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Star Parker is a columnist for The Daily Signal and president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education.
As France is gripped by civil disorder, many commentators identify, quite correctly, as the culprit the outsized burden that France’s bloated welfare state places on its citizens.
Report - Organization - Economic - Cooperation - Development
According a recent report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the highest tax burden in the industrialized world is in France—46.1 percent of gross domestic product.
In the United States, it is 27 percent, which includes taxes paid at all levels of government—federal, state, and local.
Welfare - State - Spending - France - Percent
Welfare state spending in France is 32 percent of GDP, almost double that of the U.S., meaning that 1 out of every 3 dollars generated by the French economy is captured by the government and redistributed into social/welfare spending.
But let’s recall that all this government was put in place in the name of making life better for France’s citizens.
Plenty - Analysis - Situation - Country - Government
There’s plenty of analysis regarding the French situation, as there is in our own country, about how to streamline and reform government programs and deliver the same quality of services at a reduced spending and tax burden on citizens.
But these discussions invariably fail to look at the full scope of human reality at play.
Expansion - Welfare - State - Europe - United
The vast expansion of the welfare state, both in Europe and in the United States, occurred in tandem with a weakening of the family. And weakening of the family generally occurs in an environment of weakening of religion.
When I speak and tell audiences that today four in 10 babies in the United States are born to unwed mothers, compared with less than one in 10 babies 50 years ago, I hear gasps.
France - Wedlock - Births
But in France, out of wedlock births stand at six in 10.
Not surprisingly, a recent survey by Pew Research of 34 European countries shows France to be one...
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