It isn’t. A quick glance at Figure 2.3 of the Report, which shows the complete rankings and how much the six factors each contribute to them, reveals that the only category in which Denmark clearly outshines the United States is the last one, perceptions of corruption. And anyway, the Report itself defines the social support factor this way: “Social support (or having someone to count on in times of trouble) is the national average of the binary responses (either 0 or 1) to the question ‘If you were in trouble, do you have relatives or friends you can count on to help you whenever you need them, or not?’ ” No mention of how generous taxpayers are in paying for parental leave, child care, or health care. (No, it’s not included in the generosity factor either.)
Why do Americans perceive significantly more corruption in government and business than the Danish do? Is America really more corrupt, or are Americans just more suspicious? The Huffington Post article devoted exactly zero space to discussing the one explanatory factor of the six that was worth examining in this case. Mustn’t let the facts get in the way of a good story, after all.