The Human Truth Foundation

Myanmar (Burma) (Union of Myanmar)

By Vexen Crabtree 2013


Comments:
FB, LJ

#charity #climate_change #economics #morals #myanmar_(burma) #research #science #the_environment

Myanmar (Burma)
Union of Myanmar
StatusIndependent State
CapitalNaypyidaw
Land Area 653 290km21
LocationAsia
Population48.7m (2011)2
Life Expectancy66.12yrs (2017)3
GNI$4 943 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesMM, MMR, 1045
Internet Domain.mm6
CurrencyKyat (MMK)7
Telephone+958

1. Overview

Various ethnic Burmese and ethnic minority city-states or kingdoms occupied the present borders through the 19th century. Over a period of 62 years (1824-1886), Britain conquered Burma and incorporated the country into its Indian Empire. Burma was administered as a province of India until 1937 when it became a separate, self-governing colony; in 1948, Burma attained independence from the Commonwealth. Gen. NE WIN dominated the government from 1962 to 1988, first as military ruler, then as self-appointed president, and later as political kingpin. In response to widespread civil unrest, NE WIN resigned in 1988, but within months the military crushed student-led protests and took power. Multiparty legislative elections in 1990 resulted in the main opposition party - the National League for Democracy (NLD) - winning a landslide victory. Instead of handing over power, the junta placed NLD leader (and Nobel Peace Prize recipient) AUNG SAN SUU KYI (ASSK) under house arrest from 1989 to 1995, 2000 to 2002, and from May 2003 to November 2010. In late September 2007, the ruling junta brutally suppressed protests over increased fuel prices led by prodemocracy activists and Buddhist monks, killing at least 13 people and arresting thousands for participating in the demonstrations. In early May 2008, Burma was struck by Cyclone Nargis, which left over 138,000 dead and tens of thousands injured and homeless. Despite this tragedy, the junta proceeded with its May constitutional referendum, the first vote in Burma since 1990. Parliamentary elections held in November 2010, considered flawed by many in the international community, saw the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party garner over 75% of the seats. Parliament convened in January 2011 and selected former Prime Minister THEIN SEIN as president. Although the vast majority of national-level appointees named by THEIN SEIN are former or current military officers, the government has initiated a series of political and economic reforms leading to a substantial opening of the long-isolated country. These reforms have included allowing ASSK to contest parliamentary by-elections on 1 April 2012, releasing hundreds of political prisoners, reaching preliminary peace agreements with 10 of the 11 major armed ethnic groups, enacting laws that provide better protections for basic human rights, and gradually reducing restrictions on freedom of the press, association, and civil society. At least due in part to these reforms, ASSK now serves as an elected Member of Parliament and chair of the Committee for Rule of Law and Tranquility. Most political parties have begun building their institutions in preparation for the next round of general elections in 2015. The country is preparing to chair the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in 2014.

CIA's The World Factbook (2013)9

Book CoverNow is the moment to visit this extraordinary land, scattered with gilded pagodas, where the traditional ways of Asia endure and areas that were previously off-limits are opening up. Turn back the clock in this time-warped country that´s a world apart from the rest of Southeast Asia. Travelling in Myanmar is a chance to swap the hubbub and electronic demands of modern life for the calm of gilded temples and ancient monasteries.Enjoy slowly unfolding journeys through serene landscapes including meandering rivers, lush jungles, ethnic minority villages and pristine palm-fringed beaches.

Democracy champion Aung San Suu Kyi is free from house arrest and the tourism boycott has been lifted.

Myanmar remains a troubled land and it´s up to you to decide whether to visit or not. Keep in mind that the long-suffering people are gentle, humorous, engaging, considerate, inquisitive and passionate; they want to play a part in the world and to know what you make of their world. Come with your mind open and you´ll leave with your heart full.

