Since the beginning of history, man has tried to devise a perfect political system. Plato designed a utopian Republic, while Karl Marx radically changed the face of the earth by offering up a secular state that is supposed to be sufficient for all. The highest hopes for political systems were held by some 18th century French Enlightenment philosophers, specifically Marie Jean Antoine Nicolas Caritat, the Marquis de Condorcet. However, the concomitant attempt to bring about an ideal humanistic system (based on Enlightenment thought), most nearly attempted in Scandinavia, has fallen short of fruition. The great things these systems propose to offer, such as financial and legal equality, peace and moral freedom, are not sufficient for all these individuals, leaving people disillusioned and perfect utopian political systems fatally flawed. It is foolish to try to please all the people all the time with simple comforts. Hence, utopias are doomed to failure, as my critique will show. .
I am not a pessimist and I believe things can improve. Utopian perfection, though, is unrealistic because even the best of nations suffer. Nonetheless, there have clearly been instances of political progress, even in this un-utopian nation Occidental students find most accessible. The United States has realized some broad-minded utopian ideals aimed at human improvement, like the abolition of slavery and segregation, and the introduction of universal education. However, racism still divides people and education has brought sweet and sour success. Education has provided great medicinal advantages, while old diseases mutate and new ones outbreak, and has given greater protection against military attack, while at the same time creating more powerful weapons of destruction. These shortcomings give clues to the concurrent failure of more utopian states. This paper will discuss the most successful Scandinavian State, Sweden, and its attempt to build what it believes is an Enlightenment style utopia.