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Interesting article. I find it somewhat misleading because it does seems to compare apples to oranges. For instance, according to the census bureau in 2007 the median household income in the United States was $50,740. Yet in Santa Cruz Arizona it is only $30,000. No where does the author of this highlight the median income of each city in comparative terms to the countries that they live in. Without that information, this can be somewhat misleading.

Next how does one determine what exactly is success? To determine the standard of living throughout the world most use assessments and evaluations of 39 key quality of living determinants, grouped in the following categories:

*Political and social environment (political stability, crime, law enforcement, etc)

*Economic environment (currency exchange regulations, banking services, etc)

* Socio-cultural environment (censorship, limitations on personal freedom, etc)

* Health and sanitation (medical supplies and services, infectious diseases, sewage, waste disposal, air pollution, etc)

* Schools and education (standard and availability of international schools, etc)

* Public services and transportation (electricity, water, public transport, traffic congestion, etc)

* Recreation (restaurants, theatres, cinemas, sports and leisure, etc)

* Consumer goods (availability of food/daily consumption items, cars, etc)

* Housing (housing, household appliances, furniture, maintenance services, etc)

* Natural environment (climate, record of natural disasters)

Now if one wanted to do an honest report in key to success, one would look at, and compare the cities listed below and see what are the keys to their success, and their higher standard of living.

2009 Quality of Living survey

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