how black tea and dishes like chicken tikka Masala are labelled as British, but we got them from India. Thanks for the tea Sorry about the colonization. Wow, actually apparently tea was introduced to India by the British I am I am truly shocked. I did not know this honestly speaking of colonization That was what I was going to mention about American food because yes, it is a lot of processed stuff But it’s also a lot of food that we’ve gotten from the places that we’ve colonized and the rich immigrant communities that we have So we have a pretty wide variety of foods. I did write typical American foods do include hamburgers hot dogs apple pie Literally, what’s more American than apple pie? Some other signature American foods include New York bagels, southern comfort food Which also has a lot of influences in Cajun and Creole cultures. shout out to New Orleans, Louisiana Barbecue, I think is pretty American. Would you agree? Oh, there’s a lot of a lot of states that think they’re like the barbecue state and then we have Americanized pizza Which is probably again blasphemy to the Italians, but we have New York Pizza We have Chicago deep-dish pizza. Iconic. And of course, my favorite is Tex Mex and you were saying that It’s not real Mexican food, but I was saying that that’s the point because it’s Tex-Mex and therefore it is an American creation of this specific kind of food. I mean, I do like authentic Mexican food as well. Of course, I’m from Southern California Llegada, but I also do love tex-mex and next on my list was actually tea versus coffee All right. So for me, it’s tea is not just about the drink it’s about the experience you’re socializing and To pour yourself a cup of tea or even better having your tea in a teapot where you’re letting the leaves still clash With your friends you’re with your family. You’re sipping your tea You’re dunking your biscuits in your tea instead here. Although the coffee is pretty good. I will concede it’s all very convenient as in rushed You go through the drive-thru. You pick up your coffee, you drink it. And it’s usually mostly an individual activity Right. Though you may meet up with people at a coffee shop or whatever that could be social but Coffee tends to be like when I wake up. Don’t talk to me until I have my coffee But I think yeah it is a very American thing and I wanted to get into that. So I can actually say we can attribute even more of our culture to hating the British. Ohhhh. I didn’t know about this. But it wasn’t until the Boston Tea Party of 1773 that America’s coffee culture was changed forever. The revolt against King George the third generated a mass switch from tea to coffee amongst the colonists. So then the demand for coffee flourished and then I think we began to get involved in the in the coffee biz So we had pre roasted coffee by the pound and then we had the invention of instant coffee And then what is more American than Starbucks? There’s nothing, other than Dunkin’ Donuts. What’s more New York than Dunkin’ Donuts. I appreciate coffee in a sense that you can do more with it. As in, you’ve got your lattes. You got your cappuccinos your maccacinos your laughatinos. What are you saying? Oh you’re making things up. Yeah, I was like I’ve never heard of that. Continuing on I wanted to talk a little bit about education and specifically University. So I will share with you the typical American college experience which is so iconic in our culture and Even though it’s obviously not a reality for many students here including myself, I feel like it is the ideal version of what we think University should be. So of course you have your dream school. You do your applications. You work hard your whole life to get into that school. You go there. It’s all about the campus lifestyle You don’t want to be a commuter. You want to live on campus. So when you’re a freshman you live in the dorms, you have your roommate you eat in the dining halls… Which means you get to eat whatever you want unlimited amounts two to three times a day. That is typically where the freshman 15 comes in. You also Might want to join a sorority or a frat. Along with that comes parties. Maybe you go to a frat house. Maybe you drink some jungle juice. I’ve only heard of it. I don’t know if it’s a real thing. Have I been to a college party in years? No. Then there are the tailgates and the football games. American football games. And then you graduate with an average of $30,000 in debt. And that’s the experience. So for me you didn’t even mention education once. You forgot the whole college experience. Okay for us, we do things a little differently. So it’s a primary school, secondary school, and then once you’ve done your secondary school, at the age of 16 You have the options to either go on to do higher education, you either go and do an apprenticeship within a trade or you know hairdressing or something like that. Or you choose to just go out there and work I like those options because even at the age of 18 like we’re talking 16 here even at the age of 18, 20, 21, 22, 23… people still don’t really truly know what they actually want to do for a career. Mm-hmm so I like the little breaks within our education system, where you can choose to just go and work and figure your life out a little bit. You go on to college, you do two years there and you have to collect enough Ucas points within college to go into a university that you want to go into. I mean our experience is very similar to yours. we don’t go too hardcore into the whole college frat parties, and there’s definitely parties I would say with us and correct me if I’m wrong, but there’s a little bit more of independence within our first years of University, unlike you and the American system.Within my first year, I was cooking my own meals and doing… you know figuring out I know it sounds stupid but figuring out breakfast figuring what I’m gonna do for lunch, whether I can afford lunch. mhmm. figuring out if I can afford dinner and like doing my weekly food shop or grocery shop I think it teaches you a lot about Independence and budgeting and all that sort of stuff. So yeah, there is a difference 100% but there’s a lot of similarities within the two experiences. I’m not too sure what’s better and not but I do disagree that you have to do four years of a degree, rather than three years, and I still don’t quite understand why you have to do your like core subjects of English math and science… Don’t get me started. Actually. Do get me started. I will definitely agree with that. Was that a dumb segue? Hahaha. I mean it is so annoying