By Bonnie Erbe, Thomas Jefferson Street blog
American supporters of federally subsidized healthcare never cease to compare America's lack of same to European countries, most of which have nationalized healthcare systems. Well, here's one non-healthcare-related example where Europe has it wrong: The continent is riven by strikes driven by union workers angry at their leaders for not doing more to prevent a deep recession. The United States has not had a crippling strike since air traffic controllers walked out in the early 1980s and then-President Reagan fired them. I'm not a Reagan fan, but seems to me the United States and its economy are much better off without the devastating strikes that used to pull economic activity to a standstill.
Europe's busiest commuter train line remained strike bound for an eighth day, tens of thousands of Greek workers staged a protest against government spending cuts while British Airways took court action against a damaging Christmas walkout.
Thousands of Spanish taxi drivers blocked main roads across central Madrid and other major cities to protest moves to deregulate their industry. The protest brought land traffic to Madrid's main Barajas airport to a virtual standstill…Hundreds of thousand of Paris commuters struggled to work in heavy snow as a strike on the main regional commuter lines crossing the French capital spread.
So, anyone, want to debate whether life for the average worker is better in Europe or in America? I'll stay here, thank you, except for occasional visits to gorge on European history and culture. In that way, I agree, Europe has it over us.