Stossel: Sweden is Not a Socialist Success
Today, numerous Americans don’t like capitalism. Socialism would be better, “theyre saying”. Not despotic Russian or Venezuelan socialism, but democratic socialism like what’s practised in Scandinavia. I think we should look to countries like Denmark, like Sweden. Say why, do you want to be like Sweden? Kinda. Sound pretty good. People interviewed in this just secreted PBS documentary say America should be more like Sweden. It seems like it’s like a place that like no problems or something. It is a socialist economy. Volvos and uh, trained medication. Volvo is now a Chinese companionship. Welcome to Stockholm, Sweden. My name is Johan Norberg and this is where I was born and raised.Johan Norberg made this documentary because he wanted to set the record directly. Sweden is not socialist because the government doesn’t own the means of production. To see that you have to go to Venezuela or to Cuba or North Korea. But we did have a period in the 1970 s and 1980 s when we had something that resembled socialism. A large-hearted government that taxed and waste heavily and that’s the period in Swedish history when our economy was going south. So much so that even socialists complains that the high taxes. Astrid Lindgren, who wrote the very popular children’s diaries Pippi Longstocking for instance, she was a social democrat but she had made a lot of money from her books.She found that she paid 102% in taxes. She wrote this angry essay about a witch who was quite mean and infamous, but not at all as vindictive as the Swedish tax authorities. And hitherto even if they are taxes are very high, they did not bring in enough fund to fund Sweden’s welfare state. There were waiting lines to get health care, parties couldn’t get the pension that they thought that they depended on for the future. At that top the Swedish population just said, enough we can’t do this. Sweden then increased government’s capacity. They trimmed public spending, privatized the national rail network, rescinded sure-fire government monopolies, eliminated inheritance taxes, and sold state-owned industries like the maker of Absolut Vodka. Lower taxes reformed the pension system so that it wasn’t unsustainable. The results from the spending sections and privatization? This impoverished peasant nation developed into one of the world’s richest countries. All I listen is that Sweden is this socialist paradise. We do have a bigger welfare state than the U.S ., higher taxes than the U.S. But in other areas, when it comes to free markets, when it comes to competition, when it comes to free trade, Sweden is actually more free market.That free market pays for Sweden’s big welfare programs. Today our taxes pay for welfares. You call it Social Security. For 18 month paid parental leave, authority paid childcare, for directing pedigrees, but having the authorities concerned administer all of these things didn’t work well so we had to manage it in another way. They privatized. We recognise in Sweden that with these authority monopolies, we don’t get the innovation that we get when we have competition and this is especially true for the school system.Sweden switched to a school voucher system that tells mothers pick their children’ institution, and magnetisms institutions to compete. And one of the results that we’ve seen is not just a matter that the private school are better than the public ones, but even the public academies in the vicinity of private schools, they are usually improve because they have to. Sweden’s explanation of Social Security was going broke, so Sweden privatized that, too. Privatize the pension system? That fright beings. And plainly that scares beings, but when they realize that the alternative was that the whole pension system would crumble, they thought that this is much better than nothing.Now the bulk of pensions is really contribution characterized. So if things are going well for Sweden welfares are increasing, but if things are going less well, pensions are automatically lowered, which basically takes away from politicians the ability to buy elects by only promising higher pensions and making benefit of future generations compensate. And when it comes to taxes, what Sweden does may surprise you. The low income earners in Sweden pay a lot more than low income earners in America. So despite the fact that Sweden looks like sort of a left-wing country which taxes rich exorbitantly high, the truth is the opposite. People who earn below average income pay up to 60% in taxes. This is the dirty little secret about the Swedish tax system. We don’t take from the rich and give to the poor. We pinch the poor because they are loyal taxpayers. Not taking more from the rich, school option, privatization, Sweden is anything but socialist.You can’t turn your backs to the well, to the creation of wealth. You can watch the full documentary Sweden: Assignments for America? at free to choose.TV ..