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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: I can honestly say that I do not believe democracy is the best solution for every country. Some countries need a strong and stable government that is constant. Democracy is not a constant, stable government, within a four year time period every political leader (at a federal level, not a judge) can be replaced with someone else. Obviously this brings in new ideas and views but it can also completely change the way a government acts. This constant 'struggle' for power can create an unstable government and can lead some political leaders to focus more on getting reelected than doing their job.

    What would happen if Cuba had a democratic government? Would they thrive like the United States or would they fall into a place with no guidance or leadership? I am not saying that the people may want a democracy or that dictatorships are good but I am saying that each political system has its advantages and disadvantages and the same system will not work for every government.
    • Oct 30 2011: Philosopher kings the rulers, or Guardians, of Plato's Utopian
      benevolent dictator, often considered ,in the past the best form of government, until of course the second word got a very bad name, and the first word became joke.
      Democracy is very fragile and unless carefully nurtured can lead the mob/majority rule.
      And to be a Democracy does not mean to be wise, the Germans elected Uncle Adolf in a free democratic election.
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        Oct 30 2011: And where there any elections after he became leader? Democracy is a great ststem but like every other system it is flawed. The fact that someone like Hitler was able to gain power by a majority vote is a perfect example of unstable government. And democracy can influence leaders to do what is popular not what is right.
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          Oct 31 2011: I would say that a benign monarchy would be the best but there is no such angel to fill the position. Perhaps George Washington or Winston Churchill came the closest.

          2nd choice would be a republic which is supposed to overcome the inherent problems with a democracy.

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