Labour’s manifesto looks as if it is going to bulge with apparently great promises.
Don’t like your energy bill. We’ll freeze it! What if world energy prices surge? No idea. What if energy companies decide not to invest in UK energy supply when we need more replacement power stations? No idea.
Don’t like your rent bill? Then we will freeze it. What if landlords withdraw their properties? What if people stop building new homes to rent? No idea.
Want your short term tenancy to last a minimum of 3 years? No problem. We’ll legislate. What if landlords decide they would rather not rent out at all if they need to lock up their property for a longer period? No idea.
Don’t like the Lib Dem’s £9000 student loan for fees? No worry, Labour will reduce it. How does the university pay for the teaching with less fee? Or how does the taxpayer make good the lost cash? The detail is in the post.
The art of democratic politics is to make offers which improve people’s lives which are credible and can be carried through successfully. As someone whose main aim is to do things in politics that help more people to prosper, I have no problem with Labour’s aim of raising livings standards. That is a Conservative aim too.
Having a three day week-end would be popular with many. We do not legislate for it, because our leading competitors work at least five days a week. We feel we could lose out badly if we rationed our working week too strictly.
Having a minimum wage of £25,000 would be very popular with all those on low wages. Some of us think we have to get there by working smarter and growing our economy so companies can afford it. If we simply legislated for it, some would get a large rise and would be better off. Others would lose their jobs, as various activities would no longer be affordable.
Energy prices are a serious problem. Labour should know that, because they put in the legislation and signed up to the EU measures which have cursed us with dearer energy. In order to enjoy cheaper energy, which we badly need, we have to change those policies. We need less energy generated from dear windfarms, and more from domestic gas.
Some rents and tenancy agreements are a problem for some families. Solving the problem requires us to build more homes to make housing more affordable. Above all it needs reversing Labour’s open borders policy, as a substantial pressure of demand on our housing stock is coming from the large number of new people who arrive and need homes under EU laws and UK policies which Labour signed up to.