[Ed. – You will be shocked — shocked, I tell you — to discover that leftists who define the empowerment of women as “women being subsidized by state-incurred debt for every life event, regardless of whether they need it or not” rank the U.S. 20th. 20th!]
In terms of the WEF’s overall “global competitiveness index,” Switzerland comes in first with a value of 5.7 (out of 7), followed by Singapore with 5.6, and then the U.S., Finland, Germany, Japan, Hong Kong, and the Netherlands all tied with 5.5. So, not terrible overall — yet conservatives would cringe at the thought that we’re tied with multiple “socialist” countries for third place. [No, conservatives understand that we are already overregulated in a de facto socialist manner in the U.S., and that’s why we’re not exceptional anymore. It also explains the next two rankings, made by non-leftist Western institutions. And basically everything else below, for that matter. – Ed.] As it happens, though, the U.S. is far behind such countries according to other international rankings. Forbes, for example, ranks the U.S. as the 22nd best place for business in the world, with countries like Denmark, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and Finland above us. Even the Heritage Foundation’s 2015 Index of Economic Freedom leaves the U.S. out of the top 10, placing Hong Kong, New Zealand, Canada, Ireland and Denmark at the top.
In terms of “prosperity,” a concept that includes factors like governance, education, health, personal freedom and the economy, the London-based Legatum Institute ranks the U.S. 11th, with Norway, Switzerland, Canada and Sweden being the most prosperous. We’re also ranked 13th in the world with respect to social mobility, or the freedom for underprivileged individuals to climb the social ladder and become successful. The result is that, as Politifact confirmed in a “Mostly True” rating from 2013, it’s actually “easier to obtain the American dream in Europe” than it is in the U.S. …
Social mobility is important in part because studies show that “a lack of wealth does make poor people sadder,” and social immobility prevents those without wealth from acquiring it. Thus, it comes as no surprise that the U.S. isn’t among the top 10 happiest countries. According to the most recent data, we’re the 15th happiest country in the world, behind Switzerland, Iceland, Denmark, Norway and our gentle neighbor to the north, Canada. Another factor relevant to happiness concerns the overall empowerment of women, who constitute 50.8 percent of the U.S. population. As the Global Gender Gap Index reports, countries like Iceland, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark score the best, while the U.S. ranks a shameful 20th.