After being on the dole for 6 month I got a job in Germany. (East) I am here from Oct 2011 and would not have dreamed of moving here if I did not loss my Job which I had for 11 years in Ireland. Germany will need 400,000 workers before the end of 2015 as there is a big problem with people of working age here.
I am lucky in that I got a job which pays for German classes etc. If someone is reading this I wants to get out of the mess that is Ireland today. Start learning a bit of German & look for jobs in the west Germany. Yes I am in the east but I would only say work here if you get a well paid job before you moved.
As for SW here I hope I never have to find out but I am paying tax, heath care, pension, unemployment insurance, one off tax when you start a job, church tax etc etc etc. Germany is looking after its own people but if you have a skill it will look after you too if you learn a bit of Germany & stay looking for work here.
Good luck & think positive
I'd love to live there but my degree wouldn't be in demand there. Would there be any skills that one could attain by doing a 1 or 2 year postgrad that would be in demand Deutschland?