Letter: Passport to poverty

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Sir: It is hypocritical for a public which has, for 20 years, elected cost-cutting, low-spending governments, to complain about the fact that the Home Secretary will not be using public funds to keep down the cost of passports.

Many sections of society have suffered from the "Scrooge culture" which has existed since 1979. Why should the non-travelling public subsidise other people's holidays or foreign business trips (passports)? Why should single people subsidise married couples (married couple's tax allowance)? Why should those living in rented accommodation subsidise the mortgages of others (mortgage tax relief)? Why should those in work subsidise those unable to find work (unemployment benefit)? Why should the young subsidise the elderly (the Holy Grail and ultimate target of the Thatcherite/Blairite hit-list: make no mistake)?

This is not a statement about the merits or limits of the "Scrooge society", merely a reminder that public finance supports us all in one way or another.