Thursday, 20 September 2007

As requested

As Michael has requested in response to the last post, the best I can do at the moment is to direct you to David Field's various links and posts. Many are deliberately provocative, and I suspect some (including Michael) will not appreciate the tone, but the substance is, I find, persuasive.

Welfare is all part of my forthcoming posts on taxation and the place of the state (after October half-term), though Jam has some useful starters.

Michael, thank you for your patience, as you endure my passing remarks without yet seeing my full rationale.


Sam Allberry said...

And thank you Neil for your forthcoming reflections. Ever since sharing a car journey with you (from "Megabowl" near Ledbury!) where you shared your conviction that being Tory was the Christian way forward (or something along those lines), I've been eager to hear your reasoning. I confess to being relatively new to political thought, but have an instinctive reaction against the moral high ground that is so often assumed to be the preserve of the left, not least when it comes with quite imperious tomes. (Not so with Michael, let me say.)

've been reading the diaries of Ronald Reagan, and have found him to be a compelling apologist.

Michael Dormandy said...

Thank you, Neil, for always thought provoking posts.
Field discusses Fair trade and global isssues rather than welfare and increasing taxation to increase public spending.

As I understand it, Fair trade is not so much, "buying coffee with a tip" as buying coffee at a price such that third world farmers will be able to produce it sutainably. Since I am keen to carry on drinking coffee, this seems only sensible. Why should I buy coffee at a price that will drive the farmers who produce it to either starvation or production of something more profitable than coffee, which I happen to like less as a drink (especially since this alternative crop may be a hard drug that is ruining society)? Fair trade may, in a crude sense, be "buying coffee with a tip", but I tip waiters in restaurants, because I know that they are underpaid and that if they are to be able to bring my meal next time I eat out, I shall have to pay them. If I stopped tipping then either the price of the food would rise anyway (probably by more than the tip, since the restauranat manager would take a cut of the price rise)or the waiter would leave to get another job or he would starve, so I might as well just pay the tip if I want to go back to the restaurant.
These are v rambling thoughts and I am not an economist. Neil, feel no pressure to reply in a hurry. I am probably open to charges of hypocrisy on this one and cannot claim always to have bought Fair trade at every opportunity.

On a random note, I started at Cornhill about a week ago and I think met your mother-in-law on the PT staff, though didn't speak to her.