Is The United States Still The Best Country In The World? Think Again – ValueWalk Premium
United States Ranking

Is The United States Still The Best Country In The World? Think Again

Is The United States Still The Best Country In The World? Think Again

Hershey H. Friedman

Brooklyn College – Department of Business Management

Sarah Hertz

State University of New York (SUNY), Empire State College

June 24, 2015


This paper examines the rankings of the United States in key areas so that people can see for themselves how well the country is actually doing. Areas examined include: percentage of people living below the poverty line, children living in poverty, income inequality, median wealth per adult, happiness, GDP per capita, Corruption Perception Index, quality of education and health, democracy ranking, size of prison population, and stability as a nation. Sadly, the United States does poorly on many of the above measures. The 2015 Social Progress Index, which considers 52 different measures, ranks the United States 16th out of 133 countries. It is hoped that examination of the above statistics will make people aware of how much needs to be done if the United States wants to remain a world power.

Is The United States Still The Best Country In The World? Think Again – Introduction

Americans must stop convincing themselves that nothing is wrong and that the United States is still number one in the world. Let us examine our rankings in key areas and see how well the United States is actually doing on various measures of well-being. The first myth to be dispelled: we are no longer the world’s largest economy when adjustments are made for purchasing power parity. On the basis of purchasing power (and not by converting everything into dollars), China overtook the United States at the end of 2014. At the end of 2014, China accounted for 16.48% of the world’s purchasing-power adjusted GDP (or $17.632 trillion), and the US made up 16.28% (or $17.416 trillion) (Bird, 2014). The United States will continue to shrink if changes are not made.

Percentage of People Living Below Poverty Line: U.S. Ranks 35th best out of 157 countries

Chad, Liberia, and Haiti are tied for last place with 80% of the population living below the poverty line. Data is based on CIA World Factbook and is accurate as of January 2012 ( Taiwan is in first place with only 1.16% of its population living below the poverty line. It should be noted that countries define poverty differently; in general, wealthier nations use higher standards of living to define poverty than do poorer nations.

More than 50 years ago on January 8, 1964, President Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) declared an unconditional war on poverty in the United States. He said: “The richest nation on Earth can afford to win it” (Page, 2014). Apparently, we lost the war: the official poverty rate was 19% in 1964 and had fallen to 12.1% in 1969. The poverty rate was 14.5% in 2013, but the number of poor people has been stuck at 45.3 million (

It should be noted that the demographics of the poor have changed. One key change is in the sharp drop in the number of elderly poor. In 1966, 28.5% of senior citizens (ages 65+) were poor; in 2012, only 9.1% were poor. This was due to Social Security and the fact that it was indexed to the cost of living. Poverty among African Americans has also dropped sharply from 41.8% in 1966 to 27.2% in 2012 (

Children Living in Poverty: Rank = 34 out of 35

The United States ranks in 34th place out of 35 countries surveyed in children living in poverty. Poverty is defined by UNICEF as living in a household that earns less than 50% of the national median. The United States is behind all European countries as well as Australia, Canada, Japan, and New Zealand. We are only above Romania (

Approximately 25% of children in the United States live in poverty – the highest among all developed nations (

Income Inequality: U.S. is Fourth Worst in the World

The Gini coefficient (or index) is the most commonly used measure of income inequality. It ranges from 0 (a state of perfect equality) to 1 (where all wealth is held by one person, or a state of perfect inequality). Countries with the most serious problems of income inequality are Chile (Gini = .501), Mexico (.466), Turkey (.411), United States (.38), and Israel (.376) ( [See also Max Roser (2015) – ‘Income Inequality,’ Published online at Retrieved from:].

United States Ranking

United States Ranking

See full PDF below.

Comments (172)

  • Johnny Houston

    BS….there is no other place on earth where someone can become a millionaire faster than right here in America.

    July 31, 2015 at 3:32 pm
    • Daine

      If you’re a white/asian male in your 20s to mid-30s working in the tech industry, sure, no problem. The rest of us aren’t quite so fortunate.

      July 31, 2015 at 3:55 pm
      • jxs9

        More like if you’re Jewish in the tech industry then you can get backing. Like Zuckerberg,Larry Page,etc. A lot of European Jews in the tech industry.Why do you think people like Tom Perkins,silicon valley venture capitalist keep comparing anti-one percent talk to the holocaust.Because Jews run these places.

        July 31, 2015 at 6:41 pm
    • victor yao

      Not true, China is creating more millionaires faster than the US.

      July 31, 2015 at 4:00 pm
    • MBANYC

      Actually, according to some studies, class mobility in the US is actually much worse than other developed nations.

      July 31, 2015 at 4:37 pm
    • JohnDille


      July 31, 2015 at 4:50 pm
    • Ronald Loynes

      Yes just get into politics! Especially Congress.

      July 31, 2015 at 4:59 pm
  • victor yao

    The only thing the US excels at is that we have more billionaires who are syphoning wealth from the rest resulting in 1% owning the almost 50% of the total wealth and the rest of the 99% are sharing the other half. And it getting worse and soon we’ll go the China route of becoming a communist nation as the only way to right the imbalance.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:00 pm
    • JohnDille


      July 31, 2015 at 4:49 pm
      • victor yao

        Republican politicians are doing their utmost to cover this fact by spinning the truth and telling outward lies to fool those gullible and those who cannot add. You take someone like Walker who wants to cut education funding so that he can continue to get elected by recruiting those who cannot add like him. How sad that this country is marching downhill thanks to all these corrupt republican politicians who are there to serve and enrich their filthy rich masters.

        July 31, 2015 at 9:45 pm
    • Jim Howell

      The 1%ers killed the goose that laid the golden eggs……the middle class.

      July 31, 2015 at 5:40 pm
    • jxs9

      In 2014, the 1 percent held 48 percent of global wealth. But that
      doesn’t mean the other 52 percent was for the rest of us; most of it was
      controlled by the 20 wealthiest percent, leaving just 5.5 percent of
      global wealth for 80 percent of the world, Looks like we’re in for another revolution like we saw in the past except it will be even bloodier. Crushing OWS was a mistake. That mild non-revolt was their best chance at stopping bloody revolts.

      July 31, 2015 at 6:36 pm
  • icemilkcoffee

    “In 1966, 28.5% of senior citizens (ages 65+) were poor; in 2012, only 9.1% were poor. This was due to Social Security”
    There you go- government welfare works.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:09 pm
    • Jim Howell

      Social security is paid for through payroll taxes, therefor it is not welfare. Benefits are paid to those that pay in.

      July 31, 2015 at 5:38 pm
  • Alex

    Take immigrants out of the picture for the last 30 years and all these statistics suddenly disappear. Of course you have “income inequality” when you import poor people. Move a bunch of millionaires to 3rd world countries and their “income inequality” will increase too.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:26 pm
    • Elkojai

      Yes because white trash are not poor people

      July 31, 2015 at 4:41 pm
      • Alex

        No, it’s because ice cream doesn’t have bones. Which is of equal relevance as your statement.

        August 3, 2015 at 11:58 am
        • Elkojai

          Lol blaming “income inequality” principally on “imported” people = little “relevance” to current U.S. statistics

          August 3, 2015 at 2:21 pm
    • JohnDille


      July 31, 2015 at 4:46 pm
      • jxs9

        That’s not fair. Both parties have been corporate stooges for too long. Clinton brought the Democrat party to the right in the first place with his moderate BS.Silicon tech industry is primarily democrate and they outsource everything. Microsoft even made an passionate speech about the US government should issue more H1B Visa’s so they could employ cheap foreign immigrants while laying off thousands of Americans.US graduates twice as many STEM students then there are STEM jobs but over half end up not getting STEM jobs because silicon valley is filled with H1B visa’s workers. Who they can pay cheap and prevent them from going to different employers.

        July 31, 2015 at 6:32 pm
      • Alex

        You mean those Republicans like Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates that area always grousing for more foreign workers? Or those Republicans that run Hollywood and want cheap labor to keep their pools clean and mow their lawns? Those Republicans?

