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Sweden ranks third in 'Best Countries' list

TT/The Local · 17 Aug 2010, 14:44

Published: 17 Aug 2010 14:44 GMT+02:00

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However, Sweden topped the list in the political environment category, rated third overall in health and 5th overall in economic dynamism.

"Like all lists, this one is not perfect, but it offers surprising and fascinating answers and plenty of insight into which country is healthiest, why Scandinavian countries always come out on top, and why the title of best country has more than one winner," the magazine wrote in the feature published on Monday.

Sweden's weaknesses lay in the education and quality of life categories, where it ranked 19th and eighth respectively.

"In a competition for most neutral country Sweden could give Switzerland a run for its money: Swedes haven't fought a war in nearly two centuries, and even though they joined the EU in 1995, they have not adopted the euro," the report said.

Sweden's other Nordic neighbours also fared well and made the top 10. Norway came in sixth and Denmark 10th. Burkina Faso came in last in the 100-country list.

"Transparency International ranks Sweden among the top three least corrupt countries in the world," the magazine remarked.

Story continues below…

In a nod to recent events, the magazine added, "The cartoonist Lars Vilks--who was attacked for drawing the prophet Muhammad as a dog--embodies Sweden's commitment to freedom of speech as well as freedom of religion. All religious places of worship in Sweden receive some funding from the government, for example."

As Newsweek observed ahead of the upcoming autumn election, "Perhaps it's the open environment that inspires about 80 percent of Swedes to vote."

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

15:11 August 17, 2010 by unt9
So where is the list, or it didn't happened.
15:19 August 17, 2010 by south

17:39 August 17, 2010 by mikmak
*Drumroll* Let the trolling commence
23:07 August 17, 2010 by LeoKinmann
Sweden is NOT best! It's official!
23:46 August 17, 2010 by xenyasai
USA is #11 and UK is #14. I thought these countries were the best countries in the world and far better than Sweden. At least that is what I could assume based on some of the comments here.
00:01 August 18, 2010 by diegoveggie
seeing finland ahead of sweden on this list proves the lack of seriousness of this list. finland?!! cmon, can't think of a more boring place to be in. unless you like drinking till the end and listening to heavy metal.
00:53 August 18, 2010 by wxman
I would have to agree with the current US placement at #11. This has certainly been true for the last year and a half. However, we plan to significantly turn things around in November this year and complete our work by November, 2012.
00:55 August 18, 2010 by Taxalien
Sure. It is the best country in the world. In self delusion. Not one, not two, not three but many more friends visiting have commented on how happy and content Swedes look as they go about their business. Suicides just a mirage, right?

And best in politics. Absolutely. The most networked, family run country in the world? More nepotism than in the once prosperous Roman empire? The best?

What is the yardstick for newsweek and what trainee journalist did they send over here? All the others picked more exotic places to go and you got the only country left?

Fact: Sweden is run by a political nobility which represents less than 0.2% of the population, which is less than 0.5% that the old nobility used to be.

Here in my own commune of Kungälv, several families have husband and wifes or children running for parties high up on the list at electable seats.

The corruption is total throughout the whole system.
01:30 August 18, 2010 by GLO
Not everything is just fine, you have open borders,social services out of control, and your union /elected royal class will not serve you. Still,Sweden is my best country, the USA is my home and not perfect. Used to be the Greatest about 50 years ago when I was a child. I am just stunned by the rise in your crime since 2005.
01:49 August 18, 2010 by Murgo
Sweden is the best...at denial of its trajectory towards self-destruction.

Sweden is the best...at malignant feminism.

Sweden is the best...at suicidal political correctness.

Sweden is the best...at genocidal immigration.

Sweden is the best...at immigrant rapes of native women.

Sweden is the best...at muzzling its population.

Sweden is the best...at intolerance to differing views.

Sweden is the best...at ignoring its glorious past.

Sweden is the best all right!
02:37 August 18, 2010 by LuckotheeIrish1
Wow. I thought Amerikanska had some negativity on Sweden. This takes it to another level. Sweden is not perfect, no country is, no matter what any list says. But must everyone on here harp about any possible negative thing this country has and blow it out of proportion?

I'm an American living here in Sweden, for almost 2 years now. And it hasn't been perfect, nor easy, and I still haven't found a job and haven't mastered the language, but I still choose Sweden over USA right now. I can go back anytime and start over there, but I choose here. Because here is where I have the better quality of life. Here is where I believe has the best shot of being a great country to raise a family in. One that will allow me time to spend with my kids, that will make sure my children have health care and dental, an education, etc.

I'm sorry, but I don't see the sweden you people are complaining about. It's not perfect, but I've lived all over the USA, and for my money, i'd rather settle down and grow old here! And I'm not delusional.
03:39 August 18, 2010 by Eagle63
Good to see Canada doing very well too.

