Welfare - Poverty Category. Something to think about. Parks & zoos in this country usually have signs that ask us "Please Do Not Feed the Animals." The stated reason for this policy is because "The animals will grow dependent on handouts and will not learn to take care of themselves."

Do welfare states boost economic growth, or stunt it?

from BBC,

... the same basic idea links every welfare state: that the ultimate responsibility for ensuring people don't starve on the street should lie not with family, or charity, or private insurers, but with government.

This idea is not without its enemies. It is possible, after all, to mother too much. Every parent instinctively knows there's a balance: protect, but don't mollycoddle; nurture resilience, not dependence. And if overprotective parenting stunts personal growth, might too-generous welfare states stunt economic growth?

Could a single parent accumulate more from the welfare system than they could get by working at the minimum wage? In 2013, according to research by the Cato Institute, in no fewer than nine European countries, the answer to that question was "Yes". In three of them - Austria, Croatia and Denmark - the marginal tax rate was nearly 100%.

But it's also plausible to think that welfare states can improve economic productivity. If you lose your job, unemployment benefit means you don't have to rush into another one: it gives you time to find a new position that makes best use of your skills.

So, do welfare states boost economic growth, or stunt it? It's not an easy question to answer - the systems have many moving parts, and each part could affect growth in many ways.

Welfare states don't make the pie bigger or smaller. But they do change the size of each individual slice. And that helps to keep a lid on inequality.

In America, the New Deal was attacked from the left and right.

It does seem utopian, in the sense of fantastically unrealistic. Could we really imagine a world in which everyone gets a regular cash handout, enough to meet their basic needs, no questions asked?

It would, of course, be enormously expensive.

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