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Old 07-29-2011, 02:27 PM
 
26,684 posts, read 26,964,851 times
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Top 5:

1. New Hampshire
2. South Dakota
3. Indiana
4. Idaho
5. Missouri

Bottom 5:

46. Massachusetts
47. Hawaii
48. California
49. New Jersey
50. New York

Freedom in the 50 States | Mercatus

Of course, the concept of freedom depends on the issues that are important to you as an individual. Not everyone's interests and priorities are the same.

Last edited by AnUnidentifiedMale; 07-29-2011 at 02:38 PM..
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Old 07-29-2011, 02:30 PM
 
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interesting ranking. i like how they calculated it according to "individual freedom." to give you an idea of how they construct the rankings, here is an example of my home state:

Quote:
South Carolina is in the middle of the pack when it comes to overall freedom but performs quite poorly on personal freedom. In terms of fiscal policy, the tax burden is fairly low, but government spending and, therefore, debt are high. Government employment is high and could use cutting. Education spending is also high and social-service spending could be more efficient. Labor and health-insurance regulations are generally good. In particular, South Carolina has a relatively low number of health-insurance coverage mandates and is not a prevailing-wage state. Gun-control laws are a bit better than average, but among the worst in the South. For instance, open carry is completely banned, the state licenses gun dealers, and design safety standards for handguns have been imposed. South Carolina’s marijuana laws are unreconstructed, but the state is close to average in terms of victimless-crime arrests and the drug law-enforcement rate. Cigarette taxes remain the lowest in the country. However, some restrictions on smoking on private property have been allowed. South Carolina fares quite poorly in terms of schooling laws. It has mandatory kindergarten but not mandatory intradistrict public-school choice. As for homeschoolers, the state has teacher qualifications and burdensome standardized testing, recordkeeping, and notification requirements. On the other hand, it has light requirements for private schools. Asset-forfeiture laws (which are a full standard deviation worse than average) and the state’s liability system require reform. However, South Carolina’s eminent-domain laws are quite respectable.
and i had to laugh when I read the analysis of NY:

Quote:
New York is by far the least free state in the Union. It has also experienced the most interstate emigration of any state over the last decade. New York has by far the highest taxes in the country. Property, selective sales, individual income, and corporate-income taxes are particularly high. Spending on public welfare, hospitals, electric power, transit, employee retirement, and “other and unallocable” expenses are well above national norms. Only Alaska has more government debt as a percentage of the economy. On personal freedoms, gun laws are extremely restrictive, but marijuana laws are better than average, while tobacco laws are extremely strict, and cigarette taxes are the highest in the country. Motorists are highly regulated, and homeschool regulations are excessive, but nondrug victimless-crimes arrests are low. New York has the strictest health-insurance community-rating regulations in the country, which have wiped out the individual market. Mandated coverages are worse than average but were actually cut back substantially in 2007–2008. Eminent domain abuse is rampant and unchecked. Perversely (in our view), the state has stricter contribution limits for grassroots PACs than for corporate and union PACs. On the positive side, occupational licensing is somewhat better than average.
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Old 07-29-2011, 02:46 PM
 
2,086 posts, read 2,332,819 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnUnidentifiedMale View Post
Top 5:

1. New Hampshire
2. South Dakota
3. Indiana
4. Idaho
5. Missouri

Bottom 5:

46. Massachusetts
47. Hawaii
48. California
49. New Jersey
50. New York

Freedom in the 50 States | Mercatus

Of course, the concept of freedom depends on the issues that are important to you as an individual. Not everyone's interests and priorities are the same.
So the most liberal states, you have less individual freedoms? Got it.
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:23 PM
 
1,337 posts, read 1,390,648 times
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For those that want to play with the rankings a bit, the Mercatus site has a little widget thigamabob that lets you set certain criteria that you feel is important to you, and then it will reorder all the rankings by re-weighting them according to what one might find more important. Kind of a neat little thing to play with if one wants to kill time.

Unfortunately, it's not really one size fits all because not everyone might be able to find the thing that most interests them... but I suppose it could be of some use to most people if you are willing to just look at the data narrowly, pertaining to a limited set of criteria, and just ignore the overall rankings if it doesn't have all the criteria that one would like.
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:25 PM
 
12,891 posts, read 19,156,137 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waianaegirl View Post
So the most liberal states, you have less individual freedoms? Got it.
I suppose if you define "Freedom" by the degree of self-reliance--- i.e. the ability to manage your own life, make your own decisions-- then as crazy as it sounds, yes. Excessive reliance on others, whether your parents or bureacrats, does not equal freedom.

Of course, nobody is going to claim those liberal states are mini fascist feifdoms. Personally, I loved living in New York and may return someday.
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:33 PM
 
Location: Maryland
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No surprise. Here in NY you'd need a permit to take a leak in your own backyard.
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:35 PM
 
Location: Pluto's Home Town
9,986 posts, read 12,783,186 times
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I like New Hampshire. It seems pretty moderate politically (center right), but also socially progressive. You can be religious or not, gay or not, moderately taxed, and you don't have so many ideologues running around, and RINOs are not an endangered species.

Seems like a great state, but I have never been there, so what do I know?
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:52 PM
 
26,684 posts, read 26,964,851 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waianaegirl View Post
So the most liberal states, you have less individual freedoms? Got it.
Louisiana, Ohio, and New Mexico are in the bottom tier, so I don't think it's quite that simple.
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Old 07-29-2011, 04:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Waianaegirl: "...So the most liberal states, you have less individual freedoms? Got it."

AnUnidentifiedMale replies: Louisiana, Ohio, and New Mexico are in the bottom tier, so I don't think it's quite that simple.

And likewise, Vermont and Oregon are at the top of the personal freedom index which probably relates to their permissive laws in certain areas, so obviously its an aggregate list which mixes all the states up somewhat randomly insofar as it doesn't really have a red state versus blue state kind of ordering.
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Old 07-29-2011, 08:07 PM
 
26,684 posts, read 26,964,851 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreedomThroughAnarchism View Post
Originally Posted by Waianaegirl: "...So the most liberal states, you have less individual freedoms? Got it."

AnUnidentifiedMale replies: Louisiana, Ohio, and New Mexico are in the bottom tier, so I don't think it's quite that simple.

And likewise, Vermont and Oregon are at the top of the personal freedom index which probably relates to their permissive laws in certain areas, so obviously its an aggregate list which mixes all the states up somewhat randomly insofar as it doesn't really have a red state versus blue state kind of ordering.
Yes, and that fact alone will make it difficult for some people to understand or accept it. You know the ones. They see everything through a red/blue prism. Critical thinking is not their strong point.
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