by Daniel Mitchell, Activist Post:
America’s score has improved, but not enough.
The good news is that America had dropped as low as #18, so we’ve been improving the past few years.
The bad news is that the U.S. used to be a top-5 country in the 1980s and 1990s.
But let’s set aside America’s economic ranking and deal with a different question. I’m frequently asked why European nations with big welfare states still seem like nice places.
My answer is that they are nice places. Yes, they get terrible scores on fiscal policy, but they tend to be very pro-market in areas like trade, monetary policy, regulation, and rule of law. So they almost always rank in the top-third for economic freedom.
The Humans Freedom Index.
Moreover, there’s more to life than economics. Most European nations also are nice places because they are civilized and tolerant. For instance, check out the newly released Human Freedom Index, which measures both economic liberty and personal liberty. As you can see, Switzerland is ranked #1 and Europe is home to 12 of the top 16 nations.
And when you check out nations at the bottom, you won’t find a single European country.
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