Economic Freedom and GDP per capita - Gapminder-style

For a while now I've shared common hopes to have the Economic Freedom data take new forms. The relationship between Economic Freedom and GDP per capita for example is not hard to imagine, however there is always something a bit more compelling about a nice visualization. Gapminder's Trendalyzer seemed to have established the perfect format ? it was just a matter of time before unique data sets could be plotted in a similar manner. Google has now made this possible, and with the release of their new spreadsheet gadgets I've taken the opportunity to dive into the Economic Freedom data, and add motion.

This first graph compares the Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal's Index of Economic Freedom country scores with GDP per capita in US dollars as reported from the United Nations Common Database the data from 2000?2005. Colors denote regions. Size denotes population.

This second graph uses the same data minus some of the clutter. I've selected to display just a few countries which I think are interesting to compare to one another: North Korea and South Korea, China and Hong Kong, Cuba and Spain, and Botswana and Zimbabwe.

A hat-tip to Google for making this powerful tool available at such an accessible level. Now, on with setting free all that interesting information housed in academic jargon, repelling visuals, and bullet-pointed presentations.