Tax and spend

I read in one newspaper that we will be offered tax cuts in the budget. Just what we need to stimulate an economy being put through a combined monetary and fiscal squeeze. Then I read in another paper that the Chancellor will tear up the promises to raise Income Tax thresholds, and find some more money for Universal Credit. I read elsewhere that the Treasury  still thinks it needs to raise a tax or two to pay for the increased NHS spending that has been outlined.

Who knows which of these leaks is informed. They could all be right with a government still trying to make up its mind. What is clear is many of us who will have to vote on the budget when they have decided and announced it want to honour the promise to raise tax thresholds , want to cut taxes to provide a stimulus  to enterprise and want to boost spending on crucial public services. We do not however wish to run up excessive debts and do not think there is a magic money tree.

The good news is there is an easy way to do all these things. Make it clear to the EU that we do not owe them money after we leave, and announce we will be leaving on 29 March 2019 with or without agreement to a Free Trade deal. The EU  can decide whether they want  one or not.  It is in their interest to want one and I suspect they would offer one if they were sure we will just leave otherwise.

The government also has the option to review the large spending planned on HS2. There does need to be more spending on better targeted rail investments in the North, but even after allowing for these the cancellation of this vastly expensive project would also free substantial resource to do other things.

The extraordinary thing about current Treasury thinking, as they dither over any increased spending  tax cut, is their persistent wish to give £39 bn to the EU. Why cant they transfer some of the toughness they show about  desirable UK spending and tax cuts into determined resistance to paying so much money to the EU when there is no legal requirement to do so.

I have one simple piece  of advice for the Chancellor. Dig in against more money for the EU and all your money problems for the next three years drop away. Grasp that we will trade just fine on 30 March 2019 if we just leave. That is what we voted for. We want to spend our own money on our own priorities. What part of £39 bn doesn’t the  Treasury understand?

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  1. Lifelogic.
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    But Hammond is the beating heart of remain. He is the pusher of the highest taxes for nearly 50 years. He is also ratting on the IHT threshold promise, is a mugger of people’s pension pots, a mugger of landlords and tenants, and a pusher of absurd tax complexity. He has put insurance taxes up by a further 20% and he has the demeanor of an undertaker.

    Tax cuts would be a huge boost for confidence and the economy but what is really needed is to cut the vast waste in government and the bloated size of government. So much that could usefully be cut and much of it doing positive harm. Start with the EU membership fee, HS2, Hinkley C, all the greencrap subsidies, simplify taxation, encourage private medicine and education (to save on government provision) and have a huge bonfire of red tape and bonkers regulations.

    Another even better way to boost confidence would be for May and Hammond to resign, replace with people who will avoid Corbyn.

    Proposals now even to limit the calories in or size of pizzas and ethnic pay reporting! What total halfwits we have in power!

    • Andy
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:16 am | Permalink

      Hammond was one of the main Eurosceptics in the Cameron government. To describe him as ‘the beating heart of remain’ is, frankly, away with the fairies. He is simply a man who, presented with overwhelming evidence, chooses to believe it rather than simply ranting about it. It’s basically how sensible adults behave. Brexiteers should give it a go sometime.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:37 am | Permalink

        Evidence like those 500,000 job losses the Treasury promised in the year following a Leave vote eh Andy ?

        The overwhelming evidence at the moment is that a Corbyn government would be a catastrophe for the economy – presumably you’d advise us to just to ignore any general election result which Labour won ?

        • Andy
          Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

          I don’t advocate ignoring election results. If you don’t like an election result you get to change your mind in 5 years. Unlike the referendum where, apparently, you are never allowed to change your mind ever again.

          But even despite the Brexiteers profoundly undemocratic stance, I have repeatedly said I don’t want a third referendum (the first was in 1975). And I don’t want a third referendum because it would just make you pack of professional whingers whinge even more. After all complaining is your raison d’etre.

          My firm view is that to overturn Brexit all we have to do is let the mob of blithering Brexiteer incompetents get on with it. I never had high hopes of this bunch of ranting loons but even by the low standards I was expecting they have proved cluelessly inept. Many of them have not figured out the basics. Some have not figured out that there are basics which need figuring out. It is quite clear that the inevitable car crash they are leading us towards will be quickly overturned by the next generation. And this is the best way to defeat Brexit. Let it happen. Watch it fail. And then undo it. None of you have yet realised that you not only have to deliver on Vote Leave’s lies but you also have to make everything better and nothing worse. And, when you fail – which you will – the blame is yours.

