We just love these indexes here in the Bananama Republic newsroom. The Quality of Life index, the Corruption Perception Index, the Human Development Index and so on - whenever a new edition is published it's party time.
Why, you ask? Because the cold hard data proves us right and nutty right-wing ideologists wrong each and every time on two things. One is that the European social-democracies perform best. Two is that Panama, despite all the hype and spin, always sucks when compared to its neighbors.
And again so with the new 2010 Mother's Index rankings, published by Save The Children.
Best country for mother and child? Norway. And Panama? It's ranked 26 in the group of less developed countries, below Cuba (number 1), below Argentina, below Uruguay, below Costa Rica, below Chile, below Colombia, below Brazil, below Peru, below Ecuador, below Venezuela, below the Dominican Republic and below Mexico. We're firmly in the bottom half of the group, just below Kyrgyzstan...
With health care and education both at abysmal levels because our government is all about buzziness and shit, Panama can't even take care of its mothers and children. Viva investment grade!
We have data! Let's compare us with Costa Rica, our neighbors that make more money and have less inequality and more tourism and where, contrary to Panama, more people are moving to than from - and all that without flim flam miracle cures like Canal expansions and construction booms for the narco industry.
In Costa Rica, 99% of births are attended by a skilled health professional. In Panama that's only 92%. In Costa Rica, 72% of women use modern contraception, in Panama that's only 54%. Life expectancy at birth for women is 82 in Costa Rica, in Panama only 79. Participation in government of women (in percentage of seats held) is 37 in Costa Rica against just 9 in Panama.
See where this is going?
Under 5 mortality rate in Panama is more than double (23 per 1000) that of Costa Rica (11 per 1000). In Panama 8% of the kids under 5 is underweight, in Costa Rica that's 5%. More kids go to secondary school in Costa Rica and more kids have access to safe drinking water.
Why can't we get it right in Panama? Because we're ruled by a cruel, vulgar and greedy oligarchy that only cares about itself and thinks that as long as they can afford the Punta Pacifica Hospital, health care is provided for in our country.