22 June 2011

The cost to the taxpayer of the dysfunctional

I have long wondered whether making pensioners the scapegoats for the increasing expenditure on ‘care’, in order to justify still more taxation (or reduction of pension entitlements), is a misdirection of attention. It seems to me possible that the drain on the taxpayer of the increasing population of the dysfunctional (including low-IQ) population is far greater.

On the one hand, it appears that one third of women and one fifth of men who reach pensionable age go into a ‘care home’, and for an average of about 2 years. So a population of 12m pensioners implies about 6m care-home years. On the other hand, there are allegedly 3.2 million people on disability allowances. Of course a great fuss is made about those who pretend they are unable to walk but are seen climbing ladders, playing tennis, etc.

The number of drink and drug addicts, now counted among the ‘disabled’, is known to have risen dramatically over the last ten years. But the population on disability allowances also includes those who are physically and/or mentally handicapped by the genetic endowment with which they were born, or by accident or illness later in life. These may spend far more than two years in care homes, possibly 30 or 40. Also there are many special needs ‘schools’ for those with low IQs and/or behavioural problems.

The population at special schools, or receiving state-funded tuition at home, is not included in the 3.2 million who receive ‘disability allowances’, as these are only paid to those who are over school age.

The proportion of the genetically dysfunctional among the 3.2 million does not need to be very high for the expense to taxpayers of ‘care’, and the increase in this expense per annum, to exceed that for the population of pensioners.