"The World" by Lonely Planet (2014)10

2. Myanmar (Burma) National and Social Development

#human_development

UN HDI (2016)11
Pos.Lower is better
Rank11
1Norway1
2Australia2
3Switzerland2
...
142Sao Tome & Principe142
143Cambodia143
144Nepal144
145Myanmar (Burma)145
146Kenya146
147Pakistan147
148Swaziland148
149Syria149
World Avg94.3
q=188.
Social & Moral
Development Index
12
Pos.Higher is better
Points12
1Denmark83.6
2Finland83.1
3Sweden82.6
...
161Ethiopia46.0
162Sierra Leone45.7
163Guinea45.7
164Myanmar (Burma)45.5
165Tanzania45.4
166Cameroon45.3
167Libya44.6
168Zimbabwe44.6
World Avg55.4
q=198.

The United Nations produces an annual Human Development Report which includes the Human Development Index. The factors taken into account include life expectancy, education and schooling and Gross National Income (GNI) amongst many others..

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life.

3. Population and Demographics

#birth_control #demographics #health #immigration #life_expectancy #longevity #Myanmar_(Burma) #overpopulation #population

Old-Age Dependency Ratio (2016)13
Pos.Lower is better
Per 10013
1Uganda04.3
2Mali04.5
3Chad04.7
...
84Tonga11.9
85Kyrgyzstan12.1
86Indonesia12.4
87Myanmar (Burma)12.5
88India12.5
89Bolivia12.7
90Nicaragua13.1
91Paraguay13.2
World Avg18.3
q=185.
Emigrants (2010)14
Pos.
%14
1Dominica104.8%
2Palestine68.4%
3Samoa67.3%
...
172Mongolia1.2%
173Kenya1.1%
174Indonesia1.1%
175Myanmar (Burma)1.0%
176Solomon Islands1.0%
177India0.9%
178Papua New Guinea0.9%
179USA0.8%
World Avg11.5%
q=192.

Fertility Rate (2013)15
Pos.2.0 is best15
1N. Korea2.00
2Brunei1.99
3St Vincent & Grenadines2.01
4France1.99
5Turkey2.04
6Australia1.96
7Uruguay2.05
8Norway1.95
9Myanmar (Burma)1.95
10Indonesia2.07
11Sweden1.93
12Tunisia1.93
World Avg2.81
q=180.

The fertility rate is, in simple terms, the average amount of children that each woman has. The higher the figure, the quicker the population is growing, although, to calculate the rate you also need to take into account morbidity, i.e., the rate at which people die. If people live healthy and long lives and morbidity is low, then, 2.0 approximates to the replacement rate, which would keep the population stable. If all countries had such a fertility rate, population growth would end. The actual replacement rate in most developed countries is around 2.1.

Immigrants (2010)14
Pos.
%14
1Qatar86.5%
2Monaco71.6%
3UAE70.0%
...
182Somalia0.2%
183Colombia0.2%
184Madagascar0.2%
185Myanmar (Burma)0.2%
186N. Korea0.2%
187Morocco0.2%
188Cuba0.1%
189Peru0.1%
World Avg9.2%
q=192.
Life Expectancy (2015)16
Pos.Higher is better
Years16
1Hong Kong84.16
2Japan83.68
3Italy83.34
...
138Guyana66.50
139Pakistan66.37
140Kiribati66.23
141Myanmar (Burma)66.12
142Turkmenistan65.73
143Madagascar65.52
144Tanzania65.51
145Namibia65.06
World Avg71.27
q=190.
Population (2012)17
Pos.
Population17
1China1.4b
2India1.3b
3USA315.8m
...
22UK62.8m
23Italy61.0m
24S. Africa50.7m
25Myanmar (Burma)48.7m
26S. Korea48.6m
27Tanzania47.7m
28Colombia47.6m
29Spain46.8m
World Avg36.0m
q=195.

Myanmar (Burma)'s population is predicted to rise to 54.33 million by 2030. This rise is despite a low fertility rate, meaning, that this country is helping to alleviate problems with growing population in neighbouring countries by accepting immigrants, very likely as a requirement of maintaining an active workforce. This country has a fertility rate of 1.95. The fertility rate is, in simple terms, the average amount of children that each woman has. The higher the figure, the quicker the population is growing, although, to calculate the rate you also need to take into account morbidity, i.e., the rate at which people die. If people live healthy and long lives and morbidity is low, then, 2.0 approximates to the replacement rate, which would keep the population stable. If all countries had such a fertility rate, population growth would end. The actual replacement rate in most developed countries is around 2.1.

