The reason places like Amsterdam are so expensive is because there is just limited space. Like physical space. So they can't build more housing. It's supply and demand. If no one wanted to live there, it would be dirt cheap. But people DO want to live there because it's actually pretty great. My point is, your boss didn't leave Amsterdam because it was a shit hole or worse than the US or because the healthcare, free college, and government was horrible. BTW, my family is Eastern European, and some still live in rural Ukraine (Vovche, to be exact). Even they have said they wouldn't want to live in the US. My Canadian friend took a family vacation to Disneyworld (pre-COVID). Her mom begged her not to go because she said it wasn't safe and was afraid they would get shot. That's the view they have of America.