United States Government VS All Other Governments

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  1. marinealways24 profile image59
    marinealways24posted 13 years ago

    Open for debate to all. In the World, which country has the most efficient government and why?

    1. SparklingJewel profile image65
      SparklingJewelposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      A government can be efficient and still be a dead government!  big_smile

      I choose to have it all and push for a living and efficient government by the people for the people and of the people. big_smile

      1. livewithrichard profile image75
        livewithrichardposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        True.  In order for a government to be efficient it has to take its population out of the equation.  Look at China, they have 20% of the worlds population, that's 1 in 5 of every person on this planet.  Yet, they rank in the top 4 of exporters and importers and have less than 15% of their GDP as national debt.  The US is the number 1 importer and number 4 exporter in the world and debt is 60% of our GDP and our population is less than a 1/4 of China's.

  2. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    (You realize if I post, Marine, and say something with the 'C' word, capitalism, or the 'S' word, socialism, that your topic here will become probably one of the most rapid discussions on the forums.  lol)

    So, wink, lolololo....I think the Northern European countries like Sweden, Denmark, Finland, etc. have the best governments (socialist), because their people report the greatest happiness and have the highest standard of living.

    1. livewithrichard profile image75
      livewithrichardposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I agree with Lita, but saying that, I still wouldn't choose to live anywhere else but here in the US.  Regardless of what is going on with the economy there is still an abundance of diversity and opportunity here.  When one door closes another always opens up.

      1. Eaglekiwi profile image74
        Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Definately agree the European Countries have figured out how to clothe,house ,employ,and everyone gets medical care. Certainly dont have the class system like the states do.
        That certainly improves the quality of life over all for many ,increasing their financial choices means they can  afford to take up opportunities wherever they want.
        My daughter-in-law from Sweden does not understand why there is such a large gap between the have's and have nots in the U.S.A. We believe its not the amount of taxes that are the issue, but rather how its spent ,that may be a significant problem for some other countries. Of course there are many other issues I know to take into account too.smile

        1. nicomp profile image67
          nicompposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          Easy answer for your daughter-in-law; in the US we are free to work toward our dreams. Our government was designed to perpetuate personal freedom rather than redistribute wealth, as Sweden does. Recently our government has lost its' way with free drugs to seniors, nationalizing car companies, etc., but hopefully we will see a course correction in 2010.

          By the way, Sweden has 70 per cent of its' work force in the service industry and only 1.1 per cent in agriculture. The highest 10 per cent of the earners consume 22 per cent of the resources while the bottom 10 per cent consumes only 3 per cent.

          1. LondonGirl profile image82
            LondonGirlposted 13 years agoin reply to this

            There isn't only one sort of freedom.

            Freedom from fear of medical expenses, freedom from fear of going hungry, these are important freedoms in Europe.

            1. Eaglekiwi profile image74
              Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

              So true LG

            2. tksensei profile image61
              tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

              Those are the 'freedoms' of a caged pet (at best).

              1. Eaglekiwi profile image74
                Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                Tell that to the guy whose been laid of work, employments due to run out ,his kids sick,and the car broke down! these worries take away his dignity, tell me how he is free tk?

                1. tksensei profile image61
                  tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                  Worry and dignity are not synonyms for freedom. He is 'free' to go and try to offer his skills for the highest rate he can negotiate. He is free to gamble the last $100 on a business plan that might make him a millionaire or completely broke. Being strapped to a teat is not freedom, and when that teat is pumping out drugs that weaken you but that you cannot quit is even less so.

                  Freedom doesn't mean you are always happy, satisfied, and well-fed. Some people seem to like the sound of the word but want to change its meaning to 'cared for.'

                  1. VENUGOPAL SIVAGNA profile image59
                    VENUGOPAL SIVAGNAposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                    The pet will have the best freedom as long as it remains in the cage. Imagine what will happen to it if it flies away!

                  2. Eaglekiwi profile image74
                    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                    If the choices above signify freedom to you, 'offer his skills for the highest rate'( that would need to be over-seas then,because those highly skilled people are not being offered work,do you not get that part yet? to gamble or profit from his last $100' sure those are choices ,all Western cultures have those choices...

