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The sick man is Europe.


These days, you don't hear many people talking up the European welfare state as a model for the United States. One major reason for the silence is Europe's 11 percent unemployment rate–about double the U.S. level. Another is Europe's anemic job creation: Over the past three years, the continent has created zero net new jobs while the United States has seen an increase of 8.4 million. A 1994 international study on employment done by McKinsey Global Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based research arm of the consulting firm, found that governmental "actions to control and manage the evolution of economies are the most important factors explaining differences in employment performance. Most of these government actions hurt either productivity or employment or both."