Thursday, September 28, 2006

Swedish Election to Discourage South Koreans From Welfare State?

Interesting story in Dagens Nyheter (in Swedish) about how the conservative opposition in South Korea are using the centre-right victory in Sweden to argue against the current centre-left government's expansion of the welfare state in South Korea. Until recently, South Korea barely had a welfare state and government spending relative to GDP is still second lowest in the OECD, after Mexico. But the current leftist government are apparently moving South Korea in a socialist direction, despite the strong economic growth South Korea have enjoyed in the last 50 years with its low tax and low government spending policies.

Now the conservative opposition apparently argue that since the Swedes rejected the welfare state, why should South Korea try to adopt the welfare state?

Actually, it is somewhat misleading (unfortunately) to say that the centre-right represent a rejection of welfare statism since it occurred after Reinfeldt moved his Moderate Party to the centre. At most, one can say it represent a rejection of the excesses planned by the Social Democrats and their Green and Communist allies. But if it will lead South Koreans away from implementing welfare statism, then it is just another reason to think that the centre-right victory was after all a good thing.


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