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Thread: Leaving Europe in this mess - morality discussion

  1. #1

    Default Leaving Europe in this mess - morality discussion

    Sooo...

    As most will know, this whole financial mess in Europe is not ending and plenty of voices estimate this crisis will take a decade to get over with. Personally, I am very worried because I do agree with those economic experts that say the common currency was doomed to fail without a proper integration and regulated/coordinated budgeting and such. And while this might be very selfish, I don't want to bleed out financially because some banks decided to mindlessly bet some money.

    On a second issue, Germany is (as will some others, like Japan) going to have severe problems with the age disparity - less younger people will stand opposing much more elderly people. The retirement funds will be a mess.


    Now as far as I'm concerned, I love travel. I love foreign cultures. I will go abroad all my life, live many other places and very likely I will settle down in a place that is not Germany (my home country). I am liberally minded, so my mindset is that it is my own responsibility to make sure I have enough money to live after retiring - not the responsibility of the government. And while I feel a bit guilty about my attitude, I am still fine with it and it doesn't change anything for me.

    But still, there is a moral issue at hand. I can understand the mostly conservative people that say it is our (my generation) duty to work for them. On the other hand, I just don't feel obligated (after all, I think the government/s are too be blamed for insufficient management). With the crisis, the fault lies mostly with the banks, that they were allowed to gamble in a such a way with money. But also the governments are to be blamed, after all it is their task to ensure banks stay within regulations and adjust such where necessary.
    I think the fact that I don't feel the duty to stay in this mess is partly due to the globalization and a society, that is more accepting and open than ever before. However I am far from being satisfied with my thoughts on this issue. I want to explore this more in-depth, with your help

    Should one stay home or return home, to pay taxes that will support the elder generations of your home country? Do the social thing, make your contribution to your national society? Or is it okay to freely move around in the world (to put yourself first)?
    While my example relates to Germany and the financial crisis in Europe, I am sure that most can relate to the idea, the root of the moral dilemma.
    Many countries will face problematic population changes in the future (or are already having them), but you can also apply this dilemma to taxes for example (too high taxes, is leaving for a place with less taxes okay? Or not?).

    I would be interested in your opinions, but more importantly WHY you think that way, WHAT your logic is. It'd be awesome if this could turn into a rich philosophical discussion...So please be elaborate!

    Please do add your context (European crisis, or maybe the situation in the states, or the population changes in your country...or tax issues...so one can relate better, knows which country/problem/circumstances you are talking about).

    But now...your turn

  2. #2

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    I dont think you'll be wanting to come to the US anytime soon. Our growing debt and turtle-speed economy makes the land of milk and honey more land of salt and vinegar. From what I read, Germany economically is in a good position. The infrastructure is in a good ranking and if I'm not mistaken, the job market. You could try coming to the US but being someone living here, I wouldnt recommend it.

  3. #3

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    Often when I try to understand complex economic or social problems, and try to simplify them. We began as nomadic tribes, finding that we could survive if we were banded together. For the tribe to survive, it had to share for the common good, as well as cultivate its talents. I mention this in order to address your concern about traveling to other countries so that you can avoid paying taxes that would be used to support the older and elderly.

    We have to assume, that on the grand scale, you have your education, and jobs where you can work because of the labor of those older people, they and the ones who came before them. If you understand the theory of "the tribe", you do have a responsibility to support the society and culture which gave you birth, a place to live and grow, educated you and created a complex infrastructure where you can work and travel. We work to support the society, because we are that society. No man is an island.

    On a more practical base, you are actually so small a segment of working society that your abdication probably has little impact on the great whole, but remember that the greater whole is also suppose to be the greater good.

    You're absolutely right that we have all inherited the ills of the banking industry in a global economy. I suspect that it will take not only the EU 10 years to recover, but the U.S. as well. My parents had a very accomplished friend who told me when I was a little boy, that the mark of a sane and rational person was the ability to accept and adapt to change. I have always tried to remember that. Our global economic picture scares the crap out of me, but I do have some trust in the resiliency of the younger generation, such as people like yourself. I have to add that I am so impressed with your mastery of English. Even if you move around and keep most of the money you make, I have trust in your judgement. We do have to survive, and I might do the same given your circumstances.

