The state has no money

I think we need some fresh language to get over the significance of the state debt crisis to more people in the UK.

There is no state money. State borrowing is taxpayer borrowing. State debt is the taxpayers’ debt. Every time the government tell us the government will borrow more, that means you and I have to accept responsibility for more debt. Everyone concerned about the level of public indebtedness could help by calling it taxpayer debt.

Individuals know that if you run up too big a debt on your credit card or take out too big a mortgage you have to cut your spending. It’s no good saying you will simply borrow more money to pay the interest on the money you have already borrowed. That way it’s a slippery slope to bankruptcy. You can’t go on borrowing more in the hope you will win the lottery or that suddenly the government will offer you one of their super quango six figure salary jobs which would make the debt affordable. You have to be realistic about your prospects and your means.

So it is when we act together as taxpayers. Only dreaming politicians think that the Uk will one day win the lottery or be offered a big bung by the international community to keep it going. The rest of us know that everything the government borrrows and spends on our behalf is going to have to be repaid one day with interest. We will all have to work harder and longer to repay Gordon’s debts, because they are our debts.

The figures show that families and companies are reining in their spending and reducing their debts. They know they overdid the collective overdraft in the good years, and are now making the necessary adjustments. They are spending less and saving more. It is especially galling for all concerned that at the same time as the private sector is learning to live within its means, the government is busily placing us all at risk by taking on more debt than we can afford. Why did they learn nothing from the private sector debt crisis? Why do they want to do the same again with public debt?

Taxpayers soon have a chance to rise up and make their views known. All should remember there is no state money and state debt. Only taxpayers have money, and the state will want more of it.

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46 Comments

  1. alan jutson
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    Exactly.
    The Government has no money.
    Every penny it spends is extracted from its taxpayers.
    Time those that choose not to vote, woke up to that fact.
    If you do not vote, you really cannot moan.
    The choice may be poor, but so will all taxpayers, if the present situation continues.

    • Kevin Peat
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

      Yes you can moan.

      The ballot paper has no 'none of the above' option. So what else am I supposed to do ? Give my endorsement to a party which I don't believe in ?

      I refuse to vote for a Tory party which has abandoned me. And I don't believe it has the mettle to get us out of this fix.

      Britain is finished. And this is where countless of us said we would end up but were ignored and pilloried for our troubles.

      • alan jutson
        Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:25 pm | Permalink

        Kevin

        Absolutely not, but surely one Party has some Policy you believe in. Failing that I would spoil my vote by writing my thoughts on the paper.

        I would certainly have the fact that I have voted recorded.

        If too many people do not turn up and vote, we may at some time in the future have a Government which says "no point in having a vote and holding an election, as the majority do not bother".

  2. JimF
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Part of the problem is that the people who were the net beneficiaries of all this borrowing (the poor, feckless and needy) are neither in a position to repay it nor want to, and those who didn't really benefit (private sector middle England) feel they shouldn't have to repay it. The only exceptions to this are the bankers and high earning public sector execs, whom both benefitted and could afford to repay their part of it.

    So we have the first category who will by and large vote Lab/Lib Dem and the second and third groups, who are being told by your Party leadership that "we're all in this together" and 50% income tax and higher NI will only be removed when it's prudent to do so.

    So from the low tax Party we have no promises of lower taxes. From the Party which promised us a Lisbon Treaty referendum we have no referendum.
    From the Party which first promises and needs to make swingeing cuts we also have promises to ring fence NHS spending and get quangos going to stop children being sexualised.

    And from the leadership we have "Confusion, what confusion??" Tell them John, the clear and obvious reasons why their poll lead is slipping.

  3. Javelin
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    John totally agree. Language can be used to narrow the focus away from reality. For the past five years I've always thought Gordons spending pledges should be stated in terms of the tax of a City, town or street (in a marginal). When you hear about a million being wasted, that's 100 families taxes for the year. Same with debt.

