September 15, 2006

'Thieft is good' - Polly Toynbee

Polly has done it again 'taxes are a moral good' in themselves:
But that 50p rate does something else besides. It is a totem in its own right.
No Polly, taxes are a way of financing the state. It is only by judging the overall effect on peoples happiness that a moral position can be formed.

I have never met anybody that becomes happy because they have just paid a tax bill, that there is a whole industry devoted to tax avoidance show quite clearly how much paying tax is resented. Taxes therefore cause much unhappiness. The question is does the state's spending of this money mean that overall happiness increases more than it causes agrigate individual happiness to decrease? The state funding on certain things can increase happiness; such as education, health (no that does not mean it has to be a centralised NHS) and policing. But there are also huge swathes of state spending which do nothing to increase happiness and can even decrease it; such as subsidies like CAP or using the police to enforce pointless draconian liberty destroying restrictions.

To say that 'taxes are a moral good' in themsleves is completely illogical unless you think that taking peoples money is a moral good in itself, ignoring any consequences. Nobody would point to Ronny Brigs or Robert Maxwell as a moral crusader yet that is exctly what Polly is implying. Which is rediculous, but then so is Polly.


Post a Comment

<< Home