Currently, more than half of the federal budget is devoted to social-programs spending. In Germany, it remains possible to live rather comfortably on long-term unemployment benefits, something that immigrants, who form a high percentage of welfare recipients, have noticed as well.

(from here)

There were less extreme forms of slavery than outright ownership. Debtors unable to meet their debt could work it off by entering the service of their creditor for an agreed period of time with no other reward than the cancelling of the debt. And for the very poor, an arrangement existed whereby one man could hand over himself and all he owned to another, in return for the promise of being looked after for the rest of his life.

(The Hammer and the Cross: A New History of the Vikings, Robert Ferguson)