          I should also add that I don’t like or support Corbyn. I think he will be a disaster for our country. But he is a one term disaster and Tory pensioner Brexit is potentially a lifetime disaster. In this Sophie’s choice of badness I’d pick him over any of your every day of the week.

          • rose
            Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

            How do you know he is a one term disaster? He could crash the economy, announce a state of emergency, and we would never vote again.

          • Anonymous
            Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

            “But he is a one term disaster and Tory pensioner Brexit is potentially a lifetime disaster.”

            = once in a lifetime disaster that is going to be inflicted by people who won’t be here for long.

            Actually the vote was a lot more tapered than that and many of us are likely to be around for another 40 years at this rate.

            (Many of us are in your 45-65 working age group and still doing marathons/Iron Man challenges – you choose the divisive statisticians’ young vs old groupings.)

            Longer than the disproportionately obese under 30s.

      • libertarian
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:20 pm | Permalink


        My word you are naive…. psst wanna buy the Eiffel Tower ?

    • Adam
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:24 am | Permalink

      Anti-democratic maverick Philip Hammond plays Jack of Diamonds with HS2, recklessly gambling with our economy, while his Queen dances with her Ode of Joy.

    • BOF
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:21 am | Permalink

      LL, I think you have included all of my priorities.

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:04 am | Permalink

      I have never felt more depressed about politics.

      Theresa May.

      Jeremy Corbyn.

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:27 pm | Permalink


        Many of us out here share your depression.

        Never in my Lifetime have politicians been held in such contempt by a population.

        I excuse our host who is trying his best, but afraid most of his thoughts and idea’s are falling on deaf ears and closed minds.

        • Timaction
          Posted October 13, 2018 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

          Everyone is saying and thinking the same. What a hapless bunch of useless politicos we have in Westminster with their civil serpent clowns. Decent ones like our host, JRM etc will never be allowed near the wheels of power as they don’t fit the left wing socialist requirement!

      • Michael O'Sullivan
        Posted October 14, 2018 at 7:53 am | Permalink have to try to change politics in England to one of PR type..proportional representation..otherwise things will carry on

    • Hope
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:14 am | Permalink

      The level of dishonesty from this Tory govt is breathtaking. Last night Hammond on TV said he was a low tax conservative. He has presided over the Treasury where taxation is at its highest for decades! Fake Treasury and OBR reports to scare the public. How much lower can he sink? May announces end of austerity before the structural deficit is balanced- used to get elected in 2010 and failed to deliver 8 years on. The same threats used then about Labour! Tories have racked up the highest debt in history under their watch, lied to say both deficit and debt will be reduced by cuts when in fact taxation has been used at every turn. Both are completely untrustworthy.

      May’s behaviour is beyond disgusting over Brexit. HER proposal to keep the U.K. as a vassal state indefinitely to the EU until our minds can be changed is disgraceful. It is a BAD deal and should not have even been entertained thus far let alone continuing with the madness. May is detmined to make the U.K. less competitive than the EU, not be able to strike independent trade deals, give away vast amounts of our taxes for nothing in return and be subject to EU rules and laws. May tried to sell out N. Ireland in December and got caught out. It appears she is going to try to do the same thing for the U.K. and N. Ireland. The U.K. simply does not need an punishment extension, leaving the EU does not take that long to achieve. March 2019 is long enough, 3 years, for the small amount of businesses who trade with the EU to adjust.

      At what point will JR and chums do the honourable thing and get rid of her? She has proven to be underhand and a liar. Her vassal state plan goes against what she said to the nation. I am sick to death of reading May’s scare story notices. She even desperately wrote Netflix and Spotify might not be used when traveling to the EU! Wow, is this the best scare she can do? What an absolute disgrace she is.

    • JoolsB
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      “is a mugger of people’s pension pots,”

      But only private pensions of course. They haven’t got the guts to reform the much more generous public sectors pensions which we mugs in the private sector are paying for.

  2. Lifelogic.
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    Charles Moore today:- Mrs May’s catastrophic handling of Brexit has been marked by U-turns and broken promises. She cares, above all, about “burning injustices”. She often tells us so. Yet she seems determined, next week, to ignite the biggest injustice yet. She goes to Brussels ready, it seems, to frustrate the result of the EU referendum.

    • Duncan
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:51 am | Permalink

      It’s not catastrophic, it’s deliberate. A catastrophe is an inadvertent event with an absence of intent. What May is doing is absolutely intentional. It is planned. It is deliberate. This PM, her advisers and the EU’s various apparatchiks have all conspired to bring events to this current point in time.

