Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 22nd Mar 2010 22:35 UTC
Google Two months ago, Google announced its intention to stop censoring search results in China, while also stating it may even leave the country altogether. The announcement followed the news that Chinese crackers had attempted to crack the accounts of human rights activists. The search giant has stayed true to its word: starting today, search results are no longer censored in China. Google employed a clever trick to get there: they reroute Chinese users to the uncensored Hong Kong version of Google. Instant update: China has already responded: "Google has violated its written promise it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service and blaming China in insinuation for alleged hacker attacks."
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RE[4]: Good for them.
by cfgr on Tue 23rd Mar 2010 19:06 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Good for them."
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You can see the difference taxes make quite easily when you compare The Netherlands to Belgium. We're two relatively similar countries, but we Dutch have higher tax rates. The end result? Try driving from The Netherlands into Belgium, and compare the state of infrastructure and buildings - it's like driving from a modern, well-developed and rich state (The Netherlands) into a 3rd world country (Belgium). It's easy to see why: the Belgian government hasn't a drop to spend.

While I found your post very interesting and insightful, I have to correct you there. Belgium is actually a very bad example because the problem is not tax related at all. In fact, we have a higher income tax than the Netherlands[1], I don't really understand where that Dutch tax myth comes from. However, the problem is that the federal government is pretty much broke while the regional governments get the money but don't have the authority (by law) to invest it in infrastructure/services that belong to the federal state.

About the motorways, they are reconstructing them all the time. By the time the roadworks are finished, they have to redo them due to the heavy cargo traffic crossing the country (for free) from Germany-France-Holland-UK.

But that aside, I completely agree with you. Money is just a tool to increase our quality of life. A society that prefers making money above welfare is a society that forgot its purpose and encourages greed and corruption for personal gain. That is not to say we have no corruption here, but at least we still call it corruption rather than campaign donations.

See table I.5 for the averages. As far as I can see, Denmark is the only country with a higher personal tax than Belgium, but their employers contribute very little.

Edited 2010-03-23 19:07 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2