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originally posted by: Bluesma
I am a little confused - with medicare and medicaid, not everyone is eligible for that - so you (or I) would be paying for someone else, getting nothing ourselves for our money.
With this kind of medical coverage, your money would be getting your care. Maybe that other guy is paying for you one month, and you're paying for him another month, whatever way you want to imagine it. But YOU get something for your money.
You actually feel it more fair and logical that you pay for others on medicare and medicaid, and get nothing yourself?
(Or are you eligible for those programs?)
I have lived in the US for 24 years, and I agreed with that posters observation.
Have you lived in one of these european countries with this sort of system and culture?
I feel like I never had any idea what solidarity and social conscience even was before I came here. (though I thought I did).
The people here would not even dare to consider that the health of their fellow countrymen is no concern of theirs individually.
Everyone I spoke to frowned at me and acted like I am egotistical and selfish, (and stupid). They all repeated one sentence-
"We need to keep solidarity."
They understand something we do not, about keeping our power as a people, in relation to our government.
But we're a young nation in contrast, and so maybe that is as it should be. We're still growing up.
originally posted by: nwtrucker
Never, NEVER, has there been more grants for education, training, on-line or at educational sites to improve one's lot. Many would rather play on the net, watch TV or socialize than take personal responsibility for their futures. No, not all, but it goes without saying that those that could, aren't and those that can't would be aided without further breaking the bank, as a result.
World | Thu May 8, 2014 4:08am EDT
Related: World, Norway
End of oil boom threatens Norway's welfare model
OSLO | By Balazs Koranyi
A woman begs for money outside a shop in downtown Bergen, southwestern Norway, in this March 21, 2012 file photo.
Norway's energy boom is tailing off years ahead of expectations, exposing an economy unprepared for life after oil and threatening the long-term viability of the world's most generous welfare model.
High spending within the sector has pushed up wages and other costs to unsustainable levels, not just for the oil and gas industry but for all sectors, and that is now acting as a drag on further energy investment. Norwegian firms outside oil have struggled to pick up the slack in what has been, for at least a decade, almost a single-track economy.
How Norway handles this "curse of oil" - huge wealth that bring unhealthy dependency in its train - may hold lessons across the North Sea in Scotland, which votes on independence from the United Kingdom later this year, relying at least in part on what it sees as its oil revenues.
Norway had the foresight to put aside a massive $860 billion rainy-day cash pile, or $170,000 per man, woman and child. It also has huge budget surpluses, a top-notch AAA credit rating and low unemployment, so tangible decline is not imminent.
But costs have soared, non-oil exporters are struggling, the government is spending $20 billion more oil money this year than in 2007 and the generous welfare model, which depends on a steady flow of oil tax revenue may not be preparing Norwegians for tougher times.
"In Norway, job security seems to be taken for granted, almost like it's a human right to have a job," says Hans Petter Havdal, CEO of car-parts maker Kongsberg Automotive.
Kongsberg Automotive has only 5 percent of its workers left in Norway, having moved jobs to places like Mexico, China and the United States, and keeping only high-tech, automated functions at home. It says it is struggling with high labor costs and even problems such as excessive sick leave.
"It's a bit discouraging that the sick leave in Norway is twice the level of other plants," Havdal said. "That is to me an indication that something is not as it should be."
In 2012, a new word entered the Norwegian lexicon - to "nave", or live off benefits from welfare agency NAV.
"Approximately 600,000 Norwegians ... who should be part of the labor force are outside the labor force, because of welfare, pension issues," says Siv Jensen, the finance minister.
Norway's Problem with Anti-Semitism
Anti-Semitism in Norway has become such a serious threat that many Jews are emigrating to Israel and elsewhere to escape it. Human rights activists, police and leaders of the rapidly shrinking Jewish community fear that soon, for the first time in centuries, Jews will have no visible presence in Norway at all.
I travelled to Norway last month with an open mind about the plight of the Jews and the rumours of the growing hostility toward them. As a leftwing critic of Zionism, of mixed Jewish and Catholic heritage, I was sceptical about the claims in some of the Israeli and alternative Norwegian press about the rise in anti-Semitism being the result of searching for scapegoats. What I found was a mixture of cowardly cultural relativism, examples of rabid Jew-hatred and a liberal Left that had joined forces with radical Islamists.
Norway has a history of anti-Semitism dating back to before the Second World War. Many Norwegians collaborated during the five-year Nazi occupation and the Quisling regime, and about a third of all Jews—some 750 out of 2,100—were sent to concentration camps. But the prevailing view is that, until recently, Jews had existed alongside gentiles without too much fuss.
Estimates of the number of Jews in Norway range from 800 to 1,200 out of a total population of five million. It is hard to be precise because of an increasing tendency of Norwegian Jews to distance themselves from their community and to live outside the remaining cultural and religious centres.
originally posted by: nwtrucker
As far as worker's rights go, which has NOTHING to do with what I was referring to and you know it, we've never had more 'workers right's' than we do now.
You can’t be happy in a system if your hungry and don’t have the security of health care and the system no longer provides, like the US is devolving into, a decent living.
A few obvious facts to consider:
1. Norway's population is essentially homogeneous. So there is little to no racial tension.
2. Norway's population is about 1.7% of the US.
3. Norway's land mass is 61st, US is 3rd.
4. Norway's GDP is 420 billion, US is 17.1 trillion.
5. Norway's culture is essentially homogeneous as well. US has cultural impacts from everywhere in the world.
So, to think that one can apply the example of a small country which is about the size of a large US city to a country as vast and complicated as the US is intellectually dishonest and foolish.
The Big Winner of the 2016 Race: Democratic Socialism
As Bernie Sanders heads into the New Hampshire primary, things are looking up for the left.
By Elizabeth Bruenig
February 3, 2016
On Monday night, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont tested out his “radical idea”—a vision of American democratic socialism—with real American voters in Iowa. Numerically, the race was a dead heat, with Clinton barely inching ahead of Sanders. It was not, in other words, the kind of explosive surge that might produce its own groundswell of enthusiasm, a victory begetting more victories. But for a candidate who had been expected to be a non-threatening bit-player in the Democratic primary, the achievement was enormous. And for Americans hoping to see a way forward for democratic socialism on their home turf, it was even bigger.
Social democracy, political ideology that advocates a peaceful, evolutionary transition of society from capitalism to socialism using established political processes. Based on 19th-century socialism and the tenets of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, social democracy shares common ideological roots with communism but eschews its militancy and totalitarianism. Social democracy was originally known as revisionism because it represented a change in basic Marxist doctrine, primarily in the former’s repudiation of the use of revolution to establish a socialist society.
originally posted by: Outlier13
The grass always appears greener until you realize they just use a different type of manure.
originally posted by: Aazadan
originally posted by: dismanrc
Don't forget that the US has been paying fo its defense for over 50 years, anlong with the rest of Europe.
Neat what you can do with a small population and when one of your biggest expenses get pond off on someone else.
Switzerland pays for it's defense (they even give an automatic weapon to every single citizen, along with training in guerrilla warfare) and they're doing pretty damn good.
France and the UK have respectable defensive armies and won't be toppled by anyone any time soon.
Most of Europe is actually doing just fine on the defense front. The difference is that in the US defense means offense. We have a power projection capability that no other nation has and we are very proactive in using it... that's not really defense but it's certainly a form of power.