VANCOUVER, BEST CITY FOUR YEARS RUNNING. Wikimedia Commons photo
MELBOURNE SKYLINE. AUSTRALIA HAS FOUR OF THE WORLDS TOP CITIES. Wikimedia Commons photo
We haven’t talked about geography in a while. Have you ever thought about relocating to a better place?
Like, “If Congress is stupid enough to kill Medicare, I’m moving to Canada!”
If you’re retired and living on Social Security, you might actually have the freedom to make a considered decision about the best place for you, personally.
Her Majesty Elizabeth II, Queen of the Commonwealth, must be doing something right. Public domain photo
Turns out, Canada’s not a bad choice. In Time’s list of the 10 Happiest Countries in the World, Canada comes in third, behind only Denmark and Sweden. Australia is fourth and New Zealand is eighth. These Commonwealth countries must have a secret. Could it be their health care systems? Ireland, my favorite place to consider living, is 10th. Come to think of it, I guess all the countries in the top 10 have universal health care. The U.S. does pretty well, at 12th place, considering we have health care that’s more expensive and less effective than many countries.
In a ranking of the Most Livable Cities in the World, Australia has four(!) in the top 10 and Canada has three. Vancouver, Canada (most livable city in the world four years in a row!), and Melbourne, Australia took first and second place. If you’re gazing north across the border, Calgary and Toronto also make the top 10. Pittsburgh(!) is the top-ranked U.S. city, at 28th.
Gazing south across the border? Dunno. People used to retire to Mexico for the low cost-of-living. But I hear they’ve got an out-of-control drug war going just now.
As always, these rankings of places are subjective. You have to consider what factors were considered in the rankings. What’s important to you? Health care? Cost of living? Climate?
— John Hayden
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