The last 10 years haven’t been great for growth anywhere in the rich world, but it hasn’t been any worse for countries with big welfare states versus countries with small welfare states. The thought is that paying to keep states, such as Mississippi, or countries, such as Greece, afloat is a drain on growth. However, there is no discernible pattern or relationship when average social spending is compared with adjusted per capita GDP. This means that economic security does not have to be sacrificed for economic security. Viewed another way, the euro crisis is not the death knell of the cradle-to-the-grave government; it might just be the death knell of the euro itself.

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