Thursday 9 July 2015

keep talking happy talk....

As is now a completely acceptable pastime (and as I mentioned in a comment on yesterday's post), I spent a reasonable part of yesterday evening on Facebook in animated debate with a friend of a friend who I kind of know.  The topic of conversation was that statistic I shared here yesterday about how this government is giving away £93bn a year as "corporate welfare".  That, I said, was the equivalent of £3,500 for every single household in the country.  This didn't initially get much response, but after a bit of thinking time, this:

"But how can it be £3,500 per household? If you earn the minimum wage, then you'll probably only be paying about £500 a year in tax"

Well, it's the *equivalent* of £3,500 for every household.  You don't receive an actual bill, and obviously some people pay more tax than others.

"Yes.  But it can't be £3,500 per household when some people won't be paying anywhere near that much in tax over a year"

Deep breath.

It's the **equivalent** of £3,500 for every household.  They've taken the total number and divided it by the number of households in the country to put it into context and to help show how big a number it really is.

"Well, I think it's misleading to say that everyone pays £3,500 when some people clearly don't..."

At this point, dear reader, I realised that it was better to walk away than to risk upsetting someone who is a perfectly nice person (I've met him and everything) in a conversation about politics.  In the same spirit, today I have declined to get involved in a conversation with the same person about the 20mph speed limits that Nottinghamshire police are going to put outside parks and schools across the city ("But it means that drivers will spend more time looking at their speedometers than looking at the road.  How will the Police enforce it? It doesn't make roads any safer.  Why can't they just teach kids the green cross code in schools?" Can you feel my sacrifice in resisting that kind of provocation?)

I'm only human though.  I'm thinking of striking up a conversation about God tonight, just for the hell of it.

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