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Just the Facts, Comparing Iowa-Minnesota-Wisconsin

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

I thought I'd pull this out from the first Hate Week.

I love reading the comments during Hate Week.  People will go from good-natured ribbing to disputing each other's selective facts with selective stats of their own and then it goes down the rabbit hole of assuming one place is more racist than the other due to events that happened decades ago at a completely different institution altogether.  But I digress.

So I wanted to get a comprehensive list of various data points to compare Iowa and Minnesota.  While I was at it I added Wisconsin for a couple reasons.  First, I figured I would be doing this for Wisconsin eventually so why not just do it now.  And secondly I started to wonder...which state really is the worst state ever?

(sure, I did a little selective stat work here, but as it turns out I didn't really need to)

Iowa Minnesota Wisconsin
Population 3.05 mil 5.3 mil 5.7 mil
Forbes Rnk Best States to Live 27 5 24
Fortune 200 Companies 0 9 4
Fortune 500 Companies 3 23 9
Median Income $           49,427 $           56,954 $           50,395
Poverty Rate 11.3% 8.1% 10.2%
Life Expectancy 79.7 81.1 80.0
Deaths per 100K by Influenza & Pneumonia 13.7 9.7 13.3
Deaths per 100K by Heart Diseases 175.9 121.9 164.7
% of Children Overweight or Obese 28.3% 27.2% 28.8%
% of Adults Overweight or Obese 64.8% 62.5% 64.1%
% Adults who Smoke 20.40% 19.10% 20.90%
Reported Chlamydia Cases 1 : 289 1 : 347 1 : 245
Reported Gonorrhea Cases 1 : 1,690 1 : 2,503 1 : 1,117
High School Grad Rates 87.9% 88.2% 91.1%
Literacy Rates (2003 data) 93% 94% 93%
College Graduation Rates (in 4 yrs)
PUBLIC Colleges
39.6% 30.6% 27.4%
PRIVATE Colleges
53.0% 60.8% 47.7%
Professional Sports Teams (4 major sports) 0 4 3
Tallest Building in State 192 m 241 m 183 m

There really is no room for arguments here.  The debate is really between Iowa and Wisconsin for  which one really is the worst state ever.

So why would you choose to live in a state that has a lesser developed business community, where you will make less money, where the poverty rate is higher, the literacy rate is lower, people are fatter, more people smoke, more people get sexually transmitted diseases and has a lower life expectancy?  Why?  This post should really be a recruiting tool.