Thursday, 9 July 2015

Child Tax Credits


George Osbourne’s budget has fairly inflamed the wrath of socialists if social media is a measure of general opinion.

It’s amazing how so many people have an opinion on a part of the budget when it’s obvious they haven’t even read the specifics.

What did we do without tax credits?  Initially these were introduced by Labour to help businesses keep wages low and also for governments to keep pensions well below those of Germany, Switzerland, Sweden etc.

These are now seen as an entitlement rather than a temporary help to those suffering financial hardship.

Stupidly, I happen to mention on someone’s Facebook page, that I agreed with the stopping of child tax credits for those who choose to have more than two children. I rather enjoy reading the person’s page because, although she’s of a left-wing persuasion, she has a sense of humour which shows the self-deprecating side of many Scots.

The comments became personal and rude and of course many involved a completely understanding of the issue.

I do believe that those who have more than two children should not expect the taxpayer to support them other than by child benefit.  Not so long ago I listened to one woman say she only needed to have one more child to be able to live a very comfortable life. This was said in the presence of her mother, who I know has been a hard working woman all her life.  Her daughter has never worked and of her four children, three have different fathers. None has any contact with their fathers.

This latest policy may not make the above mother more responsible, but I do hope it makes some think before they decide to have more family.  Having a child is a gift, not an entitlement.  Expecting others to pay for the upbringing of your child shows how our society has lost the concept of responsibility.

There are no children in poverty in this country. There are only irresponsible adults. We must stop throwing money at these adults and make them take responsibility for their decisions.


21 comments:

PJH said...

"I do believe that those who have more than two children should not expect the taxpayer to support them other than by child benefit."


I'd go further and stop child benefit as well for >2 kids.

People who don't have kids are subsidising families that do have kids by paying (however directly/indirectly) for

- maternity pay,
- paternity pay,
- the NHS for the kids,
- the kids schooling,
- housing benefit for larger houses
- "free" childcare/childcare vouchers
- "Care to Learn"
- Sure Start Maternity grants
- Healthy Start
- The highly generous benefits cap - equivalent to a gross (to them, unearned) wage of £33,700. The UK average wage (for those that actually go out and earn it) is £26,500.
- Childcare grants
- Income support
- Council tax deductions
- Child Tax Credit
- not available now, but there were the CTF vouchers
, the list goes on.

Could someone explain to me why a childless couple (or indeed singleton) with a private sector job should pay massively more (relative or absolutely) into the system (net) than a family with (hyperbole alert) 5 kids?

They chose to have those 5 kids, they're a net drain on resources, but they pay (relatively/absolutely) less into the system, indeed most are total beneficiaries of the system.

While I don't object to paying for some of that stuff (education, basic health e.g.) I do object to the "paying for people to have kids" system we seem to have today.

And unlimited Child Benefit falls into that category. If you can't afford to have (more!) kids on your salary, the answer is: don't have (even more!) kids.

For example, and I know one's extreme, but why should society be paying this mother to have yet more kids?: http://metro.co.uk/2015/02/18/pregnant-benefits-mum-back-with-ex-and-planning-children-number-13-and-14-5067832/

Brian McGowan said...

And for working parents with more than 2 children who suddenly find themselves out of work?

William said...

I agreed with your post, SR. The comment above illustrates however the problem in any kind of change to welfare spending.

You are correct that the concept of responsibility needs to be reintroduced and that welfare spending must be limited to those who actually need it. Unfortunately, when you give an inch, some people take a mile (like above) and want to insist there is no such thing as social spending or a collective pooling of resources for the benefit of all society.

PJH said...

"And for working parents with more than 2 children who suddenly find themselves out of work?"

What about them? They don't enter into the argument. (And even if they did, it would be a small minority.)

That's what the safety net of welfare is supposed to be about - helping those (like your example) who through no fault of their own temporarily find themselves unable to pay the bills while they get themselves back on their feet.

What the welfare state is not supposed to be, is a lifestyle choice whereby those - who otherwise couldn't afford to have more kids - are paid to have them by subsidy from those who either don't have kids, or can actually afford to have them without state intervention.

Why should those placing less strain on public services actually pay more towards paying for them?

Or put another way, why should those putting the most strain on public services contribute (if at all) the least?

