To the People

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Thursday, September 21, 2006

Depressed Europe Tries to Squelch Thriving UK Economy

The UK's economy has been robust in comparison to those of Continental Eurpope, which struggle with burdensome labor laws and onerous taxation. So what did the European Court of Justice do? Try to make the UK a model for the struggling economies? No, that would make sense. Instead, it ruled that the UK needs to adopt some of more the rigid work rules of the Continent.
One reason the British have prospered more and have almost half of the unemployment rate of Germany and France is the British have much more flexible work rules. Now the European Union demands the staff in British firms have at least 11 hours off between work days, a minimum of one day off per week, and an extended break at least every six hours.

Such rules may seem reasonable on average, but they ignore the reality of necessary "crunch time" at many accounting firms at tax time, law firms during intense negotiations, high-tech firms at critical product development times, retailers during the week before Christmas, hotels and restaurants during high season, farms during harvests, and in news rooms during critical events, etc. They also deny employees the fundamental freedom to bunch their working time if they so choose, and to work as hard and to earn as much as they wish.
Denying people economic freedom and the ability to work as hard as one wants or sees fit ought to trigger the EU human rights court to take action.