Navacerrada (Madrid), 01.07.12.- The round table “Rethinking the Welfare State: Hindrance or Growth Lever?” has started the last day of the Economics course of the 2012 FAES Campus, chaired by the director of the Department of Economy and Public Policies of FAES Foundation, Miguel Marín. The speakers invited to this table have been the regional minister for Health of Madrid, Javier Fernández-Lasquetty; the director of thr School of Immigration and Cooperation Professionals of Madrid, Mauricio Rojas; and the Professor of Applied Economics of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Francisco Cabrillo.
“Today has started working throughout Spain the new user co-participation system for medicine payment, and it had done so without problems. This system is more fair, much more logical, much closer to that of other European countries, and it helps everybody, but much more to those who really need it, like the long-term unemployed, people who lack any incomes…”.
“The non-funding of certain medicines announced this week is also a positive measure”.
“We must continue developing the reforms started by the Spanish government and which are headed in the right direction. But I also believe that, besides the institutional and economic reforms, we also need a two-fold moral transformation of Spanish people: a greater sense of responsibility of each person over himself and not building our life on the idea that the State takes care of everything; and a greater distrust toward public spending”.
“The classic Welfare State model has made three mistakes: mistaking the aim of helping those who need it by helping everyone equally and completely free; thinking that for their services to work they need to be run by public workers; and creating a false illusion of it being for free, which has led, for example, to an 80% of citizens not knowing that public health is funded through taxes ".
“At a time where competitors are emerging, the Welfare State, if it’s not very efficient – and it is not – can create huge distortions for any country wanting to keep it, thus becoming unsustainable”.
“Right now, those who have a strong Welfare State are integrated in a highly-competitive world economy”.
“There’s no serious argument, nor any serious evidence, that an approach like the Welfare State encourages ethical behaviour by the people, indeed the opposite is true. It encourages possibilities of abuse and it promotes all types of tricks, which in the medium term is quite simply a disaster”.
“The dilemma of Social-Democracy as the source of the Welfare State and which distinguishes between the production sphere and the distribution sphere is that the two spheres are not separated: as the planned economy, that is, the Welfare State, works very badly, the State gets hold of a part of the resources generated by market economy and distributes it among the people”.
Saying the solution to our crisis is more Europe has become nearly a mantra. This is not true; it depend on which Europe. The solution to our crisis is more freedom, more personal responsibility, more work and more innovation […]. With this deceit that the great State can give us everything, that Europe is simply going to sharpen the crisis instead of solving it".
“‘Eurosclerosis’ is Europe’s response to growing globalisation. Shutting itself in the security that the Welfare State apparently provided. Before this crisis, Europe lived two or three decades of very slow and insufficient growth”.
“The Welfare State, in good times, tends to increase its promises of rights, and besides, it is what the people demand from it. We must be aware that the creation and expansion of the Welfare State, of this whole deceit, has really come from both sides: there has been a political class which wanted it because it increased its power and citizens happily believing all its promises […]. The responsibility is collective and the Welfare State tends to build social states upon the supposition that everything is going to go well and when crisis suddenly pop up, then the drama of fiscal crisis begins, which is what we’re living right now”.