What Europe gets for its taxes Europeans pay higher taxes than do Americans, but for their money, they get a vast array of services that in the U.S., we must pay a major chunk of our incomes to match, said Steven Hill in The Sacramento Bee. The Week Magazine - News reviews and opinion, arts, entertainment & political cartoons posted on April 22, 2010, at 3:29 PM Steven Hill The Sacramento Bee When Americans complain about taxes, said Steven Hill, they often point to Europe as the ultimate nightmare. But people in socialist countries like Sweden are hardly overtaxed serfs. Yes, Europeans pay higher taxes than do Americans, but for their money, they get a vast array of services that in the U.S., we must pay a major chunk of our incomes to match. The $200,000 Americans pay for college educations? In most European nations, university educations are free, or very cheap. All that money youre stuffing into your 401(k), because Social Security payments are so anemic? In Europe, pensions provide more than 75 percent of what people need in retirement. Your soaring health-care premiums? In Europe, health care is available to all without charge, and the average cost per person is half that in the U.S. Child care, senior care, state-of-the-art mass transportationall are provided without additional charges, in return for the Europeans taxes. The reality is that when you include our out-of-pocket expenses for essential services, Americans pay out just as much as Europeansbut receive a lot less for our money.