Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Aid to India

Someone recently asked me what I thought of the fact that we currently spend £295million a year on aid to India, arguing that we were effectively helping to fund India's space programme, and that it should be the responsibility of the Indian Government to relieve poverty in India.

I take somewhat less of a utilitarian view.

My problem with the aid sent to India is that it is provided by the Government through tax money. I, and every other taxpayer in the country do not have a choice over how that money is spent - it is simply taken off us and given away by the Government. I do not agree with the concept of a charitable tax - if I want to give money to charity, then I should be allowed to choose which charity. Not the cretins in Whitehall who think they know better than me.

However, it should be noted that £295million a year amounts to about 10p a week per person. I think we've got bigger things to worry about. Like the £60 a week per person benefits bill, for instance.