My thoughts on the Autumn Budget Statement


A Political Broadcast Here is why Nick Clegg, David Cameron and his chums  Must Go 

 

Business and community leaders hoping for a piece of pie from the Autumn Statement to be handed down to all regions from Whitehall were left with eggs thrown in their face.

When we dig down through all the layers to the roots of the causes, we find three fundamental causes of social problems: ignorance, apathy, and greed. The ultimate remedy for social problems therefore must confront all three root causes. It does little good to just run down the street shouting “share the rent!” or “stop war!”. Uttering a slogan does no good unless it arouses sympathy.

As an example of the interplay between ignorance, apathy, and greed, consider the problem of pollution. Suppose the most efficient preventative is a pollution charge based on the damage caused by each pollutant. However, the government regulates pollution instead, a policy failure that needlessly reduces employment and economic growth. One possible cause is ignorance.
But suppose the best policy is known. The owners of the polluting industries seek to influence legislation to prevent the best policy. Because of their campaign contributions and other favors, the government adopts the poorer policy. The cause in this case is greed, both by the influence seeker and by corrupted politicians.

Greed is wanting and taking more than one morally deserves. The mere desire for wealth is avarice, rather than greed. By itself, avarice does no harm, and may even do social good as a motivator to produce wealth. The desire of the owners and managers of polluting industries to avoid the social cost of their pollution is greed, a morally undeserved portion of income. Greed can take the form of seeking undeserved subsidies or privileges, or protection from competition. Greed also motivates dictators, politicians, and government officials to seek and maintain their power.

Greed alone is not sufficient for policy failure, since the question then is why the people do not organize to counter the influence of the greedy interests and power seekers. The answer is the apathy of the voters. With the benefits concentrated among a few interests, and the costs spread among the whole population, the incentives of the greedy dominate the incentives of the masses. For the average voter, the cost of organizing and lobbying is greater than his own benefit, since the benefit goes to everybody.

But these benefits and costs are still not sufficient to cause the policy failure. Voters could overcome their financial and time cost of getting informed and organizing an opposition if they were sufficiently interested and aroused to contribute resources to defeat the minority interests. Besides their low financial incentive, there is a low sympathetic incentive. Apathy combined with low commercial returns is sufficient to prevent social action.

Apathy, greed, and ignorance are mutually reinforcing. Some folks take more than they morally deserve, but in ignorance. Many people are apathetic about a social problem because they are not informed. People can be aroused to action with a well-formulated presentation of some problem that evokes their sympathy, as is done with appeals to charity. The reduction of ignorance is also related to greed, since sympathy can replace greed with giving. The desire of a person for the goods of others or goods that harm others can be reduced by any sympathy he has for the well-being of others. A greedy person might steal from strangers but not from a friend. Mull over that folk’s. Hope it make’s sense!

When will this coalition will learn that there is child poverty and poverty in the UK and it happened to increase under their watch and they continue to blame Labour for all their mismanagement the public have caught on that they are being hoodwinked. Well there is no other way to but it more bluntly David Cameron must go.  Labour was right about the financial crash with Gordon Brown and Ed Balls was right about what Osborne should not hcar1ave done in destroying the growth Labour left in 2010. Across the board it is Labour that was right about the economy not the Tories. Osborne caused the massive recession/depression caused by his austerity drive.  A price that millions of people are still paying for with low wages and poor living standards.

George Osborne would destroy even more if he gets another chance in 2015. Low wages, Zero Hour Contracts, rising costs in housing, food and energy and nothing to look forward to. That is all that awaits under another five years of the Tories. Oh an a deficit that never goes down but only up. That is the price that happens when you do not grow your way out of debt. It is of course fantasy for the CBI and Cameron to make out the UK is growing. There are many bogus statistics beGO1ing used to make out the economy is strong. The bogus numbers of new jobs for one.

