Tag Archives: Parasite

Spanish conservatives defeat socialists in regional and local elections

Political Map of Europe
Political Map of Europe

From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. (H/T Bret Baier)


Spain’s ruling Socialists suffered a crushing defeat to conservatives in local and regional elections Sunday, yielding power even in traditional strongholds against a backdrop of staggering unemployment and unprecedented sit-ins by Spaniards furious with what they see as politicians who don’t care about their plight.Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said the result was due punishment of his government for the state of the economy — the jobless rate is a eurozone high of 21.3 percent. But he said he had no plans to move up general elections, which must be held by March of next year, and pledged to press on with job-creating reforms despite the loud outcry of opposition to his party.

The win for the conservative opposition Popular Party puts it in even a stronger position to win the general elections and return to power after eight years of Socialist rule.

In what Spanish media said was the worst performance on record by the Socialist Party in local and regional elections, the numbers reflecting the loss were stunning: the conservative Popular Party won at the municipal level by about two million votes, compared to 150,000 in its win in 2007, and in 13 regional governments that were up for grabs, Zapatero’s party lost in virtually all of them.

One was Castilla-La Mancha in central Spain, where the Socialists have always held power. The Socialists also lost bastions like the town halls in Barcelona and Seville. The conservatives padded their majorities in Madrid and Valencia, in the latter even though the president is under investigation for corruption. Several other Socialist-controlled regional governments also fell. Spain’s electoral map turned largely blue — the color of the Popular Party.

I can see why Zapatero would want to avoid calling federal elections. Spain’s youth unemployment stands at 45% and he is very likely to be thrown out of power completely. I’m sure a lot of the young people voted for socialism, because socialism is so trendy in movies, music, in the universities, and on television . But the young people are finding out now that you cannot cover your nakedness with empty rhetoric, you cannot feed your stomach with feelings of self-congratulation, and you cannot coerce employers to hire you by demonizing capitalism.

We’ve become a nation of takers, not makers

From moderate conservative Stephen Moore, writing in the Wall Street Journal. (H/T ECM)


If you want to understand better why so many states—from New York to Wisconsin to California—are teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, consider this depressing statistic: Today in America there are nearly twice as many people working for the government (22.5 million) than in all of manufacturing (11.5 million). This is an almost exact reversal of the situation in 1960, when there were 15 million workers in manufacturing and 8.7 million collecting a paycheck from the government.

It gets worse. More Americans work for the government than work in construction, farming, fishing, forestry, manufacturing, mining and utilities combined. We have moved decisively from a nation of makers to a nation of takers. Nearly half of the $2.2 trillion cost of state and local governments is the $1 trillion-a-year tab for pay and benefits of state and local employees. Is it any wonder that so many states and cities cannot pay their bills?

Every state in America today except for two—Indiana and Wisconsin—has more government workers on the payroll than people manufacturing industrial goods. Consider California, which has the highest budget deficit in the history of the states. The not-so Golden State now has an incredible 2.4 million government employees—twice as many as people at work in manufacturing. New Jersey has just under two-and-a-half as many government employees as manufacturers. Florida’s ratio is more than 3 to 1. So is New York’s.

Even Michigan, at one time the auto capital of the world, and Pennsylvania, once the steel capital, have more government bureaucrats than people making things. The leaders in government hiring are Wyoming and New Mexico, which have hired more than six government workers for every manufacturing worker.

Now it is certainly true that many states have not typically been home to traditional manufacturing operations. Iowa and Nebraska are farm states, for example. But in those states, there are at least five times more government workers than farmers. West Virginia is the mining capital of the world, yet it has at least three times more government workers than miners. New York is the financial capital of the world—at least for now. That sector employs roughly 670,000 New Yorkers. That’s less than half of the state’s 1.48 million government employees.

The problem with having a high number of government workers is that government workers don’t actually produce anything to sell. They pay the salaries of their workers by taking a percentage of the money that productive business make when they sell customers useful things like cell phones and laptops and automobiles.

This article is the second most popular on the Wall Street Journal. Recommended.

Unemployment rate in socialist Spain now above 20%

Map of Europe
Map of Europe

Here’s the story from Yahoo News.


Spain announced Friday its jobless rate surged to a 13-year record above 20 percent at the end of 2010, the highest level in the industrialized world, as the economy struggled for air.

It was more bad news for an economy fighting to regain the trust of financial markets and avoid being trapped in a debt quagmire that has engulfed Greece and Ireland and now menaces Portugal.

Another 121,900 people joined Spain’s unemployment queues in the final quarter of the year, pushing the total to 4.697 million people, said the national statistics institute INE.

The resulting unemployment rate was 20.33 percent for the end of the year — easily exceeding Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero’s target of 19.4 percent.

Spain appears to be stuck in a rut of staggeringly high levels of unemployment.

After posting a jobless rate of 18.83 percent in 2009 and now 20.33 percent in 2010, the government is forecasting 19.3 percent for 2011 and 17.5 percent in 2012.

The Spanish economy, the European Union’s fifth biggest, slumped into recession during the second half of 2008 as the global financial meltdown compounded the collapse of a labour-intensive construction boom

It emerged with tepid growth of just 0.1 percent in the first quarter of 2010 and 0.2 percent in the second but then stalled with zero growth in the third.

Zapatero has said the fourth quarter will show positive growth which would pick up steam in 2011 but he warned that job creation would be “far from what we need and desire. It will be slow and progressive.”

Remember that Spain elected Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero in April 2004, who is a member of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, which is very similar in policy to Barack Obama and the Democrats.  Let’s see what has happened in Spain. (H/T Spain Economy Watch)


Spain Unemployment Rate
Spain Unemployment Rate

Private sector employment:

Spain Employment Rate - Private Sector
Spain Employment - Private Sector

Public sector employment:

Spain Employment - Public Sector
Spain Employment - Public Sector

So what do we learn from this?

