"So what I’ve been told is that it’s considered incredibly bourgeois to offer good service. It’s a lessening of oneself to be subservient in that fashion. This may be an interaction of culture problem, as the best service I receive in the States is service of equals: it’s a salesperson or server who acts as a partner in a transaction, neither currying my favor (although friendliness is part of what I want), nor pushing me into decisions I don’t want to make."
Many Europeans are is still stuck in 19th century thinking, class warfare and all. If you win, I must lose, right? What’s amazing is that all Frenchmen who go to the US are delighted by the friendly and professional customer service there. But we Europeans are so much more civilized we grew obnoxiousness into an art form, you see.