B1 中級 78 タグ追加 保存
We asked you all a few weeks ago which country
you wanted us to tackle in our next “how

powerful is” video, and we got your response
loud and clear...

It’s often pointed to as the ideal combination
of capitalism and socialism.

Maybe it’s due to the country’s high standard
of living, education, and socialized healthcare,

or maybe it’s due to their widely respected
international standing.

Whatever the reason, we thought - with your
motivation - we’d dive deep into their society,

politics, and military to find out the truth
behind just how powerful Sweden really is.

The Kingdom of Sweden is a Nordic and Scandinavian
country located in Northern Europe.

While many use the two terms interchangeably,
they are not actually the same.

The Scandinavian countries are generally considered
to be Sweden and its immediate neighbors,

Denmark, and Norway.
However, the phrase ‘Nordic countries’
usually also includes Finland, Iceland, Greenland,

the Faroe Islands, and the Aland Islands.
Compared to most of its neighbors, and the
European Union, Sweden is massive, coming

in as the third largest member of the EU at
nearly 175,000 square miles.

Like other Nordic countries, Sweden is still
technically a monarchy, although their royal

family holds no real power.
Instead, power is held by its democratic parliament.
The country’s constitution is founded on
four major pillars: First, all government

power is granted by its population by way
of its parliament, the Riksdag.

Second, the constitution says the country
shall have a king and queen, with specific

rules of succession, including a requirement
that they be Protestant.

Third, freedom of the press is a guarantee,
which public authorities are not allowed to

Fourth, freedom of expression cannot be abridged
except in cases of public defamation.

Sweden is also known for the robust social
system it has in place for its population

of ten million residents.
The country provides universal healthcare
as well as a free college education.

Part of the reason it’s able to do this
is because Sweden has one of the highest per

capita incomes in the world, and the government
taxes that income significantly, on average

at nearly 60%.
Roughly a quarter of collected taxes go towards
healthcare and education, about 40% goes towards

social security, and just 5% is allocated
towards law enforcement and military.

But despite such a low budgetary focus from
taxes, Sweden’s military ranks 29th worldwide,

with more than 40,000 available troops, and
a defense budget of roughly 6 billion dollars.

Throughout its history, Sweden has been strictly
neutral, with its last direct warfare seen

in 1814.
It is also a member of numerous intergovernmental
organizations, such as the European Union,

the United Nations, the Nordic Council, the
World Trade Organization, and the OECD.

It is not, however, a NATO member, nor is
it part of the Eurozone, preferring to use

their own currency, the krona.
So what does this high-tax, social welfare,
and strong military mean for Sweden?

Well, they have one of the happiest, healthiest,
wealthiest, best educated, and most progressive

populations in the world.
In fact, with 10 million residents, roughly
a quarter of the population is foreign born,

due to the country’s acceptance of refugees
from the Middle East and North Africa.

Despite nationalist rhetoric from white supremacy
groups and even the President of the United

States, crime in Sweden has not seen a significant
rise, and is currently roughly the same as

it was in 2005.
In short, Sweden has managed to bridge the
gap between social welfare and high incomes,

while opening its doors to those in need.
So, when it’s held up as a model and standard
for how other countries should function, it

may be because Sweden is doing incredibly
well on its own.



How Powerful is Sweden?

78 タグ追加 保存
Ntiana 2017 年 12 月 11 日 に公開
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