                    Freedom did mean I was never hungry ,clothed ,educated and mum could stay at home when I was growing up. She had the freedom to make that choice. My father was a hard working labourer, made sure we graduated, but more than that, taught us how to be independant.
                    That is the kind of freedom I want to leave my children too.
                    What about you TK? How do you define freedom?

                2. nicomp profile image67
                  nicompposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                  If this guy (I wonder why you used that gender?) depends on a government check to prop up his dignity, then I do feel sorry for him.

                  Lots of people have sick kids and broken down cars. How sad it must be to tie one's dignity to an automobile!

                  1. Eaglekiwi profile image74
                    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                    well sorry I was taking it for granted that you could read between the lines.
                    you wondered why I used this gender ,simply because males make up the greater workforce ok? but yes it applies to both sexes.
                    quit splitting hairs, sighs
                    The Government check that you mention was money already earned by the man or woman ( via higher taxes) previously anyway, so no not a prop up in the least , more like I loaned it to my country , now the countrys giving MY money back.( which would be nice if they never took it in the first place) but anyway
                    Take away a man or womans job , take away his home , take away his car , take away his family , he may just survive but take away his dignity ( thats where he's knocked his guts out year after year for his family and country (via taxes or fighting a war he didnt want to fight in) and finds hes out of a job , no health insurance (because he can no longer afford it) and yes you attack his dignity !!!!....he has to fight harder ,because the voice in his head whispers...youve failed...
                    I wished you understood nicomp and had some compassion ,life is never black and white.

                  2. The Shark profile image60
                    The Sharkposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                    I was that guy, at one point. My comapany didn't lay me off, instead offered to transfer me about 400 miles to a "lateral" position that unfortunately paid about 40% less, so much for being lateral. I was also about 70% through building a home---that was started in a hot realestate mkt and finished in a cold mkt, anyone remember the 1990 recession? So I didn't have many choices, with a kid in a private school and a house that was now worth less than what it cost to build and not saleable, I didn't run. No instead I used the opportunites that America gives us, and the strength that God gave me. My wife and I then pitched in to get throught it. She took a job at the local McD's--we didn't feel it was beneath us, and I went on the road in sales and worked like a dog,(days and nights), for four years to get us halfway back on track. It's why I have to laugh when people look at what I have today and tell me how difficult it is and how I wouldn't know. They didn't see our refrigerator during that period, it had a bottle of water, a box of cereal, milk and a bowl of pasta, that was it. Oh by the way both the pasta and the cereal were generic! It's why I get so tired of hearing people whine about how tough they have it. More people tell me they are "giving their house back to the bank." I didn't know that the bank had sold it to them. So when I ask, the bank sold you that house? The reply is always, No I bought it from a family. So how does "giving it back to the bank fit in? What they mean is that they are about to stick the bank that leant them the money to buy that house. These are the same people complaining about their adjustable mtg. Well, they weren't complaining when they refied the home 6 months after the origonal purchase and pulled 50k out for new cars for husband and wife, and again in another 7 months taking another wad of cash out. I've refied my house two times in tha last 15 years, only to lower the interest rate. The last time 5 years ago was to take advantage of historic lows of 4.8% fixed.
                    We have gone way to far away form our make it on your own individualism that America always cherished. Look at the whining done by Ophra's sorry audience when she had KFC offer a free cupon for some healthy chicken dish. It almost erupted in riots in NY when KFC ran out. These aren't starving people, they're just entitled people, the way the whole society is becoming entitled. Look at the people at that ridiculous town hall Obama held where one woman insisted on being give a home with a "new" kitchen, and the college kid complaining about his job at McD's, and needing help to pay college tuition. I would be willing to wager that the kid is already getting help from tax payers by attending a state college,(probaly a community college), which if you live in the state, (and it appeared he did), is subsidized by the tax payers. When Does it end?? (The Shark)

            3. Aya Katz profile image84
              Aya Katzposted 13 years agoin reply to this

              Freedom from fear of going hungry is a freedom known by slaves. When someone else owns you, they have to feed you. When you own yourself, you have to fend for yourself.

              1. tksensei profile image61
                tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                Excellent post.

      2. RKHenry profile image66
        RKHenryposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          I agree with Richard.  I wouldn't choose to live anywhere else than America.  I've traveled the world.  So I can actually say this because I know better.