If people want a better life for them and their family, they will not find it in backing Osborne. Its time for change and that means getting Labour back to sort out the mess the Tories created. Only then will the economy really start to recover.

The Chancellor’s Autumn statement this week confirmed what people in the whole country already know; living standards are falling and this is not only hurting households up and down the country, but also damaging the economy.

The Coalition has failed the economic tests they set themselves. They have broken their promise to balance the books by next year, and will have to borrow £219 billion more than they planned, because wages are low and we can’t keep up with the rising cost of living. People are already DC1£1600 a year worse off under this Government and the official forecasts for wages have been downgraded this year and next year. But the Chancellor has still not reversed his £3 billion tax cut for millionaires, while everyone else on ordinary incomes struggles.

The announcement on Stamp Duty was welcome, but it is not enough to help people who can’t yet dream of getting on the housing ladder and it does not provide the revenue for the NHS that a Mansion Tax would create. Scrapping Air Passenger Duty for children will help some families, but the Chancellor doesn’t seem to realise that so many families can’t even contemplate a holiday abroad.

Following the Chancellor’s statement, the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned that “colossal” spending cuts will be required, because the Government has made the wrong choices and they have the wrong priorities. Despite this, the Prime Minister plans to cut taxes for higher rate tax payers, while freezing tax credits for those on low incomes.

This week, we needed to hear real action on wages so that people arehh fairly paid for their work, living standards finally begin to rise and everyone in the country can start to feel the economic recovery. But the Chancellor, once again, failed to deliver.

George Osborne told voters that Britain faces a choice between squandering economic security or finishing the job, adding: “I say we stay the course. We stay on course to prosperity.”

After four-and-a-half years of his stewardship of the economy, wages have been continuously adrift of prices and he wants to maintain this course. The Chancellor is happy to preside over an economy where a stuttering recovery benefits only a tiny section of society.

The rich and powerful still thrive on their accumulated wealth, sky-high salaries, bonuses, share allocations and gold-lined pension pots while a million people in the world’s sixth-biggest economy depend on foodbanks.

Osborne trots out the same old tired line that employment is the best way to escape hardship even though as many people from working families are in poverty as those in which no-one has a job.

This is because the Tory-Liberal Democrat coalition has driven down the value of in-work benefits while the cost of rents, fares, food, clothing, holidays and recreation has risen steadily.

Millions of public-sector workers have seen the value of their pay decline by at least 10 per cent since the conservative coalition took office and carried through a conspiracy to impoverish the working class.

Freezing pay and benefits is not only cruel and unfair to families doing their best to survive.

It also undermines the Chancellor’s supposed central task of balancing the books by the end of this Parliament.

He admitted yesterday that this year’s deficit is expected to hit £91.3 billion rather than £86.6bn.

This is a direct result of coalition policies that force people to take low-paid, part-time, insecure jobs on which they pay no income tax and have to apply for in-work benefits.

No amount of gimmicks in which Osborne “unveils” spending commitments already announced, plays around with business rates and stamp duty on house sales or suggests legislation to lock an incoming government into a pledge to eradicate the deficit by 2018 can disguise the bankruptcy of his chancellorship.

Not that he is without friends. Director general John Cridland of the bosses’ CBI sees the changes on stamp duty and business rates as “a shot in the arm for families and growing firms as they look towards 2015.”

Stamp duty massaging has more to do with countering Labour’s mansion tax, which, despite the high-profile whingeing of a cabal of overpaid entertainers, is popular with voters.

It’s worth noting that while a mansion tax would hit all properties valued at over £2 million, the conservative coalition’s rejigged stamp duty would affect only those up for sale and it would be paid by purchasers not by the current owners who pocket the cash.

Austerity is a codeword for “fleece the working class.” It has nothing to do with economic prudence or responsibility.

There is no value in promising to tinker with the government’s economic direction.

It has to be reversed through higher taxes on big business and the wealthy, transformation of the minimum wage into a living wage and substantially higher pensions and benefits.