Alice Moore said...

I do not understand anybody who would want to impoverish children.

Dioclese said...

Like it or lump it, the fact is that the human race is breeding itself to the point of eventual extinction.

I'd have gone further and halved the allowances for the second child and stopped them altogether if there's a third. I might make exceptions for multiple births by not halving the second child payment, but that's about it.

People have to learn that breeding and living off the welfare payment is not a viable lifestyle choice. Unfortunately at the moment it's exactly that...

PJH said...

"I do not understand anybody who would want to impoverish children."

Quite. Yet they keep squeezing them out, and expect the taxpayer to pick up the difference.

Hamish said...

While I broadly agree with your point of view SR, I am bemused how you can pick thtee children out of four who have different fathers.

Alice Moore said...

I knew my simple comment would bring out the eugenicists in some people who believe they are a cut above the rest..

PJH said...

"I knew my simple comment would bring out the eugenicists in some people..."

Simple is right.

Wanting people to not have sprogs to begin with unless they can afford them is not quite the same as demanding they have abortions, or put their kids up for adoption under the same circumstances, or enforced sterilisation of those adults who are "not that bright."

Which is what you are implying there.

I suggest you get a sense of proportion, tone down the hyperbole, and stop being an apologist for those who prefer to sponge off the state instead of paying their own way.

Unless you are more than prepared to single-handedly pay for everyone else to have kids? I do presume - of course- that you have a full-time, private sector job, with which to do so.

JimS said...

"Marie lives in a house rented from Bournville Village Trust with her children Tia, 13, Leah, 12, Latoya, ten, Joshua, nine, Alisha, six, Mikayla, five, Amelia, three, and Olivia, aged 21 months.

Her £26,000 annual benefits package is composed of council tax, child benefit, child tax, income support and housing benefit of 50p a week.

It works out at around £500 a week, from which she pays rent of £137.

Marie, who insisted she wanted to work, said £200 of the remaining £363 was swallowed up by food shopping and she also had to pay her utility and other bills.

She said she worked a 21-hour day caring for her children, rising at 6am and not going to bed until 3am, watched every penny and scoured eBay, car boot sales and charity shops for bargains."

[From the Birmingham Mail]

To misquote Lady Bracknell "To have one child, Mr Worthington, may be regarded as a misfortune; to have eight looks like carelessness"

Helena Brown said...

I have no children intentionally, we decided that if we could not give any child we produced a better life than we had we would just not bother. I am an only child perhaps that is the reason but it never seemed a world worth bringing children into.
Now as well as being an only child I was fostered by my Aunt and Uncle who received not one penny of support for me, not form my Father or from the State, well the State paid for the second child at that time. It should be remembered that this was after a second world war and the country needed to replenish it's stocks of people.
Since then it appears to me that the State has been paying willy nilly for children to be born.
It is not just the poor who do this, I had one acquaintance who could not be without a baby and last seen was on number three going on to number four. I have watched several women unable to stop producing children, it sometimes becomes and illness. One and old neighbour had six before her husband left her, she refused to be stopped until she had her boy, so that was her five girls, and one boy and a single mother/ I often wondered if it was worth it.
I do think that though the state was wrong to continue with this state of a affairs, if people want children then they should pay for them, but I think it is equally wrong to simply switch it off. By all means pay for those here but say from now on it will not.

Stewart Cowan said...

It's more complex than anyone here seems to appreciate. I believe that millions of people have been encouraged to despise large families (by the likes of the Daily Mail, who usually associate them with benefit 'scrounging').

The main problem is probably that the 'welfare state' mushroomed out of all proportion to its intended scope and affordability.

Why not blame yourselves for any perceived injustice against yourself as you have all most probably voted in the political parties responsible for the legislation.

As for children: we need more. If we fall into the same trap as they have in Japan, Korea and many European countries, we will be in decline; possibly irreversibly.

As well as voting for dangerous politicians, the majority has been fooled by "family planning" which was devised by eugenicist haters of the poor, the "diseased", "drunkards" and so on and who sought to encourage a sharp decline in babies born to such people - most people, in fact.

People think they are doing the planning, when it's our 'masters' who have been doing it.