    I also think there needs to be evidence that lower taxes help growth and taxes. The Government should choose a very specific area of business (eg companies that deliver genetic drugs) and simply half their tax, ni, vat etc and reduce the red tape. Without the facts it's difficult to argue the case. I think the Government must use tax more carefully as a reward for business as well as good behaviour that reduces costs (for example healthy eating)

    Over the past few weeks we've watched Japans ageing population saving less and less. The famous Jap savers now save less than the famous Yank spenders. This I think points the way to lower global consumer demand and investment. I can see the BRIC countries taking over, but no time soon. The bigger issue seems to be very important, that in the UK the baby boomers will stop the saving and the younger generation will have too much debt to save. This needs to be writ large.

  4. Ian Jones
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    The only reason Q4 GDP growth was 0.3% higher was because of an increase in Govt spending of 2%. Thats 2% over the prior quarter, going on new public sector jobs all with big holidays and pensions.

    Its rapidly reaching the point where the private sector shrinks so the public sector rises just to stand still. It will collapse.

  5. Simon D
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Spot on, but difficult to deliver politically. This week a new category of the public sector '£100,000 a year club' has been revealed – university teaching. At LSE 85 earn more than £100,000 with 135 at Oxford and 122 at Cambridge. New Labour has been very skilled in the way it has inflated both the numbers in the public sector and the salaries of its employees. Turkeys don't vote for Christmas.

    In a hung Parliament the Labour Government will be too engaged in negotiating the terms of a PR deal with the Libdems to bother greatly about the debt – probably Vince Cable will be the new Chancellor.

    If the Conservatives win and attempt early cuts they will be assailed by a media firestorm and rioting in the streets. It will be like the days of the poll tax.

  6. English Pensioner
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    Too few people realize the truth of what you are saying. How often do you see someone on television talking about their pet project and ending up by saying "The Government must spend more on this"? Actually what they mean is "I think this is a good idea and I believe that everyone else should be forced to contribute towards it"

  7. Slightly Green Conse
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Most people agree that public spending needs to be cut – although they don't agree about how much. But when anything specific is mentioned, be it large, like say the NHS, or a small local project, there are always howls of protest and reasons why it should be a "special case", "ring fenced" etc.
    The Conservatives should stop equivocating about public spending, say unapologetically that it will be cut across all sectors, and say why that should be so. Stop wavering and backtracking every time every time somebody objects and spell out why it's good for the country in the long run. Britain has become addicted to public spending and can't seem to stop itself.
    If necessary resurrect Mrs.T's old saying – "There is no Alternative".

    • Alan Wheatley
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

      I agree, "…stop equivocating … and spell it out". I am coming round to the view that Party (as opposed to some individuals) is unable to argue its case effectively because it does not understand the arguments upon which it is based. That is, of course, assume policy is soundly based.

  8. Brigham
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:17 am | Permalink

    Everything you say is irrefutable, and yet the Tories are steadily losing their lead, and "Brown the Incompetent" is in the ascendancy. It is too late to change the leader, which I feel is, where the problem lies. You now have, I think, two choices. One is the continue in the same vein and lose the election. This will be the end of Britain, and we will be completely absorbed into the crooked EU as a region, and too late will the stupid labour voters realise they have committed political suicide for the country. The other is to really go for it! Offer anything to the vast majority of layabouts and immigrants that vote labour. Get into office, and then do the right things for the country, ignoring the manifesto. After all the Labour party have done this for years.

    • Simon D
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:56 am | Permalink

      I agree it will be the end of Britain. In a hung Parliament, Brown will cling to office and give in to the demands of the Liberal Democrats for PR. This will stop the Conservatives from attaining office ever again.

      The LibDem/Labour Alliance will then funk the issue of making the necessary cuts and eventually the IMF will have to step in. The Alliance will also swoon into the arms of the EU and Mr. Mandelson will achieve his ambition of entering the Euro.

