Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Child Care: Choice v. Day Care

Child care is the new medicare. The Liberals have promised it upteen times, and every time, they make it sound as if this is very important to them and they will implement it. I haven't seen any sign of a national child care program yet, have you? Never mind, the Liberals mean it this time.

Against the Liberal idea of subsidizing day care is the Conservative idea of giving parents the money to decide how they would like to raise their children: day care or parent care. In my opinion, day care is to the middle classes what nannies are to the British upper classes: as soon as the kid pops out, the rich horsey set hand it over to the nanny, one for each child. With day care the middle class can have their version of the nanny too. Now having offended everyone, I will say for the single parent or two parents who have very low incomes, day care is essential to being able to work and to earn a liveable income. (And to the person on one of those TV newscasts who said that it's essential because it provides a haven and a chance for growth for the children of drug addicts and gamblers, well, why are the children allowed to stay in that home in the first place? Shouldn't children be raised in healthy homes 24 hours of the day, not healthy day care for 8 and unhealthy homes for 16? Day care should not be a catchall for pathetic Children's Aid Societies.) The catch for a low-income, two-parent household is that day care costs eat up any gain from having the second parent work. The Liberal's idea -- if they ever implement it and who believes that now? -- would make day care affordable. The Conservative subsidy is insufficient for paying for full-time day care for one kid. But the problem with the Liberal idea is that it forces parents to have two incomes; they will have no choice about one parent being able to stay home to parent their own children because the day care subsidy will make day care affordable, but not full-time parent care. I also foresee the Liberal idea being very expensive in added bureacracy costs. The Conservative idea will be less of a burden on taxpayers.

I prefer being in control of my own destiny. I prefer making my own decision about which route to go. I do not like government telling me that a particular kind of child care is preferable and that they will only subsidize that kind. How about you?

Tags: ,

No comments: