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Thursday, October 21, 2010

The United Kingdom's Budget 2010

It isn’t just the British government is cutting spending, and it isn’t even that they are cutting so much spending; although both of those things are exciting. It is what exactly they are cutting that makes the announced British budget the most important budget in post-war UK.

David Cameron and Nick Clegg’s coalition government is tackling, in one budget, the two most severe long term problems of the British economy: unproductive citizens and government debt.

Unproductive citizens (in this case) come in two forms: long-term welfare recipients and many government workers.

The UK has, for decades now, an incredibly generous welfare system. Despite reforms made by New Labour, the small incentive for low income earners to work has created a large pool of people who add nothing to the economy. They exist as parasites on the productivity of their fellow citizens.

By scaling back the overly generous welfare system the British government will encourage people to end their dependency. Creating a system that acts as an actual net rather than a reservoir will do a lot of long term good for the UK’s economy.

As for government workers…

In his book, Fearful Symmetry: the rise and fall of Canadian Founding Values, Brian Lee Crowley suggests that a third of government workers are not actually productive. That is, they do nothing but push paper around and create work for each other. If those jobs did not exist the economy would not be any worse off. In fact it would be better off because those people will then be able to enter more productive work.

The government of Great Britain is bravely trying to cut back on this entrenched group of unproductive people. As many as 500 000 public jobs are being cut; though in an economy where half the workers are public this is merely a good start.

In reality the problem of debt is the same as the problem of unproductive citizens. The state finances that are supporting this unproductively are not sustainable. It has led to ever increasing debt and an eventual crash like the one we’ve seen in Greece, except worse because the UK economy is much too big to bailout.

Posted by Hugh MacIntyre on October 21, 2010 | Permalink

Comments

Unproductive citizens (in this case) come in two forms: long-term welfare recipients and many government workers.
Posted by Hugh MacIntyre on October 21, 2010

There are two groups which you curiously omit (though neither are citizens) which cost the UK billions. Asylum seekers and unproductive immigrants. Asylum seekers cost the British taxpayer close to $500 million CDN per year.In 2009 it cost close to $200 just to feed and house 10,000 that had be ordered deported. The cost of unproductive immigrants (muslim women immigrants have a workforce participation rate of below 20%, and men about 35%) cost the Treasury around $1 billion CDN. The secondary costs of health, education, etc add billions more. It's not surprising that these numbers are usually swept under the carpet by open border libertarians such as yourself.

Posted by: The Stig | 2010-10-21 8:02:49 AM


In 2009 it cost close to $200 just to feed and house 10,000 that had be ordered deported.

That should have been $200 million CDN.

Posted by: The Stig | 2010-10-21 8:04:33 AM


The main reason we don't see such reforms in Canada is because it has not yet reached the point where it has become absolutely necessary. However, in many European countries, it has. France is paralyzed by striking socialists who realize that once these benefits are gone, they'll never be able to make a case for their reinstatement, which makes them all the more bitter and desperate. England is now following suit, and there's every reason to expect that Germany will too. This is good news for Europe. It's long past due their Marxist bedding was aired out.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-21 9:20:58 AM


Don't forget the biggest con job of civil service pensions(include all levels who work for us,AUPE,teachers,justice etc) they claim they pay into it,but the $ still comes from the private side in the first place.

Posted by: Goff Tayler | 2010-10-21 9:27:58 AM


If evil archaic power tripping governments would get real and allow everybody to grow, import, sell and smoke marijuana and any other drug they want or could spell, everybody would suddenly, magically become wonderful hard working super mega productive people who would --change the...uh.. entire world into a much more gooder planet of peace and propensity

Imagine that everybody, IMAGINE the healing vibes of divine intoxication and the GNP of the world in the future. Time traveller / author Alvin Toffler was paid off by the DEA to omit dope as the determining factor in " Future Shock "

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-21 10:05:55 AM


That's just the point, Goff. The public sector does not generate any net wealth. Every dime its employees receive derives ultimately from the private purse. And Canada's public employees make significantly more than their private-sector equivalents, which strains the system even more.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-21 10:27:27 AM


Does nobody notice the bigger picture? Banks in various countries including Britain have been BAILED OUT with taxpayers dollars. A number of reports have stated financial fraud was perpetrated, yet NONE of the really big boys have gone to jail.Why is this? Are we too stupid to see the bigger picture?
check out:
http://graysinfo.blogspot.com/2009/11/too-big-to-fail-too-powerful-to-go-to.html

http://graysinfo.blogspot.com/2010/10/dictators-of-austerity.html

Posted by: Stephen J. Gray | 2010-10-21 10:32:42 AM


" Are we too stupid to see the bigger picture? " ....doth ask Citizen Gray

1) yes. The banks have to pay it back
2) yes.only something as large as a Government has enough money to loan a banking system
3) yes. The health and continuation of banks benefits the lending government, and the people who are the nation.
4)yes. What would you have preferred, that the banks get an advance from MoneyMart?

