By the end of World War II, the nations of Western Europe all faced the burdens of the post-war economies. If not totally destroyed, a nation was in chaos and needed dramatic reconstruction. This is where democratic societies stepped in; recreation of sturdy government was crucial to the revival of Western European countries. Within just a few years after the defeat of Italy and Germany, the European hemisphere bounced back into a stronger, more efficient society than ever before. Some call this the "Golden Age of the European economy. "
As human life became more and more complex and difficult to manage, the government had to accommodate to the citizen"s needs and wants. Because of the basic importance of the contemporary social structure, its management had a crucial importance in making the countries work. Europe was used to strict authority over its people and complexity in the way they handles a countries affairs was not accepted. "Europe was a very special situation though, because it has a long record of traditional social control imposed over the individual by collective authorities, especially the state, and hierarchal religious institutions.
Another problem that was going on in modern Western Europe" (pg. 21, Crozier) the military grew in size a great deal, West European armed forces grew from forty-two thousand to almost eighty thousand within five years after the Second World War. Especially in the country of France. With the militant group emerging larger than ever, the government was working! with more citizens first hand, by supporting the working military group. One of the main pieces to making a modern democracy work was inducing the people to want to partake in the government and have them strive to get involved with the mending of the societal crisis.
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All post war European countries had to live through the same costly situation of having to restore their country"s trade, government, social harmony, be at peace with the government, and relinquish all other aspects of damages caused by the intolerances that came along with traditional thinking. In the United States, the country was working by the people, for the people, in all efforts to be a united, strong country. Automatic freedoms of speech, press, and religion, gave the people the reassurance that things were being done to assist them in everyday life.
Sixty five million dollars alone went into healthcare, unemployment, social services, community programs, and better education for children, and progra! ms for the working class. Also, anyone who was educated had a chance to run for various forms of government positions, which meant the citizens could first hand, come out and take part in the government. Some positions include senators, mayors, councilmen, governors, seats in congress and House of Representatives. Where else but America could you find opportunities such as these?
Divisions once created by war and intolerance led to the modern developing of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization). This was a form of military unity, which was important to Western Europe after 1945. It helped heal wounds with competing countries in the trade world, and have peace between once warring countries. Many other European peace treaties were signed during the 60"s and 70"s. These primarily helped the democratic people altogether because peace smoothed over tense conditions for European citizens.
These treaties include the European Coal and Steel Community and the EEC or common! market. In the 1980"s, a treaty on the European Union, integrated even more countries for a peaceful trade system. After signed in the small country of the Netherlands, an attempt to create a true economic and monetary union of all EC (EEC) members. One of the most interesting facts, coming into play in ever most recent times, is that a goal of the EC was to introduce an absolute worldwide common currency that could be found almost everywhere, called the "Euro", dated to be out 2002.
Even now in present days, the Euro dollar is heard of as an idea that some forms of government want to pursue. The fact is, democracy does not work without the people playing a crucial role in government. If your government is constantly telling you exactly how to live your life, what you must believe in, cheating you out your dollar, and totally undermining the working class, you are going to see no progress in that society.
Basically, with Western Europe having the least amount of acceptance of variety and having little tolerance for true societal freedom, a great democracy cannot exist. This is why the United States has grown to be the most powerful and well off country of all times. The creators of our ever-evolving democracy here in America just goes to show, that caring about the people who make up our "democracy" gives them the strength and will to work together to make anything work and to truly peruse happiness. Thank God for America!
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