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Monday, December 15, 2014

On Germany and Their Nasty, Ugly Socialism

There is a fantastic article and interview out just now at Alternet:

It's all based on author Thomas Geohegan's new book Were You Born on the Wrong Continent?  Renowned fellow author Terrence McNally interviews him.

Just a bit, here, to make point:

December 9, 2014/  The European Union, 27 member nations with a half billion people, has become the largest, wealthiest trading bloc in the world, producing nearly a third of the world's economy -- nearly as large as the US and China combined. Europe has more Fortune 500 companies than either the US, China or Japan.
European nations spend far less than the United States for universal healthcare rated by the World Health Organization as the best in the world, even as U.S. health care is ranked 37th. Europe leads in confronting global climate change with renewable energy technologies, creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the process. Europe is twice as energy efficient as the US and their ecological "footprint" (the amount of the earth's capacity that a population consumes) is about half that of the United States for the same standard of living.
Unemployment in the US is widespread and becoming chronic, but when Americans have jobs, we work much longer hours than our peers in Europe. Before the recession, Americans were working 1,804 hours per year versus 1,436 hours for Germans -- the equivalent of nine extra 40-hour weeks per year.
They're better paid, have more money, live better, have more--far more---vacation time,  pay less for education,don't ship jobs overseas, there's less--again, far less--poverty, they have more "green", sustainable energy sources, all while producing more, as a nation.

Great interview. It sounds like a good to great book, possibly an important one. Eye-opening to most Americans. Too many of us, without international travel, don't know what we don't have, of course, nor what, maybe, likely, even, we could, if only for better national priorities. Some things we could maybe have if we had statesmen and stateswomen in our leadership instead of what we have now.
I love this---something the author found:  "...if you don't have much poverty, life is better for everybody. Not just for the poor, but for everybody.

It's what a lot of us have been saying and for a long time. It seems something the Waltons of Walmart and the Koch brothers and their ilk just can't comprehend or accept or agree to.
What's to not want to emulate here, on our part? Heck, on anyone's part?
That is really some ugly Socialism there, isn't it?
I'm sure glad we aren't Socialists and have that ugly stuff here, aren't you?

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