Paternity Is Still Nationalised, And Some Thoughts On Refugees
Sky News' headline 'Discredited CSA Faces Axe' would normally put a spring in one's step, the creation of the Child Support Agency having been one of the most authoritarian, illiberal and absolutely unnecessary actions in Parliament's history.
But the champagne stays in the fridge.
"The Child Support Agency is to be replaced by a new body with powers to confiscate passports and impose curfews on dads.
Parents will also be encouraged to make their own financial arrangements under the Government shake-up."
'Making their one financial arrangements' according to their respective needs and resources was precisely what both parties did before the clownish adulterer John Major decided he wanted to make political capital out of the divorce statistics.
However, confiscating a 'deadbeat dad's' passport, the only tangible symbol of his citizenship, is just another extension of the state into places it has no business being. With the exception of the few and extreme cases where a parent harms a child, the citizenry has no business interfering in any family's affairs. Confiscating parents' passports for failing to adhere to family duties is an extension of state power which can only be described as fascist.
That's not to say there are those whose passports shouldn't be confiscated. Take the case of Jounama Itani.
A Scoto-Lebanese, Itani has been pulled out of Beirut at my expense. This morning she's reported as saying,
"I'm going to take some time out but I'm planning to return to Lebanon...
"I wouldn't go back this year, but hopefully things will have quietened down by next year, so I can go back."
Which means that my money's been wasted and the whole exercise will have to be repeated several years down the line when this spat's died down and the next one flares.
People who deliberately imperil themselves by choosing to live in countries where people vote for Hezbollah are unworthy candidates for either sympathy or assistance. And it would be more equitable to me to confiscate their passports than to prevent a man who's probably having trouble making ends meets in a globalised economy whose deck is stacked against him from going to Dublin for the weekend.