4. Human Rights, Equality and Freedom

#china #equality #freedom #human_rights #islam #myanmar #Myanmar_(Burma) #politics #tolerance

Myanmar (Burma) is amongst the worst places in the world at ensuring human rights and freedom, and it has severe cultural issues when it comes to tolerance and equality. Myanmar (Burma) does better than average in terms of the year from which women could participate in democracy18. But unfortunately Myanmar (Burma) gets most other things wrong. It does worse than average for opposing gender inequality19, LGBT equality20, supporting press freedom21 and in fighting corruption22. And finally, it sits amongst the bottom 20 in terms of commentary in Human Rights Watch reports23, its Global Peace Index rating24, eliminating modern slavery25, supporting personal, civil & economic freedoms26 (amongst the worst in Asia) and in its nominal commitment to Human Rights27 (amongst the lowest in Asia). After attacks on security force outposts by Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) militants, in 2017, the Burmese military "launched a large-scale ethnic cleansing campaign against the Rohingya Muslim population" and engaged in widespread crimes against humanity28. Human rights are poorly defended because of Burma's "weak rule of law, corrupt judiciary, and unwillingness to prosecute members of the security forces"28. Despite all this, China continued to strengthen economic ties to Burma and actively shielded its government from international action28.

For tables, charts and commentary, see:

5. Peace Versus Instability

#extremism #human_development #Myanmar_(Burma) #peace #politics #religious_violence #terrorism

Global Peace Index (2012)24
Pos.Lower is better24
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
135Lebanon2.46
136Ethiopia2.50
137Burundi2.52
138Myanmar (Burma)2.53
139Zimbabwe2.54
140Georgia2.54
141India2.55
142Yemen2.60
World Avg2.02
q=157.

"The 2012 Global Peace Index is the sixth edition of the world's leading study on global levels of peacefulness. The GPI ranks 158 nations using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources, which gauge three broad themes: the level of safety and security in society; the extent of domestic or international conflict; and the degree of militarisation. By generating new information on the state of peace at the national and global level, the Institute for Economics and Peace hopes to make a valuable contribution to better understanding how civil society, researchers, policymakers, and government can create a more peaceful society"24. The most peaceable countries in the world are Iceland, New Zealand and Denmark24 and the worst are Somalia, Afghanistan and Sudan24.

Impact of Terrorism (2019)29
Pos.Lower is better
Score29
1Togo0.00
2Mongolia0.00
3Swaziland0.00
...
122Ethiopia5.35
123UK5.41
124Burkina Faso5.42
125Myanmar (Burma)5.51
126Mozambique5.54
127Ukraine5.55
128Niger5.60
129USA5.69
World Avg2.78
q=150.

6. Religion and Beliefs

#buddhism #christianity #hinduism #islam #judaism #religion_in_south_africa #south_africa

Data from the Pew Forum, a professional polling outfit, states that in 2010 the religious makeup of this country was as follows in the table below30:

Christian7.8%
Muslim4%
Hindu1.7%
Buddhist80.1%
Folk Religion5.8%
Jew0.1%
Unaffiliated0.5%

The CIA World Factbook has slightly different data, and states: Buddhist 89%, Christian 4% (Baptist 3%, Roman Catholic 1%), Muslim 4%, animist 1%, other 2%31.

When it comes to religious freedom and persecution, sociologists Grim & Finke place Myanmar into the worst category, along with just 13 other countries. In this category, severe restrictions on religious freedom and freedom of belief stem simultaneously from top-down pressure from government and institutionalized religion, and from bottom-up grassroots movements that often go even further than the government in harrassing those who do not believe the right things (2011)32.

"Religious minorities, including Hindus, Christians, and Muslims, continue to face threats and persecution in a country that is approximately 88 percent Buddhist [and in] Sagaing Region, a Buddhist mob attacked Christian worshippers, destroying homes and personal property" although the government has taken some steps to stop extremists.33

Freedom of Religion and Belief: In this 88% Buddhist country, minorities such as Hindus, Christians and Muslims face "threats and persecution", and their religious activities are "tightly regulated", even in their own homes28.

