It must be National Shit Idea Day in Whitehall - this one's a humdinger:

New charges could be brought in for the first time under a drive to reform the complex and over-bureaucratic child maintenance system and make it more "family-friendly"

Yes, it's another few guilty parties added to the long line of people the Coalition thinks caused the financial crisis - those feckless women stuck in abusive relationships, children being brought up in homes where the parents don't get on and kids from broken homes who need the Equalizer of the State to extract money from an absent parent so they can enjoy a reasonable standard of living.  Well, now the State wants its cut, but it's clearly not for financial reasons:

A Coalition source said: "The aim would be to be act as a deterrent and help convince parents that splitting up should be an option of last resort when all other avenues had been taken. The whole system needs to be made more family friendly."

Yes, we're clearly all fed up with the state standing up for the disadvantaged, it's time the State stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the prissy Puritans who want to regulate other people's lives.  Er, hang on, shouldn't that be the other way round, Nick?

P.S. the Lib Dems have a get-out allowing them to abstain on the equally silly marriage tax allowance - does this extend to other Nanny Statery, or is there a loophole here for IDS and co.'s dafter ideas?