A Nordic country as well, a bit like the US, but without the paranoia and extremes. A bit like Scandinavia, but with even more SPACE and.. even cleaner streets...
07:12 August 18, 2010 by Decedo
Hmmm, it doesn't seem to take into account tax or immigration issues. High taxes can be a plus and minus, lot's of services, but expensive to the public, and reduces the 'income'. Immigration, yikes a loaded topic I'm sure...how well do Swedes really treat their immigrants? :/
09:25 August 18, 2010 by hugedingleberry
Sweden is the dingleberry that feeds off the arse of the u.s. without the arse to feed and give you lint, you would be wiped away towards to east and speaking Russian.

Sweden will be number 1 on this list when they start to sell Stemlor year round instead of just in the winter time. Then I can die young of clogged artieries and a tummy filled with heavy cream. Exit stage left...
10:10 August 18, 2010 by Serendipitiz
Seriously, what a bunch of w@nkers, losers and moaners on the Local!! Not surprising, since it seems that most of the people hanging out here only seem to be able to complain, and lack the skills, the courage, the social skills and the intrepidity to make anything of themselves either here or anywhere else.

I chose Sweden to move to when I met the right person. And I have paid my taxes and my dues in the past few years, and never taken a handout. I've proudly accepted citizenship, and I believe that Sweden is the best country in the world. Yes, I do complain halfheartedly about the taxes occasionally, but then I wake up and realise that I get free health care, my kids get free education and my pension (hopefully!) awaits me. No one is perfect, and no country is either. Sweden gets full marks for trying. If the people here are so unhappy, why stay? Or do you lack the capabilities to make it in the big, bad world out there, beyond your little xenophobic bubble?

If you think you can do SO much better, leave. Atleast try! And that applies to the native-born and the immigrants. The sheer sense of entitlement I see on these pages!! As if this country should be begging on it's knees for your handouts and your mere presence! You are born to some entitlement, and the rest of it is earned through hard work and perseverance. Too many here seem to be living off the former, and too many seem to be under-appreciated for the latter. And remember that what goes around comes around. Send all the immigrants home, and you may as well get used to a million Swedes moving back from the lands they emigrated to. Most probably better off, better educated, more ambitious...they'd take that job you are not really qualified for but think you are, and you'd still be living under a rock, complaining about how difficult it is to get someone to drive your buses, your taxis and getting your garbage off the streets.
10:31 August 18, 2010 by hpunlimited
Sweden and USA the polar opposites.

A favorite Swedish past time is to sit and complain and rag about their country. If the Swedes could, they would give away their country. People are extremely negative in Sweden and the flag is racist.

In the USA it is the opposite, they sit in their crackhouses and say how great their country is. Even if you ask a homeless person in the slums, they will still say that USA is the greatest country in the world, because the president said so :-)Americans are over positive.
10:43 August 18, 2010 by Serendipitiz
Oh, and I lived in Switzerland for 4 years.... can add that they are far, far behind on quite a few issues, and Sweden is by far a better place to live (just the weather, maybe).
11:34 August 18, 2010 by omphus
Wow...so many uninformed fools commenting
12:07 August 18, 2010 by eppie

Indeed. Probably all republican americans that are jealous because the socialist country (at least according to their christian extremist TV personalities) sweden is doing so much better.

I also loved the 1st place for Cuba in the middle income countries in terms of quality if life. Let's hear what our american friends have to say about that.

Well at least they have best economic dynamism.
12:13 August 18, 2010 by Audrian
Congradulation Sweden. Do not allow your governments to undo what your forefathers have built.

I find this report incomplete. Scores are relative; they should compare. This report has failed to show the countries that scored the top 10 grades or more, as well as those which scored the lowest among the western countries.
13:15 August 18, 2010 by Annaya
I wouldn't get too excited about anything Newsweek writes. It is not an influential

magazine. In fact, it was going down the tubes so fast that it recently sold to Sidney Harmon for one dollar.. That's right, 100 cents!
13:57 August 18, 2010 by cogito
Does anyone read NewsWEAK anymore?

No wonder so many are so misinformed.
15:09 August 18, 2010 by ubpurple05
GROAN.....jeeee-ZUS people, I don't think the article above even mentioned the poor, old, spiraling, on-her-last-legs USA ~ but you got your licks in, didn't you? Ever once stop to think about the many decent people in the U.S. that are really suffering, losing their homes, unemployed, have a loved one is one of the military fighting a stupid war, etc.? I guess it feels better to congratulate yourself that you got out of there or don't live there anymore or never did, does that really make you superior? Are you really in Sweden because you are smarter and better than people who live in the U.S.?

Arrogance is always sickening, no matter where you are talking about. And these lists, completely useless and subjective mostly.
15:10 August 18, 2010 by millionmileman
Please remember to vote in the upcoming elections for those who want to cut your taxes. It is the only route to prosperity.

The USA will probably be relegated to 22nd by this time next year if the tax demons in Washington DC are not shown the door this November.