that in high school We review you know all the basics and then you go to college and your first two years of University are gen ed courses I mean you can mix them up, but you have to do a lot of credits in gen ed. So again, you’re doing English writing language math science and Then in your last two years half of your degree is devoted to your actual major minor double major whatever it is and obviously with our student debt crisis and college already being very unaffordable for people It is annoying that we have four years and the more classes that it takes the less likely people are to actually get through it and graduate. So I am jealous that you guys have a three-year Bachelor’s degree. You win. All right next up I wanted to compare British humor and American humor because I’ve definitely heard British people say that Americans have a terrible sense of humor or that British humor is way smarter and Americans don’t get it and to some extent I can understand so I want to explain American humor first. Based on my light research American humor tends to be a lot more exaggerated and slapstick physical comedy is very popular also like absurdity in general is where a lot of our…. At least in terms of like film and TV, that’s where a lot of our comedy comes from and it also tends to be rather observational. So you’ll have those ridiculous over-the-top characters who don’t realize how ridiculous they are and that’s where the humor comes from. So it’s kind of like all of Will Ferrell’s characters ever. Like that kind of encompasses American humor to me, but I think the big argument between these types of humor came from The Office. Shouts out Dwight. And people directly were comparing the British version of The Office, and the American version, which I don’t think you can directly compare. But it does highlight some differences in how each culture would portray that story. Right. Like American humor is very like poop and fart jokes. It’s not funny, but you doing it is funny. Okay, our humor is a lot more clever than yours. Oh, yeah, there’s a certain elements of dark and dry humor that comes with it Sarcasm is something that I find that that we struggle with in the relationship is my sarcasm can sometimes offend you. Okay??? I’m like I speak fluent sarcasm. Okay, it’s funny because I think Americans think we’re very sarcastic But like I think British sarcasm doesn’t even sound like sarcasm. It’s a lot more low-key. Like Americans would be like, oh, yeah, totally. I mean is that sarcasm? I don’t know. Yeah, so for me like you’ve only got to check out like you mentioned it before the US Office and the UK Office. First of all, thank God for Ricky Gervais. You can thank him for the U.S. Office. There is humor within the US Office I think the u.s. Office is like a much better series than the UK Office. I just like the UK Office because the humor is much more realistic. Mm-hmm And you find that some of the scenarios that come up in not just the UK Office, but you know series like The In-Betweeners, and stuff like that, are things that growing up and you know being in a workplace, I can relate to a lot. I don’t think I can say the same thing for like the U.S. Office or Shits Creek or anything like that. I just find they can’t really relate to that sort of comedy. However, I find it very enjoyable to watch. But yeah, I mean, you know some of the in my opinion best comedians of the world are Brits. But that being said, I really do appreciate people like Dave Chappelle who I think is an absolute God of comedy. Yeah, I think there’s a big difference too in humor in… Wasn’t me…. Fart jokes. Look at that. No, it’s our plumbing! Stop. I’m just a dumb American. I was gonna say there’s a big difference again between the humor in film and TV versus stand-up I think stand-up is a whole different thing Next topic is the Royal Family. I’ve always been very interested in this. Obviously. We personally outgrew the need for a monarch in like the 1770s. So I just, I’m just kind of wondering like why you guys… No, it’s interesting to me as an American too. I mean even I get interested in the Royal Family. I feel like they’re a cultural phenomenon and I end up reading about I don’t know Prince Charles’s Ex-girlfriends and things affairs and the drama of it all but I feel like we don’t have that equivalent obviously here. I would say culturally the only equivalent we could possibly have as a Royal Family would be unfortunately the Kardashians. But that’s not even comparable. What do you think of the royal Family? I mean, I love them. I agree with everything you said, just then. I think you don’t need the Royal Family here cuz you guys are so obsessed with them That’s crazy. Like you go to any aisle in any supermarket like the magazine part is just all like… that’s all bullshit Yeah, Meghan Markle had an affair. Does Prince Harry know about it? It’s like Does anyone believe this shit? Probably. I love everything that the royal family stands for. I mean for me obviously We’re right now in the pandemic and listening to the Queen’s speech about a month ago now and just her message of “we will meet again” was something I took a lot of confidence from and when you have like Boris Johnson being like “I shake hands with everyone. Like I go into the hospital I shake hands with every patient and doctor” and cut to him in an ICU unit, and then you have Donald Trump who is like “Drink bleach.” It’s just like in terms of world leaders she kind of that speech gave me some sort of comfort that we will get through this and We will meet our family and friends again I can also say something people might appreciate about the Queen and the royal family is that they’re technically Non-partisan, so you don’t have to be Labour or Conservative to like them or dislike them. But I think one thing that I’ve heard one criticism is like kind of the classist element of having a royal family I mean I don’t even really know much about British like class history and conflict between like the upper-class posh people and everybody else but one one specific complaint is I guess the expense of having a royal family So I will cut you off. That is something that drives me crazy… if you… I’ve been like to London so many times now and Every time I go, I head to Buckingham Palace and I go for the change in the guard. Most boring thing I’ve ever seen. If you saw the amount of people it draws, and the amount of tourism that the royal family bring into this country into the United Kingdom and the interest and the intrigue and the money that’s bringing in and yet they you know