Monday, 11 October 2010

State Dependency and Fear

EU Referendum highlights a story that illustrates two of the problems with the big State. Camden Council is planning to ask residents to shovel snow themselves this winter, although they'll provide the shovels. Some aren't happy:
Eleanor Botwright, director of Castlehaven Community Centre, said: 'It is not quite dig your own grave but it is a double-edged sword. In some instances I am sure it will be helpful but if people pay their council tax, that is supposed to be used for that.'
So we have State Dependency - I can't do it because I pay my taxes. It's now someone else's responsibility.

But the proposal is risky. Last January it was pointed out that:
Under current legislation, householders and companies open themselves up to legal action if they try to clear a public pavement outside their property. If they leave the path in a treacherous condition, they cannot be sued. 
So we have Fear. The State has made laws such that people are too scared to take responsibility for problems. Indeed, as a result of this fear the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health told its members:

“When clearing snow and ice, it is probably worth stopping at the boundaries of the property under your control.”
It's a double whammy. Some people don't feel responsible and others that do are too scared to act on that feeling.

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