Quote Originally Posted by Cardinal View Post
When gauging how far I've come in my career, is it more informative to use a)other people in the same field I work in, or b)homeless people? Going by the former you can point to specific benchmarks I have and haven't achieved. Going by the latter, I'll always be a fantastic success, because hey, I'm not homeless.

Comparing myself to a homeless person is a great way to be thankful for what I have in life and for the tragedies I've avoided, but it doesn't provide for concrete ways to strive and improve myself. This is why I find comparing the United States to wartorn or completely despotic areas like North Korea pointless except as a means of helping us to avoid looking at ways we could improve. It also conveniently helps us to avoid comparing ourselves to countries that are clearly better in several areas.
That's okay when looking for a way to improve oneself, but not when merely judging wither US is a dystopia. I feel in a situation like this we need to primarily compare the country against others we could actually categorize as dystopian.