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The case for government

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By Alex Gratzek

In the past and even today, some have been making the argument for smaller government along the lines of libertarianism.

This may have been fine in centuries past, however, in the world today, the case for a more robust government is stronger than for an administration that is retreating from involvement in its citizens' lives. At least it appears so to this writer judging from a quick glance at Korean and American society.

In Korea, the need for government is increasing as traditional Confucianism fades away. In the past, the family could be expected to provide a safety net for elder members of the community. In recent years, this understanding between the generations has been faltering.

Today's parents, squeezed between paying for their children's education (private academies) and ever more expensive housing, are not in the position to provide their parents with money or a home to stay in, as their parents provided for their own before them.

That is not to say that no children care for their parents, but to point out that it is happening with less frequency and with greater hardship than in previous generations.

According to an article written by Kim Jae-won in the Nikkei Asian Review, the average pensioner in Korea receives 250,000 ($206) won a month; while nearly half of South Koreans over 65 live in poverty. It is........

© The Korea Times