Jejudo, South Korea
I'm talking about what people say. When you ask most people why they don't vote, they do not say, "I can't be bothered," they usually say, "Because it doesn't do anything."
I see it as a two-fold process and patience is certainly a part of it, you go into a rant about something, get it out, and then like the nun-priest in Chaucer, look around, looking a little embarrassed. You then shrug your shoulders or make some other comment roughly equivalent to that.
To some extent, as Nakdthoughts pointed out, this is a matter of me reading too literally into what people say. Yet, I still think certain speech patterns are evolve for a reason.
The second part, however, is much more subtle. There is, I think, a certain contradiction at work. Specifically, you have the idea of independence on one hand as a kind of power, but on the other, people don't acknowledge the power one feels when people are doing things for you. There is power in not having responsibility. It isn't talked about all that much, but I think the resentment is still there.
We, meaning expatriates, have always complained about the draconian methods of schooling in S. Korea and Japan, but what's the biggest question American teens ask except for "What do I want to do?"
All too often, I don't think they are properly equipped to answer that.
Much, much more of course, but I can wait until you have the time.