Synopsis of The Welfare State We’re In.
‘Britain would have been better off without the welfare state’
That is the startling claim at the core of this controversial book.
Marshalling an extraordinary range of evidence and calling a kaleidoscopic cast of witnesses from Catherine of Aragon to Vinnie Jones, James Bartholomew summons into the dock each of the sacred cows of the welfare state and subjects them to searching examinations:
• Do welfare benefits cause unemployment?
• Has state education given better chances to the less well-off?
• Does the NHS do what was promised?
• What caused the failure of council housing?
• Does ‘broken parenting’ matter?
• Is a poor state pension better than none?
He begins his summing up with the key question:
• If the welfare state is so bad, why don’t we get rid of it?
The book will infuriate many and be applauded by as many again. But no one who reads it will ever view the welfare state in the same light as before.
* * * * *
“An indispensable and very readable guide to how – despite the best of all possible intentions – the welfare state has failed to keep its own promises and, worse still, has done substantial damage to British society. Essential reading.” Minette Marrin, columnist for The Sunday Times.
(From the cover of the book.)