Folks complain that President Barack Obama is trying to set up a European-style welfare state. Europe is not such a negative model as indicated. European countries are in a crisis now, and have numerous problems that probably will take years to overcome fully. However, they are easily as capitalistic as the U.S. and as successful in producing a solid economy that benefits their citizens. In fact, sometimes they are doing better.
Gross domestic product per capita finds nine Eurozone members in the top 20 countries in the world, along with the U.S, according to the World Bank. Thus, the productivity and goods available per capita are similar to the U.S. The 2011 GDP growth rates show similarity also, with the U.S. at 1.5 percent and the Eurozone as a whole at 1.6 percent.
Unemployment in the U.S. is 8.2 percent. Unemployment across the entire European Union is 10.2 percent, with Germany, 5.6 percent, France,10.1 perCent; the United Kingdom, 8.1 percent, Sweden, 7.8 percent, and Italy, 10.2 percent.
Countries ranked by mathematics and science scores in education put the United States far behind many European countries. The U.S. spends more per capita on health care than any European country, yet we lag behind many of them in quality of care indicators. Research that has adjusted mortality to account for deaths not related to health care show the United States to be among the worst performers in comparing countries of the world. We rank lower than many European countries in years of life expectancy and in life expectancy at birth, and are ranked poorly with regard to rates of deaths from conditions that could have been prevented or treated successfully.