Government moves to increase spending again

It’s that time of year when the government asks Parliament’s approval for increased spending within the 2012-13 year.
On cue I find on my desk three supplementary estimates for increased spending. The government plans to spend an extra £531 million in Scotland this year, boosting that department’s Expenditure Limit by nearly 2%. It plans to spend an extra £327 m in Northern Ireland, boosting the Limit by 3%. It plans another £107m in Wales, a rise of 0.7%.
It would be good to hear a bit from other MPs and the media about these increases and the reasons for them, at a time when we are told about “cuts”.

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  1. Liz
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Paid for by English tax payers!

    • Jerry
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

      @Liz: Err no, paid for by the UK tax payer…

      • Roger Farmer
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

        Proportionally it will be the English taxpayer. There are not enough Scots,Welsh, or northern Irish to produce a significant amount.

      • P O Taxpayer
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        The Scots receive more money from the Exchequer than they pay in annual taxes! Since there are some 50+ million English taxpayers they are the people who subsidise the devolved governments and the largesse that they spread around to their constituents. It is going to be a shock for the Scots if they are actually stupid enough to vote to leave the United Kinghdom.

        • Jerry
          Posted February 25, 2013 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

          It is still UK tax revenue, or is Mr Osborne the Chancellor of the Exchequer only for England? Should he refuse to accept any more oil tax revenue from the Scottish oil fields, or oil that passes through the port of Milford Haven etc…

        • uanime5
          Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

          It won’t be a shock if they get most of the North Sea oil.

    • The PrangWizard
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      By now you all know what I’m going to say. We need a parliament for England. There’s no ducking the issue. England will continue to get the s****y end of the stick until we do. The leadership of the Tory party has been openly hostile.

      There’s no other way, anything less will be a stitch-up by the enemies of England. The British parliament and the parliamentarians there behave like hypocrites, they support a parliament in Scotland and a distinct identity for that nation, and the other nations; they grant self-determination for them but refuse and obstruct the very same for England and the English. I’m still waiting for an existing MP to declare clearly for an English parliament.

      Find a Party which campaigns for an English parliament as do the English Democrats and vote for them if you get the chance, you can do it now if you happen to be in Eastleigh. A tiny party but that’s its principle plank. Give them your support. Not Ukip.

  2. niav
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    Whoever is thinking about increasing state spending at this stage must be truly insane. The old “My Masters, are you mad?” springs to mind.

    • Bob
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

      Want to help the poor? Scrap the CAP
      Dan Hannan

  3. Richard1
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    It certainly would be. The language of ‘cuts’ used by the BBC, the Labour party and leftist economists is absurd in view of the way public spending is in fact rocketing.

    Do I read correctly that the Government have now agreed that the UK will enter a currency union with an independent Scotland, if Scotland accept budgetary constraints? If this is true MPs must object and insist that such a decision can be made only after referendum approval by the whole of the UK. If an independent Scotland wished to continue to use the £ sterling as legal tender and for government accounting that’s up to them, much as Bulgaria uses the Euro and Panama the US$. But if they want to be in a currency union with the UK, with all that entails for shared risk, the people of the whole of the UK should approve it in a referendum, just as we would have to if the Govt proposed a currency union with the Eurozone.

    • Vanessa
      Posted February 27, 2013 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

      It rather depends on whether Scotland want to be an EU member. If they do, then they will HAVE to have the euro, no ifs or buts. Sterling will be withdrawn as will everything else we support in that country. It will be the EU’s ability to run its “competencies” as we see in the rest of the EU. Its ability is dismal.

  4. Disaffected
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    COntinuing Brown Economics has not worked, Now we are in the realms of Osborne’s cross your fingers and hops strategy. A little more time in the Treasury rather than playing Westminster games at No.10 or visiting a US president to ride on his big plane might have helped.

    Is Cameron going to pretend to look serious when he tells us we are still in it together and the plan is on track? 299 tax rises and no substantial cuts in welfare while such dependents have tailored houses built for them, can afford to buy gee gees, flight lessons and exotic birds. Paid for by the squeezed middle who are openly humiliated for working 9-5pm to pay for (JS ed) Allowance and become worried how they make ends meet while their taxes increase to be wasted by a stupid coalition.

    So many suggestions have been given and today I read the flannel, sophistry or lies on a Tory flyer of the achievements in energy and the like. Has Cameron lost leave of all his senses to pen his name to such crap? Does he hold the public in such low regard he thinks we will believe him? Perhaps he needs to accept his advice, move over and let someone else run the country- he is simply not up to the job nor his side-kick Osborne.

    • Winston Smith
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      As an ex-Tory activist, I know JR’s Party is in terminal decline. They have lost almost 2/3rds of members since Cameron became leader. The activist base has dramatically declined. Constituency association meetings and gatherings are fraught affaits with the remaining members very unhappy. Many of them will vote UKIP in the 2014 EU elections. There really is no point in voting Conservative, when you will get LibLabCon One Government. Once this realisation spreads, more people will vote UKIP. They are, at present, the only alternative to the socialist, corporatist political elite.

      • Jerry
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

        @Winston Smith: That would be why UKIP have 100 plus MPs at Westminster rather than what they actually achieved, zero MPs elected!

        Also party membership is but a small part of the whole story, hence why independent candidates get elected, and many people who vote in EU elections use them like they do by-elections, as a means of registering a protest.

        • livelogic
          Posted February 25, 2013 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

          The reason for that is the residual value of the Tory Brand (rapidly being debased by Cameron) and inertia among the, always have always will voters. That and a voting system that rewards regional parties and larger parties unfairly.

          • Jerry
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

            Lifelogic, but we are talking 19 years of UKIP, during some very ruff and torrid times for the Tories, if your theory was correct then the UKIP would be the party in Westminster now and it would be the Tories only in Brussels. In 19 years UKIP haven’t even managed to get one MP elected, have they ever come second yet?

            People might agree with the EU stance of the UKIP but they do not seem to agree with much else, least of all their leadership, apparently (not sure if this is national or local to Eastleigh) the latests opinion polls place UKIP in front of the LibDems, that is third and fourth…

      • Richard1
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

        In the 2014 Euro election I agree UKIP will do well. But voting UKIP in the General Election will make a Labour Government or a Lib-Lab pact more likely. Then there will be no EU referendum. Only if there is a majority Convservative Govt in 2015 is there any possibility of a referendum on EU membership.

        • Bob
          Posted February 25, 2013 at 8:29 pm | Permalink


          Take a look a the Tories track record on matters EU, starting with Ted Heath, through Maastricht up to and including the three line whip imposed to prevent a referendum a couple of years ago.

          Do you honestly believe the Tories will take part in any course of action that might result in an independent UK?

          Cameron (aka Ted Heath MkII) has clearly stated that he wants us to stay in, everything else is just fluff.

          The only promise he kept was….err! I’ll get back to you if I can think of one.

          • Jerry
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

            @Bob: Take a look at UKIP’s record, in 19 years not one MP elected, but in that time many a UKIP MEP has been elected and they have all been very happy to take their seats, pay and expenses, if they had any party policy back-bone they would all have taken the same stance towards the EU parliament as Sinn Féin does to Westminster…

          • Richard1
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 9:44 pm | Permalink

            Bob, I agree there is every chance of a government reneging on the referendum promise – especially if it was a coalition in which case the LibDems would block it. If there is a Conservative Govt though I think there is a good chance now there will be a referendum. Only if there is a realistic possibility of a referendum is there any possibility of a renegotiation of powers from the EU. If Milliband-Balls-Cable are in power there is no chance. Give it one more heave with the Tories!

          • Bob
            Posted February 27, 2013 at 9:08 am | Permalink

            “is there any possibility of a renegotiation of powers from the EU.”?

            There is no possibility of renegotiation.
            Any concession made to avoid a referendum will be temporary and undone at the earliest opportunity.

            Ever closer union is their objective, always has been, and we have been lied to from the outset.

            The referendum offer was just a panic reaction because the Tories are feeling the pressure from ukip, and without that pressure the promise would never have been made (btw – I use the word “promise” in the “David Cameron” sense of the word).

            The Tories have little or no hope of gaining a majority in 2015 barring some kind of economic miracle, and they know Labour will carry the baton for the pro EU parties thereafter.

            The choice is independence or subjugation, there is no inbetween.

        • Mark B
          Posted February 25, 2013 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

          There will NEVER be a referendum – FULL STOP !!!!

          Why is it that Scotland and the Falklands can hold referendums’ in this parliament and yet the whole of the UK cannot? If this parliament will not consent, there is no guarantee that any future parliament will.

          Its all a question of trust. You still trust them. I do not.

          • Jerry
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

            @Mark B: If the Scots are going to have a vote on independence and if they did vote for an independent Scotland then I would prefer they do it before any In/Out referendum on EU membership because the Scottish vote might otherwise lead to an unrepresentative result in relation to the other three nations of the Union especially if the result is close…

          • Mark B
            Posted February 27, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

            I would like to point out that my post was about a principle of granting referendums to those where there has been no clear demand and denying a referendum to those where there is.

            You in your answer have purposefully put forward a ‘straw-man of an argument’ to distort the thrust of my post.

            Let me make it clear to you ! There will NEVER be a referendum. Cameron is only offering this to get people to vote for him. We could have had a referendum earlier in this parliament but Cameron used a three-line whip to put it down. He wants to be in the EU. If you knew what the EU really is then you too would want out. But being a CONSERVATIVE PARTY ACTIVIST as I think you are, you are not going to agree with me, are you ?

          • Jerry
            Posted February 28, 2013 at 10:52 am | Permalink

            @Mark B: “I would like to point out that my post was about a principle of granting referendums to those where there has been no clear demand and denying a referendum to those where there is.

            Err, what alternate universe are you living in?! There is a majority SNP government in Scotland and you say that there has been “no clear demand” for a independence referendum, and were is the demand in UK for a EU referendum, even if the entire Tory party were europhobes there is still not a majority.

            Let me make it clear to you “Mark B”, it is only your opinion that there will be no referendum, in fact what proof is there that UKIP would hold a referendum, if by any chance they are elected as a majority government they might then take the view that they have a mandate for unilateral withdrawal.

            As for straw-men, it is you who is clearly putting forward such arguments, even twisting the election results for the Scottish parliament to suit!

            If you knew what the EU really is then you too would want out. But being a CONSERVATIVE PARTY ACTIVIST as I think you are, you are not going to agree with me, are you ?

            Mark, you couldn’t be more wrong if you had wings, I hold no party or political allegiances (unlike you by the looks of it), I applaud what I consider correct and criticise what I consider wrong.

        • Nina Andreeva
          Posted February 25, 2013 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

          This is the thing that I cannot understand with Farrage, why is he keep dodging all these by-elections that have come by recently? If he believes that he has a huge groundswell of support and that he can break the mould of British politics, why is he not as brave as Shirley Williams and Roy Jenkins. They believed the same and had the bottle to stand in not so promising seats i.e. Crosby and Hillhead. Is it that he is just a bag of wind or he prefers the pay and conditions of the European Parliament to the Westminster one?

          • Winston Smith
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 10:05 am | Permalink

            Farage is looking at the bigger picture. Winning one seat means little – it has done nothing for the Greens nationally. Why should he parachute himself into every by-election, when there are perfectly good candidates within UKIP? He beleives in slow organic growth, similar to that achieved by the SNP. In my Home Counties constituency, UKIP are growing, they are holding events similar what I used to organise for the Conservative Party, who are losing members and struggling financially. They have candidates for all council seats. Its going to get a lot, lot worse for Cameron………

          • Jerry
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

            Nina, because he knows that he can’t be elected, it is just a show, you only need to look at the result from his last election campaign – Mr Farage came third behind a (local) independant!

          • stred
            Posted February 27, 2013 at 10:19 am | Permalink

            Have a look at the CH4 news interview of candidates at Eastleigh. The UKI candidate was articulate, attracive and confident. She may cause a surprise as voters for the main parties are well and truly PO and she put the case very clearly.

        • John Wood
          Posted February 25, 2013 at 10:38 pm | Permalink

          UKIP have to reach a threshold and keep there for some months before people will accept that they could elect UKIP members to parliament. Until then you will get the mantra “A UKIP vote is a wasted vote” or “Vote UKIP get BALLS”

          When that happens is that there will be a sudden shift in popularity in the opinion polls (probably 5 – 7.5%). The difficulty is getting to the tipping point – but the Tories and Lib Dems seem to be doing the best to help them

          • Jerry
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

            @John Wood: UKIP have been around for 19 years now, that is far longer than other parties took to get ‘accepted’. Also in that time, Labour regained the ability to win (successive) elections, a marked pro-EU party. In that time the Greens have been elected, a marked pro-EU party, makes one think…

      • Nina Andreeva
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

        Why should Cameron bother about his membership, Blair did not. Mass membership of political parties has been on the decline for years. As long as the donations keep coming in why bother? If the money is there you can pay to have the leaflets put out for example. Campaigns are fought in the mass media these days so you really do not need boots on the ground. I mean when did a candidate of any political party last canvass you on the doorstep?

        • Winston Smith
          Posted February 26, 2013 at 10:10 am | Permalink

          Labour has the public sector unions to fall back on. Cameron’s supply of money is drying up; Lord Ashcroft is withdrawing financially support.
          (wrongly hints that Mr Cameron seeks overseas donations, which are against the law-ed)

          • Nina Andreeva
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

            JR I am surprised you let that terrible slur on the reputation of the Prime Minister through. (repeats a slur that has now been edited out-ed)
            I have been moderated for much less!

          • Jerry
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

            @Winston Smith: Please do remind me who the UKIP treasurer is? Oh, hang on, I remember now. Sorry Winston but your argument about the lack of UKIP funding doesn’t wash one bit these days!

            Why do party activists think that they can ‘pull the wool’ when engaging people via the internet, 30 seconds in a new browser tab is all it took to enter the no-spin zone for that URL…

      • uanime5
        Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

        Given that the RSPB has a larger membership than the 3 main political parties those who belong to a political party are becoming an increasingly small part of those who vote.

    • P O Taxpayer
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

      Like Milliband and Balls?

  5. bigneil
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    is governments version of being in debt completely different to anyone elses?? – -If the bank tells me I have to get out of debt then – -it is basic spending only till ok – -government just has a harebrained HS2 billion pound waste – -imports hundreds of thousands of freeloaders – and any other wasteful scheme they can dream up -and totally leaves me – and most of this once beautiful nation – -speechless – – I fully expect to see john cleese installed as the minister of silly walks – -it would make more sense – -what planet are these people on????? I really wonder if one party – knowing they will lose the next election – DELIBERATELY screws things up – -so the incoming party will have to make things worse – to try and get it better.

    • Gary
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

      If they stop bailing out debtors by spending savers’ money, then interest rates will rise and with total debt at 900%(according to Soros two days ago, 1000% according to Morgan Stanley) of GDP will be culled and the country will collapse. If they carry on down this path the country will collapse in a currency crisis.

      As Mises said :”There is no means of avoiding a final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as a result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved.”

      We missed the opportunity to merely collapse, now we are now firmly on the road to the total catastrophe of the currency system.

      • A different Simon
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

        Gary ,

        Yes we are still in the denial stage that years of refusal to confront problems and trying to vote ourselves rich has unavoidable consequences which will eventually have to be faced .

        My opinion is that the Govt has to be realistic about what it can do and not aim too high . This means ensuring everyone has somewhere cheap to live and enough to eat to survive .

        The supply side of housing needs to be addressed and will pay for itself in reduced housing benefit costs . BTL’ers control too much of the housing market and covenants need to be added to new builds to stop this and also reserve ownership for British Citizens .

        Once this is done just let the whole stack of cards come crashing down , creditors take haircuts and start again .

        Iceland seem to have fared better by letting nature take it’s course .

    • lifelogic
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      “is governments version of being in debt completely different to anyone elses?”

      Yes, they borrow and waste it on buying votes, jobs for friend, pointless activity and daft green drivel and HS trains and you, the tax payer, have to pay it all back.

      Quite different from anyone else borrowing.

      • Edward
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

        As usual Lifelogic you have summed it up well.
        It is like living in an economic dreamworld at the moment.
        The TV tells me we are living in an age of austerity with huge cuts in Government and Local Authority spending yet when we look at the figures spending is going up.
        Only the rate of increase has slowed.
        Near me I see cuts to front line services but huge salaries for ever more top managers and top executives.
        I think this is done quite deliberately as a method of proving to us peasants how tight their budgets are.
        One friend of mine was given nearly 2 years salary to take early retirement from a local authority and has got most of that tax free plus a made up pension so the organisation can proclaim to the outside world that they are cutting staff and saving money!

  6. Andyvan
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    Anyone that thought we had a Conservative chancellor must have seen the light now. George and Dave are hard line socialist tax, borrow and spend idiots. It’s clear that they are totally unable and unwilling to balance the budget or even move in the right direction. Also obvious that they argument for voting blue to avoid getting red is invalid. They are all the same, pigs at the trough, careless of what they#re doing to the country.

    • Bob
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

      ” They are all the same, pigs at the trough”

      Google the collectivist conspiracy

    • waramess
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      They take advice from the civil service Keynesians which is a bit like the UK secret service taking advice fom the S.S., in the last war

  7. behindthefrogs
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    Its quite simple. Parliament should say “No”.

    It is the answer that I have to give to my wife when she asks for more housekeeping and the children when they want more pocket money. In an economic situation like the present one where we have an increasing deficit no other answer should even be considered. It will also be surprising how much money will be found hiding in the coffers if this answer is given.

  8. livelogic
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    It is interesting the absurd language the BBC uses to describe this current over tax, over borrow and over waste strategy – usually cutting too much too quickly and risking a double dip.

    People who point out the quack green energy agenda is nonsense are referred to as deniers – well if something is not true I deny it what do you do.

    I also like the way housing benefit is routinely described as being a benefit for landlords. This as though the landlords were getting the benefit of the, rent free, maintained and insured accommodation – not a benefit to the tenant at all.

    You can spot a “BBC think” Libdum person within about 50 words issued. The question is why on earth are they leading the Tory party

    • Jerry
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      @Lifelogic: “You can spot a “BBC think” Libdum person within about 50 words issued. The question is why on earth are they leading the Tory party

      Because these are the sort of people the electorate want perhaps? After all it is not that the Tory party hasn’t had right-wing leaders in the past (who would call William Hague or Michael Howard a “Libdum”) but not only were they loosing general elections with such leaders but were being well and truly routed…

      • livelogic
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

        Thatcher won 3/4 even Majors win was because people thought he was her man. How wrong they were. He then buried the party for three terms.

        William Hague and Michael Howard had no chance, as Major’s ERM fiasco and 15% interest rates and repossessions (apology still awaited) was too fresh in the mind.

        Anyway Howard and recently even Hague are rather lefty.

        • Jerry
          Posted February 26, 2013 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

          @Lifelogic: “Anyway Howard and recently even Hague are rather lefty.

          Typical stock answer from either “Lifelogic” or “Bob”, when the real life examples proved their daydreams wrong, let’s just dismiss such people as being “Lefty”, but if that was the case LL, in the mists of a populist Labour government it would have made them MORE electable, not less!

          Thatcher had a 44 seat majority in 1979 so hardly a rout, and in ’83 and ’87 both were a routeing for Labour because they were in open civil war within the party, what was the Labour 1993 manifesto dubbed, oh yes, “The longest suicide note in history” -and it was…

          As for Major, what buried the Tories was not Major, otherwise how come he won in 1992 when most pundits had it down to a Labour victory right up until the night before polling day, no what buried the Tories in 1997 were the antics of few Tory MPs who either thought they had a right to govern the country, thought they were above the law or both. 🙁

          As for the ERM, talk about grasping at straws, that was almost a full FIVE years before the 1997 election and thus NINE years before the 2001 election that you claim was the cause of the defeat that year and THIRTEEN years before the defeat of 2005! What is more the economy was booming both before the 1997 and 2001 elections and in fare shape in 2005, the UK economy was in (perhaps far to much of) a happy-clappy mood before each of those elections with little or no prospect of rejoining the ERM/Euro.