      On the day a hung parliament is declared I advise those who can to put all their liquid assets in gold and make preparations to emigrate. It will be a grim future.

      • Chris H
        Posted February 27, 2010 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

        Gold I agree with and have already done. Emigration, regrettably, is not an option for many of us older folk, who will be forced to stay put and suffer whatever may come.

  9. sinosimon
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    yes John, but of course it is not just the borrowing. The fairy dust money of QE is also helping to inflate another asset bubble, whilst surely trashing other asset values and destroying savings when the chickens come home to roost in higher inflation. we have let this shower get away with this obfuscation through technical sounding name. I'm not sure most people are even aware of what QE is…..perhaps we should start referring to Gordon's imaginary money every time it comes up to try and drive the point home?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      Well, it's not "imaginary money"; it's as real as any other money issued by the Bank of England as authorised through Acts of Parliament (I believe).

      However I'm puzzled by the way some commentators have leapt on the petty deceit practised over very minor revisions to the most recent GDP figures, while turning a blind eye to the massive effects of QE in sustaining GDP at anything like its present levels.

      One such article is here:
      http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/finance/edmundconway

      and my comment was:

      "I realise that this minor tinkering is potentially grist for the propaganda mills, but what about the contribution of the £198 billion of new money created by the Bank of England and borrowed by the Treasury via the gilts market?

      £315.712 billion worth of output in a quarter rather than £315.845 billion is a negligible difference.

      Knocking off up to £50 billion a quarter because the government couldn't borrow enough and had to cut public spending would have had a huge impact.

      In fact looking at the chart one could easily imagine that steep decline carrying on down to say £270 billion by Q4 2009, rather than breaking during Q1 2009 when "quantitative easing" started.

      Worth a mention?"

      I could only say knocking off "up to" £50 billion a quarter in my comment, because even without the Bank using newly created money to prop up (rig) the gilts market it would still have been possible for the Treasury to borrow a certain amount before international investors refused to buy any more new gilts, and so the necessary cuts in public spending would have been between zero and £50 billion a quarter.

      If in fact the government had been forced to reduce its spending into the economy by £50 billion a quarter, eg by drastically cutting the number of public sector employeees, then that would have immediately fed through to a comparable, huge, reduction in the calculated GDP statistic:
      http://www.statistics.gov.uk/hub/economy/national

      which would only have been restored after those displaced had found alternative employment, and therefore incomes, in the private sector.

  10. dimwit
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    Your headline is ambiguous, and true in both senses. One suspects, though that to a Labour supporter it is patently obvious that the State has, or should have, ALL the money, and those individuals who happen to own some of their own are really thieving scoundrels who have stolen it.

    Thus they may argue, with all the passion of personal conviction, that reducing taxes means giving the people's money away to the immoral and undeserving – a proposal of damnable wickedness which only serves to underline the depravity of those selfish monsters who vote Conservative.

  11. Peter Mc
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    This is what I have been waiting to hear the Conservatives say, loud, simply and clearly. That they understand that that statae 'investment' is all done using our money.

    The Prime Minister appears to have a magic tree money falls off without consequence and Mr Cameron never, ever calls him on this at PMQ's on our behalf in language to make the tax-payer smile about our prospects.

    It's one of the reasons many of us think the independently wealthy Cameron/Osborne doika* don't 'get it' on our behalf.

    * A troika of two.

  12. Stronghold Barricade
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    The sentiments and words first articulated by Liam Fox on Question Time on Thursday.

    I agree entirely, and hopefully you can form a coherent message

    Maybe you also need to start spelling out just where the "burden" of all the iniquitous tax falls and educate people to understand what tax rates actually mean

    • Citizen Responsible
      Posted February 28, 2010 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

      On the same programme, Peter Hain said Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling “saved the banks”. A lady in the audience got a round of applause when she pointed out that it was not them but the taxpayers who saved the banks. I can barely manage to listen to Peter Hain and his spin. Andrew Marr gave him a very easy ride this morning on his show while giving George Osbourne a grilling with constant interruptions.

