Fortunately, things can change rapidly if nations really want them to. Mauritius, despite its location in impoverished sub-Saharan Africa, leaped into the Top 10 this year at No. 8. Sweden, once known for its socialist policies, has climbed to 18th, aided by tax reforms and policies that have helped the private sector while shrinking government. There is a reason why Swedish companies like IKEA and H&M now dot the Utah landscape, and their success translates into greater freedoms in the homeland.
On the other hand, the more money our government removes from the economy, whether through taxation, regulation or the hidden costs of borrowing to pay for debt, the less money there is for people pursue their own dreams.
If we remain only mostly free, and if the downward trend continues, we will have to be the home of the brave, indeed.