I've lived in both England and the US, and I have loved living in both.
And I can only speak and am only speaking as a white, middle-class person.
That's the only identity I've ever had.
And as a white, middle-class person- I think life can be and, in fact is, very similar in both the US and the UK.
In both places, peoples' main concern is their family, friends and loved ones.
I would also say that I detect almost the same degree of tendency to be insular in some areas of the UK as in the US.
It's just expressed differently.
In general, my observation has been that middle-class people in the UK tend to be more polite and less vocal about their thoughts than middle-class people in the US tend to be.
That's why you may think that the attitudes are measureably different, when in fact, they're not.
I think this is because the freedom of speech thing is writ much larger in the US than it is in the UK.
There is a code of conduct and manners and good breeding that is exercised in the UK much moreso than in the US, where people say what they think and that's their ******* right and no one's gonna take that from them, by god.
Which mode of expression do I prefer? The one in the US - you always know where you stand. Here, you often have to guess, because most middle-class people ARE 'veddy, veddy polite' outwardly- it's been bred into them, but you'd be surpised at some of the things that come out of their mouths when they think they're with someone's who's like-minded.
One person I work with, the product of public boarding school who teaches in a prison with me said to me, 'It's not black people I don't like - it's their behavior.'
I was like, 'Huh? Oh, okay...'
What I like about the US is the individualism, the lack of pretension (for the most part everyone believes that one can make of oneself what one decides to make of oneself, regardless of birth - no titles there), the vibrancy of life and expression, and I have to admit, everything is much more convenient.
Here, if you want something, you might have to drive or walk for miles and you still won't find it- so you learn to make do.
I think both of those situations offer positives and negatives - and the manifestations in behavior are reflected in the attitudes of the people toward life in both countries.
What I like about the UK is the larger sense of community with the world that I perceive and the stunning scenery.
The place I'd next most want to live in is Mexico - here:
This is the one place I've been on vacation that I thought I'd never want to leave, even to go home. It's a small, fishing village on the west coast of Mexico. A friend of mine has a house there. The village is beautiful and the community is cooperative and self-sustaining.