  13. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    You are speaking to the converted on this blog but let us hope that your colleagues follow your advice about the language they use when talking about the economy. Another point to keep banging the drum about is the current and rising cost of interest on the existing debt. Alistair Darling didn't seem too sure but suggested it was about £40billion per annum when interviewed by Jeff Randall! Some focus on that, the fact that it will continue to rise as the government borrows more at our cost and will rise even more if interest rates on government bonds increase, should make people think of the painful consequences of this spending binge. Having done this (pity it wasn't done sooner) you need of course to have a credible plan to deal with it and be able to articulate it in clear and simple terms to the electorate. If Brown decides to call the election on 25 March you may have missed the boat!

  14. JohnRS
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I suspect the coming week is the last chance to put conservative policies in front of the electorate. Currently the Conservative PArty manifesto would appear not to be very conservative at all.

    All your comments on the state of our finances and what to do about it are sound and would be a good way to proceed….but is the leadership listening? So far the signs are not good. It's not just the economy either, the same lack of conservative policy is evident right across all major areas.

    We'll see what comes out over the next few days but time is rapidly running out to regain the initiative and win the election.

    Reply: This site is not an official Conservative site and I have never been asked to place anything on it or take aything off it by the Conservative party or the Leadership. As far I as I am aware Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne would agree with the argument I have put forward this morning. They may phrase it differently, but they strongly believe the debt is too big, growing too quickly and needs to be changed.

  15. A.Sedgwick
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Absolutely you are knocking at the proverbial open door for the taxpayer fed up with working hard to pay for the scroungers, home grown and imported.
    It's make your mind up time for Cameron for many of us. Either he pulls a few genuinely and clear Conservative policies out of the manifesto hat or in my increasing view and vote he will blow the election.

  16. roger
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    John spot on. Another excellent blog.
    Can you or someone else out there educate me?
    What are the current and future numbers for both our debt and deficit.
    Which of these is the government looking to halve in four years and us more quickly?
    What happens to the other factor?
    Whatever the answer is it needs to be clearly repeated again and again as us numskulls out here are confused.

    The published stock of taxpayer debt is £850 billion (in practise we owe much more)
    This is growing at £175 billion a year! It is the £175 billion a year they wish to halve in four years – in other words they just want to halve the growth in the debt.

  17. Peter Turner
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Every day Labour tells us that borrowing is good, that it is preventing a double dip recession, that it is ensuring that the old, the young and the infirm are not made to suffer, that it will allow the economy to recover and that to start reducing this debt burden too soon will cause untold hardship. Absolute rubbish!

    Every day the Conservatives need to bring home to the British public the folly of this policy. Evey day the Conservatives need attack this fiscal madness and drive home the serious consequencies of debt and what being a bankrupt country realloy means. Every day the Conservatives need to hold up these policies to ridicule otherwise there is a possibility that Nulabour may, once again, fool enough of the people to ensure that they continue.

    Now that is frightening.

  18. gac
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    The Conservatives must nail the lie that debt = deficit being spouted by Brown and Labour others. He was at it again at PMQ's, talking about reducing the debt when he mean't deficit, but without response from Mr Cameron. He really does need to learn to think more quickly on his feet!

    Under Blair (Campbell) Labour began the tactic that if you said something loud enough and often enough then people would start to believe it – even tho it be a 'tissue of lies'. The Conservatives have never understood how to combat this.

    Today this is reflected in the narrowing of the gap in the polls.

    If the Shadow Cabinet and their strategy advisors blow this one them they should all be shot!

