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High tax, low pay Public sector waste

Prescott’s sign

The Conservative party are today highlighting the cost of changing Prescott’s job title. A new sign for his office cost £645 and new business cards cost £726. The new sign reads “Deputy Prime Minister’s Office” instead of “Office of the Deputy Prime Minister”.

You might think so what? But in high tax, low pay Britain somebody spent the year on the minimum wage doing 37.5 hour weeks to earn £10,342.50 and pay £931.79 in tax. Add in National Insurance and you can see the correlation. When you have a government that spends so freely you even have to tax the low paid hard to pay for the privileges of our masters.

4 replies on “Prescott’s sign”

Martin,

You miss the point. It is respectable to argue that pay rates should be decided by the market. Indeed it is probably true that the minimum wage has priced some people out of jobs. Some people are really not capable of adding much value and if you give an employer the choice between someone who is worth less than you pay them and no-one they will often choose no-one. Even worse some people will actually gain skills and experience by doing low paid work that allows you to pay them more as they improve. The minimum wage may have taken this opportunity from some people.

The point I have made before is that the Chancellor gives with the minimum wage, rising fast above inflation, with one hand and takes away with fiscal drag on the other. We end up with some people excluded from work because they are not worth the minimum wage. So they draw benefits. Other are worth the minimum wage but the Chancellor takes 9% of their pay off them in tax. As well as paying for Prescott’s finery they have to support those priced out of jobs. Dumb.

Phil

Phil

I’m familiar with the excuses for paying vulnerable people an unrealistically low wage – certain US owned supermarkets vocalise them all the time – I just happen to disagree with them.

Obviously some people are worth more than others in terms of wages but do you really think the market alone should decide what constitutes a living wage?

Martin,

Yes I do think the market should decide otherwise many people are excluded from the labour market because they are not worth the minimum wage. If you ask me whether the state should have a role in supporting those that cannot entirely look after themselves then absolutely yes.

I understand why people support the minimum wage but you cannot avoid the unintended consequence that some people will lose from it. It is doubly silly to tax the low paid as hard as Brown does and then give people complex means tested benefits. This way those least capable of interacting with the “System” have to interact with it twice. Removing these people from tax and benefits would allow tens of thousands of public sector workers to stop having to deal with a group of people who really don’t want to be snared in all of this crap. Their efforts could then be directed at something useful like cleaning the streets or catching criminals.

Phil

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