When I write about Sweden, the comments under the article are pretty uniform. They are about taxes. I never write about taxes, but taxes are what fascinates. I understand this. Americans are trying to get their head around the Swedish system and how it is possible to provide such a strong safety net without totally impoverishing the average worker.
I always answer that I don’t really get it, but that I get taxed like crazy and still end up with plenty of disposable income, or at least would if I wasn’t on parental leave or working part-time.
There is sometimes good talk about parenting and gender, which is what I’m writing about. And this is good.
But for the first time, I’ve gotten a link from someone writing (albeit briefly) in a mainstream publication about the underlying social contracts and pressures that shape our society, how maybe Dads are shunted away from child care, how a society might choose to push them back.
Thank you Ezra Klein at the Washington Post, who wrote this:
This is a good example of how policy can drive culture, or maybe how policy can suppress culture. It’s possible that American dads very much want to take time off to be with their children, but there’s no policy support for them to do it.