  19. Andrew Johnson
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    Another incisive commentary, but this isn't offical Conservative Party policy is it? I think, the whole of the Western world has been infected by what I call the "Emperoror's suit of clothes syndrome. "
    Because we are told something is so, or we imagine it is so, we believe it is so. We are not interested in the truth. e.g. "it is financially prudent to lend a borrower 125% of the value of their house". Of course it is….Not!
    This situation will not change overnight – it will only change as individuals are adversely affected, and even then like addicts they will still long for a politican to come Peter Pan like and sprinkle some fairy money on them so they can fly away again to "Never Never Land" and lots more exciting adventures.

    Yes, changing the language, de-mystifying the technically complex situations, is a really important part of the antidote. But…… what is really required are politicians who can give us a hopeful vision of what our country could be and then truthfully explain to us how it can be achieved and at what cost.
    Where are they? (Present company and a handful scattered through the three parties excepted)

    Reply: As far as I know the Conservative leadership agree with me on the dangers of the debt

    • Duyfken
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

      And I would also ask why Mr Redwood is not in an important post within David Cameron's shadow cabinet team.

  20. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Exactly right – and hammering this into the heads of the electorate until it sticks is the way to win the election.

    Given that their population has declined, and that manufacturing is very competitive, Japan hasn't done as badly as many people think. Its monetary policy is sound. Its big weakness is the total state debt – over 200% of GDP – which even the Japanese find difficult to manage. This is the result of repeated fiscal stimuli.

  21. Paul Hughes
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    It's depressing John ,but I think a lot of people don't realise these basic facts .

    And still Labour hose our money away , listening to the radio today for an hour , I must have listened to 10 goverment ads , all no doubt to tell floating voters that this is a cuddly caring goverment and all for blatant party advantage and paid for by the taxpayer; but I hear no complaints from the opposition and rarely even see Conservative front benchers on TV .

  22. Lola
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Sorry Mr R, that's not how Lefties see it at all, so neither does the BBC. 'Our wealth is the states wealth'. Cobblers, of course, but that's what they believe.

    You and I know different. We know that economies consist of people and things. That Governments and Companies are just convenient administrative fictions by which we better organise our lives.

  23. Alan Wheatley
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    As to getting the message across, my suggestion is for the Conservative Party to prepare a short video, say ten minutes, in which is explained basic finance, the current situation, the nature of the problem, Labour's part in the cause and the consequences of their solution and the reason why a Conservative government would lead to a different outcome. The content should be based round a diagrammatical presentation, with plain English and not too much of it, at a pace that can be followed.

    The video should be an easy download from the web site and a simple click to play on uTube. Even the media chappies might get the message!

  24. Sue Doughty
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    You are correct, it is our money. Every penny the government spends is our money, the government having none of its own. It is our government and when they run out of our money and borrow some to tide them over it is our debt. There is no other money than our money.

    So it came about that one weekend the fincancial markets added up how much was loaned, the total world debt, and put that number against the valuations of everything there is in the world to borrow against and found that we had borrowed more wealth than there is in the whole world. Ooops, is all they could say, as they let leash the forces of Hell out of Downing St. (Not corgis.)

    The logical reaction of a socialist government was to increase the advertising budget. They tell us all to eat less because they were told to use health service money to target the many not the few, regardless of statistics showing the obese amongst us number fewer than the thin. They tell us through government information channels that murder and parental separation are normal. Next they will be withholding food from dissidents.

    I despair. There is no other money than our money, the government having none of its own.

  25. Giles
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    You are all wrong. The public sector deficit is the counterpart of the private sector rushing into surplus. Read that crazy communist Martin Wolf some time.

    If the government had aped the private sector's behaviour a 6% GDP fall would have been 12%. Really, really bright. What is the alternative: that the sudden savings would have made interest rates fall more and encouraged more spending?

    Um – how? The private sector is retrenching. Rates are at 0.5.

    I cannot believe someone as bright and experienced as JR could have written this.

    Reply: Not so – we need a smaller private sector surplus. The present one means money is too tight for business expansion, brought on by too large a public sector deficit.

