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Sat Jan 30, 2016, 08:56 PM

After Living in Norway, America Feels Backward. Here’s Why. [View all]

<Some years ago, I faced up to the futility of reporting true things about America’s disastrous wars and so I left Afghanistan for another remote mountainous country far away. It was the polar opposite of Afghanistan: a peaceful, prosperous land where nearly everybody seemed to enjoy a good life, on the job and in the family.

It’s true that they didn’t work much, not by American standards anyway. In the US, full-time salaried workers supposedly laboring 40 hours a week actually average 49, with almost 20 percent clocking more than 60. These people, on the other hand, worked only about 37 hours a week, when they weren’t away on long paid vacations. At the end of the work day, about four in the afternoon (perhaps three in the summer), they had time to enjoy a hike in the forest or a swim with the kids or a beer with friends — which helps explain why, unlike so many Americans, they are pleased with their jobs.>

<So here’s the big difference: in Norway, capitalism serves the people. The government, elected by the people, sees to that. All eight of the parties that won parliamentary seats in the last national election, including the conservative Høyre party now leading the government, are committed to maintaining the welfare state. In the US, however, neoliberal politics put the foxes in charge of the henhouse, and capitalists have used the wealth generated by their enterprises (as well as financial and political manipulations) to capture the state and pluck the chickens. They’ve done a masterful job of chewing up organized labor. Today, only 11 percent of American workers belong to a union. In Norway, that number is 52 percent; in Denmark, 67 percent; in Sweden, 70 percent.

In the US, oligarchs maximize their wealth and keep it, using the “democratically elected” government to shape policies and laws favorable to the interests of their foxy class. They bamboozle the people by insisting, as Hillary Clinton did at that debate, that all of us have the “freedom” to create a business in the “free” marketplace, which implies that being hard up is our own fault.>

http://billmoyers.com/story/after-living-in-norway-america-feels-backward/

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Reply After Living in Norway, America Feels Backward. Here’s Why. [View all]
OxQQme Jan 2016 OP
riverbendviewgal Jan 2016 #1
hifiguy Jan 2016 #8
elias49 Jan 2016 #9
Yavin4 Jan 2016 #2
hunter Jan 2016 #10
LittleBlue Jan 2016 #13
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nadinbrzezinski Jan 2016 #25
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hfojvt Jan 2016 #26
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hifiguy Jan 2016 #4
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NickB79 Jan 2016 #32
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LittleBlue Jan 2016 #12
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ronnie624 Jan 2016 #34
WhaTHellsgoingonhere Jan 2016 #18
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LeftishBrit Jan 2016 #30
annabanana Jan 2016 #31