        August 3, 2015 at 11:59 am
    • jxs9

      Actually the poverty decline started with Reagan. US outsourced entire industries to China,India,etc. That wiped out any stable lower and middle class income. US is an example of trickle down economics at its best. Incomes have been stagnant for 30 years but the income of the wealthy have skyrocketed. We have to subsidize Walmart,fast food,etc workers while they pocket billions. Walton family sits on around $100 billion combined. We don’t have single payer healthcare so you can go bankrupt paying medical bills and the costs increase because people end up working to death and going to the ER.Wall street gambles with everyone’s money and gets bailed out while everyone else gets left to die. You go to other countries and they have brand new infrastructure,high speed trains,tech,etc. US bridges falling apart,internet being monopolized by a few ISP,etc.Obama proposed infrastructure investment and it was blocked in congress.I’ve seen US corruption first hand.Federal government gave my state a grant to build out fiberoptics to rural areas that weren’t being serviced.ATT came in and used bribes to local and state government crooks to block it. It took years of fighting for Lusfiber to get public fiber-optics against the duopoly cartels. US is modern day feudalism. US is going to collapse if we can’t get legal bribery out of politics. The corporations/wealthy block everything on a local,state,federal level.

      July 31, 2015 at 6:21 pm
  • Sonny Kohler

    You realize, of course that this is going to make some people’s heads explode, yes?

    BTW: @disqus_6I7VYJY1qg:disqus – the majority of people living in poverty in this country are native-American and white (neither of which are immigrant populations) so lose the tude dude.

    I do agree with @johnny_houston:disqus that there is no place like the US to become a millionaire, very, very quickly – especially if you play professional sports, are a reality TV star, are pretty, are promiscuous or are willing to sell your soul to the entertainment industry.

    In the US, it is all about how you look, who you know and who you’re willing to put out for.

    Unless, of course you are very, very lucky and create that perfect, absolutely pointless and ultimately useless thing that everybody suddenly wants.

    The average American will never and can never become wealthy or even comfortable. We are raising an entitled generation crippled by debt and it’s even worse for the ones coming up.

    The best we can do is: 1) Be white; 2) Be male; 3) Be heterosexual; 4) Have a job, preferably in the service or administrative industries (for God’s sake! Don’t ever be unemployed or self-employed – no one will ever respect you!); and 5) Never, ever – and I CANNOT stress this enough – ever say, do or think anything that could possible be perceived as controversial or disagreeable to anyone, anywhere. Keep your male, white, employed head down and just plug away quietly through life and maybe, must maybe you and your family will make a comfortable, if tenuous life together and not be impoverished and miserable in your old age.

    That is the reality of living in the United States in 2015. It’s a heck of a lot better than many, many places, but there a a lot of places better than it.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    First of all, you’re pretty well off if you live in any of the top 20-30 nations on that list, regardless of the rankings.
    Second, would you really rather live in Kuwait or Romania or even Mexico than the US? (I mean aside from having family there or just being so rich you live like a king wherever you move),

    July 31, 2015 at 4:40 pm
    • George

      Comparing to the worst only gets you down to the worst.

      July 31, 2015 at 4:46 pm
    • vet

      Denmark is sweet!

      July 31, 2015 at 8:16 pm
  • johncush

    The United States Still The Best Country In The World. But about 5 more years. The China will surpass the US both in economy and military.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:40 pm
  • Antonious

    Isn’t this just silly NewYorkers? If you are born in the USA you have won life’s lottery. And yes many can screw that up by not getting an education, or have no desire to work or want a criminal career. A lot of the stuff they rated have nothing to do with the quality of life here. Such as the number of people in prison. Who cares how many there are? We know we have a large, diverse population and we have our share of criminals. They should be in prison. The more of them ending up in jai is better for us since we are safer, the exact opposite of what the authors believe.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:45 pm
    • Infinitelow

      Isn’t “Antonious” just a fancy pretentious way of saying “Tony”?
      As in “Hey Tony! How YOU doin’ ???
      Yeah that woman in NJ who died in her car asphyxiated by a space heater as she she tried to sleep
      in the THREE HOURS OFF she had between shifts with her THREE JOBS sure had no “work ethic”.
      we also have more people in prison as a percentage of the population than any other country.

      Not just prison – FOR PROFIT prison. Now we have made incarceration a lucrative industry we
      need to keep those prisons HUMMING!

      July 31, 2015 at 6:11 pm
  • George

    The United States use to be the greatest. Now its basically slowly dying pretty much the same as Rome did years and years ago. The United States is going through what I would like to call the Nero time frame. We have 347 Neros basically bleeding our society dry of real wealth and replacing it with fake wealth (Borrowing). They are doing the same as Nero did except their great statues are mansions, yachts, cars, and over priced clothing. No different from Nero building statues, either way its the peoples money being hoarded and the consumer that will take the largest hit. O and just in case people don’t realize it, the consumer and employee are the same exact thing. So if the employee loses the nation loses because that employee is no longer a consumer feeding the economy. Who cares though you know. What the heck do we need consumers for right? Its not like economics depends on this concept called demand. But what do I know. I just went to college and graduated with a Macro economics degree. That wouldn’t mean I knew anything about economics. Who cares. Down with the government, Up with the Kings and Queens, return of the peasant, the slave and the royalty. Who shall be our dictator. Well I guess since I have a 1 in a quadrillion chance it could be me, let it fly. Let’s do this. Of course I like most others will become the indebted slave but hey, who cares right. Power to big business, down with the people.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:52 pm
    • erin111

      Reason:corruption. Pushing people into borrowing is nothing but corruption of the system, it is cheating. Instead of paying people appropriately for their work, banks give people credit they wont be able to repay.

      July 31, 2015 at 7:08 pm
  • Jim Alexander

    Well, for all of you who are convinced that the U.S. is such a cesspool, you now have a list of countries where you no doubt would rather live. Goodbye.

    July 31, 2015 at 4:59 pm
  • Zoro01

    Meanwhile America has the most millionaire household 5.9 m of 13.8 millions across the world.Income inequality is the biggest issue in America

    July 31, 2015 at 5:15 pm
  • So CAL Snowman

    Well the problem here is that the United States of America no longer exists. This “nation” is now no more than a bunch of races and cultures fighting against each other for the scraps of a dead carcass loosely held together by the jack boot of the Fed Gov. When you add 50 million+ third world, uneducated, low IQ mexicans and central americans, the US is going to take a nose dive. When you have a country that has over 100 million black and hispanic people combined, your country in going to take a nose dive. Look at Mexico and Central America, look at ANY AFRICAN NATION! They are all third world dumps. America is not a magic land out of a Harry Potter novel where prosperity and opportunity materialize out of thin air. A people makes the nation, NOT the other way around. You can’t have a technologically advanced, first world nation with a third world population.

    July 31, 2015 at 5:16 pm
    • jxs9

      When in doubt,blame the dark skin guy.American motto. US is a hellhole because the government is massively corrupt and its run by corporations. The downward slide started with Reagan and amplified from there. The working class was obliterated when working class jobs were exported out of the country.That alone devastated various cities. And then the government ignored investing in infrastructure,healthcare,mental health,etc. You want to blame everyone else but US farming would be done without Mexicans.Some states that tried to get rid of Mexicans figured that out the hard way when lazy Americans couldn’t do the jobs.Look in the mirror and you will see whose fault it is. All Americans do today is blame each other and allow the problems to continue. You’re whining about everyone else. Last time I checked engineering,science,etc jobs are being done by immigrants for the most part.

      July 31, 2015 at 6:07 pm
  • buybuydandavis

    “Poverty is defined by UNICEF as living in a household that earns less than 50% of the national median. ”

    This is a bogus way to define poverty in two glaring ways.

    First, it measures *earnings*, and not consumption.
    Second, by comparing to national medians, they’re calling people poor just because their neighbors make more. Better to be half the median in the US than the median in most of the world.

