Leaked emails from the National Government’s Productivity Task Force have confirmed rumours circulating in senior journalist circles that the Tooth Fairy is to be sacked.
The emails include statistical data and market research supplied by the Business Round Table which indicate that the Tooth Fairy costs New Zealand tax payers more than a quarter of a million dollars a year.
In one email, Executive Director of the Business Roundtable Roger Kerr writes to Productivity Task Force Head Don Brash: ‘there are approximately 300,000 children in the country aged between 4 and 8 years who will receive an average $1 per tooth for each of the eight deciduous teeth they will lose over five years. This money doesn’t grow on trees.’
Although previously denying the rumours, Don Brash has since admitted that the Tooth Fairy will be made redundant ‘just as soon as we can get hold of her.
‘Its true’, he says, ‘that in the overall scheme of things, the total expenditure by the Tooth Fairy may appear inconsequential, but the essential factor driving this decision is that funding for a perfectly natural physical phenomenon engenders within children a culture of dependency. These kids think that just because a tooth has fallen out, they are somehow due payment. This sense of entitlement feeds into their adult life, corrupting their potential, disincentivising them from creating their own wealth and reducing national productivity as a result.’
The market research data supplied by the Business Roundtable shows that the children of affluent parents receive far less than their poor parent counterparts.
‘What more proof do we need,’ Don Brash says. ‘We know that the children of the poor are more likely to end up on benefits and now we know why. Its simple mathematics, children who receive a higher remuneration from the Tooth Fairy are less productive. It is vital to the New Zealand economy going forward that our children learn they are responsible for themselves at as early an age as possible. In short, the Tooth Fairy is a significant threat to future prosperity.
Don Brash has dismissed as ‘crazy’ a suggestion from Green Party Co-Leader Dr Russell Norman that, rather than sacking the Tooth Fairy the better approach would be to regulate and standardise the amount of money each child receives and ‘legislation covering the sustainable disposal of calcium, phosphorus and related mineral salts must be enacted as a matter of urgency”.
Don Brash says ‘market-place regulations don’t work and will distort sectors of the labour market. For example,’ he says, ‘with the ever-rising cost of fuel, more and more people are using open fires rather than central heating. The need for slim, lithe chimney sweeps is growing and attracting suitable labour will be hampered if the youth of New Zealand continue to be indulged in this non-productive manner.’
Finance Minister Bill English welcomes the new initiative. “Unless we do something now, future generations will feel entitled to have the state to pick up after them three hours a week for the rest of their lives.”
The Tooth Fairy could not be contacted for comment.