Just thinking about Churchill's masterly use of visionary imagery to give the British people belief and hope in the dark days of 1940. The people did largely respond to his rallying cry. Do we have the same spirit? And what is the attitude we can foster now to 'build Britain'? Many of us with parents/grandparents who endured the austerity of the post-war recovery will have stories and sayings a plenty that rung out across the meal table, 'waste not want not', 'finish your greens', and the rest, driven by the experience of wartime hardship and the disgust with wasting scarce resources. Rationing in the UK didn't finish till 1954 and this experience shaped attitudues to spending and consumerism. 1950s America was a very different world. The US economy, super-charged by WWII, became its golden era. This experience shaped American attitudes. It was the zenith of the American dream and the dream just went on and on. We went from the working classes to the consumer classes. Wealth/occupation became the designator of social standing as opposed to what accent you had and what class your parents were. To acquire was the mantra and path to success. It also confirmed the capitalist ethos as unassailable. These ideas worked, look everybody! The British working classes by contrast had suffered for over 150 years. Their capitalist 'ideals' had not rewarded the ordinary working family via the industrial revolution. These men then returned from two world wars and said enough of exploitation, 'if you can plan D-day you can plan a better country for its working people'. Hence Attlee's post-war Labour (Democrat) government eased to victory, ousting a bemused Tory (Republican) Churchill. And hence a unique brand of British Socialism provided a welfare state and national health service. A post-industrial landscape was a grim world for the first-industrialisers. It also confirmed the capitalist ethos was flawed. These ideas hadn't worked in the way they were meant to. I sense the children of both these 'journeys' developed a sense of 'entitlement'. We are owed something. The American post-post-war generation, I suggest, are looking at their 1950s 'highpoint' and saying 'we can't go backwards' and have any less than our 50s parents or grandparents? 'We are entitled'. Driven by a belief that we should have 'more than our parents' generation'. But failing to accept that in a complex society there are only marginal returns for our efforts. The pace of growth has to slow. If we're to move into a new future and avoid societal collapse we have to somehow shift from 'entitlement' to something else. But what? Is it our relationship with the US that drives our thinking and policies to such an extent that we should seriously consider distancing ourselves further from that partnership so we develop a British ethos afresh?