Heikki Hiilamo: Uusi hyvinvointivaltio [The new welfare state]
[The new welfare state]
Helsinki: Like Publishing, 2011. 131 p.
€ 17, paperback
There is concern in Finland about the decline of the Nordic welfare state and the return of a class society. Problems exist with regard to issues such as the country’s aging population, changes in the structure of the labour market, the increase in income disparity, and lifestyle issues. The impoverishment caused by the recession of the 1990s did not decrease in the early 2000s, as could be seen in things like the rise of bread lines, much debated by Finns. The author – an expert on the welfare state and a poverty researcher – examines the values of the good society and its institutions. He discusses welfare as the politics of social possibilities: ‘The current system does not sufficiently allow the individual to come up with his own initiatives for positive change – instead, it fetters those initiatives.’ Hiilamo’s campaining book reflects on how the welfare state could be developed twenty years after the recession crisis, and how the middle class might be brought to realise that the growth in income disparity also affects their own welfare.
Translated by David McDuff
Tags: Finnish society
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