France (or Sweden, or America) in 2017, if taken as a whole, is still a nice country. (We all know that nice is a subjective term, so let’s say it’s a first world country, which is a little less subjective term.) But an issue immediately arises when you stop taking France as a whole, and start looking at certain parts independently. Before I go further let me show you something visual.
When you mix the colors blue and yellow you get green. If you look at these two boxes as a whole, they both have the same amount of blue and yellow, but they are clearly not equal. This is why we say, “The devil is in the details”. So now back to France. France is obviously much more complicated than a box, but what you have in 2017 France is similar to what you have in box B. When you start getting down to street level, it very much matters what street you are on. You will get a different answer when asking the average guy on a Paris street how his city is doing, than you will if you ask a guy in Nantes. Even within Paris you will get different answers based on what part of the city you are in. So you really aren’t saying much when you say, “France as a whole is nice”. The fact is that parts of France are very nice, and other parts of France are very, not nice. (So now we are back to the definition of nice. That subject I will leave for another time.) By simply saying France as a whole is nice, you are overlooking a great many issues that will not solve themselves.
There is another factor in addition to location that must be addressed, and that is time. Another visual below.
Looking at any one of these circles alone is very different than looking at them in series. It is clear from looking at any two of them, that changes are taking place; you can in no way gather that from looking at just one. When looking at France at any one moment in time, you are not seeing what is really going on. This is why we say, “You have your head in the sand” or, “You’re a f*^king idiot”. One more visual.