      She’s been allowed to go ahead by a Tory party that is spineless. Tory Eurosceptics appear either unwilling or unable to bring her down. They have their reasons. They are ‘on the ground’ while we are outsiders looking in trying to gauge what is actually happening.

      Today, nothing happens in politics that isn’t planned or catered for. Yes, you’ll get the odd Black Swan event but by and large we live in an almost hermetically controlled environment. Some would call it quasi Fascist. Control of speech, thought and deed is monitored unless of course you’re afforded protection by Westminster’s party system

      It is a test of courage for Eurosceptic Tories. Has a Tory PM ever been defeated on a budget bill?

      It’s very simple. She’s either defeated in the Commons on a ‘vote of no confidence’ (a budget bill defeat would fall under that description) or the UK will face a future with Parliament with May as PM and the UK under the umbrella of the EU

      • Bob
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:25 am | Permalink

        “It is a test of courage for Eurosceptic Tories. Has a Tory PM ever been defeated on a budget bill?”

        Think about it Duncan, which Home Secretary “lost” the paedo files?
        Ever heard of Lost & Found?

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        It’s a rather academic question but I think one which is still worth asking: was there any time when Theresa May genuinely intended to carry out the wishes of the British people as expressed in the referendum? Was it all deceit from the very beginning, before she became Tory leader and Prime Minister, or did she start out with a completely honest purpose but was suborned? I may well be wrong on this but I suspect it was when she was so publicly cold-shouldered by the other EU leaders in December 2016 that she began to feel a deep emotional need to ingratiate herself, and her favourite eurofederalist civil servant from her time as Home Secretary was available to show her how to do that. Certainly she has since seemed a lot more comfortable with them, and she was obviously pleased when they arranged to give her that special football shirt … we may never know what happened, the biographers will delve but there will always be uncertainty.

        • Sir Joe Soap
          Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:53 am | Permalink

          I suspect that she is a person who “plays it by ear” instead of having her own beliefs about anything. Unfortunately, the ear she has been playing it by seems deaf to the 17.4 million, because, Blair-like, she’s far more exposed to advisors than she is to the people who pay her wages.

        • Backtoback
          Posted October 13, 2018 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

          Denis..she has been listening to the ERG set for nigh on thirty years now and was never impressed by their arguments which she regarded as old style bullying. So now that she is the PM she is determined to deliver, ‘either we will have Brexit or we will not have brexit’, either way she cannot lose. If she comes up with a good deal for the future well good but if we crash out she will still be delivering what the people voted for- she can’t lose

          • Timaction
            Posted October 13, 2018 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

            I don’t think she cares about her Country or her party as she will trash Brexit and leave politics. Her legacy will go down in British history as the worst ever Prime Minister putting a foreign power ahead of her own people. She has followed a succession of them like Major, Blair and Brown. We deserve better than the shower that occupies Westminster and a reformed voting system to condemn them to history where they belong!

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted October 13, 2018 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

            I can’t make much sense of that!

        • rose
          Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

          I think, Denis, when Timothy was working with her, she did intend to deliver. Unfortunately their power and the opinion poll went to their heads and they thought they could do all sorts of other things on the back of Brexit instead of concentrating on it flat out and taking it as seriously as a war.

          After that mad election and its mad manifesto, Timothy was defenestrated and so was Brexit.

          The first thing that happened was that David Jones was sacked. Then Davis was sidelined and Robbins moved into no 10. Boris and Fox continued to be marginalised. Barwell took over as the new Timothy, and Green and Liddington, plus Heywood moved in to the centre. Hammond was already there, as was Mrs Rudd and, of course, Mark Carney. The Speaker completed the stranglehold of Remain on the machinery of government.

      • rose
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        She has had it announced from no 10 that a defeat of the budget would not be a vote of no confidence. This woman is a barnacle on a sinking ship. She will never resign. If only Lord Home had not been so high minded when he devised the rules for removing a leader.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      “21 times Theresa May said that the UK is leaving the customs union”

      • Hope
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:37 am | Permalink

        May also publicly said six times she would not call an election. May also said she will is acting on the referndum result and manifesto etc. May also said half in and half out or remain in parts is not leaving the EU. May claimed her dementia tax changed nothing, the public voted with their feet! How about the previous failed/reneged promises on adult social care! May’s vassal state plan does not keep faith with the referendum, manifesto, red lines, Lancaster speech, following comments etc. her ambush of her cabinet and showing her plan to Merkel before cabinet and parliament shows she is untrustworthy. Davis said he was stitched up, Baker says he was blind sided. It is reasonable to conclude she is a liar.

