Wednesday, June 30, 2004
It's the spirit of the age. Work hard and succeed and Fat Gordo bangs on the door demanding half your wages. Get stoned eight days a week and the money rolls in. Slowly, some of the more thoughtful Leftists are starting to realise that a welfare state which relies on taking money from one set of folks and giving it to a completely different bunch can't last very long. Take the whole sprechen Sie English deal. Who's least likely to speak English ? Exactly - pay taxes since you're sixteen and your kids can't get a place 'cause Ivana Scroungealot has just arrived with her 64 kids.
There's a deeper problem here. Sooner or later, any welfare system has to talk about desert: giving money to people who not only need it, but deserve it. Smackheads need money - they need it to get high. Giving a smackhead cash is just a roundabout way of transferring foreign aid to Asia. Lefties claim to be repelled by the idea of making moral judgements but just ask them what they think of City salaries (or, for that matter, any post by me or Smart Peter on you-know-who issues). They moralise just fine, they just don't like our morals. We've had forty years of L3 morals on display in the welfare system - does anyone think things are better ? At least someone in the Conservative Party is prepared to point out that there's got to be a better way. IDS had many flaws, but at least he understood Conservatism was a moral as well as an economic philosophy.