In the Madness first kill interview, KIN Raiders talked about all the crazy number of normal DS runs they did with alts to funnel gear to their main raiders. Asian raiding guilds being hardcore is not really a new thing, either.
As for cellphones, the vast majority of Americans don't upgrade every year. We're tied to 2 year contracts. Some crazy techies with too much money might be paying early termination multiple times a year, but that's really rare. People in countries without contracts are much more likely to upgrade their phones multiple times a year. Hell, I had friends living in Asia who owned multiple high end phones at the same time and just swapped the sim cards around, treating the phones as basically fashion accessories.
So yeah, your America-bashing is just off base here.