Scandinavia and the World

Comments #9576879:


No day like today 8 1, 7:43pm

@Girldownunder If you read the news, you get that impression. Certainly, terrible things happened (take Syria as the extreme), but also good things.

For instance, in Europe, a lot of people think very negatively about the EU and think the EU had a 'disastrous year'. The Brits even voted to leave (though at the end of the year in two polls it turned out 54% did not want to leave so Bregret — Orb International en WIN/Gallup). But 9 of the 20 happiest countries in the world are in the EU, the EU economy grew with 2%, government debt decreased, in the last quarter of 2016, 232 million EU citizens had a job (an all time record). In various EU countries there were elections and referenda, all passed peacefully and were fair.

In The Netherlands, a politician who had broke the law was tried and convicted in a transparent and fair process, showing a strength of the separation of powers.

World wide: never were there as few people in extreme poverty as in 2016. The Paris Climate Treaty was signed.

Is it good enough? No, there are many terrible things. Such as inequality, terrorism, democracies tending to slide into authoritarian regimes (Russia, Poland. Hungary, Turkey, maybe even the US in the long term, where money has hijacked democracy (the popular vote is marginalised by for instance gerrymandering districts), Republicans plan to abolish the anti-corruption watchdog of Congress, and a president has been elected who so far shows little respect for democracy and the rule of law).

We tend to focus on the terrible things (these sell more advertisement as they draw our attention) but even with good news, people can stay negative.