  4. #4

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    I don't think people have any particular duty to stay in a given country. If their opportunities are clearly greater in another, then people have a right to chase those opportunities. It's up to the countries to mold a society that is attractive to and meets the needs of all of their citizenry. If a country fails to do so, people have a right to either try to alter their government through the democratic process or move elsewhere.

    As a practical matter, people generally don't leave their home country because it continues to best serve their interests to stay, be that through established ties to family and friends, through ties to the country from having a paper trail and job history there, though familiarity with the culture and language, and/or through the incentives provided by that country's government programs (e.g. subsidized public university).




    I don't blame you for being despondent about the Eurozone crisis; European politicians have gotten the macroeconomics of depressions spectacularly wrong, with Germany itself spearheading the madness. The best-case scenario at this point is that it slowly course-corrects over a number of years, but it's definitely within the realm of possibility that slapping band-aids on the periphery stops working at some point and all economic hell breaks loose. Other parts of the developed world are indeed likely to do better; Canada and Australia have done comparably incredible, while the US looks likely at this point to fare more like them than Europe.

  5. #5

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    Your views seem to be entirely Conservative and not Liberal as you first stated. The fact that you don't put all of your trust in big government and can see all of the problems associated with it is mostly a Conservative view on politics and policies concerniing the finacial world. You may, however, have different social views.

    Is it ok to put yourself first? As in regard of feeling obligated to stay in one place and pay taxes? Yes. You should feel free to roam, make your own way and not feel obligated to simply stay in the area/country in wich you were born! This is not selfishness but the curiosity to explore. Without it we would not have had the likes of Van Gough, Eeinstien, Mark Twain, Gallileo, or Columbus. Each one of these individuals used their sense of exploration and adventure to become the icons they are to the modern world.

    I do think, however, that if you are looking to find a "less messy" situation elswhere then you may not find it. There really is no escaping the destruction and over-wrenching that government imposes on it's people worldwide. Even with good intentions people vote their freedoms away a bit-at-a-time. Eventually the clock resets itself with civil unrest but may not happen in our lifetime. Enjoy the freedoms to roam while they still exist.

    Without getting too in depth I can paraphrase that going back to Ghangis Khan to the Ottoman Empire and through the Roman Empire that this earth has seen great enslavement and corruption. It has cylced back-and-forth even before these notable conguerings. Those that forget history are doomed to repeat it. History has proven it.

    These lessons trump even the financial state of a union. Freedom first; Organization and taxation second. Suppression breeds rebellion.

  6. #6

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    I don't owe my country anything. I had no say in the fact that I was born here and I have no say in what the economic "rules" are. I feel no loyalty at all to a government of an arbitrary geographical area who don't represent me.

    If it would suit me to leave the country and go somewhere more prosperous, I don't see why anyone should stop me from doing so. I resent the fact that I have to ask permission from the government of one arbitrary region to allow me to travel to another arbitrary region, and even pay them for their consent! And I'm equally disgruntled that I need to get permission from the government of the region I'm travelling to, in order to allow me to exist there.

    Nations and borders are a ridiculous invention designed by the rich to make sure that the poor don't get any of their money and will continue slaving away for the benefit of the wealthy... And the thoughtless imposition of borders on Africa by megalomaniac Europeans in a "divide and conquer" manner seems like a corrupt way to control the planet.

    Capitalism and "democracy" in the West are fundamentally based on the idea that people should operate with their own best interests at heart. If you act with socialist values in a corrupt capitalist economy, you're going to get screwed over by the greedy rich "elite".

    The rules suck, but I didn't make them. You gotta play by the rules, and the rules say, "Take care of number one 'cos no one else will!". What can you do?
    Last edited by tiny; 26-Mar-2013 at 11:20. Reason: Forum bug causing double posts

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by BabyBalto View Post
    You could try coming to the US but being someone living here, I wouldnt recommend it.
    I'm no expert on anything, so my chances are low either way. Countries I find interesting for various reasons are for example Canada, NZ, Japan and the UAE. I know a few people that moved to Canada and they all are so much happier now. Everything has upsides and downsides, but it is tempting to hear how they enjoy their new life.



    Quote Originally Posted by dogboy View Post
    Often when I try to understand complex economic or social problems, and try to simplify them. [...]
    Your thoughts are very interesting and I think you do make a valid point, however I think life is all but easy. I think you actually can't simplify the problem at hand. Tribes back then and even now in remote areas face different problems than we do (and by we, I mean the industrialized, developed world with all the technological bells and whistles), so I think you can't compare that really. In theory, some of your points are still spot-on however, hard to argue.