          • Mark B
            Posted February 27, 2013 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

            @ Jerry

            The date (1993) you set for the “longest suicide note in history”, was in fact in 1983. We will put that down to a typo.

            Thatcher was also helped in that year by the Falklands effect the previous year.

            Labour, right up to Tony Blair, was totally unelectable for so many reasons, remember Clause 4?

            Thatcherism was bearing fruit economically, so she and her government were seen to be sound compared to Heath’s three day week and Labour’s winter of discontent. You forget that people have long memories and when the opportunity arises they will not shy away from hurting whatever political party hurt them.

            You forget that there was a recession in the early nineties, many people lost their jobs, homes and businesses as a result. Even if they have to wait 5 years, losing any of the above is motivation enough.
            Also, Labour has become ‘New Labour’, ie under new management. It told the voters that they had changed. Many believed them.

            You also forget to mention the Maastricht Treaty the Conservative party signed – without I hasten to add our consent/referendum. This did much to split the party and added to their eventual defeat in 1997. Oh, and lets not forget all the sleaze that you alluded too as well.

            As for Labour’s subsequent victories, they inherited a growing economy and chose not to screw things up. People were then able to be gulled into believing that Labour had truly changed. No more tax and spend. Truth was they were playing at clever accounting and misled people.

            But despite everything, you still haven’t won an election. As Lord Tebbit said, “You are in office, but not in power.”

            And it shows !

      • John Wood
        Posted February 25, 2013 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

        And that is the problem – the population will never vote for a political party that has policies that will reduce their standard of living – even if only temporary and for the later good.

        A nice example of this occurred in the hustings for the 2010 election. As soon as the Conservatives hinted that they would have to make cuts, their popularity dropped about 5 points (and the knock-on probably cost them the overall majority)

        • uanime5
          Posted February 26, 2013 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

          I’d say that people won’t vote for a party that will make cuts because all the harm will fall on the poor and middle class, while the wealthy are unaffected. I suspect that people won’t vote for parties that campaigns to raise taxes for a similar reason.

          • Bob
            Posted February 26, 2013 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

            “all the harm will fall on the poor”

            What if the cuts were for public sector workers earning more than £150,000 p.a. or with pension pots greater than a million quid?

        • Jerry
          Posted February 26, 2013 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

          @John Wood: True but let us not forget which party encouraged consumerism and the use of ‘plastic’ as a means of funding today what we couldn’t otherwise afford tomorrow…

    • Bazman
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

      Or quack right wing energy fantasy such as nuclear. Funny how you have religious beliefs on that and also a number of other fantasies. Where does this ‘think’ fit in? Interesting to see what rents would be in some areas without housing benefit ‘benefiting’ landlords income.

      • Edward
        Posted February 26, 2013 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        Strange then Baz, how France with its left leaning Governments have embraced nuclear energy and get most of their electric this way.
        No fantasy for the French it would seem.
        See you are making a comeback after your unpleasant post the other day.

        • Bazman
          Posted February 27, 2013 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

          I find most right wing posts from fantasists putting forward ideas that they would not be affected by and telling us they are ‘sensible’ deeply unpleasant. I mean lets face it. How many children have been attacked by foxes in the last ten years and how many by dogs and how much dog dirt is on the streets from dogs? (Then suggests tough action against dogs instead of foxes -ed)

      • Jerry
        Posted February 26, 2013 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

        Bazman, and wind turbines (that fall down or need to be ‘stopped’ when the wind blows…) are not quack fantasies, at least nuclear HAS proved its self to be both reliable and safe -in most countries that use them for the last 50 years…

        • Bazman
          Posted February 26, 2013 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

          Reliable and safe? How about cheap? Ask Japan. The most expensive and dangerous way of boiling a liter of water ever devised by man.

          • Jerry
            Posted February 27, 2013 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

            @Bazman: That was a freak act of nature [1], coupled to a design flaw in the back up diesel generators for the coolant pumps, neither of which are likely in UK (or European) nuclear reactors – and even less so after Japan’s experience.

            [1] something that seems to have also escaped the German Chancellor…

  9. Jerry
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    John, are there any clue as to what this extra spending if needed for, which MPs might not be at liberty to say (just yet), or is it a simple case of ‘over-spend’?

