Once a population has been welfarized, can a nation go back?
Countries in Europe are facing problems as they start to run out of what Margaret Thatcher called “other people’s money.” So Denmark is trying, at least a little bitty bit, to rethink the welfare system, and finding it tough going:
“In the past, people never asked for help unless they needed it,” said Karen Haekkerup, the minister of social affairs and integration, who has been outspoken on the subject. “My grandmother was offered a pension and she was offended. She did not need it.
“But now people do not have that mentality. They think of these benefits as their rights. The rights have just expanded and expanded. And it has brought us a good quality of life. But now we need to go back to the rights and the duties. We all have to contribute.”
Good luck with that.
[NOTE: I thought I'd coined the term "welfarized" for this post. But apparently not.]