Here is a 1920s article that clarified how thoroughly mystified the Europeans were with American values and American culture:
"Envy and admiration as well as ridicule and praise are found in the many articles the European press devoted to this country. Our big business astonishes them, our so-called lack of culture inspires thinly veiled contempt, while our homicide records lead some rather irascible English critics to speak of the United States as 'the Land of Liberty - for the murderer.'"
"What does this callous indifference to murder imply? Why is it that a country like the United States, which started so well, has got all its moral and social values so mixed?"
Click here to read an article about how much the Europeans loved American silent comedies.