Thursday, June 09, 2005

NIMPBY syndrome

NIMBY is pretty famous acronym, meaning not-in-my-backyard. Well NIMPBY means not-in-my-political-backyard.

Freya Van den Bossche, socialist minister of 'work' wants to cut down on early retirements. The logic of companies hiring younger people when they are allowed to sack the old while the government pays part of the deal has never worked. Because in the end somebody has to pay the pensions of these pre-pensioners. And that are the young people whose labor is taxed extra-ordinarily high. Results way too many retire and way too few get hired. So reform is urgently needed. At the moment Vdb is announcing her proposal to reform the system. At the same time however a compagny in the political backyard of the PS, gets a deal where it puts 1600 people into early retirement. NIMPBY, remember it! This example is what I understand by Giddens third way: blabla solutions.

I always though that politics had to do with solving collective action problems. But in Europe the Welfare state has reached a point where it only creates collective action problems.


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