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Why the U.S. Is Not the Best Country in the World

Why the U.S. Is Not the Best Country in the World Steven D. Hales An article of faith in contemporary American politics is that Subjective preferences such as one's tastes and personal situAmerica is the greatest nation in the world. No politician would ation must be set aside; otherwise the variables will be far too dispute it, and pundits on the left and right subscribe. For instance, idiosyncratic to reach any conclusions about the best country to in a 2002 debate on terrorism, William Bennett claimed "We have live in. Instead, we must examine what the situation is for the done more good for more people than any country in the history of statistically average citizen of a country. Furthermore, we need the world." His opponent in the debate, Noam Chomsky, agreed, to look at objective criteria in evaluating nations--criteria that stating that, "I... live in what I think is nearly all rational persons would agree 1 the greatest country in the world." are desiderata that a good nation Once we have established that the When thinkers as far apart on the politishould satisfy. Ultimately what we data shows the U.S. to be the world's cal spectrum as Bennett and Chomsky want is a fairly general list of basic http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Good Society Penn State University Press

Why the U.S. Is Not the Best Country in the World

The Good Society , Volume 15 (2) – May 21, 2006

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Publisher
Penn State University Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 by The Pennsylvania State University. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1538-9731
Publisher site
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Abstract

Steven D. Hales An article of faith in contemporary American politics is that Subjective preferences such as one's tastes and personal situAmerica is the greatest nation in the world. No politician would ation must be set aside; otherwise the variables will be far too dispute it, and pundits on the left and right subscribe. For instance, idiosyncratic to reach any conclusions about the best country to in a 2002 debate on terrorism, William Bennett claimed "We have live in. Instead, we must examine what the situation is for the done more good for more people than any country in the history of statistically average citizen of a country. Furthermore, we need the world." His opponent in the debate, Noam Chomsky, agreed, to look at objective criteria in evaluating nations--criteria that stating that, "I... live in what I think is nearly all rational persons would agree 1 the greatest country in the world." are desiderata that a good nation Once we have established that the When thinkers as far apart on the politishould satisfy. Ultimately what we data shows the U.S. to be the world's cal spectrum as Bennett and Chomsky want is a fairly general list of basic

Journal

The Good SocietyPenn State University Press

Published: May 21, 2006

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