    July 31, 2015 at 5:19 pm
    • erin111

      It is about children living in poverty, not families in poverty. Read with understanding!

      July 31, 2015 at 7:05 pm
      • alistz

        You’re an idiot.

        July 31, 2015 at 7:35 pm
      • buybuydandavis

        “Read with understanding!”

        Good advice. I recommend you take it.

        “It is about children living in poverty, not families in poverty.”

        As measured by the earnings of the *family* relative to the national median.

        July 31, 2015 at 8:26 pm
  • KendahlCS

    The ambassador to the US from a third world country made the comment that, if there is reincarnation, he would want to return as a poor American. If the US is so bad, why does everyone want to come here? That includes highly skilled people from other advanced western nations?

    July 31, 2015 at 5:40 pm
    • jxs9

      Because the the other countries that lead before US have tougher immigration policies. US is dead last when it comes to developed countries. But of course you will take US if you’re in a war-torn country or a country with noting in place to help.

      July 31, 2015 at 5:59 pm
      • Thomassen Bart

        Ignorant response.

        July 31, 2015 at 8:25 pm
    • erin111

      Who brain washed you, that everyone wants to come here?! Only people who are from counties at the bottom of the list want to come. So naive you are!!! Believe in fairytale.

      July 31, 2015 at 7:03 pm
      • alistz

        Ted Kennedy had to change the law to keep all the well off europeans for deserting those socialist shitholes for america.
        you’re the stupidest dumbass i’ve ever seen.

        July 31, 2015 at 7:34 pm
      • Thomassen Bart

        You are absolutely incorrect and likely have very little experience abroad. A percentage of every country on the globe would like to emigrate to the US. and literally millions due every year, more than any other nation on Earth. Obviously poor and desperate folk are among the immigrants but these are largely illegals. Legal immigrants come from all classes with preference given to those with special skills.

        Family Immigrant Waiting List By Region US Dept. of State:
        A breakdown of the NVC waiting list by region is:
        Region Total Africa 126,778 Asia 1,786,612 Europe 151,484 N. America* 2,028,679 Oceania 10,453 S. America 227,744 Family Total 4,331,75

        July 31, 2015 at 8:44 pm
  • David M Hill

    when you read this article, you will see the economics are connected to the present campaign. we all will have to listen very carefully to each candidate. giving all the breaks to the rich definitely isn’t the answer. getting rid of the ACA and social security isn’t the answer either! what will terrific mean to the ordinary citizen? what will they do to the dome of utter stupidity? so get your questions ready. already there are three segments of the population looking hard at these debates!

    July 31, 2015 at 5:40 pm
    • Chris Geopon

      Why on earth would I listen to what any of these candidates have to say? They are all professional liars and are just spouting off what their consultants tell them to say to manipulate people into voting for them.

      July 31, 2015 at 6:40 pm
      • erin111

        Do you think Elizabeth Warren is a liar talking about Wall street, banks, corporate abuses, long list? Use your brain! For people like you either all is good or all is bad, you can’t think by yourself, too hard?

        July 31, 2015 at 7:01 pm
        • alistz

          Elizabeth Warren is a moron and she is liar. She lies about being native american.

          That idiot thinks that because we allow the government to build roads, any business that has an address was built by her and she has ownership right to it.

          She is the f*cking moron and only halfwitted idiot know-nothing like you would be touting that lying scumbag communist assclown.

          July 31, 2015 at 7:33 pm
          • guest444555

            you are a kochsucking POS parasite. May your loved ones get terminal cancer and die from it.

            August 6, 2015 at 12:38 am
          • alistz

            Jontathon Gruber says you’re an idiot-dupe.

            August 6, 2015 at 5:44 pm
          • guest444555

            Chris Kyle is a good conservative because he is a dead conservative. I laughed so hard when the news broke that the COWARD was shot to death. May your family members all die from terminal cancer. 😉

            August 6, 2015 at 6:07 pm
          • guest444555

            your mom is a hore of a kunt. Chris Kyle is a good dead parasite. hahaha

            August 6, 2015 at 12:39 am
  • David M Hill

    in at least three states the governors have hurt the education of their state. this why I say home school your children. use the libraries and come up with your own ideas to improve how to educate your children.

    July 31, 2015 at 5:43 pm
    • erin111

      Who is going to home-school their children? Those who can’t read???

      July 31, 2015 at 6:59 pm
  • jxs9

    Really? A country that spends trillions bailing out corporations and military is dead last behind countries that invest in society and don’t constantly go to war and allow corruption to run government. US has already been proven to be an oligarchy and controlled by the elite. Modern day feudalism.( The US is dominated by a rich and powerful elite.So concludes a recent study by Princeton University Prof Martin Gilens and Northwestern University Prof Benjamin I Page)

    July 31, 2015 at 5:57 pm
    • alistz

      See: Jonathon Gruber.

      You’re the idiot he is talking about.

      July 31, 2015 at 7:31 pm
    • Thomassen Bart

      All countries are dominated by rich and powerful elites. This is nothing new. Also, you are confusing income transfers from producers (haves) in an economy to takers (have nots) as investment. Contrariwise, this simply impoverishes folk and creates greater unemployment. True capital investment such as infrastructure programs, science and good education do tend to reap long term dividends but should not be confused with investing, as none of the above generate actual profits for anyone (save the contractors) and are always rampant with corruption. Still, such programs are necessary and a cost for living in a modern society.

      July 31, 2015 at 8:21 pm
      • jxs9

        What time was US at its best across the scale? When the rich were taxed with high tax rates. You think because someone is rich they’re producers?Companies and people that make money by pushing money around and forming lobbying groups are the vulture class. The so called “have nots” are the ones that make the takers(vulture class) rich. Where do you think all those pension funds,consumer purchases,etc come from? Some magic in the air. You keep the money at the top and they hide it offshore. You invest in the middle class and lower they spend and save.

        July 31, 2015 at 8:43 pm
        • Thomassen Bart

          At its best, that depends how you define best, economically, militarily, socially, all? With respect, your economic understanding is challenged. You conflate things which really have nothing to do with one another. I imagine you believe the United States was in some type of golden age in the 50s-60s??? At that time income tax levels were about 91% for those making 400,000 dollars per annum (equivalent to 3 million today). This very small group of people on average actually paid an income tax rate in 1960 of 31 percent, only slightly above the 25 percent average rate at the very top in 2004, (There’s No Going Back to the 1950s Tax System), Lawrence Mone, Wall Street Journal, 04-16-13. This was due to a vast number of deductions available to these tax payers. So, the 91/% figure is a myth.
          Also, the economy of the 1950s and 60s (post WWII) was vastly different than todays economy. Just after the second world war, the US produced 50% of the world’s GDP. This was directly due to the massive destruction inflicted on all of our economic rivals. This percentage could never be sustained as Europe and Asia recovered. Today our share of the world market is about 22%. So, in the 50s and 60s, we basically had a monopoly on world production, which directly influenced the wealth generated and shared by the citizenry. This had almost nothing to do with the fabled 91% tax rate, which if anything inhibited even greater growth. To achieve a similar situation today as in 1960, is unimaginable.
          Concerning your other points. You seem to be mired in a sort of feudalistic/Marxist view of economics, both of which have been completely discredited. No one is forcing you to accept wages or a salary, you can quit at any time, move and seek your fortune elsewhere, and, you have the option to learn rare skills that you can trade up for in a capitalistic system. Failing that, one might be stuck flipping burgers forever, admittedly. Still we all have choices and options. The folks who create jobs are entrepreneurs and business owners. These are the people who risk their money, take on loans, management, hiring, training, competing, etc…without these individuals, we would all people farmers or hunter gatherers. I would argue that a person does all of the above things to found or run a business, deserves to profit from it to the maximum the market will allow.
          Lastly, the US economy generates 17+ trillion each year. It is estimated US corps. have about 2 trillion abroad, these are corporations not individuals keeping the money abroad. Though this is a lot of money, compared to that generated every 365 days, it’s not so much. Still it would be better if that money were invested or spent in the US. Why is it not? Simply because of the tax code and the corporate and capital gains tax rates. If the govt would encourage business rather than combat and threaten them with hefty repatriation taxes, it is likely most of this money would come back, get re-invested here and thus create more wealth for Americans.
          Further, the middle and lower classes in the US do not save, they spend, which generates a very short term benefit. Most Americans are very heavily in debt, just like their government.

