Mark Steyn on Greece

They’re just further down the road to oblivion than us, but we’re both on the same road.

What’s happening in the developed world today isn’t so very hard to understand: The 20th-century Bismarckian welfare state has run out of people to stick it to. In America, the feckless, insatiable boobs in Washington, Sacramento, Albany, and elsewhere are screwing over our kids and grandkids. In Europe, they’ve reached the next stage in social-democratic evolution: There are no kids or grandkids to screw over. The United States has a fertility rate of around 2.1 — or just over two kids per couple. Greece has a fertility rate of about 1.3: Ten grandparents have six kids have four grandkids — ie, the family tree is upside down. Demographers call 1.3 “lowest-low” fertility — the point from which no society has ever recovered. And, compared to Spain and Italy, Greece has the least worst fertility rate in Mediterranean Europe.

So you can’t borrow against the future because, in the most basic sense, you don’t have one. Greeks in the public sector retire at 58, which sounds great. But, when ten grandparents have four grandchildren, who pays for you to spend the last third of your adult life loafing around?

7 Comments

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7 responses to “Mark Steyn on Greece

  1. Greenwich Ex-Pat

    Meh. At some point individual nations and/or blocs of nations will sweep the board and re-set. It’s inevitable. The various monetary and financial systems we’re working with are inventions anyway. Build a better mousetrap. And when the time comes, the solutions will be reality based because there won’t be any choice. Money really only represents goods and services and is but a means by which to exchange them.

  2. Walt

    Dude –
    So what is your point? We should all hump more? For once, I can’t disagree with you!!
    Your Pal,
    Walt

  3. out looking in

    Another Ponzi scheme bites the dust…but let’s see how deep Washington will strike first before the next “political revolution” takes place….my guess is marginal tax rates at 55% on all income above $250k for married folks….and forget about reforming the alt min tax….inflation will pull more and more victims into this sorry group….and Warren Buffet, whether alive or frozen, will still be squawking about how his secretary pays more taxes than he does, bcs muni bond interest will HAVE to remain tax exempt, lest rates in CA, IL, NJ rise to double digot levels…

  4. KC

    Do you sometimes worry we’re looking at the new Dark Ages?

  5. jj

    I’m not sure about Dark Ages. The more appropriate name is rather Modern Feudal system.

    • christopherfountain

      I think I’m with KC on this, JJ – civilization is a fragile thing, and I fear that we’re on the cusp of losing it.

  6. out looking in

    major shift in economic power from West to East…West needs to adjust to lower standards of living….Fed undertaking major experiment with US economy- will not end pretty….but from the economic and social ashes we will rise again…impoverished (versus our Eastern foes) but most US citizens just don’t get it anyways…just dont take away their cable and cell phone..sad…