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:56 pm | Permalink

          Hope. Never mind. She’s off to church tomorrow. That will make her feel better.

    • rose
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      Is it true that on top of all her other capitulations, she has thrown away what is left of our rebate?

  3. Duncan
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:02 am | Permalink

    Of course if Tory MPs vote against the budget bill May will accuse them of attacking healthcare funding. The NHS as we all know is a State employee vested interest, run by the employee for the employee. It’s a well laid trap

    May is using my taxes to play politics with. May is using the prospect of a Marxist government to keep her detractors in line. May is an offence on so many levels

    Eurosceptic Tory MPS should be working with the DUP and Eurosceptic Labour MPs to vote strategically to bring down May’s government in October’s budget bill.

    • Peter Wood
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:01 am | Permalink

      Duncan, you are spot on; where is the Tory party of the Thatcher years. During those times the 1922 and others were always in the corner sharpening their knives. May would have been long gone by now if we had a Tory Party with Conservative beliefs and ethics.

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

        And therein lies the problem Peter. The party currently calling themselves Conservative are anything but.

    • Andy
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:57 am | Permalink

      And yet, when you get sick, I bet you have no qualms about going to see an NHS doctor. And I bet you are happy to complain about the level of service at an organisation you refuse to properly fund.

      I must admit, though, I would like to see an NHS opt out for people like you. Tick a box and you don’t have to pay for it. Then, when you get sick, you’re on your own. Which is okay if you only ever catch a cold. Not so great if you develop cancer or MS. It would need to be a one off choice though – we wouldn’t want people opting back in when it benefits them. Plus, of course, we know that Brexiteers believe that in a democracy you are not allowed to change your minds anyway.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:41 am | Permalink

        Evidence (the Remoaners favourite word) is that an insufficient number of voters have changed their minds about Brexit to affect the referendum result. But of course Andy ignores this particular bit of evidence because he knows best.

      • sm
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

        No, we complain about the level of service from an organisation (the NHS) attempting to do a vast and complex job it was not designed for, while also being generally extremely badly managed, up to and including Ministerial level in both Tory and Labour governments.

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

        So, let an insurance company fund it. Then Mr Duncan can pay whichever premiums he chooses for whichever level of service. Outside that, he’s on his own, as you say.

      • libertarian
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:28 pm | Permalink


        Whoa hold on a minute… Only last week you told us you personally paid vast amounts of tax but did NOT use any government service. Therefore you either

        A) Opted out of the NHS
        B) Are lying through your teeth

        I know where my money goes

        Oh by the way , and just so you know. There are two state of the art hospitals within 20 miles of where I live. One is a general hospital and the other is a specialist in Oncology, Heart and Neuro medicine. They are both PRIVATE You can become a member of either by paying an annual membership fee.

        Andy you might want to give living in a 21st century reality a go, you’d be surprised how much the world has moved on since 1975

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:30 am | Permalink

      Yes. This is the only way out. I get the impression that even if the rest of the cabinet resigned, she would soldier-on with her pal Hammond and a bunch of puppets until some capitulation deal was signed, then she’d slink away.
      Time is running out for the democratic unionists across all parties to put these quislings out of power.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:43 am | Permalink

      The NHS is a dire (thousands of avoidable deaths causing) virtual state monopoly and rationing system. No amount of money will fix it with the current structures and funding system. Patient “customers” are just a nuisance from them and it shows they have you money already. Pets get better customer service at the vets.

      Meanwhile Simon Stevens, CEO of NHS England, has said that the government should consider requiring social media companies to contribute towards treatment for mental ill health, amid a growing consensus that overuse of social media can have a negative effect on mental health (particularly of young people).

      Perhaps he should have other more urgent priorities such as preventing the NHS killing so many each week through negligence, delays, incompetence, hospital infections, lack of the right staff (particularly at weekends as is clear from the death and mistake statistics) and rationing.

      It seems he too read PPE at Balliol which perhaps explains a lot. Would we not be better with someone who experience of being a doctor or surgeon running it. Or had at least done something rather more substantive than PPE?

      • Mitchel
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

        And cut his political teeth as a Labour councillor in Lambeth.

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

        Indeed. More money will end up being poured into this black hole. Better to cut our losses and change the whole organisation to be more efficient.

    • Bob
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      She is totally untrustworthy. After the 2017 snap election debacle she feigned contrition and said “I’ll stay as long as you want me”.

      Who’s gonna break it to her?

