As I had mentioned before the tax payers made their contributions, it was up to the government to spend wisely. Thus it isn't the system at fault in principle, which is as solid as it gets, but those who have been in power managing it. As I previously stated, the question isn't about debt per se, but how and by whom has the debt been created.delbified said:what doesn't add up is that neoliberal capitalism as you refer to it is supposed to reduce govt debt, by reducing spending. this - political and economic ideology - is what the French blame, as you seem to have, for the austerity measures. but it's not true - it's not ideology that's driven the French govt to reform its social policies, but a much more powerful force - namely a debt crisis. much of western europe is broke and can no longer afford to fund retirees - it is a looming disaster.
Tax evasion is just as at fault as political corruption and mismanagement and this has to do with simple greed. No system is perfect, but I prefer the "third way" in principle of civility, then the other alternatives. Human weakness, greed and corruption are rife in any system. But I was talking about principle, which was the primary consideration. If we can't change people's behavior, and I'm not an idealist (though have been called such) because I have no hope in the human race, then at least we can hold on to our principles.
Having said that, now I'm going to comment on something which I know will get some folks all worked up here, but it absolutely needs to be said. And it is this: it seems to me that there are a lot of Americans critical of France's and Europe's debt, as if look at how irresponsible, spoiled and not willing to look at the reality those people are, though I don't here a critique in equal measure regarding the monstrously gargantuan US debt. Thus the first thing that comes to mind, is from which pulpit are they preaching.
Moreover the United States, because the superpower, has had the "luxury" of living entirely above its means (the virtual wealth as against the real wealth as mentioned before) with its colossal debt for two reasons: the petrol currency in $s and China's sustaining investments in the $. It is a debt that has allowed it to sustain its mastodonic military apparatus and fight its multi-front wars, meanwhile the public sector has been raised to the soil entirely, its highway and bridge infrastructures are terribly outdated and now look pitiful compared with the Chinese equivalents. Healthcare is still a long way from being socialized, the housing market is terribly ill, etc. And yet we still hear triumphalistic rhetoric for its system.
And all this only because America is the superpower and has now brought even the European third way on the verge of extinction. Of course that superpower status is destined to mitigate and so the luxury it has provided the nation to have the world's largest communal debt, would, therefore, be rapidly transformed into its own precipitous decline. Imagine if another money, say the Euro, were to replace the dollar as the international petrol currency. And then the Chinese began asking a return on their investments from the US. It is a scenario obviously, for the momment at least, nobody wants (except, perhaps, Iran); but it goes to show you how illusory and in many respects iniquitous the US system is and the model it represents to the world.
For this reason I support the French.