people complain about taxpayer money, is something that really frustrates me now however I do believe and I strongly believe that you know Meghan Markle and Prince… or, Harry should be paying for their own security stuff like that when they live in Canada or the United States. Fully understand that. But when it comes to you know how much it costs for the Queen and the Queen to live in England It’s just an argument. I just don’t fully understand because I always wonder what sort of money they bring in. I would like to look into that. I’m sure somebody has studied whether it ends up being a positive net for tourism in the UK. It has to be. Next. Finally we can get into a little bit of politics. Yeah don’t know where to begin here I guess first we could compare Boris Johnson and Trump. A lot of people make comparisons and say that they’re basically the equivalent of each other and I will admit I don’t know enough about UK politics and all of these politicians to have a deep enough knowledge to argue But I do try to learn a little bit but I’ll say I don’t think any world leader compares to Trump because he’s literally I mean it almost feels unnecessary to talk about how much of an idiot he is, and how unqualified he is to be President. It hurts me to say that. The comparison doesn’t quite make sense. I feel like people only compare them because of their hairstyles. Maybe body type. I mean maybe body type in some way. Maybe their parties they represent. Both conservative right-wing parties. But for me there’s no comparison at all. Like you have a guy, you know, whether you agree with him or disagree with him in Boris Johnson Who’s devoted his life to politics, you know? He has experience in politics as the mayor of London and then you have someone like Donald Trump who had no experience in politics at all. He was a businessman. He was a TV star. That’s kind of what you’re comparing. It doesn’t quite make sense for me. Then I wanted to ask if we could compare kind of our political structures, so like in the US we have the President and then we have Congress, and you guys have the Prime Minister and Parliament. And I’m always very interested in learning about how they work differently or what’s more effective or efficient. I mean here in the US, obviously our Presidential elections are such a big deal. That it almost feels like we’re constantly having elections The primaries take over a year. And then it is kind of a popularity contest in that so much about our political system is about I mean you could argue this is modern politics, but image and electability and all of these kind of nebulous concepts on what makes people think that someone would be fit for the top office in our government. I think for me it’s like crazy. It’s like there was genuine conversation that people would vote for Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as President. I mean I love The Rock but he’s not a goddamn President for crying out loud. It just doesn’t make your… Again, please correct me if I’m wrong. I am no expert in politics. I really am not. I do have an interest in it and I do have an opinion but I am not an expert. To me it doesn’t make sense, your structure. I don’t know how you get things done. And I don’t know how you progress. Whether you lean right or left how do you get things done your way? I can jump in and say that’s definitely a conflict that we have and that there are checks and balances between the different branches But I think in Congress, especially everything is so partisan Every issue is just oh if you’re a Democrat You have to vote this way and then you vote against the Republicans, and they’re gonna vote against you. There’s no actual discussion and you’re very unlikely to be able to win people over And another problem is that we have this two-party system where I mean, technically it’s not officially a two-party system but independents are so rare in Congress or to be elected in any elections. Third parties like the Green Party or Libertarians almost never win. So you do get stuck with this binary of apparently left versus right? When really there’s actually not that much difference between the two parties. So people feel like you kind of have to choose like Oh the Democrats apparently care for gay people and women So if you support that you vote for the Democrats, and if you are a conservative Christian, you’re gonna go for the Republicans, and that’s kind of what our political parties shake out to be. *And you like your guns.* And your guns. Yes, of course and your freedom. That’s… that’s the Republicans. I mean, yeah, I don’t like how you have to choose between two parties. And listen in the UK it’s pretty much two parties. It’s Labour, Conservative. However, you don’t have to align yourself to that party, you know here you can believe in your right to carry a gun, and you could be pro-choice. and you could be pro-immigration. Yet if you spoke to someone they would say oh you you like your gun? You’re a Republican. It’s too contradictory. Yeah, it’s like come on like that doesn’t make any sense. It just doesn’t make sense. What’s the most frustrating thing is that the majority of voters would identify as independent. But again because of the system you’re forced to choose. Well, do you want somebody to win then You have to pick one of the two main candidates. So then independents of all sorts who do have mixed beliefs like that that don’t just perfectly align with those party lines you just feel like you have to pick whatever is closest or whatever works or people just don’t vote because nobody matches their beliefs. Well what I like about you guys we watched the last election results for the UK election and though it may be predominantly Labour and Conservative that win most seats, you guys do have…. We have SNP. We have Lib Dems. You know, you have Green Party. No, but the point that those other lesser-known parties can still win is important… And it changes every [few] years. yeah, you know, I think that’s really important to being able to change the agenda. And our final topic is healthcare, which obviously is a very big issue and I think it’s especially interesting for you coming from the UK to the US you’ve had an interesting experience. So do you want to start by explaining the NHS? Yes, so obviously I’ve lived with both systems now and for me a National Health Service makes a lot more sense. You know, there’s definite flaws of the NHS, you know. It’s underfunded, there’s long waiting times, etc, etc. But to me it just make much more sense. You know people say, “I don’t want