Just time for a quickie. It's curry and booze night, a traditional British evening combining a tongue-melting curry with cooling beer (not too cold, the shock can make your eyes pop out) and then continuing with further imbibing to a level that will turn Don Shenker purple with rage. We might even phone him up and tell him how many units we've had. And there will be smoking. At the same time. Indoors. Both at once. ASH can stick that in their pipe and bubble it because Smoky-Drinky places are not public places. Even if they ban it in our own homes, we won't be stopping. That was unanimously agreed last week. Many words and phrases starting with 'F' were used.
At least this time I won't have to sit down and slide there. The rain has washed the snow mostly away, apart from a few tenacious lumps. I can see the grass in my garden again - some patches have not been clear of snow since Christmas.
So, as I said, a quickie.
The Eurozone is melting faster than the snow and their economy is approaching Labour levels of shittiness. As always happens when the money runs out, the blame is flying.
'You people cost too much of my taxes' is the usual cry. Pick your group, it doesn't really matter. Smokers, unemployed, drinkers, fatties - oh, make up any group you like because you're wrong anyway.
None of these groups are costing you or me any money. The only reason we pay tax is because we go to prison if we refuse. What happens to it, once paid, is immaterial to the individual paying.
If you were burgled and someone stole your TV, would you rant and rage because they used it to watch Eastenders? That's pretty much the same thing, you know. Instead of ranting about the theft, rant about the use to which the stolen item is subsequently put.
Suppose you get held up at knifepoint by a druggie, who then relieves you of fifty quid. You report this at the police station by saying -
a) Someone held me up at knifepoint and stole my money.
b) Some damn druggie is wasting my money on drugs.
The reason the thief took the money is immaterial. The taking of the money is what you object to, even if he wanted it to buy his grandmother some flowers.
For some reason it's different with tax. We shout about what the money is used for but rarely complain about it being taken at all. Many people don't even see that the tax is taken under threat of violence. They don't hear the 'pay up or else' part.
The government does not need to run ninety percent of the things it runs. They don't need to spend all that time and money, and fund all those people, just to tell us how to live. They don't need chaffeurs. If they're too incompetent to handle a car, then they are far too incompetent to be in public office. They don't need second homes, if they work away from home they can use hotels like the rest of us and pay for it themselves like the rest of us.
We don't need 646 MPs unless, if recent revelations are anything to go by, we need that many to reach a cumulative IQ somewhere higher than 'dolt'. In which case, perhaps selecting some intelligent ones might be an idea?
The fact is, the government doesn't need to spend all your money on fripperies and control-freakery and 'initiatives' so ludicrous they make a mockery of the word. The government should not be funding any charities at all because that is not how charity is supposed to work. If government restricted itself to doing only what a government needs to do, there would be little need of tax at all.
The reason we pay tax has nothing to do with the groups that benefit from it. We pay tax only because we'll be dealt with severely if we don't. What the highwaymen do with it afterwards is not relevant at all. They take more and more because they can, and then they misdirect the blame by saying 'Look how these benefits cheats are stealing your money'.
Benefits cheats are not stealing our money. It was stolen long before they saw it. With the threat of force.
As long as people look past the thief and only see those he supports, the thief will continue to get away with it.