Sometimes Sweden is offered up as an example of how socialism can work. And I'm probably not alone in wondering how they do it.
My own theory is that the innovators, inventors and type "A" entrepreneurs have fled for more favorable jurisdictions. And the remaining residents are quite satisfied as government dependents. But just to show that all isn't really so great there, here are a few anecdotal news reports from The Local, Swedish news in English:
Says there was 1.4% growth in economy in 4th quarter of 2012, but still only 0.8% for the full year. Maybe it is "surprisingly strong," but it's not that great by American standards, at least prior to 2008.
Russia mocks Sweden's lack of military might. "In January, Swedish Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Sverker Göransson said that Sweden’s scaled backed military leaves the country vulnerable. Sweden, he claimed, could only defend itself for one week if it came under attack."
They can't afford them. Maybe we can barter for some Ikea furniture.
Out-of-hours police turn away murder suspect. "Upon ringing the bell on the door shortly after 6pm, he was informed that the police station was closed. 'Closed? I'm suspected of murder and a wanted man – you guys really want to get ahold of me,' he said into the intercom. But instead of being let in to the station, he was instead directed to another police station. When he had made his way there, he was placed under arrest."
OK, enough fun. Here's a real story of individual courage.
The golfer who was bitten by a spider while playing in a qualifying tournament in Australia. The photo looks like a black widow spider, but they called it a redback. Anyway, she punctured the skin at the bite site with a golf tee and squeezed out as much poison as she could. Then she finished the game, but unfortunately she didn't make the cut.
Now that's stoicism in any language.