the money to come out of my paycheck like it does in the UK.” You know money comes out your paycheck to pay the NHS. But I’d rather that get taken out and know exactly what I’m getting every month then like a surprise bill that comes out of nowhere from a hospital visit that you had to go to and all of a sudden you have to like fork out that money for that. It just doesn’t make sense and again in the UK There’s options for you to go private If you want to go private you can do it, and if you can afford to, go for it. But, for me the NHS and this is agreed on by both you know, right wing parties, left-wing parties within the UK… It’s so valuable for us and we appreciate it so much Over here, it’s just confusing. I can kind of explain an example. So, okay. Let’s say I’m an American and I am in need of medical attention I will not call an ambulance probably because I’m too afraid of the cost. So I will drive myself to the hospital and then let’s say I have health insurance. I pay $400 a month for it and I still have a deductible which means I have to spend a few thousand dollars before my insurance is even going to cover anything. Then you have to make sure the doctor and the hospital you’re going to are in-network and all of the procedures are approved and so you’ll go through all of this. And in the meantime, it’s usually in an emergency or a stressful situation and then you go home and then you do get that bill in the mail a couple weeks later and your insurance is telling you why they’re not covering certain things and then you’re left with this massive bill and again, you’re already paying hundreds of dollars every month if you have insurance. It’s very expensive and then you have your deductible. Then you have your co-pays. You’re still paying, you know every time you go to the doctor and really it’s like what does our insurance provide to us? And for most people it’s just like a disaster protection thing so like if you had an absolutely catastrophic issue that would cost you like a hundred thousand dollars at least your insurance will save you then but you’re still gonna have to pay thousands first. But so many people end up spending all this money and getting nothing out of it. I just… I… I still don’t quite understand why politicians are telling you how you can’t get it done and it’s the most frustrating thing. Here’s why we can’t do it. To even hear Democrats, who apparently are the liberal ones on the left… Progressives… to hear them say, “oh, no. We want you to have the freedom to keep your private insurance. You like your private insurance. Don’t you?” It’s like it’s so asinine. It’s sad. Like what’s sad is even now with the pandemic. This is a story in New York where a patient goes in and has the virus really really bad and sadly dies from it, but apparently their last words were, “Who’s gonna pay for this?” Why is that even a worry? Like why is that the forefront of your mind when you’re… you’re so sick? Mm-hmm You break an ankle or even worse God forbid you Come down with like a really, really bad illness and you have to get an ambulance and then you’re like trying to figure out whether that cost like two to five grand or wherever that’s gonna cost you to even call out an ambulance. Right. In the moment, you can’t think about your health or your loved ones or your last moments and you have to consider the cost. And the worst thing is like even if you’re developing symptoms of something… You’re too scared to go get that figured out and then it could be too late before you even go see your doctor. And for me, it’s just like the argument against a National Health Service, which has been done in countries like Canada, UK, Germany, France… You know to name a few is that, “Yeah, but they take the money out of my paycheck.” Well, of course. It’s gonna be paid for. It’s not free. So I’d rather come out on my paycheck and then know exactly what I have at the end of that paycheck. Know that everything is covered. And there’s an argument about what about the jobs for the people who work for the insurance companies, and I get that, but like when you come up with a better system You have to move with the times. Yeah, or with green energy. We’re trying to phase out fossil fuel and fossil fuel jobs, which it sucks to lose those jobs. But you’re going to have new industries and the economy has to you know continue evolving, and most importantly you can’t prop up an industry that’s bad for people, bad for the planet, just for the sake of some jobs. I do think you do have to have a transition plan though. And that’s what most of these proposals have. It’s like for the people who are going to lose their job from this what other job can we offer them so that you don’t have an unemployment issue also. But I mean, it really just comes down to propaganda from the healthcare industries. The insurance companies themselves make so much in profits literally for denying care That’s how they make their money. And then you have the pharmaceuticals and you have health tech industries that all want to preserve this very wasteful and expensive system that kills people for the sake of their profits. And we have politicians who are essentially bought by these industries and that’s why they vote against things like Medicare-For-All. Which by the way, Medicare-For-All. We need it. And if you can afford your health care right now and you like your health care right now well, then, you know if there is a national health service, there will be private options, you know you can go for if you want to go for it and if you can afford to do so. That’s the thing. It’s like people are like, “I want my private insurance.” Why do you want private insurance? If you have the money to pay for private care, pay for private care like you do in the UK. But you just go to a private practitioner, right? But you don’t need a private insurance plan. Right, exactly. Yeah. That has been quite a conversation. Thank You, Nathan, for being here. It’s been enlightening. I hope you guys enjoyed this. I hope it was an interesting format. And again, let us know what your thoughts are on each of these issues. I’m sure we will have some discussions in the comments. And stay tuned for my next video. Once again remember to check out Babbel. You guys can click the link in the description. Get 50% off, six months. You said you wanted to learn a new language. I will challenge you to do that. I want to do Mandarin, but I think that’s probably a little too tough for me right now. You want to say K, thanks, bye? Or just wave? How do you do it? K, thanks, bye! Bye!