          August 1, 2015 at 12:23 am
          • Martin Meaders

            What abject ignorance.

            August 1, 2015 at 3:18 pm
          • Thomassen Bart

            Do you have something to contest?

            August 1, 2015 at 8:01 pm
          • Martin Meaders

            That was not directed at you but jxs9

            August 1, 2015 at 8:50 pm
          • jxs9

            You’re right that you can’t compare it to 1960’s because people actually made a living. They also owned their own homes and had lower college debt if any.The GI bill pretty much created the middle class.The reasons Americans have high credit card debt is the same reason we have high student loan debt. Wages have been stagnant for decades. Wages haven’t kept up with inflation. The richest Americans income skyrocketed. While most Americans income stayed the same. Along with the export of working class jobs that paid a decent wage like manufacturing.

            You’re right the majority of jobs are created by small business but they don’t get any of the benefits that are afforded to large corporations and ultra-rich. The 1% get bailouts,private jet tax breaks,subsidiaries.Someone proposed we allow Americans and student loans to be at the same interest rate as the bankers get and congress blew a gasket. Profits are privatized and losses are socialized at the top.Pay the middle class and lower a decent wage then they wouldn’t need to use credit cards as often.There are trillions in pensions. Americans have little in savings but a lot in pensions. Pensions are one of the driving forces of the finance industry.

            August 7, 2015 at 12:57 am
  • Martin Meaders

    If we are not then thank the liberal Democrats. We can be again if some elected leaders would prioritize the country over their political party.

    July 31, 2015 at 6:39 pm
    • erin111

      Thank corporations that raped our country using Republican politicians. Thank Regan for deregulation, what allowed for this economic rape!!!

      July 31, 2015 at 6:57 pm
      • alistz

        China was one of the world’s poorest countries. It’s entire population was starving in the 1970’s and the government recognized it could not provide for them.

        China did one single thing. It allowed corporations into the country. China is now the world’s largest economy. It is so much better off, and it’s people are better off for one single reason. They know you are wrong.

        You are the biggest f*cking idiot on the internet. Get off the internet, you’re slowing it down!

        July 31, 2015 at 7:29 pm
        • vet

          China has the worlds largest economy 1.3 billion people, it also has the largest middle class 300 million built on the backs of over 850 million poor! They now ship their labor to Africa because the dollar an hour they pay their chinese workers is too much, in africa labor is cheaper. China standard of living is also cheaper. I find your argument lacking in common sense.

          Corporations don’t need people to make a living, they need cheap labor, people willing to work for a slice of bread. We can’t live off a $1.00 an hour in the U.S. capitalism requires only two things, cheap labor to get products to poorer people and poorer people to make those products for themselves. Hence the rise of Walmart selling cheap products made by poor people, to poor people.

          The only way to attract manufacturing back to the united states is to lower the standard of living in the United States. The only reason that american was ever rich was because after WW2 the worlds manufacturing capacity was destroyed, the only industrial country left in tact was America, hence we had a market for our goods.

          Go get a life idiot.

          July 31, 2015 at 8:06 pm
          • alistz

            I find your argument lacking in
            common sense.

            That’s because you’re a f*cking idiot, like Jonathon Gruber says. You repeat nonsensical garbage because your masters have programmed your mind.

            They now ship their labor to Africa because the dollar an hour they pay
            their chinese workers is too much, in africa labor is cheaper. China
            standard of living is also cheaper.

            Nice phony fact you gruber dupe. China is not wealthy because of some manufacturing boom in Africa. Produce some statistical evidence that supports this stupidity.

            The only reason that american was ever rich was because after WW2 the
            worlds manufacturing capacity was destroyed, the only industrial country
            left in tact was America, hence we had a market for our goods.

            America was rich way before WW2, moron. It was filled with natural resources, agricultural ouptput, and innovation since the 1820s.

            capitalism requires only two things, cheap labor to get products to
            poorer people and poorer people to make those products for themselves

            Again, you moron, try reading anything about economics. Capitalism is nothing but the creation of wealth by allocating resources to their most productive use as determined by marketplaces. It does nothing but produce products, goods and services at the lowest possible cost and provides them to people in a marketplace. That is what wealth is.

            July 31, 2015 at 9:48 pm
    • DeeDee Denise

      But why is it important for America to be Nr. 1? Why can’t America just live in harmony with the rest of the world? Every empire falls, America is no different. A sure sign is when the country no longer has a moral compass. Everything else starts to fall after that. Greed, sexual immorality, corruption…America is over doing it like it always does but this time to its detriment.

      August 1, 2015 at 9:36 am
  • dikkbump

    I don’t believe any ‘poll’ that states that Mexico is ahead of America.

    July 31, 2015 at 6:43 pm
  • erin111

    US in definitely #1 country for Corporate “freedom”, read Corporate abuses on the whole country!!! This is where deregulation lead US. Thank you Regan and all the Republicans for turning our country into a sea of poverty (Republican states are leaders in this category nationwide!)….. well, 1% got our money. How is it called … corruption, right?

    July 31, 2015 at 6:49 pm
    • alistz

      Poverty has gone up 3% under the policies of Barack Obama.

      You’ve never read a book about economics in your entire life, stop babbling about a topic on which you are completely ignorant.

      July 31, 2015 at 7:26 pm
      • Thomassen Bart

        Your argument is weak and uninformed, not corresponding with any known data.

        July 31, 2015 at 7:55 pm
    • Kent D

      Obama has been purchased by the ultra rich who run the medical industry. He’s worse than any of his predecessors. You need to wise up.

      July 31, 2015 at 8:41 pm
      • erin111

        Strangely, Obama’s plan A was National insurance, European style. This plan was immediately rejected by Republicans, so he had a plan B, modeled on Romney care from MA, and this plan became Obamacare. Short memory??? Before ACA was implemented it was maliciously screwed by Republicans. They were haggling about everything and demanding changes to make is as bad as possible …. to have grounds to attack it later. Peoples’ lives and health didn’t matter for them at all.

        July 31, 2015 at 11:32 pm
        • Kent D

          You miss the point entirely. The only reason the medical industry (and it is an industry) went along with it is that Obama backed off the cost containments. Note that while the salaries of most middle class have continued to FALL under Obama’s watch, the salaries of licensed medical professionals have increased, and faster than inflation. As a pay off for their support, Obama has funneled money that used to go to creating middle class jobs to the pockets of the already well paid medical elite. Obama used to call this sort of thing “crony capitalism,” at least, before he was elected.

          Kent in SD

          August 1, 2015 at 11:45 am
          • cadmium

            The government doesn’t create jobs.
            Actually the best thing to do, for the betterment of the American people is to disband the health industry and form a new system that is single-payer. As they had proved beyond a shadow of a doubt, they are incapable of trust, morals or ethics when being for-profit.

            Remember they were non-profit until Nixon was in office, then came in the HMOs, which seemed great in the beginning but have lead to where we are, until the ACA.

            August 2, 2015 at 3:57 pm
      • cadmium

        Facts are annoying to you aren’t they?

        August 2, 2015 at 3:48 pm
  • erin111

    We are #1 in the category: Children in poverty! “Approximately 25% of children in the United States live in poverty – the highest among all developed nations.”

    July 31, 2015 at 6:55 pm
    • alistz

      Yes, and like the article says: there is not a single definition of poverty, so that statistic is meaningless and disproved by the fact that millions of people come here because the poverty means free housing, free food, free obamaphones and free health care.

