January 7

The best countries to live in : crowned republics – ie., constitutional monarchies

The proof of the pudding is in the eating. 

Often rubbished or at least dismissed by the elites, once  again crowned republics, or constitutional monarchies, have been  shown to offer the beat form of governance known to the world. The consistency of this sort of result will demonstrate – at least to the open minded – that this is no mere coincidence.

The UN Human Development Programme is based on the proposition that human development is about enlarging people’s choices, allowing them to develop their full potential and lead productive, creative lives in dignity and in accordance with their needs and interests.

By ranking countries in a way which is more consistent with this thinking, the HDR report has helped shift the debate away from gross domestic product (GDP) per capita as the only measure of development.

Instead, the HDI has provided a summary of each country’s achievement in attaining for its people: 

·          A long and healthy life,

·          access to knowledge, and 

·          a decent standard of living. 


The HDI for 2008 was released on 18 December, 2008. Using 2006 data, the latest HDI has been calculated for 179 countries and territories.  Since the data relate to the 2006 year, the impact of the current economic crisis is not reflected in the rankings. 

Three countries have been added: Liberia, Montenegro and Serbia, while one country, Zimbabwe, has been unsurprisingly dropped because of problems with income estimates. Yet that unfortunate  country, when it was still a self governing constitutional monarchy, would no doubt have ranked high among African countries had the HDI been available then.

The point is that constitutional monarchies, or crowned republics, make up less than 20% of the list. And yet, they make up 70% of the top ten.

Most are clustered among the highest HDI countries. The first developing country in the list is a constitutional monarchy.

This is not a coincidence and is consistent with every earlier edition of the HDI and other measurements of well being taken over extended periods of time.

These have included a separate measurement of prosperity and, you may be surprised, even one for corruption.  


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