Links:

7. The Internet

#internet #Myanmar_(Burma) #politics #the_internet

Freedom On The Internet (2012)34
Pos.Lower is better34
1Estonia10
2USA12
3Germany15
...
39Saudi Arabia71
40Vietnam73
41Ethiopia75
42Myanmar (Burma)75
43Uzbekistan77
44Syria83
45China85
46Cuba86
World Avg46.7
q=47.
Internet Users (2016)35
Pos.Higher is better35
1Iceland100%
2Faroe Islands99%
3Norway98%
...
191Congo, DR4%
192Guinea-Bissau4%
193Chad3%
194Myanmar (Burma)3%
195Sierra Leone2%
196Niger2%
197Guinea2%
198Somalia2%
World Avg48.1%
q=201.
IPv6 Uptake (2017)36
Pos.Higher is better
Ratio36
1Belgium55.4
2Germany41.8
3Switzerland35.1
...
129Guyana0.0
130Namibia0.0
131Tonga0.0
132Myanmar (Burma)0.0
133Morocco0.0
134Timor-Leste (E. Timor)0.0
135Honduras0.0
136Syria0.0
World Avg3.82
q=176.

Internet access has become an essential research tool. It facilitates an endless list of life improvements, from the ability to network and socialize without constraint, to access to a seemingly infinite repository of technical and procedural information on pretty much any task. The universal availability of data has sped up industrial development and personal learning at the national and personal level. Individuals can read any topic they wish regardless of the locality of expert teachers, and, entire nations can develop their technology and understanding of the world simply because they are now exposed to advanced societies and moral discourses online. Like every communications medium, the Internet has issues and causes a small range of problems, but these are insignificant compared to the advantages of having an online populace.

8. Public Health Issues

#alcohol #genetics #health #Myanmar_(Burma) #obesity #public_health #smoking #sociology #UK

Myanmar (Burma) does relatively well in encouraging good health, compared to many other countries. Myanmar (Burma) comes in the best 20 in the prevalence of overweight adults37. It does better than average in terms of its smoking rate38, its adolescent birth rate19 and in its alcohol consumption rate39 (but high for Asia). Myanmar (Burma) does not succeed in everything, however. It does worse than average for its immunizations take-up40. The prevalence of overweight adults has increased by 14% during the last 40 years.

Alcohol Consumption (2016)39
Pos.Lower is better
Per Capita39
1Bangladesh0.0
2Kuwait0.0
3Libya0.0
...
74Bolivia4.8
75Costa Rica4.8
76Guinea-Bissau4.8
77Myanmar (Burma)4.8
78Zambia4.8
79Zimbabwe4.8
80Lesotho5.0
81Suriname5.1
World Avg6.2
q=189.

There is nothing wrong with drinking modest and sensible amounts of alcohol but fitness, physical health, mental health and long-term health all suffer as a result of medium- or heavy- drinking41 and the health risks to the baby when pregnant mothers drink42 are well-known. Aside from the effects on the individual, alcohol misuse impacts on entire economies43 via increased health service costs, policing costs and lost days' work. Worldwide, alcohol misuse is "among the top five risk factors for disease, disability and death" and is a "cause of more than 200 disease and injury conditions in individuals, most notably alcohol dependence, liver cirrhosis, cancers and injuries"44. "In 2012... 5.9% of all global deaths, were attributable to alcohol consumption"45. Deaths from chronic alcohol misuse have been rising for decades, and so has violence, abuse, vandalism and crime all associated with alcohol over-use. The aggression and crime associated with alcohol in some Western countries infringes on the human rights of those who want nothing to do with such behaviour. Many of the social effects of alcohol are psychological and cultural; i.e., people don't have to behave criminally or destructively whilst drunk - it is a culturally learned behaviour. Experiments have shown that behaviour can be controlled: Those who do not wish to behave badly whilst drunk, will not do so.

Overweight Adults (2016)37
Pos.Lower is better
%37
1Vietnam18.3
2India19.7
3Bangladesh20.0
...
15Sri Lanka23.3
16Malawi23.4
17Madagascar23.9
18Myanmar (Burma)24.8
19Rwanda25.1
20Congo, DR25.3
21Laos25.4
22Kenya25.5
World Avg49.0
q=191.