    Reply I do not hjve many details, but I think the main increases are to cover the extra costs of the Student loans scheme and capital items.

    • Deborah
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      That increase in student fees was a truly brilliant idea. lol.

    • wab
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

      “I think the main increases are to cover the extra costs of the Student loans scheme.”

      Yes, it is not enough to say that spending has gone up, we need to know why.

      If student loans are a major factor then has a single civil servant or politician taken responsibility for this extra cost?

      It’s hard to know which is the stupidest coalition policy so far but the student loans fiasco is pretty near the top. The UK taxpayer is far worse off for the first N years. The universities are worse off (as Mr Redwood would know if he talked to his buddies in Oxford). The universities even have to spend a large fraction of the fees on politically correct “access” activities, which will turn out to be largely a waste of money, but will keep the public school boys running the country feeling less guilty that they are where they are today because of their privileged upbringing. Finally, the students are also worse off and the most talented might go abroad to avoid repayment.

      It’s a lose-lose-lose policy, congratulations.

    • stred
      Posted February 26, 2013 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      Maybe it is a bung to encourage the Scots to vote to stay in the UK. According to polls, more voters in England want them to leave than voters in Scotland. Would English MPs please vote against this increase.

  10. Barbara
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    Where’s England in all this spending? Again we produce the majority of taxes, and do we recieve nothing in return? We do need investment into this country as a whole, its welcome whoever gets it. It seems we are going into plan B whatever politicans say, lets hope this means investments, and banks beginning to lend to small businesses and large ones. Borrowing may go up, in the short term but if it breaks what we see is happening with no growth it might be for the best. It will need close control, but I just hope we don’t see the poor hit again as they have been. There is only so much people can take, and poverty brings anger, and its then we may see things go badly wrong. We have already seen riots on our streets, and it only takes on spark to make things go wrong again. Poverty is a terrible thing and it festers things like a bad wine. I just hope this government knows what it’s doing? We will see.

    Reply England does not have a devolved government and a single departmental budget – English increases will be in Supplementaries for the various English departments – Health, education, Environment etc.

    • Old Albion
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      More’s the pity John !

  11. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    The best part of another £1 billion the government hasn’t got and will have to borrow.
    It is too much to expect that Parliament will refuse to approve this ? Most MPs seem to think spending more money is good regardless. John, I sense you, like we, have reached the end of your tether with this tax, spend and waste. The only glimmer of hope I can see is if UKIP win the Eastleigh by-election and thereby stir those of your parliamentary colleagues to take some action instead of being compliant on the road to economic perdition.

    Reply I do not expect a vote on this, as doubtless the Opposition is in favour of the extra spending. There would be no point in calling one, as all 3 parties are in favour of this spend.

    • Brian Tomkinson
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply,
      How does the government ascertain that it has Parliament’s approval if there is no vote? When you say “all 3 parties are in favour of this spend” I presume you mean all 3 party leaders are in favour and the 647 other MPs are just expected to lump it?

      Reply Parliament often approves things without a vote. There is only a vote if the Opposition wants one, or if a determined group of backbenchers call one.

      • stred
        Posted February 26, 2013 at 9:30 am | Permalink

        Please find a determined group of backbenchers. The Scots should be allowed to levy an extra tax to pay for their extras.

    • alan jutson
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

      Reply to Reply

      Do you ever feel like giving up John ?

      The answer is simple to those in charge of these Departments.

      There will be no more expenditure, work within your given budget or be sacked for gross incompetence.
      The choice is yours.

      The problem we have, is that those in charge (sorry power) do not have a clue how to run anything to set a budget, work to a budget, or get others to work within a budget.

      Dumb and Dumber springs to mind.

    • Deborah
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

      So let’s just roll over then…?

      At least a public vote would clarify who to blame.

    • Bob
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

      “all 3 parties are in favour of this spend”

      One party, three colours, a bit like Neapolitan ice cream.

      You couldn’t get a Rizla between them on policies.

  12. Old Albion
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    You forgot to say, by how much the (dis)UK Gov. would increase spending in England…….
    Oh ! but of course……we don’t exist do we…………………………..

