Tuesday, January 12, 2010

EU vs. USA, Part II

Click to enlarge.
Source: The 2004 study "EU vs. USA" by the Swedish think tank Timbro (Table 2.2). Note that the data in the table above are from 1999, but would probably be comparable to more recent data.


At 1/12/2010 3:48 PM, Anonymous Norman said...

Yep, we need to be more like the Eruopeans!!!! We live 30% better than them now and they count on us for defense. And we should be more like them?

At 1/12/2010 4:09 PM, Blogger Shawn said...

I'm amazed at the times when people merely look at things like "good public transportation" when stating that EU > US.

I think public transportation is one of the worst things to spend money on (in terms of being actually profitable and useful), but I do wonder if the obvious utility gained is worth the expenditure (again, I don't think so, but then I'm so hyper-anti-government that I'm never going to think a gov program is a good one).

If we just had great public trans in the 20 biggest cities, would people bitch so much about how great the EU is, or would they just move on to something else?

I guess health care is the other big one.

Aside: my word verification is "recessin". There's a joke in there--maybe "you can't spell recession without O?"

At 1/12/2010 4:26 PM, Blogger tom said...

Well in reading Krugman today...he seems defensive with all these solid points rebutting his premise.

At 1/12/2010 5:45 PM, Anonymous Slartibartfas said...

UK "Autos per 100": 3

Are you suggesting one would take a study that does not even proof read its numbers serious? Or are you suggesting that 3 in 100 is actually correct?

It is also interesting that you "forgot" to include the whole table, ie "Radio", "Television", "phones per 100 people", "cell phones per 1000", might it be because Europe is either superior there or at least on par with the US?

When I look at the number of microwaves I also can't help myself but think that it is indirectly proportional to the quality of the cooking skills of the people.

Last but not least, statistics from 1999 on vastly technology related aspects of life are hopelessly outdated.

At 1/12/2010 7:20 PM, Blogger Jet Beagle said...

Shawn: "I think public transportation is one of the worst things to spend money on (in terms of being actually profitable and useful)"

I agree, if you are referring to rail transport. Bus and jitney transport may make economic sense if energy costs get high enough.

Shawn: "If we just had great public trans in the 20 biggest cities"

Not sure it's possible to have "great" public trains in the 20 biggest American cities. Our large cities were designed for personal transport vehicles. As such, they are much less dense than cities where rail transit can work (NY, Tokyo). We cannot "redo" our cities. The existing investment in low density housing and dispersed infrastructure, accumulated over a century, is simply too large, IMO.

At 1/12/2010 8:57 PM, Blogger Craig said...

I don't know that I'm willing to use 10 year old data as a basis for, well, anything. It's rather a breezy assumption that nothing much has changed since 1999.

At 1/13/2010 2:43 PM, Anonymous richard said...

This can't be right. I am Dutch, I live in the Netherlands. I don't know anybody without a dishwasher. Or a microwave. Or a PC.

Sounds like a lot of self rightiousness b*s*, if you pardon my french.

At 1/13/2010 2:50 PM, Anonymous richard said...

In case you were wondering abou how many pc per capita the us has: Here is your vice president speaking:



"New broadband access means more capacity and better reliability in rural areas and underserved urban communities around the country," Biden said, according to a transcript of his remarks supplied by the White House.

"Businesses will be able to improve their customer service and better compete around the world," Biden said.

"This is what the Recovery Act is all about -- sparking new growth, tapping into the ingenuity of the American people and giving folks the tools they need to help build a new economy in the 21st century," he said.

Speaking at the event with Biden, Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue described broadband as the "new dial tone of the 21st century.


Yep. Talk about the 21th century. Let's see who got there first. Same news article from AFP:

The United States was ranked 20th in broadband penetration in a survey of 58 countries released earlier this year by Boston-based Strategy Analytics.

South Korea, Singapore, the Netherlands, Denmark and Taiwan were the top five countries listed in terms of access to high-speed Internet.


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