Well, the public sector doesn’t really sell any products or services, so they don’t really have any customers to please, nor do they have any revenue. They exist by confiscating the wealth of other people (in the private sector) who do have products and services to sell, and do have customers to please. The governments job is to HELP the people in the private sector and not to raise their taxes, or control them, or get in their way except to make sure that they compete fairly and honestly with other people in the private sector. When government oversteps their bounds by raising taxes too high and spending too much, they stop acting like a REFEREE and start acting more like a PARASITE.

You’ll note that Obama is also spending trillions of dollars on government boondoggles – and where is our unemployment rate now?

Obama doubles the number of federal workers paid over $150,000

USA Today reports that the number of federal works earning $150,000 or more has DOUBLED since Obama took office.  (H/T Gateway Pundit)


The number of federal workers earning $150,000 or more a year has soared tenfold in the past five years and doubled since President Obama took office, a USA TODAY analysis finds.

The fast-growing pay of federal employees has captured the attention of fiscally conservative Republicans who won control of the U.S. House of Representatives in last week’s elections. Already, some lawmakers are planning to use the lame-duck session that starts Monday to challenge the president’s plan to give a 1.4% across-the-board pay raise to 2.1 million federal workers.

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate averaged 9.43% under Obama.

How public sector unions cause tax rates to increase

Let’s take a look at the UK economy after over a decade of rule by the socialist Labor party.

Here’s an article from the UK Telegraph about the pensions of unionized public sector workers.


It is estimated that, on average, private sector workers would need to put 37pc of their salary into their pension to match the retirement income paid to a public sector worker on a similar wage, if you believe a report by accountants PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Even public sector workers on modest final salary schemes might be surprised to learn how much they would need to save if they were in the private sector.

To get the average civil service pension of £5,928 a year you would need a pension pot of £189,151. The average NHS pension of £6,931 is equivalent to a pension pot of £221,155 and the average teachers’ pension of £9,358 is equivalent to a pot of £298,596, according to Hargreaves Lansdown, the financial adviser.

[…]The figures showed that average total pay, including bonuses, in the private sector in February was £451 a week. Excluding bonuses it was £418 a week. In the public sector the corresponding figures were £462 a week and £459 a week. Public sector pay, on average, is also rising at twice the rate of private sector wages.

Government workers have pensions and salaries that are higher than in the private sector, and those costs have to be paid by private sector workers who actually generate revenue and pay taxes. Public sector employees don’t actually have to do any work for the most part, (excluding things like military, etc.). People only work when they have customers to please, who can choose them or choose a competitor. Government has no competitors, and so they really don’t need to work hard to please a customer.

Another UK Telegraph article explains who pays for public sector union pensions.


By 2015, almost £10 billion of public money will be spent every year supporting the retirement of millions of public sector employees – up from £4 billion this year, the independent body said.

[…]In 2010-11, the amount spent by the taxpayer on public sector pensions will be £4 billion, rising to £5.5 billion the following year, the report said.

The cost will then rise, on average, by 20 per cent each year until the commitment reaches £9.4 billion in 2014-15. This equates to almost £400 for each of Britain’s 26 million households. The sharp increase, according to the Treasury, is a result of Britain’s ageing population.

[…]There are more than two million public sector workers receiving pensions from “unfunded” schemes.

The schemes are heavily supported by the taxpayer, with employees generally contributing less than their counterparts in the private sector.

And another UK Telegraph article explains how taxes on the productive private sector will have to rise to pay for the pensions.

Here’s one of several proposed tax increases:

We already know that [the capital gains tax] is due to increase, said Grant Thornton, although we don’t know what new rate or rates will be. “We do know that it will be more in line with income tax, so it could go up to 40pc, but the option of taxing up to the highest rate of 50pc has not been ruled out,” the firm said, adding that the measure was “likely to go down like a lead balloon” with investors with share portfolios and anyone with a second home.

Any raise to the capital gains tax is a direct assault on capital investment, and will damage the economy more than raising consumption taxes. The worst thing that you can do in a recession is to punish investors and private businesses. You end up losing jobs, which decreases your tax revenue even more.

And they are going to raise consumption taxes:

The Chancellor may face an “irresistible temptation” to increase the rate of VAT to 20pc now that he has had the opportunity to review the country’s books, said Grant Thornton. The standard rate of 17.5pc is relatively low relative to other EU countries and many economists predict a rise to 20pc, which would cost someone on average earnings about £150 a year.

That one will hit the poor as well as the rich.

And one last UK Telegraph article to explain how the recession has hurt men most.


Malcolm Hurlston, chairman of the [Consumer Credit Counselling Service], said: “Men have been hard hit by the recession and are emerging as the new underclass. Debt alone is no longer the problem. It is loss of income and other rising costs.

“This deterioration in the economic circumstances for men, still the main breadwinner in most homes, has serious implications for many households.”

The charity said it had seen the number of men contacting it for help soar from 146,00 in 2007 to 221,000 last year, a 51pc jump.

It added that the number of women seeking help had increased by only half this amount over the period, although women were still more likely to contact it than men, accounting for 52pc of its caseload.

Men who contacted the charity during 2009 owed an average of £26,957, down from nearly £30,000 in 2008, but still significantly higher than the £21,915 that women typically owed.

The main reason men gave for getting into debt was a fall in their income, with this cited by 26pc, while 23pc said they had become unemployed or been made redundant. A further 20pc of men blamed their situation on overcommitting themselves on credit.

When one group of people vote themselves higher benefits without any additional productivity, some other group is going to be taxed to pay for it. And higher taxes lower incomes and produce unemployment. The UK is replacing working men with big government dependency.