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Jin Liqun, chairman of China Investment Corporation (CIC), the nation’s sovereign wealth fund, warned that Europeans should “work a bit harder” if they want to pull the eurozone out of recession.
He said people in the West are too reliant on welfare payments and the benefits system, looking for external solutions to the debt crisis rather than tackling the problem from within.
Mr Jin also said the long-term economic slide could only be solved by amending the restrictive labour laws that mean Western workers are unable to compete in global markets.
“The root cause of the trouble is the over-burdened welfare system, built up since the Second World War in Europe – the sloth-inducing, indolence-inducing labour laws.
Double ouch, but I can’t see where he’s wrong. It might be hard to hear it from someone representing a country where freedom can be a pretty notional concept and the state tries to oversee practically everything, but the guy’s got a point. In the west the governments don’t try to oversee as much – or at least most of them don’t yet – but they have encouraged the raising of a couple of generations who rely on the state to wipe their arseholes for them because they couldn’t find them by themselves bent over a mirror with a greased stick. Money no? Economy bad? Is wrong. Government fix. Government fix now. Also done poo-poo and now smell bad. Government fix that now too please.
And it brings to mind something I said back in January when I came across a US site advocating protectionism and other anti free trade measures: I think that the Chinese might turn out to be better at capitalism than we in the west. Well, as long as they don’t make a habit of producing seven foot long slippers by mistake.