Wednesday, 11 March 2009

The Parasite State

Douglas Carswell MP, who will speak to the society tomorrow*
about his coauthored libertarian manifesto, 'The Plan: Twelve Months to Renew Britain,' has an excellent post at ConservativeHome on the parasitical nature of the modern social democratic state:
"The modern British state has many of the characteristics of a parasite; it grows and feeds off each of us. Far from nurturing, it infantilises us and stifles society.

Ever more tax is collected from us to pay for the livelihoods of remote officials whose sole purpose is to tell us how to live our lives. Tax is not simply too high, but at times seems designed to punish those who try to do the right thing.

Savers, taxed once on their income, must pay tax on their prudence. Older folk, forced to pay for their long term care, find virtue penalised and a lifetime’s thrift ignored. And after all that income tax, national insurance, road tax, VAT, license fee, petrol tax, what’s left over? For many families, little more than pocket money."
You can tell he's been reading Atlas Shrugged. There is a growing resentment among the productive and prudent in society that current government policy is actively designed to penalise them, and - since a crisis is something that shouldn't "go to waste" - that things will only get worse. It was excellently captured by the comments of Rick Santelli, CNBC financial reporter, that have ignited a new wave of protests:

It's little wonder that 'Going Galt' is catching on.

* The talk will be held in Lecture Room 1 at Christ Church. It starts at 8pm on Thursday 12th March, and all are welcome. For more details, see here/here.

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