  26. Norman
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

    Glad to see some proper conservative headlines over the weekend from the Shadow Chancellor – reducing corporation tax is a must if we want to tackle our debt mountain. Some good news and it does seem as though the Conservative Party is now on the right track. One thing is for certain and that is that Labour won't get us out of the mess we're in. They are the architects of this disaster.

    I do think that for most people it hasn't fully sunk in that we have a public sector that is completely unsustainable. We are borrowing at an alarming rate to maintain what we currently have. If we want anything like the same levels of service in, for example, the NHS (arguable that more money = better service but seems to be the mindset in most) and start to pay back our debt rather than keep adding to it then our private sector must grow at a rapid rate.

    The only way to do that is through tax cuts – forget about the faulty reasoning that if we stop spending money on public services we will make things worse, if government really does want to inject money into the private sector do it directly via tax cuts. If you can identify £50bn worth of savings make them and give £30bn of it to the private sector via tax cuts to encourage growth rather than giving it to the public sector which will result in no growth.

  27. Fabian_Solutions
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    I warn you now.

    If Cameron and Osborne cut even one job, or freeze even one pay cheque, there will be strikes.

    There will be protests and riots – the Poll Tax riots will seem a picnic in comparison.

    The public sector unions and our friends will bring this country to a standstill if necessary. Just like we brought down the Heath government, we will bring down Cameron’s Tories.

    And if the Old Etonian Tories try to impose an “austerity” regime on the people, while sipping champagne and eating caviar in their moated mansions, it will create the worst class war, ill-feeling and animosity this country has ever seen. There will be chaos.

    The Greek government will hopefully learn its lesson soon. Let’s hope the Tories do. No public sector redundancies!

    You have been warned.

    • alan jutson
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

      Fabian Solutions

      Yes a very helpful attitude to the National cause.

      If you work in the NHS you may already know that the Government (The Labour Government) has already given the order to cut future expenditure/budgets by a significant amount.

      If in any doubt ask your Primary Health Care Trust CEO.

      My Daughter has just been given notice of redundancy (along with many others) from the end of March, on her working Contract with a Government Department who were responsible for improving learning skills for those who needed more training.

      As I understand it, many other public services are also being asked to make plans for cuts in future budgets.

      So the LABOUR preparation for CUTS have already started, they are just being HIDDEN until AFTER the ELECTION.

      So it looks like whoever wins you will be taking action, assuming of course that you can get time off of work.

      You simply cannot spend more than you earn (tax receipts) for long, before the chickens come home to roost. The longer you wait the larger the debt.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

      There may be strikes. There may be a lot of brave lefties hitting policewomen with their little handies like for Mrs Thatcher's polltax riots and then lying down crying in the street so they can claim compensation and police brutality.
      But if Gordon gets back in not only will the schools 'n' 'ospitals 'n trains not work (remember?), we will be paying most of our taxation money in interest – if, indeed, we can get any credit.
      Oh – and kiss goodbye to any form of industry. they will have gone ages ago to somewhere where the electricity is reliable.
      I have just been reading about Mugabe.
      He thought that because he was Black and because he needed to help the people who had supported him, that somehow a miracle would pull him through.
      Well, it didn't.
      And, just because we once had Karl Marx as our patron saint, it won't work for us either.

    • Nick
      Posted February 28, 2010 at 10:51 am | Permalink

      Warned? We pay you! You work for us! You are our servants! You don't even get a choice if you want to work or not if *we* choose to sack you. It is our money that you spend.

      So strike. Go on. See how long you can go without pay before you give out. We do NOT need you. You fulfil no service we want, no function we need. The last time my local council went on strike getting into work was easier. Those were the only repercussions.

      The rest it's easy enough to legislate against their ability to strike – your beloved Labour government's own emergency powers act, for example!

      There is, as Mr Redwood rightly says – no more money – no more of *our* money.

    • StevenL
      Posted February 28, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      'Cuts' = early retirement/flexible working. They've started already, and many people are looking forward to them.

