Thursday 22 March 2018

Here's hoping taxman is kept out of the bedroom

The last thing that the low-paid need now is moralising from highly paid civil servants, says Marc Coleman

Before you and your partner enjoy your next night of bliss, take my advice: lock the bedroom windows and draw the curtains. Before too long, Revenue officials could be on ladders peering through your steamed-up windows with cameras. A tax on sex might seem ridiculous but if the Department of Finance gets wind of the latest census figures, it could be on the cards.

And if the idea seems fanciful, consider how the "F" word originated. In the 8th Century -- during the reign of Anglo-Saxon King Offa to be precise -- the words "Fornication Under Consent of the King" were hung outside every house that had paid the king an obligatory tax. Houses that didn't were, so legend has it, regularly called on by Offa's militia. So perhaps one of the reasons that last Thursday's preliminary census figures showed such staggering population growth is that procreation is one of the few pleasures that the Government hasn't gotten around to taxing.

Given how rightly fornicated the State finances are, that may not last long. As for population growth, regular readers of this column will recall how in 2007 I predicted that our State's population would hit five million by 2020. With the right policies we could survive the coming crisis and reach new heights of prosperity by 2020, ideas I turned into a book, The Best Is Yet to Come.

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