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Laurens Rademakers

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Is the superior Northern European social model applicable to all societies?

It is well known that the Northern European way of organising a society leads to the highest levels of wealth, health, happiness, and even biological strength ever achieved in mankind.

Hundreds of social, economic, medical, and biological parameters point that way.

Typical for the Northern European model is: free world-class health care (socialised medicine), free world-leading education, a very generous social security net, very low inequality (egalitarianism), high taxes - to name but a few of the dominant traits.

Now there's a debate about whether this model can be applied to different cultures. The question is important, because it may inform choices to be made by leaders in developing countries - who now have the choice between the Anglosaxon model of development (which leads to misery), or the Northern European model (which leads to prosperity).

Is the miracle model applicable to other cultures? Or does culture impose strong barriers to its adoption?

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  • Oct 29 2011: In reply to pat gilbert



    The 1% ters has gone up 240%

    But let it be, my point was that nature law, or let the markets take care of it does not cure problems
    people and governments do.
    My point about Mao was that his natural law was the gun, he did not think *things will work themselves out"
    as it was the point of all the others I listed. There must be action/intervention not passive *things will right themselves*

    *Sub prime loans were a product of socialistic policies started by Carter, Clinton, Franks, Dodds, the Federal Reserve under Greenspan*
    What makes you think that they are not part of Corporate America ? Because they tell you so ?
    Ask Clinton where all the Haiti feel good money he collected went :-) Or the FED for a list of Banks they paid off.
    Carter is about the only one of that bunch that could be scum free, but look how far that got him. One term, your out,....next.

    "What happens in your Denmark if the authorities decide something is not an official sanctioned procedure?"

    Danes then use their own savings or collect money on social networks and goto Germany or China for the
    operation/procedure.........the same as American importing non FDA approved drugs from Mexico

    Anyway, nice chatting with ya, but I think we might be wearing out our welcome at TED (?)
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      Oct 29 2011: "The 1% ters has gone up 240%" I don't get your point?

      The free market is people. The practical reality is that the governments do not represent the people, they usually just represent the individual's in power's self interest.

      For natural law to work there must first be a rule of law. In Mao's case or many of the other cases there was no rule of law it was a dictatorship or corruption.

      With the housing bubble it was both crony capitalism and corruption that caused it, I don't disagree.

      Carter created more regulations and parasitic bureaucracies (like the energy department) that bypassed the constitution and got what he deserved. One of the worst presidents in the history of the U.S. The road to hell is lined with good intentions...

      What works in Denmark won't work in the U.S., it is a fraction of the population and homogenous.

      On the other hand I prefer the interaction and diversity of viewpoints in a heterogeneous society.

      I guess this is all a moot point when countries start failing as at the end of the day countries are transitory at which point it will be rule of force.
      • Oct 29 2011: You stated : *The Middle class income has gone up by 50% over the last 30 years in the U.S. *

        "The 1% ters has gone up 240%" was my reply
        The income of the rich 1% has gone up 240% in the same time period.
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          Oct 29 2011: Not true, in that same report it stated:

          "Among those with the very highest incomes in 1996 – the top 1/100 of 1 percent – only 25 percent remained in this group in 2005. Moreover, the median real income of these taxpayers declined over this period."

          You are indulging in conjecture the stock in trade of the media who's only purpose is to sell advertisement through sensationalism and secondarily to control the collective.
      • Oct 30 2011: Yours is from the Treasury, mine are from the Congressional Budget Office . Now who shall we believe ?
        http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/the-cbo-takes-on-income-inequality/2011/10/26/gIQAzcPqIM_blog.html

        Stats are so much fun, right ?
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          Oct 30 2011: I hate to say it since you went to the trouble of looking but CBO reports are notoriously inaccurate because the parameters of the report are dictated by people with an agenda. What this report fails to state is 2 things that skew the graph so badly it is a complete canard.

          The first point is that transfer payments(welfare), and social security are not included in the report. In this report they shows the top 1% getting 16% of all the income reported. When you account for the transfer payments and the social security payments the actual amount they received was about 10.6% of the income.

          The second point is that he remaining appearance of disparity was caused by tax rate changes.

          The top personal rate dropped to 28% in '88 from 50% in '86. Lots of C-corp returns became S-corp returns. People aren't stupid, they take advantage of lower rates and reported more personal income at the new, lower rate. 28% beats the 35% corporate rate. The trend started in '83. In 1981, only about 8% of the income of the top 1% came from business. By '04, it was over 28%.

          In 1981, only about 8% of the income of the top 1% came from business. By '04, it was over 28%.

          Can you say S-corp or LLC or partnership? Can you say flow-though to your personal return?

          That's called tax-shifting. 5 hunks of important tax legislation in '86, '90, '93, '96 and '03 were responsible. Flow-through filings rose about 10% per year since '86. Not to mention other tax-motivated compensation structures that resulted in more personal income being reported.

          The problem for the "growing income inequality" crowd is that income shifting from C-corp tax returns to individual returns didn't make anyone any richer.

          At all.

          The income was always there, it was just being reported differently.

          If you knock the shifted business income out, the top 1%'s share of PERSONAL income is a little over 7%.

          SAME AS IT WAS IN THE '80s.

          Stats are necessary, the hard part is deciphering what is true and what is not.
      • Oct 30 2011: Nice expose on the art of stat manipulations. All the shifting has but one purpose, to avoid contributing to the common good. I don't blame anyone in the US for doing that as they see that their money in the aggregate is not used responsibly. The amount used in the Bush ego war in Iraq would run a sensible Nordic State for years. (Yes our nutty politicians participate in that power play also).
        So all this wrangling back and forth brings us back to the proposal of this thread. Would the Norther Model work for the US ? And the answer is still no. What will work ? A return to state sovereignty ? A libertarian way of life (Ron Paul). Or simply let the evolutionary forces take the US where it will ? Or is the state of the Union sound and working as it should ? Since Ron Paul is being marginalized by the Corporate Press I don't thanks that dog will ever be in the hunt. So my bet is on total slow meltdown over a number of years, prolonged just long enough for the Multinationals to shift their assets out of the country. Of course they still need people to sell to so the US will remain a consumer market targeted country but that happens no matter what kind of government, short of communist, there exists. So don't look to the people or Democracy of the US to determine it's fate, look to the Boardrooms for the future to be determined.
        (adding this later as a thought)
        Maybe they will decide to throw out some bones and bring some manufacturing jobs back to the US ? Just to calm the populous and bring back a false sense of hope, so they can continue to generate tax shifting wealth, Not a bad idea. Do it during a presidential period where they see benefit in supporting the government and making it *look good*.
        Another example just so the Northern Model doesn't look all that clean. We have a problem with University students getting a free education and a subsidized Upper Graduate degree in the US, staying in the US and never coming back to Denmark to contribute the the society.

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