Your roads are superb I would barely land a helicopter over here, let alone a Gripen.
15:13 August 18, 2010 by ubpurple05
Oh yeah, and furthermore, why slam Sweden, a perfectly lovely country? Seriously? There is an old saying in the U.S. ~ Love it or Leave it. You guys are high if you think things aren't tough all over, especially if you sit on your ass and complain all the time.
15:18 August 18, 2010 by NTR
Hej folks each country is best in its own prospective..
16:36 August 18, 2010 by rumcajs
I see a lot of people here that seem to hate things Sweden is very well known for since I was a little kid (I'm 31). I really can't get into my head why on earth they came here.

Do you guys just feel like moving somewhere, pick a country on a map randomly and buy the plane tickets without doing your homework or what?

And the TAX worried ones... ohhh we pay so much in taxes!!! C'on, even with the huge taxes people in Sweden get much more money in the acc avery month than in MANY other countries with similar prices for housing and food.

I've been living in many countries in the last 8 years and the one I've liked the most so far is Sweden. And no, I'm not a lazy communist who likes living from others, if any extremist right is thinking about spiting that stuoid sentence.
16:58 August 18, 2010 by Vetinari
I love how these lists always brings out the complainers. I'm also amused how many people aparently absolutely hate Sweden but yet hang around a site about Sweden. The list/ranking picked a few criteria, and it judged accordingly. They are all important criteria, but it is not all the criteria that can be used.

This list is similar to judging a beauty contest by only looking at the waist down.

I'm sorry to all Americans that others won't say your country is the greatest anymore. If you want to think it still is please go ahead, just expect others to disagree with you and use (probably good) examples why it isn't.
17:46 August 18, 2010 by glamelixir
They didn't fight a war but the certainly sell the weapons.

For you statistic lovers, what about Sweden being the 7th best seller of weapons in the world... quite a shame for a "peacefull" country, isn´t it?
19:13 August 18, 2010 by Jaffo1970
As an American living in America I can say that this is still a pretty decent country to live in, but has been going downhill for so long. I expect that we will be at the bottom of all lists by the end of the decade, just as soon as everyone quits loaning us money to consume the 25% of the world's resources we have grown accustomed to.

Can I come to Sweden before it is too late??

00:18 August 19, 2010 by commenting
Life is a wierd experience, I've realized: there are no facts only interpretations. The numbers given are results of such interpretations, there is no certainty in indicators.
11:30 August 19, 2010 by Rick Methven
Last year there was a listing that put Sweden last because they had given zero points for something. Sweden complained to the publisher and got nowhere. Of course there where the usual crowd on TL saying that the report was factual because they are always knocking Sweden. Now we see the same lot of dumb assed posters say that this list is all wrong.

All you moaners that think Sweden is the pits, why not just LEAVE (that is if you are really here) and to the other trolls who could not even find Sweden on a map STFU
10:20 August 20, 2010 by cogito
#32, Mr Love It or Leave It.

Your reasoning is digital, though those who are less kind might call you simplistic.

TL-ers who live here and pay taxes here have the right to counteract the Sweden-Best in the World flag-wavers by criticizing out what all that is seriously wrong in Sweden.

They are better informed and more lucid than the ignorant America-haters, who moan and whine about the U.S.A. without having ever set foot there.
17:26 August 20, 2010 by LeoKinmann
Apparently this ranking doesnt take non-alcoholic induced social interactions into account. Otherwise Sweden will be ranked second-last, and Finland takes the bottom position.
19:41 August 20, 2010 by Regor
@ serendipitiz #15

My hat off to you and I agree with most of your comments.

I have lived in the US for 50 years and came here from Sweden as a 26 year old. Sweden was a great place to live when I grew up, the schools were good, higher education excellent, the self directed/paid health insurance was just about perfect, no disgruntled immigrants, traffic very reasonable, streetcars, buses and trains almost always on time, taxes reasonable (in spite of a liberal regering).

Since I came here I have found that the school system is totally corrupt, higher education is from reasonable to poor and VERY expensive, health insurance and medications originally covered by my employer are becoming more expensive by the year, muslims and wetbacks taking over, traffic is atrocious, taxes were reasonable but are now going through the roof and my retirement savings are rapidly shrinking!

For over 20 years I was blessed with a job that took me many times around the world and found that a lot of countries had something that I liked, but that was generally outweighed by things I didn't like.

I have been back to Sweden many times in the past, I still love the country, but it has gone downhill in too many areas -- just like the US of A! The result? I am looking for a peaceful, inexpensive, warm place anywhere else in the world to move as a retiree! But projecting where I think the world is going I think I'll stay right here, where I can still have my guns and ammunition to protect myself when the muck really hits the fan!

Bitching doesn't do it -- doing the best you can with the means at your disposal does!

Live well!

00:21 August 21, 2010 by k84
It's not Sweden anymore it is the Islamic Republik of Swedistan ! !
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