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Here's another piece of the puzzle, in terms of looking at expenditures on social spending...

 Definition: Net public social spending as a percentage of GDP. This also includes public health expenditure.

 Amount

  1. Sweden 30.6% of GDP  
  2. Germany 28.8% of GDP  
  3. Belgium 28.5% of GDP  
  4. Denmark 27.5% of GDP  
  5. Finland 25.6% of GDP  
  6. Italy 25.3% of GDP  
  7. Norway 25.1% of GDP  
  8. Austria 24.6% of GDP  
  9. United Kingdom 24.6% of GDP  
  10. Netherlands 24.0% of GDP  
  11. United States 23.4% of GDP  
  12. Australia 21.9% of GDP  
  13. Canada 21.8% of GDP  
  14. Ireland 18.4% of GDP  
  15. New Zealand 17.5% of GDP  
  16. Japan 15.7% of GDP  
 Weighted Average 23 % of GDP  

Source: Willem Adema, Net Social Expenditure (2nd edn, OECD Labour Market and Social Policy Occasional Paper 52, 2001)

So, perhaps you have to do an overlay, looking at poverty and social spending, to see if there is a correlation between increased spedning on social spending and decreased level of poverty (which you would think), but if a country has high poverty and high social spending, you would have to wonder where the money is being spent...

"Once in awhile we get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if we look at it right" - Hunter/Garcia

by whataboutbob on Wed Oct 12th, 2005 at 11:04:27 AM EST

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