Which country’s citizens see it as more socially just; the capitalistic United States, or the bit-more-socialist Germany?

70 % of Germans polled consider their economic system hardly or not at all socially just. "A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of Likely Voters finds that 24% believe American society is generally unfair and discriminatory".

The very of embodiment of capitalism, the U.S., fares better in the category "social justice" than welfare state Germany, based on the subjective judgement of each population?

Makes you wonder whether Germany shouldn’t turn to American style capitalism in order to improve social justice in the country…

Hey, Michael Moore, do you hear me? Michael?

As German blogger David notes, this is a subjective measure, but it’s very interesting to see the huge disparity.  Part of this is likely due to what each country’s people consider "socially just", so that standard may be different.  But I think that’s an important issue.  I find it very likely that Germans, who have come to expect more hand-holding by their government, don’t see what their government does as enough, mostly because government can never do "enough".  At some point the individual has to own their situation, but growing up and living in a culture where this is expected, any time the government falls short (and it will fall short, a lot) is perceived as "unjust", and contributes to an overall disappointment with a government that is quite possibly redistributing much more wealth than the United States.

In the US, the pendulum can swing the other way, too.  In a country built on individualism, it’s possible that most might see the economic system as being just fine, might see those not making it as moochers, and thus consider it more "just".  But as has been noted before, the same folks who defend capitalism the most (i.e. the center-right in this country) also give more in charity personally, in both time and money, and don’t expect the government (i.e. everybody else) to do it for them.  They own their own social justice issue, and thus, I believe, see it as just.  Not perfect, because neither situation is, and people will fall through the cracks under both systems.  But they do own it themselves.

Filed under: ConservativeCultureEconomics

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