Progressive And Progressive Mean Different Things

Or perhaps, without headline capitalisation, Progressive and progressive mean different things:

A Progressive is, roughly speaking, someone who self-declares that they’re going to advance society through the expansion of state power or provision. A Progressive policy is therefore something supported by Progressives, there is no other valid definition. Trade union rights, the NHS and the welfare state might all be considered ‘Progressive policies’. More recently, policies such as abolishing student fees and loans, free broadband, free dental checkups and clearing the oceans of plastic all fit into the ‘Progressive’ basket.

The problem is that progressive has another, more specific, meaning. In economic terms a progressive policy is one which benefits those of lower income more than those of higher. So, when we refer to progressive taxation systems we mean that the average tax rate increases as income does. Average here again has a technical meaning: the portion of a person’s total income paid in taxation, rather than the marginal tax rate on the last unit of it.

Giving freebies to the middle classes, paid for at least in part by the taxation of the poor, is not progressive. It may well be Progressive of course but that’s an error with Progressive policy, isn’t it, that it’s not progressive.

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Bernie G.Bloke in North DorsetTomMr Yan Recent comment authors
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Mr Yan
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Mr Yan

When is the Progressives ever care about the poor?

Tom
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Tom

Mr Yan: the 12th December?

Bloke in North Dorset
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Bloke in North Dorset

There’s none as conservative as a progressive, especially when it comes to the NHS.

Bernie G.
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Bernie G.

Back to the same old argument of universality verses the stigma of welfare.