Monday, November 27, 2006

Reform On Welfare Waste

We need a couple of these

In the poverty debate, Reform's new report on welfare is required reading. Its 143 pages sound like a 100% damning analysis of Gordo's welfare system.

£79 bn pa (excl OAPs).... 51 different benefits... 39% of working age households claiming one or more... 5.4 million people of working age living entirely on benefits.... Britain with more "registered disabled" than any other European country bar Poland... 800,000 working parents on 70% effective marginal tax rates - 34,000 on rates above 100%.... a total disaster both for taxpayers and many recipients.

And many will say aha, that just underlines the fact that we should abolish welfare - it may help the "deserving poor", but only at the cost of featherbedding scroungers and spreading dependency on a massive scale.

And Tyler nods and says yes, of course, I see what you mean. But turn it round the other way - what if we stop the scrounging and the dependency but only at the cost of pushing the deserving poor back into the gutter?

That's why I'm still thinking. And reading stuff like this report.

Radical reform is clearly needed, and personally I reckon the safety net remains a better guiding image than Pol's caravan.

But if only we could find that silver bullet...

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