Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2006-03-23-Speech-4-047"

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"Ladies and gentlemen, rapporteur. Mr Bushill-Matthews has prepared a much-needed report. If we continue to occupy ourselves merely with everyday politics, Europe will be hit by a demographic and social catastrophe on the scale of the Asian tsunami. The sustainability of the European way of life is under threat. The younger generation works long days for a pittance, causing physical and mental weariness. What is presented as their free choice is actually forced upon them by the ‘winner takes all’ society. Wage slavery or unemployment, climbing the career ladder or having the door slammed in your face – these are the choices faced by our highly qualified young people. When, in spite of the law, a person works 12 hours a day and more, neither flexible working hours nor longer opening hours in the sales and services sector can help. There is simply no time for private life or having children. From the macroeconomic point of view, this arises from the need to finance the older generation’s anticipated pensions and medical treatment, which is becoming increasingly expensive. This report should just be a starting point. Maintaining the high standard of living in Europe requires politicians to do a lot of extra work, and to act quickly. Thank you for your attention."@en1

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