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-21 11:02:00 AM


Hugh - You left out a third component of government. In addition to the parasite and bureaucrat you missed regulators, the most economically destructive. When you consider the roll of the regulator, its a good thing we don't get the government we pay for. unnecessary and stupid regulation takes almost as much out of the economy as taxation.

It's difficult to imagine a future without some kind of eventual class warfare between reform oriented leaders (along with the productive sector) and the ruling class (and public sector) . It seems to be starting in Europe now.

Posted by: John Chittick | 2010-10-21 11:45:25 AM



A Puritanical Prohibitionist posits:

' if gov't would just get real and allow everyone to grow, import and use drugs.'

Agreed.

Let's hope they just get it done before the impending Rapture.

Cause if there's one thing that CRAP'ers, Puritanical Prohibitionists and their ilk can't stand, it's the thought of somebody having fun.

Having fun that doesn't correspond to their particuar brand of fun.

The 80mg Oxy. Rush Limbaugh inspired kinda fun that is.

Going to be interesting trying to see some of the Rapture Discs trying to take off to Heaven bearing some of the 'portly' CRAP'ers. Harper, Van Loan and Kenny may want to drop a few pounds prior to the ' fateful' day.

Praise Jesus!

No need to worry for the Rapturists who wonder what may happen to their pets who aren't Raptured though.

Eternal Earth-Bound Pets promises to rescue and care for animals left behind by the Raptured.

$110 for a ten year contract. A little cheaper than the @ 10 Billion $$ the CRAP'ers want to spend on imprisoning Canadian Cannbis imbibers in a for profit prison system imported from the USA.


Has it only been a year since Harper atonally crooned:

'I get high with a little help from my friends.'

Posted by: jeff franklin | 2010-10-21 12:20:30 PM


Franklin, do you ever talk about anything except pot?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-21 12:42:12 PM


This is for the number man? "419"
Check out this:
"Nine Stories The Press Is Underreporting -- Fraud, Fraud And More Fraud" at:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/20/nine-stories-the-media-is_n_769620.html

Posted by: Stephen J. Gray | 2010-10-21 1:42:37 PM


Ultimately, the greatest parasite on the wealth of the individual is government and all its machinations. It is government that is the single greatest threat to wealth creation and the promotion of Liberty. End government and all will be well.

Posted by: AB Patriot | 2010-10-21 3:06:56 PM


Thank you Mr Gray--
do you yourself have any points of view
or do you just provide clumsily written links?

You know, there is more to life than
home delivery of the Huffington Post

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-21 4:05:32 PM


Huffington Post? the one pushed by Leftist Billionaire George Soros? Is that like the leftist CBC or the leftist Toronto Star?

Posted by: StanleyR | 2010-10-21 6:57:53 PM


More info for those interested at link below:

http://www.bnet.com/blog/financial-business/smoking-loans-prove-wall-street-committed-fraud/7759?tag=content;drawer-container

Posted by: Stephen J. Gray | 2010-10-21 8:07:12 PM


Sorry, Stephen, but I've learned to be distrustful of single-source "exposés." In any case, we're discussing remedial measures for what has already happened, not the numerous opinions as to why it happened in the first place.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-21 8:53:54 PM


"Ultimately, the greatest parasite on the wealth of the individual is government and all its machinations."
Often that is the case.

"It is government that is the single greatest threat to wealth creation and the promotion of Liberty."
We have seen often again that this is indeed the case. AB you will agree with what I read from you that the religion of Islam would be included as that threat as well.

"End government and all will be well."
Wrong, this is where I disagree with you. Eliminate the state and you will have absolute anarchy. Unfortunately government is a necessary evil. Unfortunate yes, necessary unfortunately. yes.

Posted by: StanleyR | 2010-10-21 10:05:17 PM


"End government and all will be well."
Wrong, this is where I disagree with you. Eliminate the state and you will have absolute anarchy. Unfortunately government is a necessary evil. Unfortunate yes, necessary unfortunately. yes.

Posted by: StanleyR | 2010-10-21 10:05:17 PM

StanleyR, you may be right, but I have become more interested in the possibility that you (and I) are wrong about it. It just might be possible.

Somalia is an interesting case in point. There is no state in this country but things are better there (although far from perfect) than they were during the failed attempt at statehood.

This article http://blog.mises.org/14250/if-men-were-angels-2/ discusses this and it seems that it may indeed to possible to say that with NO state it might not be great but WITH a state it is worse.

Posted by: TM | 2010-10-21 11:56:12 PM


    Somalia is an interesting case in point. There is no state in this country but things are better there (although far from perfect) than they were during the failed attempt at statehood.

And this one example you feel makes the case that any nation would do better without a state? Also, is a den of piracy and bloodletting that best we could hope to achieve under your system? If that's the case I'll stick with Ottawa, thanks.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-22 6:29:23 AM


Shane, did you actually read what I said and what the link said?

Posted by: TM | 2010-10-22 4:47:35 PM


"All nonstate threats to life, liberty, and property appear to be relatively petty and therefore can be dealt with." is a quote I pick from "if men were angels" blog that TM refers to.

