June 16, 2005
Boris on Childcare.
Well, yes, I think he’s got a point here.
Here, on the one hand, we have a Government that takes away 40 per cent of the income of the bottom 20 per cent of society in tax, so that young mothers are driven to supplement the family income; and there, on the other hand, we have this same Government, using the same tax money, to pay for the Sure Start and the Kelly hours, so that the very same young mothers can get out there into the workplace. It is what we call a vicious circle. I can't help wondering whether there are other ways of doing it.
To understand what is going on, you have to think yourself into the mindset of the grandes dames of the New Labour movement - Cherie, Margaret Hodge, Polly Toynbee - and consider that they have all had fantastically busy careers, and they have paid for their nannies and au pairs out of their socking private incomes. They want to replicate this for all working women, except with state subsidy, and because they are Lefties they want the childcaring to be done in state institutions, subject to all the insanity of state regulation.
Not only do all the mums who run the pre-school I mentioned have to pass loony anti-paedophile screening procedures; they must get written permission from each parent if they want to use the paddling pool, and so on. And being Lefties, Labour folk are instinctively attracted to the idea of children being held and cared for in common, as in Plato Rep II.
Since I am a Conservative, I think it might be better if we gave those who needed it the option of using this Sure Start money to pay for, say, grandparents to mind the children, and keep the children at home. Better yet, we could have personal tax breaks for everyone who has to pay for childcare. Now that is a suggestion that should win me a vote at tomorrow morning's breakfast.
(Although that 40% number is a bit dodgy. You need to add both NIs, plus income tax to get it. OK, not too dodgy then, on marginal not total income.)
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I reckon what happened was that someone saw that figure about how much 'hidden' work the nation's housewives manage to get done.
Then they thought "Imagine if all that work was actually on the books - GDP would rocket!"
The rest is history.
Posted by: N.I.B. | Jun 16, 2005 8:38:55 AM
Just let married couples merge their tax status to get one double sized tax allocation.
Posted by: Rob Read | Jun 16, 2005 11:54:16 AM