A Response to the ‘Budget’


Its been long overdue but here is the official BUCF Response to the Budget.

What can we really say about this budget? In simple terms this budget wasn’t worth the paper it was written on and the public can see that so I’m not going to pick it apart piece by piece or go on my usual tyrade of abuse at a government I despise more than I ever imagined possible. This ‘Budget’ speaks for itself as the hostile public reaction to it demonstrates. We all can see, apart from our dear Labour counterparts, that we are in the worst economic situation in living memory which try as they might cannot be solely blamed on the bankers or the Americans. However the reality of this budget is much worse. Usually at times like this we could console ourselves an election was round the corner and the Conservatives could come in and sort it out (as we always do) but the fact remains that whoever does come in next and whoever comes after that is inheriting the worst economic legacy in living memory. This is down to the fact that what lies behind the numbers in this Budget is a set of assumptions that are ficticious. Darling confidently predicts that by 2011 the economy would have swung around to rapid growth, trampolining from a shrink of 3.5pc this year to a miraculous growth by that same amount in 2011. How exactly? By taxing higher earners more? Give me flaming strength… weve been there before and it failed!!!!

Indeed following the rise in public borrowing and the increase in taxes on the wealthy outlined in the budger there has been much talk of a return to ‘old Labour’ politics and this wouldn’t be an entirely outrageous statement. The ‘old’ Labourites that lurk on the governments backbenches never truly accepted ‘New’ Labour and have always yearned for a return to the divisive class concious politics that blighted the country. In that light the 50% tax hike on the highest earners, which incidently is the most productive part of the economy, will delight those ‘old’ Labourites who have always deomonstrated a ‘politics of envy’ and led our country to ruin. But this budget is far worse than ‘old’ Labour. Unlike new Labour, old Labour had the ‘honesty’ to outrageously tax the electorate at the time, rather than tax subsequent generations. Britain is going to be riddled with debt that will be all but impossible to pay back. Even by the governments own figures our national debt will soar to 79% of GDP in 2013/14, while Public Sector Net Borrowing will peak this year at 12% of GDP.  In sum, no matter how they try to spin it, this budget clearly shows our national finances are in a much worse position now than they were even at the point of maximum humiliation in 1976 when Denis Healey held out the begging bowl to the IMF for a £2.3bn bail-out. So this government and this budget can be summed up in 5 clear words: Labour have done it again.

The sick man of Europe is back. Enter ‘Thatcher’.


6 thoughts on “A Response to the ‘Budget’

  1. At some restaurants the food is worth the wait. At others it’s about speed but the food isn’t so good. Dan’s response is the worst of both worlds. We’ve waited nearly three full days for a substantive response to the budget but all that BUCF has produced is the political equivalent of a happy meal that has gone cold. It was hardly worth the wait.

    First it has the usual historical innacuracies that we’ve come to expect. He speaks of ‘Labour always wrecking things” when in fact, since the war, only the Labour party has bequeathed to its succeeding government a budget surplus. In the same period, every conservative government has left a deficit. He also makes the mistake of suggesting that the Tories ‘fix things’. This is demonstrably false when one considers the conservative record on unemployment and borrowing.

    He then goes on to say that Old Labour ‘outrageously taxed the electorate’ when the tax burden was 33.1% of GDP in 1979 compared with 35.4% in 1990 and 34.0% in 1997. In fact the tax burden averaged 34.42% of GDP between 1974 and 1979 and 35.42% between 1979 and 1997. So if ‘Old Labour’ outrageaoulsy taxed Britain then I would be interested to know which words he would use to describe the actions of the following Tory government.

    He also says that “Britain is going to be riddled with debt that will be all but impossible to pay back”. Perhaps he should acquaint himself with the facts. Gross debt in the UK sits at 58.2% of GDP. If we consider various government assets we have a figure of PSND at 50.9%. Excluding financial sector intervention it stands at 41.7% of GDP. To put that in an international context we have a lower debt-burden than the following nations:

    France 72.3%
    Germany 76.1%
    Italy 109.4%
    Japan 217.0%
    United States 81.2%

    Which ever measure we use, Britain has a lower burden of debt.

    And if we wish to make historical comparisons, we had a higher burden of debt when the following left office: Churchill, Atlee, Churchill, Eden, MacMillan, Douglas-Home and Wilson. So in fact we are far from an irrecoverable situation. To attempt to prevent an increase in the national debt during a world-wide economic crisis would be extremely fool-hardy.

    All of these listed fallacies can be found in a budget response that was promised in a reply to the accusation that “BUCF and the conservative party in general have nothing to suggest in terms of policy”. BUCF has still failed to put their cards on the table because we know that they have nothing to propose:

    Dan complains about the tax on high earners while the leader of his party refuses to pledge to reverse that tax rise.

    He complains about debt with no suggestion of how to reduce it. (And somehow I don’t think his unquantified ideas about increasing defence spending will help things.)

    He also says nothing about the causes of the recession because he knows that while Labour was producing budget surpluses, his party promised tax cuts.

    This country faces severe problems over the next few years and the irony is that after all the years of policy suggestions from the conservatives, they have now fallen completely silent with no clue as to how to provide an alternative. We complained in the aftermath of the budget that BUCF and the Tories had failed to stand for anything. We were then told to wait. Unfortunately we are still waiting.

  2. Couldnt resist the Thatcher reference could we Daniel.

    Also why are the tories convinced that Cameron is the next Thatcher? My money is on Cameron being the next Heath, no determination or principles.

    *drops bomb and runs*

  3. I might have many issues with Ted Heaths government but to say he was unprincipled is not merely ‘unfair’ it is completely false.

  4. ‘All we’ve got is a happy meal that’s gone cold’

    I love that, I’ll use that in future I think.

    I think Dan’s conclusions are right though.

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