      July 31, 2015 at 7:25 pm
      • vet

        You realize that their is no such thing as the Obama phone? Started under Reagan and turned into cell phones by GWB! Fact check it! Healthcare is not free to everyone, only to the poorest.

        July 31, 2015 at 7:52 pm
        • alistz

          That’s why Jonathon Gruber publicly says that people like you are stupid dupes.

          Because there was a small program under Ronald Reagan to give phone service to elderly poor and people in remote areas, that does not mean the Obama phone plan, which was to give 60 million people free phones, as a vote buying technique by these socialist asshats is the same thing.

          You are the guy that Jonathon Gruber mocks.

          July 31, 2015 at 9:57 pm
          • cadmium

            Wow, you must really know what you are talking about when you use some guy’s name that no one but you knows. Is he an academic? A scholar? Oh, I know, a republican pundit!
            Well then, it’s got to be true!
            You know, my mom says you people are dupes!

            August 2, 2015 at 3:59 pm
    • Thomassen Bart

      It’s a foolish comparison based on relative data. If average income is 1 million dollars but you only make 499K then you are poor, while in a neighboring country, where average income 1000 dollars and you make 501 dollars then you are not poor. These extreme examples show the primary issue with these types of comparisons.

      July 31, 2015 at 7:53 pm
  • Csibi Attila

    deport the 30 million illegal immigrants and the country will shoot up the rankings.

    July 31, 2015 at 6:55 pm
    • K. Campell

      That has nothing to do with wealth stupid!

      July 31, 2015 at 9:35 pm
    • cadmium

      Who’s going to cook your meals in most restaurants? Who’s going to clean your offices at night?
      Good luck with that!

      August 2, 2015 at 3:45 pm
      • Csibi Attila

        workers with a decent wage. you know the ones that got undercut because of illegals.

        August 2, 2015 at 9:00 pm
  • Kazz Man

    This is something anyone with common sense knows. You just can’t tell that to arrogant Americans.

    July 31, 2015 at 8:01 pm
  • DR47

    We were the greatest country in the world when we were still a democratic republic (two generations ago?). Once rich lobbies became represented and not voters, we became more and more decadent.

    July 31, 2015 at 8:11 pm
  • Kent D

    Another one of these Left Wing pinhead professors twisting all kinds of statistics in order to make us look bad. For what end? The facts are this: people from all those countries the Far Left professor says are better than U.S. risk their lives to leave there and come here.

    The take away is this: Yahoo has become nothing more than a Far Left propaganda machine intending to deceive us.

    Kent in SD

    July 31, 2015 at 8:40 pm
    • victor yao

      Kent, republican must love people like you who cannot add. This country has been going downhill thanks to smart people like you.

      July 31, 2015 at 9:48 pm
    • DeeDee Denise

      People from Denmark, Luxembourg, Switzerland and other top countries are not dieing to live in the United States! The immigrants coming to the USA are more from the east and Mexico. I don’t see why it’s so hard to accept that the U..S has gone downhill. If you can’t accept it then you can’t remedy the problem.

      August 1, 2015 at 9:28 am
    • cadmium

      Twisting all kinds of statistics? No one compares with Republican revisionist history! You guys are the best and completely fact adverse!

      August 2, 2015 at 3:43 pm
  • Luke Schneider

    We are the greatest at incarcerating our citizens. We spend the most per capita, on the military by far. We have the most open immigration policy of any country on the planet, We spend more per child on education yet our students rank 35th in math and lower in literacy than any other developed nation. Oh yeah, we are really, really, great at fooling ourselves.

    July 31, 2015 at 8:51 pm
  • 2smartforlibs

    100 years of history revision, we teach of kids how to be nice but not how to fill out a job application, we tax producers and are punitive when it comes to new private invention. The 4th branch picks winners and losers ( Taxi/Uber for an example). WE teach hate for anyone that differs in viewpoint from the totalitarian regime and you wonder why we have slipped. THis country was founded on rugged individualism and you could make whatever you could. Now we have generations that depend of the government for everything cradle to grave. Sad what you have let this Country become.

    July 31, 2015 at 9:11 pm
    • Martin Meaders

      Revision to the point high school kids do not know what Pearl Harbor was all about.

      July 31, 2015 at 9:23 pm
  • speakeasy8

    How did they define median wealth per adult? The US ranks 27 at $38000??? Ergo, we are a third world country.

    July 31, 2015 at 9:20 pm
    • victor yao

      Republicans must love you.

      July 31, 2015 at 9:46 pm
      • speakeasy8

        victor yao – that is all you can say, go back to school where you came from and learn some more.

        August 3, 2015 at 5:17 pm
        • victor yao

          For someone who can’t even add, you are awesome.

          August 3, 2015 at 6:45 pm
  • Martin Meaders

    I will blame the Republicans but not Reagan. Government should do little regulating. That is one reason we are in such trouble now. Handouts for deadbeats is another.

    July 31, 2015 at 9:22 pm
    • cadmium

      Do you want to include the billions in subsidies for Large American and some multinational corporations?
      Do you know that many of our largest corporations are able to declare a loss to the IRS at the end of the year, even though they made tremendous profits … and get a windfall subsidy of tens of millions from the government in return?
      Corporate taxes, taxes that help maintain roads, bridges, police forces, etc have taken a nose dive in the last couple of decades … but they benefit directly from it.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:37 pm
  • Stop Treason

    So who is allowing millions of 3rd world jobs thief’s with Temporary work visa into the U.S, who in return, never return?
    So who is allowing over a millions of Foreign Students into the U.S and who also Never Ever return.
    The Above two Facts have been in process since Ronald Anil Reagan resulting in currently over 93 Million Americans Unemployed and Millions more Under-employed. Please do not do # 1 on me and tell me that it’s raining.
    Trickle Down was and is a Terrorist Act against ALL Americans!

    All H-1B/L1 visa holders and Visa Over-stayers plus all the Illegal Aliens and All who hire them are All the Real Terrorist!
    Please Youtube: “America’s Bogus Skilled Labor Shortage”.

    July 31, 2015 at 9:42 pm
    • cvxxx

      It is the campaign funding. Large corporations and big donors care about profits and investments people fellow citizens do not matter. IMF,World bank and the UN want to have invasion of the 3rd worlders to destroy American individualism.

      July 31, 2015 at 11:04 pm
      • DeeDee Denise

        Don’t just blame those from the third world. The USA is out of control with spending, never mind creating continuous wars around the world. These things cost! The US desire for world domination is killing the country and the American people can do nothing but lay down and die…it’s a pity.

        August 1, 2015 at 9:11 am
        • cvxxx

          It’s more complex that that. The US is hardly in the world domination business the UN,World Bank,IMF are with the corporations doing that job

          August 1, 2015 at 12:36 pm
          • DeeDee Denise

            The IMF, World Bank, etc…are all part of the U.S. hegemony….get your facts together…The sooner you face the truth about the condition of the United States the sooner the populace can do something about it. The longer you bury your head in the sand the worse it will become. Don’t be surprised if you wake up one day and America has become Greece. The countries are in the same situation except America can print worthless US dollars,,,it’s better that you get to the truth of the US rather than continue to bury your head in the sand. The situation is dire….

            August 1, 2015 at 1:53 pm
          • cvxxx

            Incorrect. They are part of the plan to rule the world and govern it . The us politicians need corporation campaign funding. If congress had kept the original rules this would not be happening.

            August 1, 2015 at 7:04 pm
          • DeeDee Denise

            Your post still does not invalidate my point that they are all part of the hegemony of the U.S. China’s AIIB Bank, BRICS, and additional organizations have been created to challenge the hegemony of the U.S. and it’s about time. This will curtail the U.S. warmongering and eventually replace the dollar as the world currency. This will be good for the U.S. as the country will not be able to trade worthless dollars for goods and will therefore have to “get their house in order” so to speak. You do know that the Chinese Yuan will be added as one of the world’s reserve currencies later this year don’t you? Countries are dropping the dollar like flies. With the AIIB Bank, countries will be free of the corruption of the IMF, World Bank, and the like. As I wrote America IS Greece, except the U.S. can print money! Get your head out of the sand and prepare for a worsening situation in the U.S. At least do that for yourself….

