Singapore–One of the least corrupt governments in the world

Or says this CNN.com article.  It tied for first place as “least corrupt” with Denmark and New Zealand.  The US was 22nd.  Somalia, Afghanistan, Myanmar (Burma) and Iraq were the most corrupt.

I genuinely don’t know enough about/have a strong enough understanding to discuss Singaporean politics.  However, I do find it interesting that the three least corrupt governments are all fairly small first-world countries.  I’m projecting, of course, but it’s probably easier to run a corruption free government when the country you are governing is so small, and requires a much smaller administration.  For comparison, I’ve often heard Singapore’s size described as “half the size of LA.”  You can easily drive from one side of the country to the other in under an hour (barring traffic, of course).

I’m also not surprised that the “most corrupt” countries are all war-torn and poverty-stricken; that’s the perfect environment in which corruption can flourish.

That the US came in 22nd is actually something of an accomplishment in my opinion.  We’re such a large and unwieldy creature with so many moving pieces, it’s actually kind of surprising we don’t have more.  The UK, which is much smaller only did two spots better at 20th.

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4 Responses to Singapore–One of the least corrupt governments in the world

  1. bookjunkie says:

    in my mind when I think of the top 5 least corrupt…I would have thought USA. very surprised it’s at 22 and probably for the reasons you mention.

  2. Kirsten says:

    Does it make sense that I’m more excited New Zealand is up there than Singapore? *confused loyalties*

    I thought the top would have more Scandinavian countries. They seem to top everything.

    The good thing about the Singaporean government is that they aren’t corrupt or crooked like so many other governments in the world – however, it doesn’t really mean they’re completely clean either. There’s still lots of dodgy stuff going on, such as human rights abuses, and the fact that there’s still no Commission of Inquiry to find out the truth about the political detainees who were held without trial during Operation Coldstore and Operation Spectrum. And of course, our dealings with the Burmese junta – and even naming an orchid after the Burmese PM – when Burma has already been condemned by many nations for their lack of democracy, and their human rights issues.

    So even though I’m proud that my government is not corrupt or crooked, I find it difficult to really rejoice in that fact – at least not until we REALLY work to sorting out all this other stuff.

  3. Joshua Ledwell says:

    I think 22nd is kind to the USA. Or maybe MA is just more corrupt than most US states. Here’s a treasurer candidate handing out sneaky license plates to her campaign contributors: http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/10/26/treasurer_candidate_polito_has_the_edge_on_low_number_sox_plates/

    Then we have the state Democratic establishment grinding down the probation department with patronage: http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/05/23/at_the_probation_department_patronage_is_job_one/

    The winner is that the last three speakers of the MA house were all indicted: http://legalblogwatch.typepad.com/legal_blog_watch/2009/06/lawyers-indictment-makes-it-three-for-three.html

    I’ll be glad once the elections are over and I can think about other stuff again 🙂

    • Crystal says:

      I really could care less about the license plate thing…it’s totally small potatoes. Is it unethical? Sure. But it’s nothing compared to Jeff Perry, who’s running in the 10th in MA who apparently was in the next room from one of his officers who strip searched underage girls (or Baker, who’s supporting him). Additionally, when compared to Blagovich of IL who wanted kickbacks for Obama’s seat, it’s almost adorable.

      Like I said, I was kind of impressed as my personal opinion is that the US is too big to govern itself. But when compared to places like Afghanistan, or parts of Africa where rape is being used as a weapon of war, it’s not corrupt.

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