The trend to privatisation, which has hit Royal Mail, the NHS, Forensic Science Services, Plasma Resources and state school playing fields, must also be halted.

Bringing back into public ownership our rail, gas, electricity and water services should be the initial step in taking control of the economy and making it operate in the interests of working people.

‘It’s rare that a PMQs can be described as a classic of the genre. Too often they are forced, trite, staged and bland affairs. In fact, most of those we’ve seen in the past six months could be described that way. Ed Miliband has rarely gotten out of his comfort zone and neither has the Prime Minister. The two have become locked in a deathly dull dance off between Ed “NHS” Miliband and David “OLTEP” Cameron.

Yet PMQs on Wednesday  4 December 2014  was different. Perhaps because – coming immediately before the Autumn Statement – the pressure is off. Whilst these sessions are usually the keynote event of the week in Westminster (for good or often ill) this time it was a mere prelude, the background music before the crash of the orchestra. A kick-about before the cup final.

And yet it was a warm up with a bit of energy about it. A bit of malice, venom and spite. And it was Ed Miliband’s best PMQs for ages.

The theme was straightforward but effective. David Cameron has broken his promises. And there are a litany of them to choose from – the deficit, immigration, the NHS were Miliband’s weapons of choice – but they all serve to hammer away at the Tories strongest cards (Cameron and competence), “Cleggifying” the Prime Minister as an untrustworthy and unscrupulous charlatan who will say whatever he needs to say to get elected, but can’t or won’t deliver. Cameron’s response to being challenged on his failings was pitiful. He tried to list Miliband’s alleged broken promises (none memorable or particularly significant), he puffed out his chest and he waved his glasses. But he didn’t land so much as a glancing blow. For Miliband, in this most overlooked of PMQs, he’d surged to victory by brutally exposing Cameron’s weak underbelly trust and delivery.

The downside of such an approach of course is that every time the public hears one politician attack another as untrustworthy, unreliable or a failure, their instant reaction is to think that all politicians are as bad as each other. But with Miliband’s leadership rating as low as they are, that’s a risk (grim and depressing as it sounds) that he can take at this stage. The upside is that when it comes to taking apart someone like Cameron – who is light on detail and heavy on moist-eyed promises – it’s rather effective. The TV debates could be rather interesting if they take on the tone of today’s session.

And what made this week’s PMQs a real classic was what happened after Miliband had sat down. Cameron – relishing the opportunity to goad the Shadow Chancellor (he’s obsessed with him, if you hadn’t noticed yet) – accused Balls of being a “Masosadist”. The already buoyant and boistrous Labour benches howled in barely disguised glee and amusement. Cameron claimed he meant Masochist, but it seems more likely that whilst aiming for S&M, he landed instead at M&S. His attempts to clarify his embarrassment only saw him sink deeper into the smutty muck.

And before we moved onto the Autumn Statement, there was Skinner. There had to be Skinner. And his question was on the economy. It was rather on message by the Beast of Bolsover’s standards. He asked why this government have increased government debt by more in this parliament than the Labour government did in 13 years. The Labour benches roared, Cameron spied an opportunity to blame Labour regardless, but the battle way won for the opposition.

Except today of course, this is just the first battle of a longer war. It’s one that will be even more ignored than most PMQs sessions. It’s one for those who are gluttons for punishment.

One for the Masosadists, as the Prime Minister might say.’ It’s raising hundreds of Millions pounds for the taxpayer. It’s doing what private companies do not. Its paying money back into the system. Yet the Tories want to flog it off cheap so some company can get a cheap deal and of course pay less back. It No doubt if we look closer those gaining financially from this move will be downers to the Tory Party.

If the boot was on the other foot it would also be the other Tory Party, UKIP taking the backhander to sell of our public assets.

We do not need the Tories and we certainly do not need UKIP. We need Labour.

 

 

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