Ireland: the real wealth of the nation

Back in 1990 the United Nations started measuring ‘human’ development as opposed to economic development, and publishing an annual Human Development Index (HDI). The ‘real wealth’ of a nation lies not in its gold or money but in a human being’s actual experience of life. The HDI has many indicators, including the adult literacy rate, carbon dioxide emissions per capita, expected years of schooling, gender equality, the homicide rate, life expectancy at birth, maternal mortality, the robbery rate and under-five mortality.
In 2010, Ireland according to the HDI is the fifth best place to live in the world, the second best place to live in Europe and the best place to live in the EU.
Remember, life isn’t about money. Blather Sunshine Industries offers a free lollipop to each Irish person who comes forward to admit that they have an excellent quality of life compared to the majority of people on Earth. Of course, there is a strong belief in our organization that every single Irish person is a born moaner who is obsessed with money, the economy and owning property (and the art of moaning and complaining), so we are going to demolish our lollipop factory at midnight tonight if we can’t find ONE Irish person who will admit that life is good.

The top 10:
1 Norway
2 Australia
3 New Zealand
4 United States
5 Ireland
6 Liechtenstein
7 Netherlands
8 Canada
9 Sweden
10 Germany

Barry Kavanagh writes fiction, and has made music, formerly with Dacianos.

Contact him here.


  1. Shure, I’m in Dept to me neck, I’ve no job, but I have a new career on the way, a wife that loves me, a puppy to entertain us when we can’t afford the electricity anymore and a government determined to stay in power until the country is completely fucked.
    Life is good, now where’s my lolipop 😛

  2. The Blatherometer writes:
    Well done George, now let’s look at your score! One point for using the word ‘love’, +1 for ‘puppy’ and +1 for misspelling ‘debt’, which shows you don’t give a monkey’s about it. But minus one point for mentioning debt to begin with, -1 for ‘job’, -1 for ‘career’ and -1 for ‘government’. Overall that’s a score of minus one. You now owe Blather Bootboy Debt Collection Agency one lollipop. The preferred flavour is ‘raspberry’.

  3. Cripes did this study reflect on taxation? I mean a place where I have to give back 70% as taxes (Norway, Germany, Sweden) is most definitely not a good place to live.
    On the other hand, a government that is cashing in so much is expected to keep the hospitals clean and the roads in good condition. Give me 2/3 of your money and I’ll do it too.

  4. I live in Norway. Income tax rates for 2010:
    “The general combined rate of national and municipal income tax is 28%, with a lower rate of 24,5% applicable in the Counties of Finnmark and the Nord-Troms.
    A further national income tax, called “top tax” or “surtax”, is levied on gross income:
    * 9.00% on income between NOK 456’400 and NOK 741’700,
    * 12.00% on income above NOK 741’700.”
    In Norway there is a high standard of living, free education to all, excellent social services, long life expectancy etc.etc. How can you define whether a place is ‘definitely not a good place to live’ just because you’d have to pay tax there? You are thinking in terms of figures not human life.

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