        1. earnestshub profile image84
          earnestshubposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          I have worked in the USA, but live in Australia, and I reckon this country is the best to live in.

          1. RKHenry profile image66
            RKHenryposted 13 years agoin reply to this

            I couldn't live with all the snakes........wink

  3. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago


    I was being provocative, mainly...lol  And we were just discussing living as an Ex Pat in this house...  I'm very adaptable, but I don't know if I can see myself doing it.  I identify with being an American--and I agree, it is a vast, diverse and beautiful country.  I write about it and I take photos of it--I'm connected and decidedly American. 

    Not that this has much to do with governments, but this is how I see it.

  4. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    I'm sorry.  Free drugs to seniors?  Where are you getting your information from, Nicomp?

    1. livewithrichard profile image75
      livewithrichardposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I'd like to know too because my senior parents could use some of those free drugs.

      1. profile image0
        Leta Sposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        lol  And I worked for Medicare it sure didn't seem like those drugs were anything like free.

    2. nicomp profile image67
      nicompposted 13 years agoin reply to this
  5. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    Ok...the only thing I've looked at thus far is the webmd, detailing the Bush change in Medicare w/ Part D.  That is not free.  Seniors pay a premium to be enrolled.  I don't know specifically if it will vastly ameliorate huge drug costs because I'd left the job by 2006...I'd have to go in & study it more.  I'm sure it will cover some more of the expense than was previously...

    And you realize, don't you, that private plans are part of medicare already...this is always the senior's choice.  This sounds like noise from the private senior insurance marketing lobby.

    1. Eaglekiwi profile image74
      Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Hi Lita
      Can you tell me how you feel about the new Government planned Insurance scheme -it sounded affordable ,but all of them are new to me ,so would be great to hear your thoughts,thankyou.

      1. profile image0
        Leta Sposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        I do not know about it in depth.  It seems that Obama is working within the infrastructure of what exists already.  And that if you don't have insurance, you have a choice in a plan that Congress serves itself.  I do know this is FAR from socializing medicine (that is propaganda).  One of Obama's biggest campaign contributors was the health care industry/lobby.

        He does have a website with explanations of most of these things (I have not visited it in a while - been busy).  Hold on and I will post the link.

        1. profile image0
          Leta Sposted 13 years agoin reply to this
          1. Eaglekiwi profile image74
            Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

            Ok thats great thanks,appreciated smile

  6. Eaglekiwi profile image74
    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years ago

    Yes it was an easy answer for my daughter in law to think her country has the better economic and employment rate than the USA.
    You quoted some figures about Swedens workforce, well I will take your word for that , I dont really believe in stats too much , Im more interested in how many are employed period.
    Guess I am also a practical person too , because dreams need money, even the toothfairy is finding it pretty tough these days!
    Especially when you consider everytime we turn on TV or open a newspaper the unemployment rate is worse ,or another business has hit the wall.
    Sorry but it doesnt feel much like freedom either when unemployment and the ridiculous high cost of medical is right on you doorstep!
    I like the USA ,I chose to come here, I am willing to contribute,( which I have) I am willing to support this country, so I mean no malice or ill feeling , just saying how reality sucks.
    My family has this discussion once (pertaining to this forum post) and decided that there were too many variables to fairly compare, first there is population , then how a country is actually governed ,values, consumption, debt ,inflation, gosh the list goes on. to your best life smile

  7. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    Those 'afraid' of the human rights of minimal health care and sustenance for those faceless 'others' (never themselves, hell, no, they will never be 'weak,' lol) - a minimal level, mind you - I would say have certain ideas about human nature.  That entails a law of the jungle mentality, that people are motivated by carrots and sticks in a behavioralistic fashion, and not innately; that altruism cannot exist beside enlightened human interest and enterprise.  All of which some would also contend is dead wrong.

    Generally this kind of thinking is also tied to those who wish they were part of the 'wealth' club, but who are not.  Unfortunately, they are also unaware that they have been caught up in a very well orchestrated propaganda plan designed to protect certain interests that ARE part of the wealth club.

    In essence, they are afraid of their own weak natures.  That which some do not share.