  13. uanime5
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    Is extra going to be spent in England? If so which regions?

    • Old Albion
      Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      If we had an English Parliament, it would decide where the money would be spent.
      Not Scots,Welsh, N.Irish and quisling British/English MP’s

  14. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    For the same reason Europe gives us money for certain things keep GB together

  15. waramess
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    They thought they had beaten the enemy but failed to see they had actually set up camp in the midst of enemy territory(Civil Service). They took aim at the wrong target failing to spot the bullseye of reducing the size of governement and reducing taxes.

    The chums really are not up to the job and this must becoming clear to even their most ardent supporters. The wrong lads chosen for the wrong reason….but is there anyone in the party big enough to confront them before it is too late.

    In the private sector if you are put in charge of turning a company round and have failed to show very material progress within two years, you go. Already the Labour party have shifted much of the culpability for the crisis to the Conservatives, what a poetic injustice if the good apples of the Conservative party rot with the reputation of the slouches

  16. Jon
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    They are loosing the plot politically and economically. The Scottish Parliament will criticise them just as much for the increase than if there was no increase or if it was double the amount. We have to pay for these increases when we are already in massive debt! Bonkers!

  17. Mark B
    Posted February 25, 2013 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    Are you deliberately trying to provoke me and my fellow Englishmen ? Surely an intelligent man such as yourself would have known of what response you might get from many of your readers to the itemized spending, with no reference to my country.

    How dare you ! How dare ALL of you !

    And what of the peoples’ say on this. It is our money after all. You take what you like from us without asking. Make promises then break them. And make deals over the table between yourselves and then tell us that, because its in YOUR coalition agreement you must honour it.

    Parliament ALWAYS says yes to the governments spending plans. We the people, whose monies it is, demand a say.

  18. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted February 26, 2013 at 2:30 am | Permalink

    Add that little lot together and it’s close to £1 billion. Fairly soon we’ll be talking serious money but don’t worry – the printing presses will cope. Nigel Lawson’s budgets used to have several billions of contingency money in them. We might do well to revive that idea. Failing that, perhaps we could sell off the buildings that house the Scottish parliament and the Welsh and Northern Irish assemblies, and end the whole rotten, chaos creating, devolution experiment.

  19. Steve Cox
    Posted February 26, 2013 at 5:06 am | Permalink

    “It would be good to hear a bit … about these increases and the reasons for them…”

    Umm, let me see now. Wales is the poorest region of the UK but gets the smallest increase. OTOH the Welsh are generally pretty quiet and not much into burning down holiday homes or anything like that nowadays.

    The Scots, on the other hand, are having an independence referendum next year, so perhaps this is just another cynical ploy by government to try to buy off some more voters with a bit more cash. I’d expect an even bigger increase in the 2013/2014 period.

    And Ulster? Well with the resurgence of the IRA, the loyalist flag flash mobs, and a general fear of a return to the bad times there, it should be obvious why NI gets the biggest chunk of extra cash.

    Some people just call it Realpolitik.

  20. Excalibur
    Posted February 26, 2013 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    It really is astonishing that the country is run in this manner. That an extra 955 million pounds is to be allocated without a vote being taken in parliament is barely credible. Given the desperate plight of UK finances, the willingness of MP’s to simply rubber stamp this further outlay suggests either, that parliament is not functioning as it should, or that the tenets of the left are so imbued in all levels of government that careful budgeting is simply not a consideration.

  21. stred
    Posted February 27, 2013 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    I spent half an hour commenting on points raised while watching the HOC energy committee interviewing Prof. Buchanan, the retiring regulator,yesterday. He brought out concerns about older power stations not being maintained an therefore not being available in case we wished to reverse policy in an energy crisis. Also, the way that energy company profits are reported as a % of the whole bill, wheras their profit on sales operation and generation are individually higher. If this was not relevant and moderated, I hope you will watch the proceedings and raise the issue.

    I see British Gas is excusing itself today for the rises. The renewal of the gas grid also is being charged on bills, to a private monopoly, deciding on the extent of the work being done- as also in my contribution.

  • About John Redwood

    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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