      You represent a tiny minority of public sector workers who should all be cut.

    • peter soakell
      Posted March 1, 2010 at 12:11 am | Permalink

      Seems to me that you are the only one who is obsessed with class- why do you not try some caviar?as to the future, we all know you are on the way out- 'nuff said . ( bet you can't guess my class)

  28. Steve Tierney
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Everybody who reads this blog surely knows all this and agrees with you. Many of us having being saying as much on our own blogs for a long time.

    But who listens? The public think we're into a recovery. They think everything is well. There is a collective blindness which leads, ultimately, to a very collective wake up call. And its coming fast.

  29. Chuck Unsworth
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 10:36 pm | Permalink

    I'm sure others will have said the same, but the word 'investment' truly grates. If the State is 'investing' my money when do I get to see a return and at what rate? Do I get voting rights? When's the AGM – and where?

    So far, I can see nothing in the way of a dividend, and much in the way of straight devaluation.

  30. Johnny Williams
    Posted February 27, 2010 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    Listen to the stark bullies and threats from those above. They will strike and damage us all if we DARE to say that we will not pay any more in taxes or in huge Public Sector wage and pension payments.

    Remember, the LOT of you that you are Public Servants and at the end of the day, we can decide in any democracy to pay you more or make you redundant.

    In the not too distant future, real democracy and transparency in decision making will finally put Public Sector power brokers back into their boxes. Who do these people think they are? I have paid taxes all my life, run and built a company and never taken a penny from the State. You are not going to take my pension from me too, I can assure you all- the noble Public Sector – the Enemy of any true democracy. You are fooling no one as your rhetoric becomes more threatening.. Beware the Silent Majority..

  31. David Price
    Posted February 28, 2010 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    You're right that new language is needed, we desparately need a way for people to understand and reality of the situation. If you think it through, even without an economists perspective, the situation is completely unsustainable even before looking at the deficit.

    In November 2009 the TPA estimated that taxes and NI from 22m private sector employees were funding 7m public sector employees, 6m on benefits and 12.5m on state pension. So each person on a private sector salary, or pension, is funding at least 1.2 other adults in addition to their own family.

    This is obviously unsustainable and Labour were reckless in raising the cost on the taxpayer further even before the world financial crisis struck.

    The really frightening bit comes when you look at other expenditure – where is the additional money going too come from to pay for the EU, the national debt, the annual deficit, the guilt money to developing countries etc? Javelin suggests 100 taxpayers contribute £1m, this would mean 17.5m extra private sector incomes would be needed just to service the deficit, let alone everything else.

    A responsible government has only one choice – cut expenditure and encourage private sector earnings, to kill the debt and deficit as a top priority and bring the public sector cost burden down to sustainable levels. Labour do not act responsibly however and not only are they saddling us and our children with enormous levels of debt they are also have tried to devalue the debt and deficit along with everyone's income and pensions.

    Some new laguage is definitely needed, except I can't think of any which does not include words like "criminal" and "insane".

  32. Bazman
    Posted February 28, 2010 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    Could also be a good idea to pay of your debts when you get a job and to use some borrowed money to find one. The fact that the state has no money will affect the poor and unemployed the most not rich politicians, tax exiles, bleating rich pensioners and civil servants pretending they work for private companies. In a nutshell. Austerity for who? Not the people who write on this site for sure. Tories in council houses. You've got to laugh.

  33. Chris N
    Posted March 16, 2010 at 1:22 am | Permalink

    "Call me Dave" sounds more like a lefty to me boasting, about what he's going to spend on us (with our taxes). We have a civil service that can now bully us, with the full force the law. when a blind 96 year old man gets a 1000 pound fine for putting a tin in the wrong recycling box, and a man in Scotland gets a fined for littering, when he drops a ten pound note, by accident, then we are in trouble.

    This government is corrupt, incompetent, and arrogant.

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    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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