Time again for one of those stupid polls done by some organization I’ve never heard of, which ranks the “Best of” — this time, of cities around the world to live in. The criteria seem quite reasonable:
The results are based on scores across three key categories – liveability, lovability and prosperity, with dozens of factors taken into account. These include educational attainment, GDP per capita, poverty rate, the number of quality restaurants, shops and nightclubs; walkability, the number of mapped bike routes, quality parks and museums.
They cock it up somewhat by including “number of recommendations on sites such as Tripadvisor, Google, Facebook and Instagram” because those are generally driven by booster bots and paid “influencers” (same thing, really), but whatever. Here are the Top 20:
1 – London
2 – Paris
3 – New York, U.S.
4 – Tokyo
5 – Singapore
6 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
7 – San Francisco, U.S.
8 – Barcelona, Spain
9 – Amsterdam, Netherlands
10 – Seoul, South Korea
11 – Rome, Italy
12 – Prague, Czechia
13 – Madrid, Spain
14 – Berlin, Germany
15 – Los Angeles, U.S.
16 – Chicago, U.S.
17 – Washington D.C., U.S.
18 – Beijing, China
19 – Istanbul, Turkey
20 – Dublin, Ireland
…and to my Murkin Readers, at least, this would cause coffee-splattered screens and keyboards, because the five U.S. cities listed are the ones showing the greatest outward migration and desertion by the people who actually live there. (And this is also true of the other U.S. cities in the 30-50 group.)
And where are these “refugees” going, according to actual census data? To Orlando (53), Miami (55), Atlanta (65), Houston (68), Nashville (71), Dallas (73) and Charlotte (92). And it’s got nothing to do with the warmer weather, either.
It is, as they say, to LOL. If the list was entitled “Nice Places To Visit (but you wouldn’t want to live there), then it might have some (but not much) credence, with regard to the U.S. cities anyway.
Forty years ago, this list may have been true — and maybe not even then — but today? As they say in New York (3): fuggeddabahdit.
As for the furrin cities, and based solely on my experiences there, I’d have no issue with living in London or Paris, but certainly Amsterdam (9) would rank higher than either, and Vienna (21) would be in the top 5.
Probably the only ranking I agree with is Baltimore (100). It’s a total shithole, and deservedly placed well below such garden spots as Beijing (18!) and Bogotá (81).