I agree to an extent that national character and racial characters are meaningless. Not all Brits drink tea. Canadians aren’t uniformly polite. Calling Americans cruel and unhappy may be misleading on an individual basis but countries are all judged and have reputations. It’s what humans do. Likewise, how often do we hear phrases like, ‘The greatest country in the world’?
Given that judging (and bragging) happens, how else are we to view and judge a country other than by its internal and external actions? Does government at various levels of society truly represent the wishes of its people or just those of the ruling classes? To a large extent it must, otherwise there would be a second revolution.