            August 2, 2015 at 10:27 am
  • GregoryH

    I thought letting millions of dirt poor and illiterate third worlders into the USA was supposed to make everybody rich? Gosh, I’m so surprised it didn’t work.

    July 31, 2015 at 9:59 pm
    • cadmium

      Actually it has made some people very rich, the rich corporations that exploit them, like in the agriculture and slaughterhouses. Also you can picture the large corporations that hire foreign workers and that get to pay them less than American workers. Basically, they are getting richer.
      If you’re not American Indian then your ancestors that came here were most definitely ‘dirt poor and illiterate’.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:32 pm
  • Rickycardo

    Sorry but I don’t use any of those criteria for deciding what country is best. I go by what inalienable freedom I have. I still choose the US, followed closely by Alaska.

    July 31, 2015 at 10:24 pm
    • Pete

      Free? You forget your Government spies on you. And everyone else for all that matters.

      July 31, 2015 at 11:02 pm
      • Roger

        Sure they do watch one too many movies do we

        August 1, 2015 at 2:19 am
    • Roger

      You chose the US followed by Alaska you moron Alaska is the US stop talking you make us Americans look stupid

      August 1, 2015 at 2:18 am
    • Cythia

      Alaska is not a country, it is a state in the USA last time I checked.

      August 1, 2015 at 7:57 pm
  • Stop Treason

    Bill the very Greedy Gates is a real Scambag! He hates All American workers with passion and like so many other Tech CEO, he is very addicted to cheap cheap H-1B/L1 Parasites!
    While demanding for OPEN Borders and unlimited supply of H-1B/L1 Visa scabs parasites, Microsoft laid off over FIVE hundreds of their very highly Skilled AMERICAN employees last week. The Redmond software company announced in last year that it would eliminate 18,000 jobs, 14 percent of its workforce. The new CEO Asian Indian Satya Nadella who was appointed by (The American Hating ‘Bill the very Greedy Gates’) said the goal was to streamline the company. Rounds of layoffs were carried out in July, September and October, and Microsoft said the process would be complete by the end of this year.

    July 31, 2015 at 10:37 pm
    • DeeDee Denise

      I have to agree with you here, but what can the American people do about it, that’s the question. The government is so corrupt that “the people” have no say in the matter they just have to take it laying down.

      August 1, 2015 at 9:08 am
  • Jacob45

    A university liberal ranks US according to his stats. What utter drivel! Notice that Cyprus a country that robbed it’s citizens of part of their savings when it went bankrupt shows a higher median wealth than the US. This is pure socialist propaganda!

    July 31, 2015 at 11:20 pm
    • DeeDee Denise

      But why is it so hard to believe that the US has dropped in many areas? Do you have proof that what this person wrote is a lie?

      August 1, 2015 at 9:03 am
      • Kent D

        The “proof” is the vast number of people who try to come to the U.S. No one is breaking down the door trying to get to Cyprus.

        August 1, 2015 at 11:41 am
        • DeeDee Denise

          But what about all the people trying to get into Europe? Not only that….the people trying to enter the U.S. are poor people looking for handouts. Not only that there are those lured with H1B Visas who get paid more than Americans. They don’t come because they think America is great, it’s economical. Those with jobs will leave as soon as their work is completed. Keep in mind, people renouncing their U.S. citizenship has gone way up….some of us know when the ship is sinking and to jump off. People wanting to come to a country doesn’t mean that it’s great! Many other factors are involved like standard of living, quality of life, income…LOL like the article states. However, you have to accept that the U.S. has gone way down in their standard in the world…if you can’t do that then you won’t solve the problem of the demise of the U.S.

          August 1, 2015 at 12:13 pm
          • Jacob45

            While you make valid points as to our government and our overspending you tend to go overboard in promoting other countries. A majority of the immigrants heading for europe are the same low income poor folks seeking a handout as we get, they just come from Africa, Asia and the third world Mediterranean countries. As far as expats go, good riddance, if they are not willing to fight to keep their country they are as useless as the occupy losers and the welfare pimps. As the man once said.”These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country” I know…them’s fighting words.

            August 1, 2015 at 8:07 pm
          • DeeDee Denise

            The immigrants running to Europe from Libya, Syria, and other countries are mostly coming in masses because of the bullsh*t wars that the U.S. started in their countries! U.S. starts the wars and Europe becomes the fall guy! The United States have ruined these countries including Iraq and Afghanistan. Now the people are leaving these countries and spreading like roaches caught in the light. Why should an expat or any other person not have the freedom to leave and live where they please if they can? If you are on a sinking ship should you remain or try to save your life? There are MANY places better to live than the U.S. I’ve been to over 15 different countries, speak several languages, and live in another country as well. I’m very well aware of what’s happening….

            August 2, 2015 at 10:33 am
          • Jacob45

            My only point of contention with your post is that we need our intelligent and courageous people here to battle our out of control government. However it’s all about free choice.

            August 2, 2015 at 2:04 pm
          • DeeDee Denise

            You have over 300 million people in the U.S. I’m sure you still have some good pickings in the bunch….LOL

            August 2, 2015 at 2:26 pm
        • Cythia

          Anyone check out the numbers on how many Americans are leaving the country? I notice that was not mentioned when we have the highest number of Americans leaving this country than in the history of the US and the reason is the conditions are better in other countries, do the research!!!!!

          August 1, 2015 at 7:56 pm
      • Jacob45

        Can you (or the author) prove that any of it is accurate? Being “Old School” I judge everything I read by what I see around me. Extensive in country travel does not reflect this stories premise. Quite the opposite actually. But it does support the liberal/socialist/communist agenda and the income inequality that they push. Like most liberals they cherry pick stats from like minded academia or journalist. It’s called propaganda. When you’re stuck in a traffic jam (even in Chicago’s Southside or on a LA freeway) surrounded by thousands of newer cars full of chubby, well dressed people it just makes you wonder.

        August 1, 2015 at 11:58 am
        • DeeDee Denise

          I asked you a question….can you prove that what the writer wrote is a lie? If not, then you really don’t have anything to backup what you write. You shouldn’t allow your feelings to get involved with the fact that the U.S. is no longer the head-honcho and deal with it before the U.S. pulls a Greece on you. You could wake up one day and there’s no money for you in your bank account or you are heavily restricted on withdrawals. The U.S. is in really bad shape….Here are some more stats for you:

          #1 in Wages to 16th (in min wages half of 1965 with more than half of Americans making less than that!)
          #1 In % getting college degrees to 13th.
          #1 to sixth in semiconductor production, a technology we invented. America does lead in semiconductor Plant closings however that cost a billion bucks to build.
          #1 Creditor nation to largest DEBTOR Nation (a decline just under Reagan).
          #1 in education to 25th, 31st in internet speed, 21st in railroads, 14th electric grid
          #1 in infrastructure to 25th (America spent 11% of GDP under Ike on
          infrastructure now ….2.5%, …or 1/3 as much as the countries beating the U.S).
          #1 in healthcare, now 37th… at twice the cost, only developed country w/o everyone insured.
          #1 to 91st In income distribution, between Uganda and the Ivory Coast with
          less upward mobility that any other developed country…. HARDLY EXCEPTIONALl…
          #1 in USA has lost 80% of their private industry and 47 million
          jobs outsourced.182K factories closed, 60,000 just under Bush. From
          trade surpluses to trade deficits larger than all others combined.
          #1 In High tech, under Bush USA lost 50% of high tech jobs and now import more high tech than you export.
          -USA has not produced a commercial ship in more than 30 years. The cruise
          ships are made in the EU, where wages are more than double America’s
          and unionization is 7 times greater (USA is 61st in Unionization, only
          dictatorships and communist countries have lower rates of Unionization,
          countries with higher wages, GDP per capita and middle class wealth all
          in top 20).
          -Only developed nation w/o national healthcare for everyone, and yet USA pay
          twice as much per capita to cover only 60% well (some feel it’s a little
          better under Obamacare).
          -Most of what USA exports is raw materials, like a 3rd world country.
          Gasoline is your number one (behind weapons) export, while the USA
          import computers. The EU exports 50% more than the USA and it’s not raw
          materials or food, but high value MFG goods…

          **It would be better for you if you face the truth and start dealing with it. Remember, this is the way your government wants you, in delusion and without a clue. They want you to believe their propaganda that the U.S. is so great, Nr. 1, and doing well…it’s all a lie. But the American public is very easily fooled, and they know it! All the while they take away your freedoms and send your jobs away leaving the American public with nothing. The government can do what they want with you and they are….