    1. tksensei profile image61
      tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this


  8. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    Take for instance, London Girl, a product of a so-called socialist country--with all that socialist health care, education, etc.  She has a JD, and certainly does not seem to be 'sucking a teat' and weak, to me.  She seems quite independent and ambitious....  It does seem she didn't need to be motivated by fear to be successful like neocons in the US think must be the case.

    1. tksensei profile image61
      tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Do you have a link to what political figure you are referring to who said that you "need to be motivated by fear to be successful"?

    2. tksensei profile image61
      tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      That conclusion is illogical. If you go to a neighborhood blighted with rampant drug abuse and find a few people who are NOT addicted to drugs and who are doing their best with what they have that does NOT mean that drugs are not detrimental to that neighborhood.

      The most "independent and ambitious" tend to succeed regardless of circumstance, but when you cripple the motivation of those who have native talents but might not be as independent and ambitious as the cream of the crop you are precipitating the decline of that community in general. Really caring for the most vulnerable means pulling that needle out, not offering free crack because that will make them happy (vote?) right now.

      1. LondonGirl profile image82
        LondonGirlposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Ensuring people get health care and don't starve is nothing to do with hard drugs, don't be silly.

    3. LondonGirl profile image82
      LondonGirlposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      What is a JD? I'm not sure I do have one (-:

      1. profile image0
        Leta Sposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Juris Doctorate....  Sorry.  That's American equivalent.  What do they call you 'Barristers?' lol  smile  What do they call your degree?

  9. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    I do not talk to stalkers, wink.  I must protect my enlightened self interest.

  10. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    Precisely the take on human nature I mentioned and do not agree with.  It is a very negative philosophy...also does not show a reasoning of the whole cycle through completely.  And I completely disagree with it.

    I am that exception (no, no drugs involved) that came from a poor background and worked like hell.  I am a first generation college graduate and then some.  My sisters, coming from the same background, didn't go so far.  One has a GED, the other graduated high school.  I contend that the opposite is true.  With minimal assistance, those a little less motivated would definitely have gone further...we were all enrolled in gifted programs in grade school... 

    As far as education (which I see as the cornerstone of success, whatever its mode), I favor Alfie Kohn's ideas about intrinsic motivation...and innate motivation must be cared for from within and without.  Carrot and stick (rewards/punishment-behaviorism) may work--but only with those who are certifiably mentally disabled.

    1. tksensei profile image61
      tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      What's negative is creating dependencies and undermining motivation. What's most insidious is that it 'hurts' the most vulnerable in the name of 'helping' them.

      All of which is not even to mention the economics of it.

  11. Sufidreamer profile image80
    Sufidreamerposted 13 years ago

    I know many Greeks who went to America with a few dollars in their pocket, worked hard, and did very well.

    I also know many Greeks who stayed here, worked hard and did very well.

    Never been sure why this government issue is an either/or issue, really. We have a great amount of personal freedom here, and are extremely happy with the way that things work smile

  12. earnestshub profile image84
    earnestshubposted 13 years ago

    The problem in making comparisons is size. I like Australia where I live. It is a fairly open democracy, but we just do not have the numbers America has, so we do not hurt the world as much if we make a mistake.
    America under Obama would seem to have a more peaceful theme than before and I hope America can regain it's strength but this time apply it in a humane manner towards fellow humans of every race and country.

  13. getpaidtopost profile image41
    getpaidtopostposted 13 years ago

    I believe to be very privileged living in the UK, However we are paying for it in tax and more besides.

  14. nicomp profile image67
    nicompposted 13 years ago

    Giving people free stuff does not make them free. A house, a job, a car, clothes, food must be earned in order for them to have value. The true violation of civil rights is confiscating motivation under the guise of a "hand up."

    To undermine your straw-man argument: yes, we obviously need a safety net for those who absolutely cannot help themselves. Excluded must be the lazy, the un-motivated and those who chose not to work because they can't find the perfect job in the perfect location.

    Certainly this irks the Liberals/Democrats/Progressives, but it's OK to work more than 40 hours a week or to hold down more than one job. That's not a bad thing. Take in a roommate, downsize, move to where the jobs are. Work is always good, handouts are generally counterproductive in the long run.

