After returning from Europe and reminding myself that we have an amazing system that limits the power of kings and that we will most likely never have a king as bad as most European countries have had, I feel as relaxed and calm about our current government as I ever have.
That said, Trump apparently said yesterday that the United States needs to keep out people from "shithole countries" and bring in more people from places like Norway. The White House hasn't denied the statement and numerous sources have confirmed it.
It brings up an interesting point... and it's not the fact that Trump thinks there are shithole countries nor it is it that he doesn't want people from those countries. I don't think that's shocking to anyone.
More interesting, to me, is the fact that Trump thinks someone from Norway would want to move to the United States.
Why in the hell would anyone want to move here from Norway?
You can look up the stats on your own - it's a fun time - but the U.N. recently named Norway (again) the number one spot to live in the world.
1. Norway — For the 13th consecutive year, Norway ranked highest in standard of living, life expectancy, and education. Thanks to the country's robust, publicly funded healthcare system, the average life expectancy is 82 years.
Now ranking countries is difficult but according to most every meaningful metric Norway is up there, if not number one.
And, according to that same study the United States is 11.
So, again, more important than the fact that there are perceived lower countries, it's important to remember that there might be 10 "better" countries that we can humble ourselves and learn from.
Oh and Norway's prison system is generally regarded as the most humanizing and healing in the world. It's prison rate is 75 per 100,000 compared to 707 per 100,000 for the U.S. It's recidivism is generally the lowest in the world at about 20%. The U.S. has a rate of about 76%.
Oh, and Norway recently pledged 1.2 billion dollars to the Syrian refugee criss which is the equivalent of $240/person. The U.S. has pledged about $16 a person. (But Norway's GDP of $97,000/person is nearly double the U.S.)
Oh, and though Norway has recently tightened up its restrictions, it has been generally been a leader in the world in accepting people from "shithole countries".
Yeah, there is much we can learn.