Reader Comments

  1. TIME STAMPS:
    0:00 – intro
    1:24 – shout out to Babbel
    2:53 – American English vs British English
    7:35 – regional accents
    11:42 – what is American culture?
    13:03 – UK culture & (some) traditions
    16:04 – American food vs British food
    19:40 – tea vs coffee
    21:28 – the college / university experience
    25:37 – American humor vs British humour
    29:09 – the Royal Family
    32:56 – US vs UK politics
    38:32 – healthcare (NHS vs American private insurance)

  2. The royal family is DEFINITELY an elitist scheme that 100% needs to be reworked to fit in with the 21st century HOWEVER it brings the UK so much tourism that I don’t think it should be abolished

  3. I dont know if you've mentioned this before but I would loove to hear more about how your boyfriend moved over to the states and what that process was like I as I'm from the UK and would really love to do so and am really eager to hear other people's stories!

  4. Okay so the easter chocolate egg thing is a whole other ball game in the UK. Every candy brand does their own giant egg usually the size of like an american chocolate bunny. It's one of my favourite things about easter here along with the 4 day weekend!

    How can you talk about british unis without discussing Freshers!? It's a completely different experience to be able to start college being able to drink! Also regarding classes I think one of the benefits of having more gen ed courses at a US college is it can really round out your world perspective at a high academic level. I think this is really valuable in a time where STEM fields are sold as the best and humanities are worthless. This is made even worse in the UK where you can stop taking humanity type classes at quite a young age compared to the US which requires you to take 4 years of english and 3 years of history for a high school diploma. (This might very depending on states which is a ridiculous thing about American education.)

    For context I'm an American who moved to the UK 5 years ago.

  5. taking about politics, it’s important to note that the uk parliament has some kind of power over the prime minister while the us congress does not (basically)

  6. Super interesting video! Although as a Northern Irish person I can confirm his accent was a Republic of Ireland/dublin accent and that “top of the morning to ya” is something that NOBODY says here. Disappointed that he perpetuated the idea that many Americans have that northern irish people speak/sound the same as southern irish people when the island is actually two distinct countries that simply share a land mass with many different accents and cultures not just one country where everyone sounds like a leprechaun. Was such a good opportunity to explain something that many Americans (and people in general) are unaware of!

