Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week August 21, 2016Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
This is late today due to the necessity of avoiding the internet to watch the MMA fight without knowing the result. An unexpected result was seeing a report on Leo Varadkar’s speech in memory of Collins and Griffith put up at 1pm today in which he discussed his philosophy on taxation and liberty. What a treat. Otherwise, quiet enough week due to the dominance of stuff about the Olympics.
A fine example of lies, damned lies and statistics comes from Dan O’Brien in a piece on government spending on what he describes as the welfare state.
If globalisation has not caused the pruning back of entitlements and free services, neither has the efforts of those who believe that welfarism has gone too far. Back in the 1980s Ronald Reagan claimed that America’s greatest problem was an overweening state. Along with Margaret Thatcher, he believed that the unprecedented increase in the size of the state in the years after the Second World War had been counterproductive in its outcomes and damaging to individual liberty. Reagan and Thatcher wanted to reverse the trends of the previous three decades and roll back the state. They failed. Nowhere did they fail more obviously than in containing the size of the welfare state.
This week it came out that private landlords in the UK now get double from the government what they did a decade ago, claiming £9.3 billion. The reason for this is the continued and continual shrinking of the welfare state. Welfare spending that goes into the pockets of the private sector is not the welfare state. It’s a massive transfer of wealth from the public to the private sector, the redistribution of wealth from the poor to the rich. People who write about economics in leading newspapers really should know the difference between what a welfare state is, and what state spending on welfare is. Hint for Dan: Public ownership and provision.