I live in Alaska and frankly-it's a common topic of discussion here that "the lower 48" (states in the mainland area of U.S.) are so much more closed-minded and bad to live in as far as dealing with people go (weather is better generally).
FYI-I've also heard it said that it's fairly disrespectful to refer to the US as "America" as it discludes Canadians & Mexican's (who are in Northern America and therefore American's as well). Do'nt know how our Canadian buddies on this board feel-but thought I'd mention it.
As for the food servings-totally true. In fact, I have PURPOSEFULLY stopped eating everything served if I go out-because I can generally get 3 meals out of it.
Waste-absolutely true. It's asinine.
The thing is-that just because it's common-doesn't mean that it's everyone. It's not everyone. I'm surrounded by people who are conscientious and careful about the environment, their health, other people's health etc.
You have to look at the people individually. Like a previous poster said-there are also "cultures" within the smaller areas. Not only regional, not only state or city, but even within smaller cities there are subcultures.
I live in Wasilla, Alaska. Obviously a big spot for "Palin supporters" and yet there is a HUGE group of "Obama supporters" and another large group that are anti BOTH sides! We can't even really be called a "city" by normal definitions for the country-but there are definitely different cultures even in the smaller groups.
My father in law is in New York City. I've never met a man who is nicer, sweeter, kinder, more helpful in my entire life.