Denmark , a Scandinavian country where once Vikings ruled, is one of the leading economic as well as democratic powers in the world. It came into the spotlight in the US when Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton sparred over whether there’s something capitalist American can learn from Denmark’s democratic socialism.
Although Danish prime-minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen was a star in the spotlight, he claimed that Bernie was wrong to call his country socialist. He said:
“I know that some people in the US associate the Nordic model with some sort of socialism, therefore I would like to make one thing clear. Denmark is far from a socialist planned economy. Denmark is a market economy… The Nordic model is an expanded welfare state which provides a high level of security to its citizens, but it is also a successful market economy with much freedom to pursue your dreams and live your life as you wish.”
Why is Denmark better that the US? First take a stand, then read the top 10 reasons list on why Denmark system is better that the US. You are free to change the side one you’ll finish reading this list. And, if you know more reason, feel free to share them with us.
1. Per capita income
Maybe US has the largest and most technologically powerful economy in the world in general ,but per capita income in Denmark is $6,000 higher than in the US according to the World Bank.
2. Poverty rate
Only 6% of the population in Denmark live under poverty line, which makes this country the 2nd lowest relative poverty rate in the OECD (The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Last year, the US Census Bureau reported that more than 46 million people or 14.8 % of all Americans, lived in poverty.
3. Employment Rate
On one hand, the employment rate in Denmark is 72,8% which is one of the highest in the OECD, and it’s still rising. Moreover, Danish employees pay voluntary fixed social security contributions for unemployment insurance, early retirement, and flexible benefits. So anybody who has worked at least 52 weeks in three years has guaranteed income high as 90% of their original salary for the next two years.
On the other hand, the employment rate in the US is 67%. Despite the fact that the nation’s unemployment rate remains high, many states have cut unemployment benefits to levels not seen since the 1935. The percentage of unemployed Americans who use these benefits is at the lowest point since 1970s.
4. Weekly Working Hours
Recent data indicates that the typical American worker is no longer adhering to an eight-hour workday. According to the Bureau of Labour Statistics, the average American works 47 hours per week, or 9.4 hours per day and has16 days vacation in a year. Americans are working more than ever before and taking less time off.
Meanwhile in Denmark, there are 33 working hours per week, which makes about 5.5 hours per day. Moreover, everyone has the right to a 5-week long paid vacation per year.
5. Health Costs
In Denmark, health expenditures are at $4400 per capita more than OECD average of $3300, while, the U.S. healthcare spending is on track to hit $10,000 per person.
6. Tuition Fee
In Denmark, high education is free, and the government pays its students $900 per month to attend their studies. The only condition for students is to live by themselves, not with their parents. What makes this support more appealing is that it does not have to be paid back.
On the contrary in the US, the average tuition per year at a public university is $ 22,000, while it is over $31,000 yearly for private university.
7. Business environment
Forbes ranked Denmark as the best country for business using 11 criteria to rank, while the US was at number 18 under the same criteria.
Moreover, the World Bank ranks Denmark on the 3rd place as the easiest country for doing business worldwide. The US came as number 7.
8. Paid parental leave
Newly parents get 52 weeks of paid parental leave in Denmark. In addition to this whole year, mothers get 4 weeks of maternity leave before giving birth, and 14 weeks after the birth of the baby. The baby’s father is entitled to take two weeks of leave during the first fourteen weeks after the birth of the child. Then, the rest of 32 weeks follows where the mother and father can freely share leave between them.
Newly parents in American get nothing. Mothers have 12 weeks of unpaid leave annually for newborn or newly adopted children, and 1 in 4 new mothers go back to work within two weeks after giving birth.
9. Saving & expenses
Although Danes pay higher taxes than Americans, they still manage to save more money for retirement and other needs. Gross national saving (which includes savings by both individuals and government) in 2013 was estimated at 24.1 percent of GDP versus 13.5 percent in the U.S.
10. Danes Are Much Happier Than Americans
Denmark is on the 3rd place, while United States is on the 15th in the United Nations’ 2015 World Happiness Report.
Denmark has one of the highest tax rates in the world. 48.6 % of the country’s economic output comes from taxes. This model is used in order to narrow down the income gap between the rich and the rest. It will lower poverty, unemployment, inflation, budget deficits, and national debt. Do you think that Americans will accept this? I don’t think so. Americans have problems with current rate of 24.8% in taxes. Moreover, Danes accepted this model, and they are happy to pay their taxing because they are aware that this is the way to secure their future.
Do you agree with this list? I believe that those who vote for the US before, will change side. If you like this article, share it!