Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Toys out of the pram over child benefits

Highly amusing to see the new Aberconwy Tory MP Guto Bebb throw his toys out of the pram at the first Tory-Lib Dem attack on the welfare state.
As the ever excellent Blogmenai points out, whatever can have possessed the high-earning father of five to come out against proposed cuts in Child Benefit for those earning more than £44,000?
I happen to agree with Bebb but for vastly different reasons. Child Benefit, like the State Pension, is a universal benefit and when the state starts to means test benefits, there's only one way that can go.
This first assault on universal benefits will only hit the very affluent - less than 10 per cent of people in Wales earn more than £44,000 a year. But this government will no doubt lower the threshold at every budget and, before we know it, it's entirely possible that the majority of people will be excluded from what were universal benefits.


The Druid of Anglesey said...

Turns out 83 percent of people agree with the policy though.


Plaid Whitegate said...

About the same number of people throughout the UK that aren't affected by it! Funny that. Everybody's first reaction, if they earned less than 44k, was "that won't affect me". It will.

The Druid of Anglesey said...

"Everybody's first reaction, if they earned less than 44k, was "that won't affect me". It will."

Will it? Where's your proof?

Plaid Whitegate said...

It's a prediction.

glynbeddau said...

What the Druid can’t (or refuses to see) is that once the principal of an Universal Benefit has been removed. Then this will open the floodgates to furher erosion of our current universal benefit system..
All benefits will be called in to question and this will eventually include free NHS healthcare.
The Tories are using the current climate to do what they have always wanted to do and destroy the welfare state and we are talking about the implementation of cuts in order to further
ideology rather than balance the books.
Perhaps the question we should ask is how much further Lib Dem supporters will go along with this.
They voted against this plan in their recent conference but this will not be good enough if their PMs succumb to their Tory bosses.