Right now, Europe is in a state of financial collapse the likes of which will more than likely demolish the welfare state in many of the lower European Union countries. In the center of this mess is Germany, which appears to repeatedly come out every few decades to destroy the entire continent in some way, shape, or form. I would say it was a pathological compulsion, but you simply cannot ascribe a mental disorder on an entire society across generations.
In any event, the consequences of the welfare state, fiat currency, and dependency on foreigners for their own defense. The last part is largely our fault due largely to the North American Treaty Organization. The United States has stretched itself too far and now that it is on the verge of bankruptcy itself, save for its military might, the rest of the allies’ own governments are crumbling before financial ruin.
Our warfare state is responsible for the ridiculous and incredibly foolhardy welfare programs and labor regulations that are currently in place throughout much of Europe. If we had not promised to defend these nations against the communists, I am fairly certain we would have seen a Europe that has a much more stable system in place with the ability to properly deal with foreign invaders.
On the other side of the coin, their shortsighted rubber stamping of the various welfare benefits (in Greece you could retire comfortably at 50) allowed for economic collapse. This is what happens when you create a currency backed by promises of future currency (that is what fiat currency is) while simultaneously creating massive entitlement programs.
When I was in high school, I once told a teacher that communism could never work in the United States because only 10% of the population would be working. The problem with welfare is that you eventually end up paying more people than you can possibly provide for because more and more people decide to not do the work. They outsource their labor to others who are working and being productive members of society.
Now some may say that because there are no jobs, these welfare moochers are unable to be productive members of society. The problem is, most welfare recipients lack motivation while they are collecting “benefits”. The motivation to make money so you do not starve is probably one the single most important drive a human being can face. Most people of integrity would either find work or start creating a service or product that generates money for them when faced with the prospect of starvation.
Ultimately, the welfare state crumbles because enough people realize that they do not need to work and it gets to a point where there is not enough wealth generated to cover the cost of the moochers. And so we find a society that collapses violently, like in Greece, because the government has to make deep, difficult cuts in their programs in order to keep out of debt and not ruin their nation financially.
The reason that the welfare system in the various European counties has survived for so long, though, is largely because they could focus their tax revenues (money stolen from the producers) on welfare instead of warfare. Now that our own welfare system, which is tame compared to many European countries, has started to collapse along with our warfare system, Europe has started to collapse under its own moocher greed.
I have not sympathy for anyone involved in that mess. I do feel a bit of pity for those politicians in our country who will get elected into national office next year since they will have to make some really hard choices and face the same consequences that Greece is facing. Nothing here is solvent as all welfare benefits, from Social Security to farm subsidies, are all going to collapse sooner rather than later. My advice is to keep working and save money and real commodities in your place of residence. Because when the moochers lose their livelihood, they will take it from you directly.