    Quote Originally Posted by dogboy View Post
    I have to add that I am so impressed with your mastery of English. Even if you move around and keep most of the money you make, I have trust in your judgement. We do have to survive, and I might do the same given your circumstances.
    Well thank you sir! You made me blush, but you made my day as well - thank you! My decision is not necessarily out of survival, it is more based on the desire to lead a life with as much comforts as I can get without too much sacrifice. I still value family very highly though. But at this point it gets really complex though, I am even not sure myself how I think about certain aspects or what my priorities are or should be.

    Overall, I like the idea of local community clusters. Meaning (simplified!), if I move to a new place I would contribute locally and give back to the people who are in need, however that might be. I am not a egomanical person with no social regard for others. It would just mean giving back to strangers, rather than "my" people (although that is a tough one as well - keyword multinational identity!) - which in a way seems more pleasing, as I can see who benefits! Which, in a way, comes back to tribes ^^ - after all, they're also "just" a local community.




    Quote Originally Posted by Fruitkitty View Post
    [...]It's up to the countries to mold a society that is attractive to and meets the needs of all of their citizenry.[...]
    Great point, didn't think of it that way! Although it feels a bit as if it is a valid opinion given a crisis situation (such as Syria), but not so in a more "common" setting.



    Quote Originally Posted by ilostthesheriff View Post
    Your views seem to be entirely Conservative and not Liberal as you first stated. The fact that you don't put all of your trust in big government and can see all of the problems associated with it is mostly a Conservative view on politics and policies concerniing the finacial world.

    These lessons trump even the financial state of a union. Freedom first; Organization and taxation second. Suppression breeds rebellion.
    First off, when I say my mind is liberal I do not mean this in a political sense, but in the purest sense of putting freedom & individual responsibility first - As far as Politics are concerned, no liberal or libertarian party in the States nor Germany corresponds to my views.

    I agree on the history bit - suppression never leads to anything good. Although I know I need to be careful, I sometimes think a rebellion might be what we need in Europe. What is happening feels a bit like taking of a bandaid over a time-span of 5-10 minutes, rather than just ripping it off in an instant.



    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    Capitalism and "democracy" in the West are fundamentally based on the idea that people should operate with their own best interests at heart. If you act with socialist values in a corrupt capitalist economy, you're going to get screwed over by the greedy rich "elite".
    That is a bit cynic, but you make a valid point. I do think we need more social thinking without actually going towards communism. But you will always have some few that are very rich - in history this was always the case. And I rather welcome the fact than anyone can be rich by luck or talent, rather than being dependent on who your father is. Either way, interesting as this is I think it would be stretching this thread - How about you opened a new thread about that maybe? I think that could be the base for a very interesting discussion!

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    Haha...the rich. Yes, it's good to be the King! I wouldn't refuse the throne, however.

  9. #9

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    Which reminds me, Game of Thrones Season 3 is finally coming this Sunday! Ooooh...soooo excited! *sorry for the offtopic*

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    I don't owe my country anything. I had no say in the fact that I was born here and I have no say in what the economic "rules" are. I feel no loyalty at all to a government of an arbitrary geographical area who don't represent me.
    Honestly, I feel the opposite. I got a quality K-12 education in American public schools. I got a good undergraduate education from public American colleges, and I paid for a graduate education with loans from the US government. My country's done a lot for me. Sure, I won't say that the system is perfect or that it's never done me wrong. But I'm here because of the things that society made available to me.

    I went to a conference for prospective DO students a year ago with around 1,000 attendees. At one point, the keynote spent a long time talking about how DO is going to be the solution for the looming shortage of primary care physicians in the US. He asked everyone in the room to raise their hand if they envision being a PCP. Just about every hand in the room went up. He said something to the effect of "see, that's what I'm talking about." He then used this to segue into "But on that note, I'd like to talk about international licensure requirements. Does anyone here plan to practice primarily outside the US?"

    Every hand in the room went up again.

    I have to commend him for maintaining his composure, but you could tell that he wasn't prepared for that kind of response.

    On the one hand, I support private universities' right to take whoever they want from their applicant pool. But I have to admit I feel miffed that this country has a significant shortage of primary care physicians, yet our universities accept a considerable number of applicants who have no intention to ever practice here.

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