I'm posting this for reference, because I am sure it will come in handy some time in the future. Some people here get the wrong impression that I am a liberal, or at least an economic liberal. I'm not. I have been a member or supporter of conservative parties in Canada and the UK, and used to regularly support the Republicans. My political hero is Margaret Thatcher, and I generally believe in free trade and less government involvement in the economy. This mistaken impression has come because I am often arguing with conservatives over basic facts. This p****** me off because I find myself defending policies in which I often don't believe nor support just to clarify factual mistakes people make to support their own worldview. For example, in this thread, I am being forced to defend the Swedish economy, a model I don't particularly support. I am going to re-post this so I can find it the next time I need it. You can see all the data here. 1. Gross domestic product Real GDP growth on a purchasing power parity basis from 1970 to 2009 for the US was 3.6% v 2.9% for Sweden. From 1980 to 2009, it was 2.8% and 1.9% respectively. From 1990 to 2009, it was 2.6% and 1.8% respectively. This decade, it has been 2% and 1.7% respectively. America does better, right? Well, this is almost due entirely to population growth. Over the past 40 years, GDP growth per capita for the US has been 2.9% versus 2.8% for Sweden. Over the past 30 years, it has been 1.8% and 1.7% respectively. However, since 1990, per capita GDP has grown faster in Sweden at 1.7% versus 1.6% in the US. And this decade, Swedish real per capita GDP has risen by 2% compared to 1.2% in the US. That doesn't mean I support all of Obama's policies, or that I think America should be like Sweden, or that we should have high taxes and a broad welfare system, or anything like that. It just means that people should look at basic facts and data rather than continuously spout trite bromides to reinforce their own beliefs.