  7. Irish English is the best english. We use a verb tense that originates in Irish. It's subtle but it makes certain phrases have a different meaning.

    Eg: You ask an Irish and a British person if they want a cup of tea. They both reply "I'm after a cup of tea."
    The British person is "after" tea, as in they want some.
    The irish person is "after" tea, as in before and after, the tea is in the past. The irish person has already had tea and doesn't want another.

  8. I recommend Shaun’s video on the monarchy, to get a very thorough understanding of the cost breakdown.

    I liked CGP Grey’s, but Shaun’s made me realise CGP Grey’s was somewhat oversimplified (I absolutely adore CGP Grey and this is no shade, I absolutely recommend his videos, but everyone misses a beat sometimes)

  9. I live in the Midwest. Grew up in lower Michigan, lived in the UP for several years, now live in Wisconsin. Can confirm that the Midwest accent is basically "Ope." More specifically, "Ope, lemme just squeeze pastcha der."

  10. I’m sorry to Nathan because he seems very sweet, but VERY bold of a British person to try and jab at our food when they eat beans on toast for Gods sake

  11. I'm American & my dad had a brain aneurysm along with a couple of strokes. The health insurance he had for decades dropped him because he became a liability. EVEN WHEN we are paying for that service in case of emergency, there's no guarantee we get what we pay for.

  12. Does anyone actually like their private insurance in the us? It’s not like we get to choose our insurance provider since it’s tied to employment so the choice argument drives me insane

  13. Here's a pretty good video on the cost of the royal family by lefty youtuber shaun: https://youtu.be/yiE2DLqJB8U , in my experience the common sentiment among young people in Britain is that the royal family is outdated, even despite claims of bringing in income through tourism

  14. Tiffany, as a portuguese I feel OBLIGED to inform you both that the british tea tradition actually came from Portugal! We brought it over to Europe from China on the nautical discoveries era and so when the portuguese princess Catarina de Bragança married the english king Charles II, she brought it over to England and introduced it to the noble people. THEN the british took it to India! Thought you'd like to know!

  15. As a Canadian so many of the topics you discussed and explained about America absolutely BOGGLE my mind. I really don’t understand America 😅

  16. As a French and as a litterature student I really enjoyed the little History moment about the influence of french on english words !

  17. Why did I look at this man and wonder if he's from Devon only to find out that he IS?! I do be psychic tho…
    Edit: (I'm from Plymouth)

  18. I'm a Brit but I don't think I know many people who are royalists and people just kind of see them as a source for gossip for tabloids, especially when Harry and Megan wanted to leave their traditional roles. Most of the time the Royal family are just seen as a method of tourism to most people I know.

  19. Personally I think you are underestimating the queen, I think the queen is conservative and has a dark side, there is more to her then what she shows. She does not help the UK much yes tourists like the queen and such but there many other reasons to come to the UK . She gets given lots of money from the UK and she does not share it with the rest of the people in the UK. The Nhs is being cut, school etc yet she does not get a pay cut and yes she does not think to donate it if she did care she would , actions speak louder then words.The UK would be fine without the royal family.

  20. Americans got rid of the u in words like colour to save cost when printing presses charged by letter

  21. Devolved governments within the UK would have been an interesting topic but I understand Nathan is English so that wouldn't be very interesting to him. As a Scot, we have to be a bit more strategic when we vote as there's no point us voting Conservative or Labour really because they don't focus solely on Scotland's needs whether the Scottish National Party does. Same for Wales and Northern Ireland I think. It was interesting recently when all of the devolved governments went against the UK covid-19 change of policy.

  22. Omg this british boyfriend showcases literally everything I find insufferable about British men. Uggghhhh. Only a surface level understanding of American culture and yet so judgmental. The unexamined air of superiority is idiotic to me. It’s all the worse that so many Americans just kind of nod and agree because people who talk with a British accent sound smart to them. Both places have good and bad things, duh.

  23. However, our university system is much less flexible. If you messed up choosing your degree you either have to stick it out or drop out and start again. Yes within reason you can move around a little if you switch VERY early, like first month (social anthropology to sociology) but in general I think the American system is actually better. 4 years is necessary to actually figure out what you want to do and you can take more classes and open your mind a bit. If you're doing STEM you at least have a chance to audit other classes more freely or even take some for credit, and vice versa. That's much better. I know many people who's lives were delayed a lot by dropping out and having to start again. Despite what he says, few people choose to drop out after A-level, and the Tories made post 16 education mandatory anyway.

  24. when Nathan talked about switching between certain words I thought I might tell my story.
    I'm from Tunisia and specifically a city that has a pronounced accent and I moved to the capital 3 years ago so basically, I sometimes find it very tough to switch up between words and end up by speaking to my family by my adopted accent and to my friends with my original accent.

