Some people think that if you repeat a lie for long enough it will eventually become truth. It doesn’t, of course, and whenever someone touts the same bullshit in order to make it “the truth” I have a steady job of speaking out against it. Perhaps I can make a living off writing these articles, perhaps some day Americans will wake (the fuck) up and smell the rancid coffee they’re drinking?
Myth #1: Danes get 90% of their old salary for 2 years when they become unemployed.
That does sound good, doesn’t it? Well, if you believe this myth I have some alien artifacts to sell you. Of course the danish government doesn’t give anyone more than anyone else – everyone is equal, of course – and while some people actually can get up to 90% of their former salary, there are a lot of things preventing this – and it is a private transaction between the unemployed and his “A-Kasse”.
An A-Kasse is something the Unions in Denmark offer their members, and it is ridiculously expensive. It is a kind of insurance against unemployment and while heavily regulated by the government (of course) it is actually a private institution. Most low-wage bluecollar workers are members of their Union and the Union’s A-Kasse, because they actually can get up to 90% of their former salary if they become unemployed. I actually think american unions should create similar options for their members, but that’s an entirely different matter.
The danish government offers somewhere around 10.000 dkk if you become unemployed in “Kontanthjælp”, which translates into “cash help”, and is actually all the danish government offers in wellfare. You can get extra benefits if you’re an unemployed single mother or similar things that make your life more expensive, but a single male dane can only get somewhere around 10K.
The 90% number is calculated from the average salary of someone who is a member of an A-Kasse because those who make a lot of money doesn’t take these memberships and prefer investing their money instead.
It is true that some people can get up to 90% of their former salary, but that is through a private arrangement that is heavily regulated by the government, but the recipiant has already paid a lot of money in membership fees to their A-Kasse.
It’s bullshit, but leave it to socialdemocraZies to take credit for a private arrangement they only regulate.
Myth #2: Denmark spends far less on Healthcare than the US
Actually, yes. Our underpaid nurses, poor quality healthcare and long waitinglists for surgery is actually far less expensive than the american solution. It’s true. Finally a truth; danish healthcare is in fact cheaper than the american equalent. Yay, Denmark!
The fact it’s worthless to the patient shouldn’t matter. People receiving poor healthcare and being forced to pay for it and not able to take another alternative shouldn’t matter because it’s cheaper! It worked so well in the Soviet Union, didn’t it?
Please note the sarcasm.
Myth #3: Denmark is the happiest country in the world
Sure, if happiness is apathy and pills, we are indeed the happiest people in the world. The vast majority of the people have resigned to the fact our nanny-state has taken everything from us and regulates every aspect of our lives. Our happiness is based on the safety of the blanket we have been wrapped in by our nannies in government.
Still, we bitch and moan constantly about everything the government does. No matter what the government does everyone speaks out against it; bitching and moaning, all while apathy takes over and noone does anything!
Danes aren’t happy; we’re apathetic. There’s a difference.
Myth #4: Danes have a 37-hour workweek
Sure, but that’s because Unions – not the government – has negotiated a shorter workweek for their members. It’s not the government who have created the workweek for employees; and American unions can help American workers get the same.
Of course, if you’re not employed as a working class employee, you usually have a far longer workweek. Personally I work somewhere around 45-50 hours per week, but I am not working class or blue collar.
The hours an employee works is a matter of negotiation between unions and the employer organisations. The danish government regulates parts of the agreements, but it’s still a private matter, not a governmental issue.
Myth #5: Denmark pays students money to study
Yup, everyone pays for students, but less than Kontanthjælp (wellfare). Some sites cite $900, but the actual amount depends on your parent’s income, where you live and how old you are. It also depends on what you’re studying and what semester you’re doing.
If you’re becoming an academic, sure, you get up to $900 per month from the government. It’s called SU – short for Statens Uddannelsesstøtte, which translates into “Government Educationsupport” – but only if you’re not living at home with your parents and are over a certain age.
I have not done all the research and wont cite the actual age because I don’t remember exactly how old you have to be to get the full amount, but if you’re younger, living at home and your parents are well off you only get “café money” – slang for the lowest possible help you can get because it’s so low it only gives you a trip to the café with your friends – but sure, you do get money from the state.
If you’re studying to become a carpenter you have semesters at school and will receive the same in SU as an academic, but you also have semesters with a private company who will pay you a “student wage” during your semesters with them, which is about twice the SU.
The problem is, of course, that with such a nice safety net students tend to study what they want and not what they can actually aspire to be. A lot of students start an education, stop and start another either because the subject of the first education was too hard or they lost passion for it – and quite a few loose interest in their next education and stop that one as well.
Besides, noone can make a living with an income of only $900 in Denmark. Most take a huge loan on the side and a job to make ends meet and those who choose this way of life don’t need the extra money everyone else is paying for over their taxes.
The SU is not free – it’s paid for by everyone else.
Myth #6: Denmark has the highest per capita income in the world
Of course we do! Whenever we make a Krone we give half to the government, so sure; we make the most money because we can only keep half, and have to give a fifth of the remaining income whenever we spend the money we get to keep. You better fucking believe we demand a ridiculous income since we don’t get to keep most of it!
Everything in Denmark is taxed, even the fucking taxes are taxed!
So yeah, it’s true we are highly paid but we don’t get the money; our government takes most of it and demands we’re happy about it! If an american company wanted to employ me as a writer they would have to pay we around twice as much as they would an american writer, because I have taxes to pay!
Myth #7: Denmark has one of the lowest poverty rates in the world
Sure, but we are also the least likely to be charitable through voluntary means because we feel we have already paid enough for charity. We don’t do charity because we have already paid for everyone else.
Myth #8: Denmark is the #1 country for business
I have no idea how Forbes Magazine came to this conclusion, but maybe this is true in theory, but then the theory is dead wrong. More and more businesses leave Denmark for countries with lower corporation taxes and a cheaper workforce. The only reason I still operate my business in Denmark is because my product is Scandinavian porn.
If I am ever able to get a foothold in the american adult industry I would leave in a heartbeat, but until that happens I am stuck here paying ridiculous taxes on everything. Luckily I am very good at our national pasttime “Tax dodging”.
Myth #9: Paid family leave for 52 weeks
Yes, the danish government demands that companies still pay for a women who leaves their company for a year to stay at home with her child. They start paying before she has given birth and then keep paying for her and the employee who assumes her position in the company during her leave. The government demands this of the company and will in some cases help pay for her, but it’s still expensive for the company, who loses their employee for a year or so and of course have to replace her during this period.
Imagine that you have an employee you’re very happy with and then she get’s pregnant. She leaves your company and you still have to pay her salaray while she’s away for a year. You have to find a new employee to take her place and pay that employee as well. You’re paying for 1½ employee for the same work!
Fair? Hell no, but that is of no concern in your average social democraZy. It’s not like you have to think before you plan a family and you can’t fire or even not hire a woman because she might end up costing you 1½ salaries. You cannot fire her for being pregnant nor can you ask “do you intend to have a child in the near future” during the job interview.
Nothing in a Social DemocraZy structure is fair nor is it efficient. The things that actually work and make sense are created and run by private interests and the things that do not are run by the government. If you’re actually a believer in socialism you should enact a lot of these things but only with other socialists of similar beliefs and not force other people to be part of it.
And stop lying and twisting the truth. You might believe in these lies and myths, but reality is very, very different. I actually live in your dreamworld and believe me; it’s not what it’s cracked up to be for everyone else.
If you want social democraZy in your government I truly believe your either a fool or actually evil.