Monday, August 29, 2016

Debunked! Myth of Nordic socialist utopia crumbles

Swedish researcher: 'Culture of success predates the welfare state'

Liberal American politicians often cite Nordic countries like Norway, Sweden and Denmark as proof that big government or socialist policies can lead to vibrant, prosperous nations, but a leading economic scholar says those countries are successful despite more government and are actually proof that such policies are a failure.

Dr. Nima Sanandaji is author of “Debunking Utopia: Exposing the Myth of Nordic Socialism.” He told WND and Radio America liberals and socialists in America and beyond frequently extol the Nordic countries such as Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland for one simple reason.
“If you remove the Nordic countries, the left doesn’t have any role models left,” he said. “The left doesn’t say, ‘Look at California. They have big government. It works.’ They don’t say that. They don’t say, ‘Look at Italy. They have social democratic policies. That works.’ They only point to the Nordic countries.”

But even that example is badly misleading. Sanandaji said while there are some socialist policies in place, those are not socialist countries, and they don’t see themselves that way.........Liberals in the U.S. and beyond point to Nordic life expectancy exceeding that of the U.S., including Denmark, which has a life expectancy one-and-a-half years higher than that of Americans. Sanandaji said that’s true, but government-run health care is not the reason.

“True. They do live longer, but I look at history,” he said. “In 1960, Denmark had lower taxes than the U.S. had. At that time, before the welfare state, Danes lived 2.4 years longer than Americans. The difference has actually shrunk when Denmark is moving toward the highest tax on the planet.”......

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