Friday, October 23, 2009

Why are kids in continental Europe so feckless?

Its the incentives, stupid:
In continental Europe a big part of an estate (often around half) is reserved for the surviving children of the deceased and must be equally divided between them. This “forced heirship” makes it impossible to disinherit feckless children (though several countries exclude bequests to “unworthy” children, who have for example murdered a parent or two). ...

Europe’s inheritance laws pit the Anglo-Saxon emphasis on freedom and markets against a continental focus on social “solidarity”, meaning the belief that shielding people from the vagaries of fate is an overriding public interest (even if that sometimes rewards the feckless). It is no coincidence that Europe is equally divided over labour laws that favour competition, versus those that protect workers from the whims of markets and bosses alike.
HT: Claire

1 comment:

  1. It is good point.

    In Greece, combine this with no land registry, and you have absurd situations of land going to waste because a) the small ownings, by b) hard to find owners, and c) no legal squeeze out.