  25. Any British Asians here lost tbh can't relate to most of the stuff talked about
    we got our own elite culture ennit🤷🏽‍♀️

  26. I think that free health care is the way to go. It works like a dream in Denmark. If we had not have it I Know a lot of people close to me who would have been dead and I couldn't get treatment for mental health issues. Nothing worse than poverty, mental health issues with no treatment and a lot of guns like in the US. :/

  27. I will never grasp the dream college concept, it's so bizarre to me when my counselor says "mention why you want to go there specifically" and "I choose <college name> because such and such" and when In fiction students are so fixated on the idea, etc…

  28. It the same as saying "data" to me. Most people around the midwest say day-tuh, but some americans say dah-tuh, and I was around enough people who said dah-tuh for about a year that I'ved switched to it at this point, and people here look at me weird.

  29. 21:09 the blasphemy!! nothing is more new jersey than dunkin' donuts! new yorkers have standards goddamnit!

  30. this camera set up is kinda weird,
    I'd rather have two cameras on each person, one wide, or three cameras (one wide two person cameras)

  31. you should show him Philosphy Tube's video on monarchy……. hes just wrong about it tbh and Oliver's a Brit so he can give him a Brit to Brit talk….

  32. tbh whenever I think of US food I think of all the ways you have murdered and disrespected italian food 🙂 🙂 fettuccine alfredo and chicken parmesan are great examples.
    (sorry, I'm just a bitter italian food nazi)

  33. As a Graduate/Master degree student in English I really relate to a lot of what you're saying here 😊
    Also it's nice to see Nathan 😃 (I really like his accent, I do think the traditional English accent as he has is the best to listen to, however I prefer to write in American English, don't know why haha)

  34. as a brit, i'm fully aware of how much tourism is due to the royal family, but as the epitome of classism it's like ……… why do we want this to be our only personality trait when it oppresses the majority of people who actually live in this country

  35. I think the posh steriotypes of how we speak in England is only ever true in richer regions of the country. Especially in places like London people speak with frequent slang, abbreviation,ect.

  36. huh the nhs is similar in the uk and in portugal, which I didn't know, and omg the health care situation in america is ridiculous

  37. I loooove this cause I’m from NY (and still live here) but my mother is from England so I’m very mixed in both cultures.

  38. Actually American English is closer to the Old English than the British one. It retained some of its parts because of the distance.

  39. opinions from a German (lol nobody's gonna read this anyways)
    english: I speak very American English simply because it is all over YouTube and that's pretty much where I learned English from. I think it depends on what you're used to but I prefer listening to American English because it just sounds more "relaxed" if that makes sense.
    food: Honestly, I'ver never been to America, but British food is NOT that great, I don't like it (except for all the indian food that is pretty popular in the UK) and the "typical" American food is just normal food that you can have once in a while (burgers and stuff)
    humor: Again, I think it's just about what you're used to, both can be funny and very unfunny 😀
    politics: lmao don't even have to talk about that
    healthcare: …. welllllll….

  40. I'm a little disappointed that you didn't break out "DIS-GOSS-TANG" when you guys talked about Scottish accents

  41. I loved this. What a way to explore the US and UK lifestyles without someone trying to cancel someone xD

  42. We took the u out of words like color and humor because each letter cost the post to print so it was cheaper that way not just because we wanted to be different

    (Sorry if this comes of as know it all this is just what u learned from school and my own research)

  43. as an american who grew up overseas i believe that americans don’t really have a culture. like of course we have a culture but it’s so bland and basic. also i just believe that the us is one of the most flawed developed countries. we are so dumb and stubborn. it’s kinda funny to me that most americans don’t have to pass a exit exam when leaving high school. i don’t know i just have so many problems with the us and honestly i can rant on for so long about this. i hope you found my opinion interesting. : )

  44. As a fellow Brit, nothing makes me cringe so much as when I see other Brits get defensive or dismissive when discussing UK vs USA. For example: America doesn't have a rich history? There's no such thing as American food culture? Okay so obvs a lot of this podcast discussion is just in good internet entertainment fun … but I think a lot of my countrymen need pulling up on this.

    Whenever we say stuff like this about Americans, whether you intend to or not, you're dismissing both the indigenous and immigrant contributions, history & culture of America. The US didn't start existing only when colonisers found it – there were people there with their own identity, story and culture. And sure it maybe wasn't a unified country landmass as it was made of many Native American nations, but we don't have a hard time wrapping our minds around the concept of independent city states that made up Ancient Greece. We respect that history but not Native American. (And yes there are other factors like cultural genocide & racist suppression that lead to under appreciation.) Tiffany has covered some of the contributions immigrants have made to US history, one of the most personally impactful for me was the Civil Rights Movement.

