Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Herald on Labour’s election bribe

The way the Herald sees it this morning:


Even the Herald is prepared to go hard against the idea of taxpayers further subsidising the taxpaid generation.

Labour proposes to replace doctors' discretion with free consultations and medicines to the over-65s regardless of their ability to pay. It would give the elderly the same benefits provided to children up to age 13 in this year's Budget, which Labour endorses…
    Labour is offering free doctors and medicines to a generation that grew up in a welfare state, attended university at a fraction of the cost faced by their children, bought houses at lower relative prices, had their top income tax rates reduced by half early in their working years and enjoyed galloping house price inflation in their peak earning period.
    Some have been able to invest in multiple houses to generate additional retirement income, which would not be taken into account when Labour provides them with free medical services at a cost to the taxpaying generation, which has already had to pay a higher share of its tertiary education costs and taken out much higher house mortgages to afford a home of their own in a market inflated by the lucky generation's appetite for investment property…
    If Labour's Budget calculations give it a spare $280 million a year, its supporters could probably suggest several more urgent uses of that money…

And so, dear reader, could you.

And so you should, because it’s yours. Not that any of the political parties acknowledge that.

It is too easy for political parties to promise handouts in election year. No rival is going to say senior citizens do not need it. The election becomes an auction in which all parties put up their bids at public expense. If the party wins power it is obliged to carry out the promise no matter how cheaply it was made. And once enacted, the benefit becomes almost impossible to remove. Taxpayers bear the waste and the economy loses the investment. It is one way that nations get poor.

And taxpayers get fleeced.

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