There’s a lot of class war rhetoric around in this election. There are some who seem to think you can make the poor rich by making the rich poor. There are certainly many who speak divisively about society, seeking to set poor against the better off, as if their interests were incompatible.
I have spoken and written before against austerity. I want greater prosperity for all. I want tax cuts for all to help bring it about. I want people at all income levels to keep more of the money they earn, and to pay more tax when they earn more money. Cutting tax rates, and lifting some people out of income tax and some capital taxes altogether is one of the best ways of stimulating more enterprise, more activity and more prosperity.
The Conservatives are not the party of the rich as endlessly stated in Labour and Lib Dem caricatures. We want the rich to pay more tax, and think the best way to bring that about is to set rates that mean they will stay and pay, and rates which encourage them to venture more with their money, employ more people, contribute more to our economy. We want everyone who can work to have the chance of a job. We want everyone in a job to have opportunity for promotion, training, higher pay.
You do not rule well by seeking to divide society, and by thinking that differences of income are of all consuming importance. You rule well by enforcing a fair law equally on everyone. You rule well by ensuring the many can aspire to better jobs, higher incomes, better homes, and by looking after those who cannot manage.
The danger is we spend too much time arguing how to divide the cake up, and far too little time and effort thinking how to bake a larger cake. Some want to break the country up, setting rich parts against less well off parts. Some want people to depend more on the public sector. I want to see policies which promote better training and education, more people setting up their own business and working for themselves, more small businesses expanding, more people owning property and other assets.