Ending the Welfare State
And reducing the size of the state is something I fully agree with.
Yet, it's how to do it that's open to discussion.
I'll talk about Italy because it's the place I know best. There, the state apparatus and public debt grew in a rather slow fashion from the end of the 60's to today's unsustainable levels.
A large part of this debt is caused by the welfare state expenses - pensions, health care and public sector wages above all.
This means that millions of people depend on the State for their lives. Not in the sense that they sit there all day waiting for the benefit paycheck (some do, tho), but that they make a living working in the public sector, or receive the state pension, and use the public health service to treat their illnesses.
If all this spending were suddenly cut in a significant manner, there would be positive effects, yes, but also problems, big ones.
Millions of people would find themselves with no or gravely reduced income and without the possibility to pay for the medical treatment they need.
The oldest and most frail ones may simply die off; for the others there will be hard times. And for the whole of Italy: expect a massive drop of internal demand of good and services, with many business forced to close down for lack of customers.
Bank deposits would plummet as well, eaten up by the need to buy basic goods and services. Less money available for the banks to lend means credit crunch.
In short, an economic recession in a country with an already agonizing economy.
A reduction of the size of the state must occur, but gradually.
Or with a revolution, but often those leave the ground soaked in blood for too many years.