I checked five different indices of freedom and democracy provided by various researchers. My initial idea was to show the top 10 ranking countries of every index. However, the USA does not manage into the top 10 anywhere. So, I checked what countries rank better than the USA on those indices. Apparently its neighbour Canada, The Netherlands – one of the oldest democracies in the world, also New Zealand, Denmark and Switzerland rank better on all five indices. Countries like Estonia, Taiwan and Uruguay rank better on 3. Fund fact – the United Arab Emirates, one obviously not-so-free country ranks better than the USA on Economic Freedom Index.
So, If we talk about FREEDOM we talk about THE NETHERLANDS.
What: Difference in ranking compared to the USA on the following indices. Index, When, Source: Democracy Index, 2019, EIU Human Freedom Index, 2017, The Human Freedom Index 2018: A Global Measurement of Personal, Civil, and Economic Freedom Economic Freedom Index, 2020, The Heritage Foundation Moral Freedom Index, 2020, The Foundation for the Advancement of Liberty Press Freedom Index, 2020, Reporters Without Borders Where: 172 countries were ranked on at least 3 of these indices.
There are few real communist regimes left around the world, and even those are not really communist. So, maybe democracy and economic freedom do not correlate well? Apparently, they do. Democracy and economic freedom go together!
What: Democracy Index and Economic Freedom Index When: 2018 for Democracy and 2019 for Economic Freedom Index, which covers years 2017-2018. Where: 162 countries of the world Source: EIU for Democracy Index and The Heritage Foundation for Economic Freedom Index
There is such Human Freedom Index, covering a wide range of areas including freedom of religion, freedom of movement, freedom to trade and many more. After plotting this index against the Democracy Index I saw a super clear relationship: democracy and freedom go together!
What: Human Freedom Index and Democracy Index When: 2016 Where: 157 countries of the world Source: EIU for Democracy Index and Ian Vásquez and Tanja Porčnik, The Human Freedom Index 2018: A Global Measurement of Personal, Civil, and Economic Freedom (Washington: Cato Institute, Fraser Institute, and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, 2018).
Let’s say Human Development Index indicates this “betterness” of life, and the Democracy Index indicates how democratic a country is. Then it is visible, that only democraciest democracies show a positive trend. Countries below score of 6 lose that clear correlation, because some countries managed to provide good living conditions for their citizens without being democratic. Most of them have oil.
What: Human Development Index (HDI) and Democracy Index When: 2017 Where: 165 countries of the world Source: UNDP for HDI and EIU for Democracy Index