About one third of the global population is overweight or obese46. Most Western countries are facing an obesity epidemic. Our cultures are having to change to compensate for widespread ill-health. It is costing our health systems a massive amount of money, and is having negative effects on national economies. The situation has persisted for a suitable length of time for our very perceptions to change; opinions on "normal weights" for people and "average sizes" for clothes has shot up47. Over 2 in 3 adults in the UK are overweight47 and this costs the NHS £5.1 billion per year48 and "costs Britain's economy £47bn a year; more than war, terrorism or armed violence"49. We are forgetting how to be healthy.

The causes are not genetic. Most people who say obesity "runs in their family" are wrong. The rate of increase in obesity is many, many times too fast to be accounted for by a change in inherited genes50. Our culture and lifestyle choices are to blame. The causes of the modern obesity epidemic are processed foods, low levels of physical exercise, over-indulgence, poor choices in food products, poor knowledge of nutrition. Most of this is made much worse by well-funded advertising campaigns by food manufacturers selling cheaper mass-produced food. Even some so-called "health foods" contain well over recommended limits of fat, salt and sugar51.

Smoking Rates (2014)38
Pos.Lower is better38
1Guinea 15
2Solomon Islands 26
3Kiribati 28
...
41Cameroon 184
42Guatemala 190
43Ecuador 191
44Myanmar (Burma) 206
45Madagascar 206
46Burkina Faso 213
47Maldives 215
48Panama 224
World Avg 819
q=182.

9. Children's Health

#health #Myanmar_(Burma) #parenting #population #vaccines

Adolescent Birth Rate (2015)19
Pos.Lower is better
Per 100019
1N. Korea0.5
2S. Korea1.6
3Switzerland2.9
...
51Tonga15.2
52Mongolia15.7
53Turkmenistan16.4
54Myanmar (Burma)16.5
55Malta16.6
56Kiribati17.2
57Macedonia17.6
58Uzbekistan17.7
World Avg47.9
q=185.
Infant Immunizations 2011-2015 (2015)40
Pos.Higher is better
Avg %40
1Hungary99.0
2China99.0
3Uzbekistan98.9
...
152Marshall Islands81.8
153Mozambique81.4
154Venezuela80.6
155Myanmar (Burma)80.3
156Benin80.1
157Guinea-Bissau80.1
158Tonga80.0
159Mauritania79.9
World Avg88.3
q=194.

10. More Charts and Comparisons to Other Countries

Personal Charitability
(World Position, 2013-2016)
52
Pos.Lower is better52
1Myanmar (Burma)1.25
2USA1.5
3New Zealand3.5
4Canada3.75
5Australia5.25
6UK6.75
7Ireland6.75
8Sri Lanka8
9Qatar9
10Trinidad & Tobago10
11Netherlands10
q=156.
Research and Development (2016)
Pos.Higher is better
% RDP PPP
1S. Korea4.2953
2Israel4.1153
3Japan3.5853
...
106Burundi0.1254
107Madagascar0.1154
108Philippines0.1155
109Myanmar (Burma)0.1156
110Peru0.1057
111Paraguay0.0958
112Congo, DR0.0859
113Indonesia0.0860
q=126.
Gross National Income Per-Capita (2011)16
Pos.Higher is better
PPP $16
1Qatar$129 916
2Singapore$78 162
3Kuwait$76 075
...
136Laos$5 049
137Pakistan$5 031
138Moldova$5 026
139Myanmar (Burma)$4 943
140Nicaragua$4 747
141Honduras$4 466
142Marshall Islands$4 412
143Sudan$3 846
q=193.
Environmental Performance (2018)61
Pos.Higher is better61
1Switzerland87.4
2France84.0
3Denmark81.6
...
135Mozambique46.4
136Uzbekistan45.9
137Chad45.3
138Myanmar (Burma)45.3
139Ivory Coast45.3
140Gabon45.1
141Ethiopia44.8
142S. Africa44.7
q=180.