没有鸡汤的世界：The harshness of American life helps explain the presence in the US of a dubious, even predatory, wing of the self-help industry, which profits by selling unlikely promises to the unlucky. It’s telling that self-help gurus hardly exist in the Nordic countries. They’re not necessary. As in other areas of life in Nordic societies, this is an area where the basic goal of the Nordic theory of love—to provide every individual with independence—results in freedom. And the sort of freedom I’m talking about here is freedom from investing energy in false hope. Wishful thinking can take a nation only so far. Ultimately hope has to be generated by the actual presence of opportunity. And if it’s really there, it doesn’t require constant psychological energy and enthusiasm, or a constant stream of heroic tales of survival against all the odds, to sustain.