          August 1, 2015 at 5:01 pm
          • Jacob45

            Of course what the government tells us is all lies! Obama’s socialist/communist regime, with the help of the Dems and Republicans, is stripping us of our rights along with sending our jobs overseas (both oceans). However the point of this article implies that income inequality is the major fault and pushes the rich vs poor rhetoric. We (the American people) have allowed, and created, a political class to ignore the Constitution, and in so doing to destroy the future for our children while promising them free stuff! While many of our citizens are fat, dumb and happy and cruising down a welfare highway that indeed leads to a Greece like end. The great thing about the US is we can stop this runaway government and return to the top. Unfortunately I don’t think they will. We have maybe one more shot to retake our government through the ballot box. After that….

            August 1, 2015 at 7:39 pm
          • DeeDee Denise

            I agree with your post 1000%….I hope that things will turn around. I am American as well even though I no longer live in the country; however, I do concern myself with what happens in the U.S..

            August 2, 2015 at 10:15 am
  • Stop Treason

    Please wake up! Many of the States have already been Invaded!!! This is one of those shady areas. If you have millions of people who Invade a country, isn’t that a Declaration of WAR without words? It’s so hilarious if you think about it, it’s a passive invasion, happens slowly and over time because we don’t enforce the existing laws. So instead of enforcing said laws, we would rather bend over backwards for cheap cheap H-1B/L1, Visa-Over-stayer and illegals that do not want to assimilate nor speak English. Now that right there is democracy, a failed one at that. So how exactly does this help the ANY “American” of ANY Race?

    July 31, 2015 at 11:40 pm
    • Roger

      Relax take it easy take off the tinfoil bubba joe

      August 1, 2015 at 2:34 am
  • C C

    What a stupid study, Mexico ranks above the U.S. in happiness. Someone should tell all those illegal emigrants how much happier they were in Mexico. Don’t see many U.S. citizens headed south across the border.

    July 31, 2015 at 11:44 pm
    • Roger

      I so have to agree with you

      August 1, 2015 at 2:36 am
      • Rivaldo

        God made planet for human not yes for UK France Italy Greece Spain and you came to this land to is not UK land you can to take over the land you and the rest of UK France Spain Italy Greece have done to much to human the planet and god made all planet for human not yes you UK France Italy Spain Greece how the world be we that UK Spain France Greece Italy it well. Bee happy and free land you came here take over the land thing you the bad pay back Hope god comes take over you 4 country’s

        August 1, 2015 at 7:34 pm
    • DeeDee Denise

      Most immigrants are coming to the US illegally not because they are unhappy but for economic reasons.

      August 1, 2015 at 9:02 am
  • kart_125cc

    What utter nonsense. There is ZERO actual COMPARATIVE REFERENCE.

    It should be noted that countries define poverty differently; in general, wealthier nations use higher standards of living to define poverty than do poorer nations.

    Darn right it “should be noted”! It’s actually crucial to be noted. So if a nation just doesn’t really care and sets its “poverty level” ridiculously low such that practically even the most poor are above that level, they win! How absurd is that. It’s like having a race where the people don’t race against each other but everyone just says what time they hope to beat and whoever beats their self=declared time by the most, wins. So the person who just self-declares some ridiculously slow time would then beat everyone else who actually gave an honest time they hoped to beat. It’s a means of measurement that does NOT measure comparative or relative quality but simply the degree of “sandbagging” their self-reported “poverty level”.

    Just FYI – someone at the official US poverty level is better off than 80% of the world’s population.

    Poverty is defined by UNICEF as living in a household that earns less than 50% of the national median.


    Approximately 25% of children in the United States live in poverty – the highest among all developed nations

    Same thing. All that says is that relative to that nation’s “poverty measure, they have more or less children below that level. It does NOT say a thing about how that child in that nation in that nation’s poverty level compares to a child in some other nation in their poverty level. Suppose one nation has 5 children below that nations “poverty level” and some other nation has 1 million children in that nation’s “poverty level” but being in that poverty level is still better off than nearly <every child in that other nation, is that other nation really better off because it only has 5 children in “poverty” or is the latter actually the better nation if their children in “poverty” (measured relative to that nation) are still better off than every child in that other nation, even those at the top of that nation’s scale?

    Is it better to be “wealthy” in a poor nation than “poor” in a wealthy nation, or if you are “poor” in a wealthy nation but still better off than a “wealthy” person in a poor nation, wouldn’t that be preferred? Is it better to be called “wealthy” even if it is poor compared to other nations? Is it worse to be called “poor” in a wealthy nation even if you have a better standard of living than even a “wealthy” person in a poor country? Do you care whether you are considered poor or wealthy, or do you care that you actually have a better standard of living?

    The “Gini coefficient” also suffers from the same flawed logic. It does not give any actual measure of what portion of a population of one nation is or is not actually better off than a greater or smaller portion of another nations’s population. You could have a highly unequal distribution of the wealth, but it could quite possibly be everyone is still better off than everyone in a nation with completely uniform distribution.

    Now, I will admit that being at the bottom of an unequal distribution can create negative feelings, even if one is far better off than the rest of the world, but that’s not a flaw with the system (how could it be considered a flaw if everyone in a country is better off than the rest of the world, at least as far as the people in that country are concerned) but rather a flaw with people’s inability to grasp how much better off they are than the rest of the world.

    Going back to the comparison of the US poverty level with the rest of the world. It seems quite absurd to argue that the “system has failed you” if you are better off than 80% of the world – that’s 5.7 BILLION people who would love have what you have. And you are displeased with that? You know how you whine about the “1%”? Well, everything you whine about the “1%” – that’s what you are to 80% of the world.

    I am not saying that to say you should just suck it up (of course not – everyone should endeavor to improve their lot in life!) but to give a dose of cold perspective of the reality for 7 billion people and your place in that. Maybe the better “world view is to stop putting so much effort into complaining so much and instead put that effort into getting on with doing what actually creates success. In the big picture, everyone is responsible for creating their own success. And it is specious to whine about how there is no opportunity or you are being shut out – all those people flooding our shores and creating their own success puts the lie to such claims. What’s the difference between foreigners who come here and create success and those born here and fail? The former do not make excuses. And maybe they don’t make excuses because coming from other countries, they know what real lack of opportunity looks like. And just because you can’t see or won’t see or just refuse to see the opportunity that draws these foreigners here, does not mean that opportunity does not exist.

    August 1, 2015 at 1:35 am
    • cadmium

      Travel to poorer places in the US, you’ll see how bad it can be. There are areas where the hospitals are exactly like third world countries. What your belief system wants and what reality actually is, can be very far indeed .

      August 2, 2015 at 3:26 pm
      • kart_125cc

        Exactly like third world countries? That’s what you seriously believe? You think people in Afghanistan, or the favellas of Brazil, or the slums of Venezuela are better off than even the poorest in the US? Or how about most countries in Africa? Try finding North Korea in Google Earth in night mode. It’s not hard – it’s the North Korea shaped black splotch in the middle of the lights of China and South Korea. So explain to me how the North Koreans are better off. North Korea does not have data on their Gini, but Afghanistan’s is better than the US’s. Which country would you prefer to live in? The one with the better or the worse Gini figure?

