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Thread: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

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    Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Payback Time - Deficit Crisis Threatens Ample Benefits of European Life - NYTimes.com

    Across Western Europe, the “lifestyle superpower,” the assumptions and gains of a lifetime are suddenly in doubt. The deficit crisis that threatens the euro has also undermined the sustainability of the European standard of social welfare, built by left-leaning governments since the end of World War II. Europeans have boasted about their social model, with its generous vacations and early retirements, its national health care systems and extensive welfare benefits, contrasting it with the comparative harshness of American capitalism. Europeans have benefited from low military spending, protected by NATO and the American nuclear umbrella. They have also translated higher taxes into a cradle-to-grave safety net. “The Europe that protects” is a slogan of the European Union. But all over Europe governments with big budgets, falling tax revenues and aging populations are experiencing rising deficits, with more bad news ahead. With low growth, low birthrates and longer life expectancies, Europe can no longer afford its comfortable lifestyle, at least not without a period of austerity and significant changes.

    ...

    Figures show the severity of the problem. Gross public social expenditures in the European Union increased from 16 percent of gross domestic product in 1980 to 21 percent in 2005, compared with 15.9 percent in the United States. In France, the figure now is 31 percent, the highest in Europe, with state pensions making up more than 44 percent of the total and health care, 30 percent. The challenge is particularly daunting in France, which has done less to reduce the state’s obligations than some of its neighbors. In Sweden and Switzerland, 7 of 10 people work past 50. In France, only half do. The legal retirement age in France is 60, while Germany recently raised it to 67 for those born after 1963. With the retirement of the baby boomers, the number of pensioners will rise 47 percent in France between now and 2050, while the number under 60 will remain stagnant. The French call it “du baby boom au papy boom,” and the costs, if unchanged, are unsustainable. The French state pension system today is running a deficit of 11 billion euros, or about $13.8 billion; by 2050, it will be 103 billion euros, or $129.5 billion, about 2.6 percent of projected economic output.
    The gist of this article should not come as a surprise to anyone, but the specifics astonished me. 50% of French people retire by age 50? Are you kidding me?

    We need to be doing everything we can to avoid falling into the same trap, to the extent that we haven't already done so.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Payback Time - Deficit Crisis Threatens Ample Benefits of European Life - NYTimes.com



    The gist of this article should not come as a surprise to anyone, but the specifics astonished me. 50% of French people retire by age 50? Are you kidding me?

    We need to be doing everything we can to avoid falling into the same trap, to the extent that we haven't already done so.
    Too late, way way too late.

    You should have realized that(while he went about it the wrong way) McCarthy had very real and genuine concerns.

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    any "austerities" are gonna have to run over the opposition of his holiness

    Pope calls for ethics in world economy - Yahoo! News

    pray

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Does this mean his Priests are to be vied as ETHICAL human beings?

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Nice hit piece....
    PeteEU

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Quote Originally Posted by PeteEU View Post
    Nice hit piece....
    Do you have a more substantive response than this?
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    No danger of that.

    American welfare only helps the very poor and old people.

    You should have realized that(while he went about it the wrong way) McCarthy had very real and genuine concerns.
    Is this some kind of Gettier problem? McCarthy's concerns didn't relate to anything real, they related to things he invented and could never be found or proved in spite of his rigorous and constitutionally dubious investigations.
    Last edited by Morality Games; 05-23-10 at 10:49 PM.
    If you notice something good in yourself, give credit to God, not to yourself, but be certain the evil you commit is always your own and yours to acknowledge.

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Quote Originally Posted by Morality Games View Post
    No danger of that.

    American welfare only helps the very poor and old people.
    Even if this were true, a huge portion of the country falls into the "very poor" and "old" categories. However, our welfare subsidizes many who don't fall into those categories - a family making as much as $80k will receive thousands of dollars in health insurance subsidies each year under our new health program.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    The gist of this article should not come as a surprise to anyone, but the specifics astonished me. 50% of French people retire by age 50? Are you kidding me?
    No wonder Europeans always rate themselves happier than Americans.

    It's a completely different culture and way of looking at the world. They pay huge taxes (based on American standards) in exchange for month long holidays, full health care, free college, and early retirement. And that's what they want. They figure they're getting their money's worth.

    Of course, when the economy crumbles, it hurts, but hey, it hurts us too.

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    Re: Crisis Imperils Liberal Benefits Long Expected by Europeans

    Quote Originally Posted by jujuman13 View Post
    Too late, way way too late.

    You should have realized that(while he went about it the wrong way) McCarthy had very real and genuine concerns.
    *facepalm*
    He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear
    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    We’ll say what? Something like “nothing happened” ... Yeah, we might say something like that.

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