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Originally posted by pajoly
As you yourself note, of course not, but the chest thumping and emphasis we place on it sure says a lot about our culture. A healthy society might consider itself for having bragging rights for any of these good reasons:
- leading in literacy
- leading in math and science graduates per capita
- lowest in murder rates
- a long term trend showing wage growth keeping up with productivity
- having the best and most available healthcare
- leading in probability for upward mobility no matter to status you were born (believe it or not, we are no where near the top here; most north European nations beat us)
- having the lowest carbon footprint of industrialized nations
- highest percent of workers earning a living wage
- lowest infant mortality and highest life expectancy
- fewest children or elderly per capita in poverty
- lowest incarceration rate per capita
Those are just a few of things that a nation could use as bragging rights. We are now rank near third world status on many of these metrics. Winning Olympic medals hardly ranks, but it is a nice distraction for those who the flag as lapel pins.