7 SEPTEMBER 1951, Page 14

Church and Welfare State

Sut,—A Welfare State is one in which the Government deliberately sets out to make available for all the people a minhpum but high standard of well-being, and uses to this end its own authority and primarily its own administrative resources. Such a State we have, since this is avowedly Governmental policy. The fact that the Government has not yet succeeded in completely implementing this policy in every field of well-being (for example, fuel, power and light) does not makeit any less a Welfare State. The National Health Act and the achieyement (not merely the aim) of full employment are, however, giantastrides towards the Welfare.„State's arrival at its own goal. A Welfare State, 1 take it, fails at the moment when the benefits it offers are generally realised to be powerless to raise the standard of living or to make people happier, and therefore its great enemies are inflation, industrial irresponsibility and the frame of mind which gives as little and takes as much from the State as it can. These can make all Governmental promises of none effect. Then, sooner or later, people think they have been "had for mugs,” and when enough people think that, social chaos is not far off, and this in turn is likely to be followed by dictatorship with all its tyrannies. In spite of Mr. Osborne's arguments, I still think it most important that the Welfare State should succeed, and that whether we are Socialists or not we should wish it well.—Yours faith- fully, ROGER LLOYD. Cheyney Court, The Close, Winchester.