        Not that it is an “academic reference”, but from the Wikipedia page “List of countries by income equality”:

        Because the underlying household surveys differ in method and in the type of data collected, the distribution data are not strictly comparable across countries.

        You are one to be talking about “belief systems” when you have no concept of relative magnitude and what real poverty around the world looks like. Maybe you should travel to other parts of the world to see what the rest of the world experiences of poverty looks like.

        August 2, 2015 at 8:22 pm
  • Stinger Bee

    Don’t like it here? Then kindly GTFO and take all those illegal aliens ‘somewhere better’ with you, while you’re at it.

    August 1, 2015 at 2:40 am
    • Cythia

      Stinger, you need to GTFO, you sound like you could care less if the is country goes down the drain, your kind is what is dragging this country to ruin, get your butt up and get busy for change and quit being a lazy loser. Along with the illegals we have the lazy losers who just want to use their mouth and not their brain.

      August 1, 2015 at 7:43 pm
    • cadmium

      Every movement that pushed for bettering people’s lives, was fought for by people that believe in the US and believe in it’s values: fairness, opportunity, etc.. Otherwise they would leave.
      Those illegal aliens, possibly like your ancestors, provide the backbone of the economy. Read up on the history of the USA and on the economy before you continue to say asinine, things because you don’t know.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:24 pm
  • Stinger Bee

    The guy who wrote this article would love it if everybody in the USA had exactly $1000. That way we could define poverty as having less than 1000, and being wealthy as having at least $1000. Then he could say we were all rich.

    Liberalism, led by American academia, want everyone to be equally miserable.

    August 1, 2015 at 2:44 am
    • cadmium

      Reality is that the Republicans, every time they are in power, always do the same things, while hoodwinking their base with nonsense; give everything to rich, decimate the social safety net and rack up the largest deficits the US has ever seen, all while shouting about fiscal responsibility.
      From Reagan onward, has there been a republican president that hasn’t done this? No.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:19 pm
  • Cuffy

    Keep importing millions more third world illiterate poverty stricken peasants. As you can see it’s doing absolute wonders.

    August 1, 2015 at 7:33 am
    • cadmium

      Are you American Indian? If not, then you are a product of some ancestor of yours that made it over here, legally or not and at best, it’s questionable about their intelligence level. Many complained back then of the quality of the ‘chaff’ being blown over from Europe.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:15 pm
      • Cuffy

        First off, my ancestors all came here legally. Secondly, they didn’t expect food stamps, section 8 housing, healthcare, obamaphones, furniture vouchers and God only knows what else for every child they had. The comparison is so ludicrous I’m really surprised I even responded to this stupidity.

        August 4, 2015 at 9:37 am
  • DeeDee Denise

    Amazing…whenever I have mentioned on these forums that America has become a cesspool I was called everything but the child of the devil. Now here is “more proof” that the USA is not Nr.1 and the US media keeps the populace in the dark. Trivial issues are kept to the fore so that the American people become dumber and dumber as the US delves deeper into 2nd world-3rd world status. This is not a personal attack on the American people, it’s those making the decisions that’s causing the mayhem; however, the American people have become very complacent. A shame really…..

    August 1, 2015 at 8:34 am
    • Cythia

      You are so right!!!! No one can stand up and make a difference, we have turned in to a bunch of lazy complainers. Thank God our founders didn’t act this way or we would never have a country.

      August 1, 2015 at 7:50 pm
  • Linda

    That’s what happens when the government decides to deindustrialize the country while importing millions of low skilled/no skilled foreign workers at the same time while claiming American citizens won’t do those jobs so they can drive down wages. No other result could be expected without a very robust growing economy but the US in engaged in de-growth to end capitalism and consumerism. They neglected to mention that.

    August 1, 2015 at 9:09 am
    • cadmium

      Corporations are the ones choosing to send jobs overseas and to hire foreign workers at lower rates here, that is the truth of the matter. Nafta and those agreements were pushed through by the influence of corporate money.
      The rest is republican blather and misdirection.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:12 pm
      • Linda

        If either party wanted these companies back, all they would have to do is reduce the corporate tax rate and not tax the money that comes back that was already taxed in the country they are moving from. Its not rocket science. The US is no longer the best place to do business. Over regulation is also driving companies out of the US. Neither party seems to be engaged in the return of American job. They are engaged in de-growth. See John Holdren, Obama czar.

        August 2, 2015 at 4:17 pm
  • MoreBS

    Just glancing through the comments there are lots of blame to go around. I’d also bet that we are giving many of the countries ranked higher aid! Go figure!

    August 1, 2015 at 10:11 am
  • jeffho

    Wealth or income is just one measure but the true value of living in one country over another is quality of life enjoyed by average folks. The top 5 countries on the Happiness list are so tiny that they are barely the size of a county in the US. It is also noteworthy that Mexico is ranked above the US; which explains why millions of them are risking their lives to cross their northern border.

    August 1, 2015 at 10:40 am
    • Cythia

      Ever thing how crazy it is that some small dinky countries can achieve it but US cannot. You discount them yet they can do what we have not been able to continue. Your comment makes no sense.

      August 1, 2015 at 7:48 pm
      • jeffho

        It is very easy to govern a small country and create sound economic policies. Not so when you have a huge landmass and several hundred million people with diverse self-interests. Small European countries are very wealthy on a per-capita basis but it’s mostly old money. If you are not born into the right family, you’ll just have to settle for mediocrity. The key that makes it all work is that everyone knows their place. Those who wanted a better life left for America a long time ago.

        August 2, 2015 at 7:11 am
        • Matthew

          Small countries have there own self interested group’s just as much as big countries, You need to look at it on a per capita basis rather then the simple biggest number.

          Yes European countries are generally wealthier on a per capita basis but your claim that it is mostly old money hold’s no basis in fact when the income gap in the Europe between the poor and the rich is lower then that of the US.

          Your view that those that wanted a better life left for America doesn’t hold any fact either, They left for one, Doesn’t mean they got one. US has worse health care the Cuba!, Has one of the worst education systems, crumbling infrastructure, a prison population larger then China’s etc etc

          If you want to say the US is best then that is your prerogative, but if you are going to use information to back your view up then use factual information rather then complete lies.

          September 16, 2015 at 6:12 am
  • Richard Gibbard

    The US is still the only country in the world worth living in.

    August 1, 2015 at 10:55 am
    • Cythia

      Sure, if you like being bold faced lied to everyday by the people who own this country. People get busy and make a difference or we will be like so many other countries that WERE great and took the fall,. Do your research, look in to history instead of just commenting off the top of your head.

      August 1, 2015 at 7:46 pm
    • TrueTwit

      You Richard are semi- delusional. All countries have strengths and weaknesses. I’ve been to the USA many times and it’s often motor city madhouse and boring consumerism, meanwhile with the national debt, declining productivity, race problems, old infrastructure and culture wars, the US has many challenges ahead.

      August 2, 2015 at 2:36 am
    • cadmium

      Unless you have seen the world, traveled outside of our borders and myopic media, you cannot make such a statement because it has no merit.

      August 2, 2015 at 3:10 pm
      • DeeDee Denise

        I try to tell them that but they are so hypnotized by the American propaganda that you can’t get anything through their thick skulls…!..LOL

        August 2, 2015 at 6:20 pm
      • Richard Gibbard

        Been there, done that.

        August 14, 2015 at 12:13 pm
        • Matthew

          Really, And where have you been that makes the US look so great?

          September 16, 2015 at 6:00 am
  • Martin Meaders

    What is wrong with being number one? What is wrong with being the economic driver of the world? What is wrong with being rich? Public schools, the media, and college professors have convinced our young that we should settle to be equal with all other countries and not strive for excellence. What a loser attitude!

    August 1, 2015 at 3:17 pm
  • Cythia

    Merger, merger, merger. The companies are now to big and to powerful for the American people to do anything to stop them, they control the economy, the wages, the prices and us. We all just sat back and let it happen while the top one percent spent their time constructing the control.

    August 1, 2015 at 8:00 pm


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