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  1. #21
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
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    I would hate to live in a dictatorship like China. I would also hate to live in an extremely liberal society like in scandinavia. Although not perfect, I'm fairly content with where the US is hovering right now. I accept that this means that wars will happen from time to time, which is why a thriving country needs a strong military.

  2. #22
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    No proportional representation.
    That makes the United States a better example of liberal democracy, as there is more accountability of politicions to constituents and less to national political bosses, the constituents already know what the competing 'minimum-winning coalitions' are, and localities are more empowered.

  3. #23
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    I think there is a definition issue here.. where perhaps Americans refer to liberalism as socialism.

    Socialism is towards the extreme left.. Liberalism is mostly central, It only feels left.. Because the USA is a very traditionally right wing nation.

    Left wing: Progressives, Social liberals, Social democrats, Socialists, Communists and Anarchists.
    Right wing: Conservatives, Reactionaries, Capitalists, Monarchists, Nationalists and Fascists.

    The USA is Capitalist-Nationalist, traditionally.. So that's why something like Progressive, which is what Canada is, is called a Socialist country by American standards.

  4. #24
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  5. #25
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arclight View Post
    OK.. I will not disagree with any of what you are saying.

    But you can have peace or freedom.. You can't have both.. They are fundamentally polar opposites .. The USA sacrifices some peace in the name of freedom. Canada sacrifices some freedoms in the name of peace. I am not sure one really qualifies as better over the other.
    I don't think it really works like that. You see, it's possible that requiring everyone to pitch into a public good actually ultimately produces more freedom. It's possible that you can regulate your way to more freedom.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arclight View Post
    I understand some of these countries have better standards of living.. But Why then, does everyone want to live in the USA?
    First of all, who's everyone? Obviously that's not literal. I wonder what percentage of people actually want to go to the USA, of that percentage, I wonder how they would break down in terms of being from third, second, and first world countries.

    But for those who do want to go, I can think of at least three reasons that aren't necessary examples of positive qualities in the USA.

    Low standards. It's a lot easier to get into the USA and became a citizen here than it is in most of the other first world countries. An once you're here, lots of other stuff has lower standards. Easier to get into college here (easier to get a good grade in it, too), easier to get a driver's license here, etc...

    Public relations. Does any other country put as much resources in telling the rest of the world, particularly developing nations, how great they are? And it's not just in direct propaganda either. It's also in things such as our continuing dominance of the film industry and so forth. Then don't forget that we still have an outsize reputation that is possibly a reflection of a bygone era. It may simply be an example of the adage that the squeaky wheel gets the oil.

    Unrealistic opportunity. Give people the choice between a city that has a smaller and stagnant economy but better living conditions in every way, or one that has a larger and rapidly growing economy but worse living conditions, I bet most will go for the latter city. That, however, is not necessarily the right move. People tend to be optimistic about their chances. Too optimistic. People will take the latter city because they unrealistically convince themselves that they will be one of the small minority who reaps the benefits of the economy so well that they can buy a living better than they would have been guaranteed in the former city. Lots of people, no doubt, come to the USA to purse the American dream, which is largely bullshit that amounts to what I just described. Think of it as playing the slots.

    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    That makes the United States a better example of liberal democracy, as there is more accountability of politicions to constituents and less to national political bosses, the constituents already know what the competing 'minimum-winning coalitions' are, and localities are more empowered.
    First past the post or winner take all systems puts the fate of elected offices in the hands of so-called swing voters who rather than being wise moderates (as some like to fantasize) tend more to be uninvolved people who have little idea of what's going on. Non-proportional representation puts all the weight on a relatively small group of people who have the interest in or knowledge of the political environment.

    Furthermore, it encourages parties to become identical. If you complain that you can't tell the Republicans and Democrats apart enough, you can partly blame non-proportional representation for rewarding everyone for vaguely appealing to the same lowest common denominator.
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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giggly View Post
    Ahah France --» 51% thank jesus I'm not living there anymore.

    But to see in what countries people have money after taxes, you gotta see this, gdp (ppp) per capita :

    Rank↓ Country↓ Intl. $↓
    1 Qatar 145,300
    2 Liechtenstein 122,100
    3 Luxembourg 81,800
    — Bermuda 69,900
    4 Singapore 62,200
    5 Norway 59,100
    — Jersey 57,000
    6 Kuwait 51,700
    7 Brunei 50,300
    8 United States 47,400
    — Hong Kong 45,600
    9 Andorra 44,900
    10 Switzerland 42,900
    11 San Marino 41,900
    12 Australia 41,300
    13 Netherlands 40,500
    14 Bahrain 40,400
    15 Austria 40,300
    16 United Arab Emirates 40,200
    17 Canada 39,600
    18 Sweden 39,000
    19 Iceland 38,400
    20 Belgium 37,900
    21 Equatorial Guinea 37,900
    22 Ireland 37,600
    23 Denmark 37,000
    24 Germany 35,900
    25 Finland 35,300
    26 United Kingdom 35,100
    27 Republic of China (Taiwan) 35,100
    28 Japan 34,200
    29 France 33,300
    30 Italy 30,700
    31 Greece 30,200
    32 Korea, South 30,200
    33 Monaco 30,000
    34 Israel 29,500
    35 Spain 29,500

  7. #27
    No moss growing on me Giggly's Avatar
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    Wow.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giggly View Post
    Wow.
    Before you get too shocked, look how close China is to France on the list in terms of taxes, and check out everything you get in France for those taxes, and everything you don't get in China.

  9. #29
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redScorpion View Post
    But to see in what countries people have money after taxes, you gotta see this, gdp (ppp) per capita :
    What? The GDP PC is nothing more than the GDP divided by the population. What does that have to do with what people have after taxes?
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  10. #30
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    Also, another thing - that's about a fifteen grand difference between U.S. and France, but look at all the additional shit you have to pay for out of pocket in the U.S.!

    Lists alone with no analysis are deceiving...

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