A new report reveals a very sobering fact: the United States’s freedom rankings are sinking further and further downward.
Conservative Review‘s Chris Pandolfo cites three freedom ranking lists in which the U.S. has fallen from the top ten: the Legatum Prosperity Index, the Frasier Institute’s Economic Freedom of World Index, and the Heritage Foundation’s 2016 Index of Economic Freedom.
The Legatum Prosperity Index ranked the U.S. at 11th overall in 2015, behind the Nordic countries of Norway, Sweden and Denmark as well as the U.S.’s northern neighbor, Canada. Pandolfo notes that “the U.S. failed to make the top 10 in the critical categories of Economy (11th), Entrepreneurship & Opportunity (11th), and Governance (11th)” and the country was also ranked at 15 in the “personal freedom” category. But most disturbing was the fact that the U.S. ranked 33rd in the “Safety & Security” category.
It gets worse:
America’s sad showing in the Legatum Prosperity Index is not an anomaly . America was 16th in the latest edition of the Frasier Institute’s Economic Freedom of the World index, copublished with the Cato Institute. In the year 2000, the United States was ranked 2nd.
Nor was the U.S. worthy of top-10 placement in the Heritage Foundation’s 2016 Index of Economic Freedom as well, coming in 11th place.
In the former list, Qatar, Singapore and Jordan were all ranked ahead of the U.S. in economic freedom. In the latter list, the U.S. ranked behind countries like the United Kingdom, Australia and Estonia when taking into account the following categories: “rule of law,” “limited government,” “regulatory efficiency” and “open markets.”
“America’s historically vibrant entrepreneurial growth is significantly hampered by intrusive, expensive, and often ineffective government policies in areas ranging from health care to energy to education,” The Heritage Foundation explains in their rankings system. “Government favoritism toward entrenched interests has hurt innovation and contributed to a lackluster recovery and stagnant income growth.”
Indeed, the Obama administration has truly extended the iron fist of government further into the lives of everyday Americans. For instance, through 2015, there has been a total of 20,642 regulations issued under Obama, an astounding number that is suffocating economic growth in the country, and that number is only increasing in 2016. The Environmental Protection Agency is pummeling the coal industry out of existence. Obamacare has restricted the choice of healthcare options among Americans as its imploding.
But perhaps the most significant indicator of the decline of freedom in America can be seen in the country’s presidential choices: an un-indicted felon whose political ideology is in the vein of Saul Alinsky-esque radicalism and a policy-illiterate nationalist populist who has staked massive tariffs as one of his main campaign platforms.
There is a saying about putting a frog in boiling water:
As the story goes, researchers found that when they put a frog in a pan of boiling water, the frog just quickly jumped out. On the other hand, when they put a frog in cold water and put the water to boil over time, the frog just boiled to death. The hypothesis is that the change in temperature is so gradual, the frog does not realize it’s boiling to death. While the results of the experiment are in question it is a good metaphor for organization cultures.
It’s also a metaphor representing America’s gradual fall from freedom and into tyranny, as reflected by the country’s descent in the aforementioned rankings lists. Will Americans wake up and realize the water is boiling before it’s too late?