Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Government Is Not Our Father

I've already ranted on this blog about strikes in Portugal and Portuguese Angst, but today I couldn't help it: I had to write a full-blown article about it this month for Ignitum Today. It has just been too much! I hope you're not sick of politics just yet...

The Government Is Not Our Father

 | November 14, 2012 AD Reply
Living in Europe (and more specifically, Portugal) has been tough in terms of politics lately. I would venture to say even tougher than in America, even with this thorny election. Today is another day in many recently when Portugal is on strike or protesting in the streets. Today is a “general strike” when all are called to skip work and protest against the government, which is supposedly robbing us of money and any hope of happiness. Because of this, I don’t have public transportation to my job, which I depend on.
At the root of all these protests seems to be a certain ideology: the government needs to take care of us and our well-being depends on its policies. The Portuguese don’t want the government to increase taxes, which seems logical enough, but they also don’t want any cuts in the “social obligations of the State”. It was an outrage when they tried to cut on university funding and non-profit organizations (yes, they’re government-funded). In stark contrast to the Catholic uproar about the HHS mandate, we’ve been paying taxes for everyone’s contraception and abortion in Portugal for years. It’s the government’s fault the country is so backwards and there are so many poor. Yet the majority do not pay their taxes, tithing is unheard of (except for 50 cents every Sunday) and the iPhone5 sold out in an hour with people lining up outside .

To keep reading on Ignitum Today, click here...