Helena Brown's sad attitude, above, says it all, "I have no children intentionally, we decided that if we could not give any child we produced a better life than we had we would just not bother."

JimS said...

"As for children: we need more. If we fall into the same trap as they have in Japan, Korea and many European countries, we will be in decline; possibly irreversibly." Stewart Cowan

It's not that long ago that it was being said that the optimum population for the UK is about 35M. Since then we have seen the fastest increase in population per decade probably ever and our GDP per person, which had been rising continuously through peace and war for the previous 90 years , has been flatlining. And this has been done with the pyramid scam excuse that we have an aging population.

So rather than breed our own babies, which gives time to plan for schools etc. (not that we would need them if we were merely maintaining the population), we import full-grown adults who will in turn age (sooner than the babies) and no doubt require further immigrants to 'look after' them!

We are though 'all' responsible for our own 'destruction'. Without wishing to be sexist we were probably better off with one bread-winner and one 'home-maker' per family and with that family essentially living within its means and minimal use of credit.

Increasing the population by increasing the proportion of high social cost children, those of the poor and the immigrant, is madness. Its not eugenics, it's economics, as these children begin life disadvantaged by poor language skills and poor health, problems that will never be solved, no matter how 'benevolent' the 'state' (i.e. the rest of us) is.

The joke is that when we have been out-bred by 'new Britons', Urdu has replaced English and the green flag flies over Buckingham Palace, we might be back to families that live together, work together and that have division of labour. We'll just need to get used to open sewers and people riding on top of buses and trains too!

Stewart Cowan said...

I largely agree with you and I don't think it's sexist to say the obvious that a woman's place is in the home, at least while the children are growing up.

"It's not that long ago that it was being said that the optimum population for the UK is about 35M."

Yes, the Optimum Population Trust (now 'Population Matters') wants the UK population to be 30 million. They are dangerous people.

The major 'pioneer' of 'family planning', Marie Stopes, was most definitely a eugenicist. Her Wikipedia page calls her one too. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marie_Stopes

And yes, with the 'natives' in decline and all manner of immigration happening, we're heading for trouble, economic or otherwise.

Elby the Beserk said...

Tax credits - Gordon (bloody) Brown's largely successful plan to make as many people as possible dependent on the state. It will be bloody unravelling it - after all, most of the middle classes are now hooked on welfare, not just the poor - but unravel it we must. Sod bloody Brown - may he rot in hell.

Alice Moore said...

I still do not understand the will that some people have to impoverish children. I have never seen one person address that. Tough, does not do that. In fact, tough is quite sickening.

When respondents address the issue they conveniently stop talking about children and start talking about adults. That is a dishonest move.

Let us keep talking about children and what the consequence will be for them.

PJH said...

"I still do not understand the will that some people have to impoverish children."


The simple answer is "what kids?"

If people don't have kids until/unless they can afford them, then they won't actually be there to - in your words - "be impoverished."

Now - back to my question which you appear to be strenuously avoiding - why should those that are more of a drain on resources actually contribute less to (or indeed be net beneficiaries from) the system, than those that aren't?

Or to put it in your terms, why do you want to "impoverish" those that aren't milking the system for all it's worth, and are not only willing to not only pay their own way but are also forced to pay for those that aren't?

Elby the Beserk said...

Alice - do you think that somebody who cannot afford a third child should expect others to support them? The current proposals will NOT affect children already born, multiple births and there will be other caveats as well.

Over to you? How much of my money should other assume to be theirs?

Elby the Beserk said...

"Blogger Stewart Cowan said...
It's more complex than anyone here seems to appreciate. I believe that millions of people have been encouraged to despise large families (by the likes of the Daily Mail, who usually associate them with benefit 'scrounging').

The main problem is probably that the 'welfare state' mushroomed out of all proportion to its intended scope and affordability"

Not quite. Gordon Brown deliberately set about creating a client state with tax credits; and to a large extent succeeded. As somebody once said (words to the effect of) - once a portion of the population understands that they can vote themselves the contents of the treasury, the game is over.

Macheath said...

"No despot, no autocratic monarch in his pride and greed has injured England so much as the common man. Every penny that could be wrung out of the nation has been devoted to raising the standard of living of the least competent elements in the country, who have held the voting power."
Nevil Shute: 'In The Wet'(1953)

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