We are nearing the end of maternity leave and with it the time for leaving my babies. Under other circumstances I might at least have consoled myself with the knowledge that it means a welcome increase in income but as previously ranted about, my income is going to drop even lower than maternity pay courtesy of childcare costs. I have been quietly hunting for alternative work – anything that will not require me to pay full time care for Poppy and out of preschool hours care for Izzy but my will has finally crumbled. Congratulations British economy – it has taken a few years but finally you have bested me because I am tired. Too tired to keep juggling these figures while knowing half a dozen people who have never bothered to shift off their lazy behinds to the job centre even yet have cars I can only dream of, smoke cigarettes I couldn’t afford to smoke (even if I wanted to) and drink quantities of alcohol I am finally beginning to wish I had the opportunity to reach for. And who is paying for it? Everyone but themselves. And they are laughing, always laughing, and why the devil not?! If you can have a dfs sofa to sit on and watch your giant screen tv before popping out for another takeaway despite never having worked for any of it I am not surprised you find life pretty darn hilarious! And at the same time I know half a dozen people who would like to work but actually earn more in benefits if they don’t and they simply cannot afford to let their self-respect outweigh their current income. So come on people – where in this great and good country of ours, where we ensure nobody goes hungry or sick and put a roof over as many heads as possible is there something written to protect the normal folks? Where does it say “hang on, if you don’t work you shouldn’t have a better life than the people who do, how will that encourage you to stand on your own two feet?” Where is the help for the people who need it and earned it the old fashioned way? And where is the common sense that says “we are at breaking point and can’t even afford to look after the people already living here so regardless of what Brussels has to say about it we simply cannot keep letting more people in than the number of people leaving. The common sense that says if there is no good reason you have never paid tax by either stocking a shelf in tesco or waiting the odd table, or even taking a paper round then you can only get limited help from those who do. I watched “Happy Families” last week. A woman had five jobs to support her family. FIVE! She looked exhausted from work but still came and helped her kids with homework before heading out to her next job. Yet if she earns enough to be taxed then each job that is considered her ‘additional’ job will be more heavily taxed than the first. To show willing to work and be penalised for it by some twonk saying “well if you have more than one job then you are earning enough money to pay more tax” instead of “she obviously needs the money and is more than willing to work for it so let’s reduce the rate of tax on her additional jobs so that she sees the benefit of her hard work”. I am not talking about utopia. I am talking about fairness which stops those who do because they have to half killing themselves to keep those who don’t simply because they don’t want to.