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Politics

Here’s the truth: America isn’t the best country in the world

Quite frankly, I’m sick of the “rah! rah! rah!” that the US gets right around this time of year for being the best country in the world—and there’s even more hype now because it’s an election year. Time to “rally the base” y’all!

It could be said that the thinly-veiled propaganda is intended to give citizens hope that their elected officials are doing something right. Or maybe it’s just tradition, going back to a time when America actually did lead the way. But every time I hear someone say, matter-of-factly that America is the best country in the world, I want to know where they got their stats.

CNN published a very long article today that underscores the sentiment that many people think, but are too afraid to say: America isn’t the best country in the world. Not even close, by a number of indicators.

Ok, we’re great at a lot of things: we allow more freedom of choice than hundreds of other countries and when it comes to offering people resources to innovate, we’re top notch. But let’s face it, in so many categories we’ve lost ground.

So can we all just drop the needless patriotism (sometimes very nearly nationalism) and start to actually FIX the problems we have?

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Discussion

9 thoughts on “Here’s the truth: America isn’t the best country in the world

  1. And of course this is all Obama’s fault. Prior to 2009 we lived in a utopian society…

    Posted by ws141 | July 2, 2012, 3:09 pm
    • Can’t blame Obama or any other president. That’s just it: it’s the responsibility of everyone in the country to make it better, not just the president…who’s become more of a scapegoat figurehead than anyone who actually pushes the ball forward. He’s even blamed for gas prices now. C’mon!

      Posted by aaronendre | July 2, 2012, 3:54 pm
  2. Finland is #1 in lack of corruption and #2 in effectiveness of education, woo! But yeah… I must admit I’ve always wondered why exactly you Americans are so proud of your country? I’m not saying you have nothing to be proud of! It’s just that your mentality is totally different from ours. Finns tend to be humble to the point of ridiculousness even when we should be proud. That’s a character flaw, too. Sorry. We’re working on it.

    Posted by inmyinternest | July 2, 2012, 3:37 pm
    • Good point. I wonder why that’s the case — perhaps it’s that thing where if you “got it” there’s no need to flaunt it? Maybe America, being a young country and often characterized as the great experiment, we constantly have something to prove?

      Perhaps the most telling indicator of the greatness of a country is the “life evaluation score”, essentially detailing which countries have the happiest people. Not surprisingly, Scandinavian countries are right at the very top, with Denmark and Finland leading the pack. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/06/world-happiness-report-2012_n_1408787.html

      Posted by aaronendre | July 2, 2012, 3:52 pm
      • Americas over twice as old as Finland as it became independent in 1917 so which is the younger country.

        Posted by Juhani | December 1, 2012, 11:42 am
  3. If the U.S. is so good why do they have to use a Russian rocket to get back to the Space station and for the record a Canadian university built the lab (bio) for the latest Mars vehicle.

    Posted by david tribbeck | December 21, 2012, 2:45 pm
  4. Where did you find these statistics by the way? I’d really like to see the whole list.

    Posted by Erin Delaney | February 4, 2013, 6:41 pm
  5. India has the smallest prison population? in relation to what, per 100 people? The reason I’m asking is it is number 4 on the list for prisoners.

    Did someone pluck these figures from their behind, or use multiple sources that contradict, or even worse, omitting every other country in the world except from those 4 countries used in the prisoner column to suit their agenda?

    he he he

    Posted by Ian Richards - Scotland | September 6, 2013, 6:43 am

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