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April 15, 2007

If You're In DC...

Tomorrow at Cato:

Should the United States Be More Like Scandinavia?

POLICY FORUM
Monday, April 16, 2007
12:00 PM (Luncheon to Follow)


Featuring Johnny Munkhammar, Program Director, Timbro, Sweden; Ezra Klein Writing Fellow, American Prospect; and Dan Mitchell, Senior Fellow, Cato Institute.

The Cato Institute
1000 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001

Most of Western Europe suffers from high taxes, high unemployment, and low growth rates, but some observers see Scandinavia as an exception that has managed to combine an extensive welfare state with robust economic growth. New Republic recently lauded Denmark as an example for the United States to follow. Should the United States adopt the Scandinavian model? What are the real lessons from Denmark, Norway and Sweden?

Registration for events at the Cato Institute closes 24 business hours prior to an event; however, seating is still available. If you would like to attend this event, please feel free to register on-site. Thank you.

April 15, 2007 | Permalink

Comments

If you don't have a centralised bureaucratic state, you can't take the Scandinavian model for a spin.

Posted by: otto | Apr 15, 2007 10:30:57 PM

I suppose I should just wait for tomorrow, but I want to ask now: is this

Should the United States adopt the Scandinavian model?

sort of question just a rhetorical setup for the Cato answer Hell no!!! or am I misjudging them, and they might entertain the possibility?

Posted by: Allen Knutson | Apr 15, 2007 11:28:52 PM

Should the United States adopt the Scandinavian model?

I'm sure there are lots of American men who would be happy to adopt a Scandinavian model.

Wait, that's not what they meant ...

... Also, isn't this deck a little stacked. Someone from a right-of-center Swedish think tank; a Senior Fellor from the Cato institute; and a Prospect rook? Either the game is rigged against wittle ol' Ezra, or he's a man playing a boy's game.

Posted by: Nicholas Beaudrot | Apr 15, 2007 11:58:30 PM

The welfare state is only an outcome. Centuries of developing a culture of majority honesty and considering all children as community responsibility is what is behind it. The cultural gap between the Nordic countries and the English speaking nations is much larger than it appears.

Posted by: James Pratt | Apr 16, 2007 12:15:25 AM

Good luck, Ezra!

Posted by: Neil the Ethical Werewolf | Apr 16, 2007 12:55:59 AM

Good luck, Ezra. But why'd they pick you?

I'm prejudiced, having come from an academic background, but I'd be interested in hearing more from Ph.D.s in economics, professional researchers, and government program directors on this issue. I'm less interested in the opinions of think tank "fellows."

Dan Mitchell -- a person who might seem like a real, live researcher -- has a publication record that seems to consist entirely of papers written for the Heritage Foundation.

While I appreciate that the world is big enough to accommodate many different value systems -- going through the academic career track or a government career track is apparently not necessary to be accepted as an expert on economics or the formation and implementation of government programs, but that doesn't mean that I have to buy into that value system.

Posted by: Constantine | Apr 16, 2007 1:19:07 AM

Can I just say that Johnny Munkhammar is the coolest name ever?

Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Apr 16, 2007 5:04:34 AM

"Most of Western Europe suffers from high taxes, high unemployment, and low growth rates"

Actually, most of Western Europe does not massively suffer from any of those any more than the US does (yes, Western Europe's taxes are a bit higher, unemployment a bit higher and growth rates somewhat lower - but not that different from the US in any of those measures). In addition, the economies of the Netherlands and Switzerland are almost as robust as Scandinavia, so it's not some Nordic thing.

They're mostly talking about France and Italy, and probably ignoring that "Germany's" stats include the very economically depressed East Germany (which, to be accurate, West Germany's government has only had 17 years to counteract a Soviet-imposed economic disaster).

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Posted by: judy | Sep 28, 2007 5:05:19 AM

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