What about the great blackout of 1977 in New York City? the mayhem that resulted because people thought they could get away with the arson and looting.

Posted by: StanleyR | 2010-10-22 5:34:54 PM


Yes, TM. You are saying that we should completely do away with the state as a grand experiment to explore the possibility that it just might be tolerable without one. Sorry, but I require more concrete reassurance than "mighta" before turning society completely upside-down to satisfy the intellectual curiosity of a few otherworldly philosophers espousing a system that no one has ever tried and which has never endured when it arose spontaneously.

Your link does not constitute proof; it constitutes someone's opinion. That much is evident from the URL. I disagree with Higg's conjecture, because he has absolutely no historical proof to back it up. I do not indulge in thought exercises. The preponderance of evidence either supports the anarchist position, or it does not. And frankly it does not. Evidence may abound that states are less than ideal, but evidence that anarchy is anything less than the worst of all worlds is simply not to be had.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-22 6:46:20 PM


What about the great blackout of 1977 in New York City? the mayhem that resulted because people thought they could get away with the arson and looting.

Posted by: StanleyR | 2010-10-22 5:34:54 PM

What about it? I don't think a stateless society means there is no law.

Shane Mathews, you assume you know what I am saying but you don't. I am not saying we should completely do anything, nor am I saying anything constitues proof of anything.

When an person (even an open minded person)changes there mind about something it is usually a process. I have become interested in what people are saying about a stateless society and how and why it could work. That's what I am saying.

Furthermore I appreciate that you require more concrete reassurance, but I am not trying to convince you of anything.

Posted by: TM | 2010-10-22 10:56:45 PM


If you're not trying to convince me of anything, TM, why the link?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-23 12:46:05 AM


Shane, while it is true I lean towards believing that a stateless society is possible and superior, I am not convinced in my own mind. I have some doubts.

I put the link in my comment because I wanted to. I thought it interesting and decided to share it for conversation, not debate.


Posted by: TM | 2010-10-23 11:12:20 AM


Do we assemble at the Western Standard for conversation? Forgive me, I came to a place called the " Shotgun" to debate issues and as required, clash ideas.. not have conversations..

None of the Wipeheads & anarchists who come here come here to have " conversations" , they come here to throw entitlement tantrums and go on long vague power trips, on occassion they manage to pull off debate. If this bis a conversation party, i woiuld be better off calling my Gramma and conversing about dogs and noodle recipes with her- where we do not get into the merits and downside of dogs or noodles,- conversation where there is neither poop nor pasta facts and experiences being evaluated and explored just well wishing with no real expectation for advance

You might be thinking of not "the shotgun" where good people debate with other good people but perhaps something with nice people enjoying light snacks and soft music over at the " water pistol" blog.

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-23 4:06:38 PM


419 I guess I didn't read the rules. It sounds to me like you are throwing a bit of a tantrum yourself. Anyway, I have no problem debating, it's just that my original comment was not meant to debate because I know so little about it and I have my doubts.

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Posted by: Mr JOE BEST | 2010-10-25 9:42:00 AM


Two days and this junk is still here. Who's minding the fort?

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2010-10-25 10:03:35 AM


TM:

where are these rules you speak of
that I didn't read?

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-25 10:59:02 AM


419, with all due respect, I didn't either and that's my point.

I am willing to debate issues, but am not interested in doing so on some issues that I am still forming an opinion on. I don't believe every comment a person posts must be debated lest he be considered a candy ass.

Posted by: TM | 2010-10-25 11:19:58 AM


My Gramma will be glad to talk to you then

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-25 11:32:29 AM


419, OK you win, what would you like to debate?

Posted by: TM | 2010-10-25 12:19:12 PM


Noodles and Poodles..

a veiled threat to the principles of western style democracy, or just more far left media posturing during an economic downturn ?

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-25 12:31:35 PM


419, I don't understand the question.

Posted by: TM | 2010-10-25 12:51:22 PM


I will have Gramma call you

Posted by: 419 | 2010-10-25 5:33:13 PM


In related news the UK Forestry Commission is planning on selling off half of its Crown forest land to raise cash for the national treasury. If BC was as enlightened as this (with just 20% of the Provincial land base), it could eliminate its entire provincial debt and undermine the arguments the US has used to screw the province with the softwood agreement. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/countryside/8082756/Ministers-plan-huge-sell-off-of-Britains-forests.html)

I'm perversely hopeful that the Chinese will simply seize the US national forest and then start selling timber and or land. The market value of that asset equals about half of what the US currently owes China. ($3 to 400 billion in timber alone). Given that the Greens have shut it down for timber production there would be no downside to the action. Future headline: "Sierra Club takes on the Chinese Red Army and loses". To dream!

Posted by: John Chittick | 2010-10-25 6:35:45 PM


419, I'm sure she has better manners.

John, maybe Greenpeace and Sierra Club will join forces and both be defeated.

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