A recent study conducted by a bunch of ‘University Types’ from the University of Leeds found that Vietnam is the only country on earth that is even close to using resources sustainably, and ensuring a good quality of life for its citizens.
The study isolated a number of factors to quantify ‘quality of life’, and contrasted them with the resources used to provide that standard of living.
No surprise, the advanced economies use a ton of resources, though they do generally make sure their inhabitants live to be over 65, at least on average. I think that this is a good illustration of what a wonderful country Vietnam is, though I use a different set of criteria in my life.
What Matters To Me
I frankly don’t care if I live to be 65, and I don’t know why people are so obsessed with a long life.
Sweeping judgments aside, these are my factors for evaluating a ‘livable’ country:
1. Personal Safety
2. Cost of Beer/Coffee
3. Availability of Great Multi-Ethnic Food
4. Quality/Existence of (Real) Bread
5. Climate (Does it get cold?)
6. Can I Make Out With My Girlfriend In Public?
I am happy to report that Vietnam excels in all of these areas except the last one, as they discourage public displays of emotion or affection.
That said, once I get a few beers in my Vietnamese girlfriend, she will make out with me a little bit in the street, as long as we aren’t in a neighborhood where she might be recognized.
The West Is Massively Overrated
It is currently Lunar New Year here in Vietnam, which means all the people are enjoying their longest public holiday with their families.
I have no idea what is going on in the US and EU, but from what I read people are getting shot in the US, and Europe is inundated with migrants that seem to think Europe is the land of milk and honey.
It also gets really cold in many areas of the US and EU, so according to #5 on my list of what matters, long term living there would be impossible. I guess some people like the cold, or at least they say they do, which I don’t understand at all.
Of course, living in a cold climate means using a lot more fuel to keep warm, so I personally think that anyone who isn’t a native resident (indigenous person), should be forced to relocate somewhere warmer. I am on the fence about the Canadians, but the Nordic people should probably be allowed to stay in their native countries.
If anyone wants to flee the sunless tundra they should be allowed to move somewhere less energy intensive, but the specifics of that undertaking are beyond me at the moment.
The US is a different story.
People all across the Canadian border are sucking up resources at a frightening pace, and they just seem to want to use more and more energy to perpetuate their lifestyle. So right away, kick all those people in the Northern US out, and make them move somewhere warmer.
The amount of resources the US uses will drop significantly, as will their carbon emissions.
No need to drive around in the frigid white north, because when you live somewhere warm you can bike or whatever. The study from the University of Leeds found that past a certain point increased use of resources didn’t accomplish much, so let’s make some big changes, and save precious resources.
Watch A Documentary Or Something
The western ideals of egalitarianism and freedom don’t really work on scale.
First of all, just look around the world. Everyone is really different. I am not saying that racism and discrimination are ok, just that different people have different capabilities.
The US, for example, is moronic in a way, and on a scale that should be ended immediately. I have no doubt that there are some smart people in the US, but overall, the culture that exists there should be done away with.
Making war, polluting the planet and using any resources they can get their hands of isn’t going to work in the long term, and also they blew up a bunch of nuclear bombs in the mid 20th century that gave the whole world cancer.
Yes, France, the UK and the USSR did similar things, but on a much smaller scale.
Now all that radioactive waste the US created is just seeping into the Pacific Ocean, which is also covered with plastic that seems to be thrown away like confetti by people that just don’t care at all.
Do people litter here in Vietnam?
Sure, but much like China or South America, people collect recyclable materials, so the level of waste is much lower.
There are people with rubbish bins constantly patrolling the streets picking up garbage, though many industrious people also look for things like plastic bottles and old beer cans to sell for the value of material.
This sort of thing doesn’t happen in the US or other ‘advanced’ economies, as the value of an aluminum can simply won’t motivate anyone to do anything.
Is Central Planning Really That Bad?
Communism gets a bad rap in the West, and sure, the USSR was pretty rough for many people. I am not saying that any political system is perfect, but that the idea that massive corporations somehow work to the benefit of humanity is absurd.
There are terrible abuses of human rights under the current global corporate oligarchy, but the big companies are smart enough to hide them in places most people don’t go.
This allows people to keep on consuming, and not worry about the poor children that mine coltan or rare earth elements in the Congo, or the garment slaves in Bangladesh that keep production costs low, and margins for companies like H&M high.
People don’t care at all about the workers that allow them to waste resources on a scale that was unimaginable a few generations ago, and now, somehow, an idea like ‘Fast Fashion’ is ok to advertise!
They should really put a picture of a 10 year old Congolese child disappearing into a hole in the ground on the box of every iPhone X, just like the pics of rotted out lungs they put on cigarette packs.
Incidentally, here in Vietnam they don’t require any sort of nasty pictures on cigarette packs, which I like. Not that I smoke, it is just terrible to see those awful pictures all over the place. I guess the government here trusts that their citizens know that smoking is bad for health, and don’t need to be reminded of it every time they go to a store.
Not that Vietnam is perfect, according to the study they still emit too much CO2, but in the grand scheme, they are far further down the road of sustainability then most nations. Additionally, there is inexpensive cold beer, great bread, wonderful ethnic food and it is warm all year round!