    It's also OK to live in an apartment until you can afford a house. It's OK to ride the bus until you can afford a car. There's no shame in owning only one clunker car until you can afford a newer vehicle. It's all part of the process.

  15. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    Nicomp, I find that you set up something of a strawman quite often.  I see no liberal/progressive here being irked with living in an apt., driving an old car, or certainly working more than 40 hours a week.

    I work from a set of principles that must be termed universals, and an acknowledgment of basic human rights.  I feel freedom must best be defined through those....  I do not have the time (must run of to more than 40 hours), or I'd list those--post a link.

    The study of motivation and the debate between intrinsic vs. external motivation is very interesting - and I see nobody seems to know anything about it here.  Funny, I never made it through my teaching course, and I thought I was among a few who teach.

    Ultimately, I believe we must work towards the separation of economic interests from governance.  And I don't mean that in the neocon fashion.

    1. nicomp profile image67
      nicompposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Sorry, I was referring to the "no compassion" strawman that's rolled out when a conservative suggests that everyone should make their own way in the world. What I usually read are responses from Liberals/Progressives/Democrats opining the lack of support for the truly needy and somehow linking that to the entitlement mentality that both parties have created today.

      BTW, a huge number of Liberals/Progressives/Democrats decry working two jobs or more than 40 hours a week. I get that all the time.

  16. The Shark profile image60
    The Sharkposted 13 years ago

    Freedom...O're the land of the free and the home of the brave.
    Certainly those word are diminishing in value and meaning. My Daughter in HS had a project for literature, she was supposed to
    illustrate how freedom holds people back, and how the government can make our lives better, .....certainly not the schools I grew up in.
    I said to her, well if you write your paper based on my opinion you will probably fail. I explained to my daughter that anytime you accept something from the government you sacrifice some of your freedoms. If you take, then you must be willing to play by their rules, like it or not. When you start taking, obedience or conformity is expected.
    Of course she questioned me how that could be? I used section eight as an example.If you accept section eight for housing you must conform to the type of house or apt. that the government inspector says you can have, number of rooms, etc. You also must conform to periodic inspections of your income, providing letters from employers showing how much you earn and how many hours you work.
    If you want to keep the section eight you must make sure your employer keeps you under the number of hours required to keep you qualifying, threby giving up income that you might earn. It becomes a way of life, certainly this is a surrender of freedoms. The same can be said for welfare recipients, you must conform. In years past this might have been a temporary thing for an individual, a stop on the road to better times, but today it has become a way of life, suppoted by tax paying working individuals. I won't even get into the "home of the brave" part, I'll save that for a different day.
    The Shark---taking a bite out of liberalism

  17. tksensei profile image61
    tksenseiposted 13 years ago

    Ok, so this is going to be an endless semantics-fest. Got it.

  18. Eaglekiwi profile image74
    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years ago

    I dont do big words on a Monday ( they dont pay me enough) wink

  19. Gordon Hamilton profile image94
    Gordon Hamiltonposted 13 years ago

    Sorry. I did not read any replies, merely the original question.

    "Efficient," was the optimum word in the question. Neither the USA, Great Britain, Canada or Australia can possibly feature in the Top 100 if your question is taken literally.

    Efficient and democratic are about as synonymous as black and white, rich and poor, or alive and dead.

    The most efficient Government on the planet has to be the Chinese - without any realistic competition whatsoever. They control one-third of the world's population with a rod of iron, and woe betide anyone who steps out of line.

    1. tksensei profile image61
      tksenseiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      China is not as much like NK as you may think.

  20. LondonGirl profile image82
    LondonGirlposted 13 years ago

    Barristers have a degree (often an LLB, but could be a BA or a BSc) and some will have a Masters, and then the bar qualifications. So I am Miss London Girl, LLM, Barrister-at-Law.

    A doctorate is separate, very few barristers have a PhD.

  21. LondonGirl profile image82
    LondonGirlposted 13 years ago

    "And what do they know of England, who only England know?"

    Rudyard Kipling

  22. Eaglekiwi profile image74
    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years ago

    Im just happy to be alive ,no matter which country Im in smile

    Everyday above grounds a good one.

    (didnt like the bugs in either country above ,lol) but we are beginning to bond..


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