[xmca] Re: UNICEF

From: Paul Dillon <phd_crit_think who-is-at yahoo.com>
Date: Thu Dec 11 2008 - 21:42:32 PST


I found the report, Childhood Well-being in Rich countries, available at:


is really worth looking at, especialy because the bar charts allow one
to scan all 54 pages and absorb a great deal of information very
rapidly although if you live in the UK or the USA you might not want to
look at it.  On the composite scale of all of the indicators, 6
categories of them,
probably 20 or more total, the USA and UK consistently came in last or

The indicators are very well-crafted and I'm
sure most people on the list will enjoy perusing the document.   US
kids are the most overweight but report liking school in the top third
and also rank high in physical actiity,  go figure.   occupy the mode
in getting into fights, Hungarians kids report getting into more fights
than anyone and Belgian kids fight more than the Irish -- goodbye one
more stereotype!

Cuba's not included, I guess  because it's not a rich country

The Brits are totally worked up about their place at the bottom:  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6359363.stm

 But I don't know why the Aussie's should be making a fuss.  Australia's not even included in the report which states: "OECD countries with insufficient data to be included in the overview: Australia, Iceland, Japan, luxembourg, Mexico, New Zealand, the Slovak Republic, South Korea,
Turkey."  Some countries don't have info for all the indicators, for
example, there's no data for US teen sexual activity or condom use. 
Probably the Bushite Ed Dept prohibited administering such questions
despite the fact that USA teens have the highest pregnancy rate among
OECD countries, equivalent to Russian teens for non-OECS ones.

One of the many surprises --  Mexico is considered a rich country.  Definitely a worthwhile document to scan.


--- On Thu, 12/11/08, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:
From: Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>
Subject: UNICEF
To: phd_crit_think@yahoo.com, "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <xmca@weber.ucsd.edu>
Date: Thursday, December 11, 2008, 7:50 PM

This report, which put Australia 3rd last, has caused a real stir here in Oz,
coming as it does amidst a major sandal. The previous right-wing government
marketised the early childhood problem by creating a voucher system for parents
and facilitating the creation of an early childhood care industry. A company
called ABC Learning made one man very, very rich, setting up 1000s of centres.
It was listed on the Stock Exchange and was hot property until the founder was
discovered off-loading his shares ahead of an announcement of bankruptcy, having
milked the company for millions. The new government is saving some of these
centres but many are being shut down.

So much for the market solving the early childhood education problem. Maybe the
market can do better with carbon trading? Ha!


Paul Dillon wrote:
> This morning I heard a news story on BBC about a new UNICEF report
evaluating early child development
> and welfare. Using 10 indicators they evaluated "developed"
> countries. It turns out that the countries with the highest taxes (all
> Scandinavian countries but also France) scored the highest -- . The
> conclusion I draw, thinking of the recent presidential campaign, is
> "Yes, paying higher taxes is patriotic." Mike Moore's moie
> made this very clear as well.
> I looked on the UNICEF website but couldn't find the referenced
document so I can't say where Cuba or the US came out on these indicators,
but I will keep looking.
> Paul

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Received on Thu Dec 11 21:44:02 2008

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