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And it requires moral decisions that are reasonably obvious unless you obfuscate them with dodgy economic philosophies.

People will fall through the cracks as a result of the way the system is set-up. It's not primarily their fault. That's why we should be ready to catch them, support them and at least stop them hitting bottom. Make sure they have adequate shelter, adequate health care and adequate food. Ensure that they have the material resources to maintain some self-respect in a society that equates material wealth with moral rectitude.

Blaming the people who fall through inevitable cracks in the system is stupid and evil: maybe some of their choices did help them fall, but if they hadn't it would be someone else. Maybe you.

The key difference between the US and European models seems to me to be a general acceptance in the EU that the people at the bottom should be supported while from over here it looks like that  in the US the consensus seems to be "to hell with them, it's their own fault".

That's what you get for letting Puritans found a country.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Oct 12th, 2005 at 02:18:44 AM EST
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