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May 27, 2009


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Craig Westover

I'll take the time to read the report in detail, but a quick glance at the rankings that place the United States at #15 is revealing in and of itself.

Among the top 15 you have the Scandinavian countries, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Netherlands, and Singapore -- all relative small geographies with homogeneous populations. Above the U.S. on the list only Germany and Canada come close to being comparable in size and diversity.

Ireland is interesting in that over the past decade it has "liberalized" its regulatory environment and completely transformed its economy by fostering more economic freedom. With a million people less than Minnesota, Ireland outproduces Minnesota by about $30 billion.

That a country the size of the United States, with the population we have, and the diversity of that population, the mobility of that population, the immigration issues we have, ranks 15th on this list is amazing. What I don't understand is how progressives think we can overlay ("author" in the words of the study) a programed culture from homogeneous cultures on the diversity of the United States without destroying that diversity and the innovative power it brings to our country. Progressivism would be fantastic, if it worked. It simply can't achieve the objectives it sets out better than capitalism.

("ethical" capitalism, like "compassionate" conservatism," merely attaches a moral modifier to an amoral set of principles -- its like saying ethical gravity or compassionate mathematics. The modifier doesn't change the principles at work.)

Charlie Quimby

You might also take time to read what's been happening lately in Ireland (yet another small, relatively homogeneous country but one that meets your approval). Turning backwater economies like Iceland and Ireland over to the free market certainly had some positives in the short run, but progressivism is about the sustainable, long term gains.


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