Monday, November 01, 2010

These people are morons

On Friday night, your humble Devil highlighted the fact that—as Wat Tyler pointed out—we do not actually calculate household income through the tax system and, as such, enforcing the cut in Child Benefit was going to be a bit damn difficult.

It seems that, belatedly, Our New Coalition Overlords™ have realised that they might have made a bit of a boo-boo and they are taking steps to remedy the problem.

Now, which route do you think that they have taken? Is it:
  1. the government has decided to approach it in a different way, or
  2. the government has decided to use the threat of violence in order to get its own way.

If you answered "2", then give yourself a pat on the back: the super Coalition has, indeed, decided to use the threat of violence to back up their stupid policy.
Higher rate taxpayers could be fined if they fail to declare they have a partner receiving child benefit, when cuts are introduced in 2013.

The Treasury has confirmed that "penalties" would be issued in cases of non-disclosure of earnings.

It follows reports that Treasury sources have said a plan to stop child benefit payments to couples with one higher rate taxpayer is unenforceable.

What the hell...?

Look, cutting benefits is the right policy. Cutting child benefit absolutely right: why the hell should I be taxed to pay for other people's lifestyle choices—especially when those people are earning multiples of my salary? And, apparently, Child Benefit is paid out for "children" up to 19! 19! For fuck's sake.

But, equally, the law in this country quite clearly states that any citizen has the right to organise their affairs in a way that minimises their tax liability; by extension, this also means that any citizen has the right to organise their affairs in such a way that they maximise their benefits receipts.

Whether you think that the withdrawal of Child Benefit is right or wrong is irrelevant: it should be done in such a way that citizens can comply with the law—this nebulous crap is stupid and wrong.

These people are idiots.

UPDATE: your humble Devil would like to apologise for the general incoherence of this post, but I find myself literally speechless at the crass stupidity of Our New Coalition Overlords™. Everything that they touch turns to shit.

NuLabour might have been incompetent, authoritarian bastards, but this lot are not much less authoritarian but, more pertinently, seem to be attempting to win an award for being stunningly, unbelievably incompetent.

9 comments:

Span Ows said...

Meet the new boss...not quite the same as the old boss.

Of course it could be a civil servant internal war and booby trap fest.

Chalcedon said...

Not only have they failed to think this through, they are behaving just like the last shower of authoritarian bastards. Child benefit should be scrapped for everyone. If you can't afford to keep the child you shouldn't have them.

Jim said...

I have a simple solution - pay child benefit to the mother AND the father (half each). Thus each parent must claim it individually (and prove they earn less than £44k). In these days of equality why should it be paid to mothers only?

Of course single mums will be a bit buggered, if the fathers of their spawn don't give them their half of the cash, and spend it on booze'n'fags, but what they heck, a fair proportion of it ends up that way anyway. It might serve as a small incentive for women to only breed with men who are decent enough to stick around and pony up the cash.

And of course you wouldn't get the male half if you refused to put the fathers name on the birth certificate, which would be another incentive to name the fathers, who could then be pursued by the CSA for maintenance as well.

Snotrocket said...

To repeat a comment I made on a similar thread, CB should be removed from mothers who live in homes within Council Tax bands F-H - subject to appeal - as one can assume that high value homes, for tax purposes, must be supported by high incomes (or at least, that's what our politicians would like to think).

B said...

@Jim: What happens in the scenario of two gay men adopting?

Lee said...

DK,

"1. the government has decided to approach it in a different way, or"

The only other way I can see for this to work would be to have an increasingly intrusive and all encompassing database of all taxpayers matched to the benefits they are receiving.

Unless I've missed something here (and to be fair I might have as I've just got back from a 4 hr tax exam) the "honesty" approach with penalties if you lie to the tax man seems to be the lesser of evils.

Stop Common Purpose said...

"NuLabour might have been incompetent, authoritarian bastards, but this lot are not much less authoritarian but, more pertinently, seem to be attempting to win an award for being stunningly, unbelievably incompetent."

Just realised that have you. Mr Devil?

Was obvious from before the start of the Gnu Parliament.

Ian E said...

Simplest solution - just phase out child benefit: no new benefit given for any child born from the next tax year onwards. (i.e. if you want a child from now on then you must be able to afford it!)

Devil's Kitchen said...

Lee,

"The only other way I can see for this to work would be to have an increasingly intrusive and all encompassing database of all taxpayers matched to the benefits they are receiving."

The government already has a means-testing system for child benefits, called Child Tax Credit. Simply roll Child Benefit into Child Tax Credits and suddenly you can means-test everyone.

Except, of course, those who decide that the payments simply aren't worth the massive amounts of paper-work involved, i.e. the richest.

Ian E,

"Simplest solution - just phase out child benefit: no new benefit given for any child born from the next tax year onwards. (i.e. if you want a child from now on then you must be able to afford it!)"

Well, quite. No more Child Benefits for kids born more than 9 months from this date.

DK