Tax exemption for overtime

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A world map of countries by gross domestic pro...
A world map of countries by gross domestic product at purchasing power parity per capita in 2006 from the World Bank. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was trawling through the net this afternoon when I came across a truly revolutionary, innovative idea on the economy!

Increase the purchasing power of workers.

As an idea its probably what most, if not all governments would want to achieve. Well, reading Philippe Doucet he seems to have a great idea on how to actually do it.

Income tax exemption for overtime working!

Over the last 12 months the French public believe that their personal purchasing power has decreased. They don’t feel quite as wealthy as they did. People all over the developed economies of the west are being asked (told) to work harder for less pay. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe that his idea will in any way address unemployment, that is a factor that can only be dealt with over time (years). But by increasing the purchasing power of those in work it can only assist industry and services to survive this longest of all drawn-out recessions.

The struggle with unemployment is about skills in my view. Skills training, up-skilling, vocational education is the way to deal with unemployment. Under-qualified employees are a burden to business both in supporting the reduced productivity, and the cost of employing appropriately trained employees.

The time is now for the debate concerning workers pay and how its taxed. The idea of tax exemption for overtime comes from the left of French politics is true, but it makes it a no less valid proposal in an environment of stagnation of ideas. Radical; yes, Inspired; yes, Fresh; YES!

There’s also the hidden benefit of reduced employment costs, business too will benefit financially (well they will here in the UK). Of course this policy represents an increase in sophistication for employers and employees alike, but consider the benefits to the economy. The economy is treated to a boost whilst fairness to workers is also addressed.

Since the debacle of the Banking crisis, the ineptitude of our politicians this seems to me an idea that addresses so many issues of perceived (in)justice that I almost cannot understand why it hasn’t been proposed earlier.

The government of the day is voted for on its supposed ability to defend the interests of the populace who voted for them. Higher paid workers (myself included) and those who earn big bonuses (bankers…) will not benefit from this policy, it will be those who do the real work. The middle and working classes.

I don’t support this policy because of some high minded principle but from a very practical stand-point. More money in the economy will benefit everybody.


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