As the reader who sent this to me said, “I bet a lot of Koreans would beg to differ”:

Korea has been ranked the 19th best country for babies to be born in by the Economist Intelligence Unit, a think tank affiliated with the business magazine.

The think tank ranked 80 countries. Korea scored 7.25 points ahead of Japan in 25th (7.08 points), France in 26th (7.04 points) and China in 49th (5.99 points).

Germany and the U.S. shared 16th place with 7.38 points.

I’ve got to say, though, the feeling I get living here is that Korea is moving forward—its best years have yet to come. I don’t live in Japan, so obviously, I can’t speak for sentiment over there, but looking at it from the outside, I see a place that’s lost a lot of cachet. I see Seoul the way * William Gibson used to see Tokyo—as the place where the future will happen.

* If you get a chance, check out Gibson’s 2001 post on Tokyo at Wired.