The Transylvania Times -

Tread Carefully With Paid Parent Leave


December 27, 2018

After regaining political leverage, the radicalized Democratic Party is bound to lure in voters with fiscally irresponsible policy proposals such as a guaranteed paid parent leave. As a Scandinavian immigrant, I urge Americans to examine the topic rationally instead of emotionally.

Advocates of social justice point out that the U.S. is the only developed nation without mandated paid parent leave program. As so often, supporters of any federal government program point out to socialist Europe and especially to Scandinavia for any kind of economic program guidance. Interestingly the American left always omits the inconvenient fact of socialist Europe being fiscally insolvent due to “cradle to grave” programs. Paid parent leave would not be an exception.

In my native Finland, the government guarantees paid maternity leave for 4 months and paid paternity leave for 8 weeks. The benefit amount is capped at 80 percent of last calendar year’s annual income. Logically, many parents strive to maximize their earnings in the previous year to receive larger benefits in the following year. Unfortunately, due to Finland’s high progressive taxation system, many parents do not get to enjoy the fruits of their additional work amount because higher earnings are taxed correspondingly.

Employers are being punished even more heavily with additional regulations pertaining to parental leave. For instance, employers may hire a replacement worker, but when the mother/father returns from parent leave, they are by law entitled to their positions even if the replacement worker proved to be a much better individual for the role (not to mention the cost of recruiting, hiring and training replacement staff). Consequently, Finland’s small- and medium-sized businesses simply cannot afford to hire women in their child-bearing age.

Many leftists in America forget the high tax-burden to finance many of Scandinavia’s welfare programs. Interestingly the same American progressives also wish to transform America from a society of personal responsibility to a society where even your own children are someone else’s financial responsibility.

This is morally reprehensible.

Henri Erti

Jeter Mountain


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