    And of course there's US food culture! Even if people feel ashamed of the processed part (which is a fraction of the diversity of US cuisine) it's still wildly successful around the world. When the world orders pizza – and we love you Italy – we mostly lust after American-style pizza. Savoury British food cuisine whilst I love it, is famously bland. We smash the fuck outta baking & sweets though, I think we even invented apple pie tbf.

    British sarcastic humour is not entirely unique to us. I get we can crack jokes differently and to greater degrees of cruelty but we act a tad too ~special snowflake~ about this. And even if we do think our humour's better we don't produce & export comedy anywhere near as much as the Americans so of course they're proud of their legacy and its impact. Way more people respond to The Office US worldwide, maybe because it's more hopeful.

    Listen I love this damp little island a lot and theres much to defend: our ambivalence to religion, our cakes & puddings, we can laugh at ourselves sometimes, our NHS, our generally calm & competent politics (though that's being stretched AF), lack of guns … but sometimes we just need to calm down.

  45. tourism is a terrible argument for the royal family. if we opened up buckingham palace the tourism would boom and i think it’s insane that we are paying for everything and all the weddings when no one comes to london to see the queen, they come to see her bloody house and the guards because you never see her

  46. babes sorry but as a scottish person a need to call out your boyfriend for that terrible attempt x also i have to admit british food is absolute shite, the good british food is indian/turkish/middle eastern/chinese etc… basically everything from abroad. also scotland does 4 years too! but you can graduate after 3 years with a bachelor's, but you won't have the (hons).

  47. also a side note: your boyfriend is wrong about the royal family tourism argument. that has been debunked by many people, you can research about it about the budget and the income from the tourism, plus comparisons to say France who doesn't have a royal family anymore but it's past royal castles gain more tourism than ours.
    honestly i disagree heavily that anyone can like the royal family, regardless of your political stance. especially in scotland, the royal family is quite hated. people who love the royal family are a lot more likely to be right wing and unionist. leftists and socialists DO NOT approve of the royal family, the royal family upholds the classist culture of our society, has big roots in nazism, nearly everything about it should be objected if you're "leftist". hope you see that since you're a leftitst, please don't support the royal family because your boyfriend does.
    i also want to say that when comparing world leaders, disregard their personality and look at their history on what they vote on, what they enact and their foreign policy. you will find they are very similar, even though trump seems more idiotic (despite boris having a buffoon reputation). they're views on things are basically the exact same, and they have contributed to the same amount of suffering in the middle east.

  48. This is why the Big Pharma theory is important to consider! Because the American health care "industry" lives on profit, how can Americans ever trust anything they are told by this industry? If people get better and are living healthy lives this means less profit for the health care industry, which in turn results in large pharmaceutical companies operating AGAINST the public good. How can there ever be any trust within this health care "system".

  49. ah yes, the life of being an european taught british english at school but actually learning the most of it from american movies and music so ending up with a really hybrid weird english version

  50. This video is so funny to me because I'm American and my fiance is British, from Devon as well. So we've had a lot of the same discussions.

  51. Shaun made an interesting video countering the argument that the Royal Family bring in more money than they cost: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yiE2DLqJB8U

    Also, I come from neither UK nor US, but I do get the impression that Americans prefer absurdity / escapism / idealism / exaggeration in their entertainment while in Europe there's more respect towards realism. If something is too close to reality Americans might find it unfunny, too depressing, boring or even offensive.

  52. As a British person I felt like some of Nathan’s comments sounded like they were coming out of an american’s mouth! His Irish accent was a stereotype of the Republic of Ireland and not Northern Ireland and he thought that wales was the only country in the UK to have its own language 😣 also on the subject of the royal family – it’s been proven that they are a net negative on how much they spend vs how much they bring in tourism, and if you’re interested Philosphy Tube did a great deep dive into the British royal family! Other than that I loved this vid, would definitely listen if you guys started a podcast!

  53. I love your shirt!! And generally all your clothes… I know you try to be green and buy your stuff second hand which mean I won't be able to find these clothes anywhere oh the tragic moment when you ask someone where they got their stuff in hopes of buying it but it was bought in a thrift shop 😭

  54. Love you videos! If possible could you do one on the rise of self proclaimed 'health gurus' or 'well-being' counsellors (like the HSE type) and dangers of these. 🙂

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