      • Adam
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

        If the PM read Conservative contributors’ opinions on this blog, she would realise she is unwanted, but she actively stays ignorant, opposing what Conservative voters have long-demanded.

    • nhsgp9
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      May is going to use your money to pay the EU a bailout of their pension incompetence.

      How many nurses could you get for 100 bn?

      So will you get the right of consent, the right to say yes or no?

      Nah, consent? Plebs making the decision.

      No, its pay up or go to jail.

      MeToo matters when it comes to sex and the state.

      The state doesn’t believe in informed explicit consent.

    • Timaction
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

      Bringing May down is now a priority for our National interest to stop the treasonous behaviour of May and her cohorts.

    • margaret howard
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 4:49 pm | Permalink


      “Eurosceptic Tory MPS should be working with the DUP”

      More danegeld? Where will it end?

  4. Nig l
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:03 am | Permalink

    You have two robotic, risk averse, pro EU machine politicians as PM and Chancellor. There is your answer.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:06 am | Permalink

      Nig 1

      Totally correct. Why are they still in post we must ask ourselves?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:33 am | Permalink

      Not just risk averse but totally wrong & misguided. What part of killing the golden goose (with over taxation, over regulation, over complex taxation, daft employment laws, green crap, expensive energy and bloated largely parasitic government) do they not understand?

      What part of taxed and regulated too much already do they not grasp?

  5. Len Grinds
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    “Grasp that we will trade just fine on 30 March 2019 if we just leave.”

    We lose all the agreements that are the basis of trade with our most important partner, the EU! We lose all the agreements that are the basis of trade with the rest of the world too, unless every single country comes running to our rescue (not one has done so so far) as yesterday’s excellent government report on the insanity of no-deal makes clear – read But John Redwood says it will all be fine!

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      We are not allowed to sign trade deals till we have left the EU. That’s why we haven’t signed any. Do keep up Len !

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      Don’t panic Mr Pike!
      People will still want to sell to us, visit us and they’ll still want us to invent and make things.
      Don’t let a Tory screw-up get in the way of common sense please!

    • libertarian
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

      Len Grinds

      Get back to us when you know something about international trade , theres a good lad

    • John Hatfield
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

      EU membership is too expensive Len. Some say it costs the UK just short of £100 billion a year. And are you sure we won’t be able to trade with the rest of the world after we have left the EU. Many countries have indicated that they will be willing to do so.
      And lastly is the EU our our most important partner? I’m not sure it is any more.
      So in summary the EU is a parasitic rip-off.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

      Wrong, with or without a deal with the EU we do not lose the WTO trade agreements, which are not contingent on EU membership and which are only marginally inferior to the current situation in overall economic terms. Countries around the world will still want to trade with us once we are out of the EU and a simple exchange of letters would suffice to keep trade running more or less as it is now on a provisional basis, which could in fact continue for many years, just as long as it may take to get a new formal agreement in each case. Some Remoaners seem to think that the world is full of people as idiotic as themselves who would be perfectly content to see their country’s valuable trade with the UK grind to a halt when that could be avoided with just a couple of letters.

      • GilesB
        Posted October 15, 2018 at 5:21 am | Permalink

        Do you even need a couple of letters?

        Nearly every country around the world follows the principle that ‘everything is permitted unless it is explicitly prohibited’. So UK 🇬🇧 companies can trade with companies in all those countries, unless they have an explicit embargo on trade with the UK (like the US has on trade with Iran).

        Only the continental Europeans, following the Emperor Napoleon’s code, have the principle ‘Nothing is permitted, unless it is explicitly allowed’ . It is the companies in the EU that have a problem with no deal. That would in theory stop them importing from or exporting to UK companies.

        In practice the EU countries will,as France has already announced, issue executive orders giving French companies permission to trade with UK companies. The UK government does not need to give UK companies permission, as there is nothing stopping them.

        So it is not an exchange of letters between Governments. It is an announcement by each country following the Napoleonic code that companies in their country are allowed to trade with the UK.

  6. oldtimer
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    Hammond was interviewed by the BBC yesterday. He said taxes need to go up to pay for the NHS. In his next breath he said he was a “low tax Conservative”! The Treasury is in the grip of an apparently unshakable mindset. This has provided us with the discredited long term economic forecasts and the apparent failure to recognise how lower tax rates can actually boost tax revenues in a thriving economy. This will only change if or when a Chancellor is appointed which capable of shaking the institution up.

  7. Alan Jutson
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    Afraid your/out Government John have completely lost their way on so many topics there really is not much point in them continuing.

    The only policy that has seems to remain constant is the threat that if you do not vote Conservative you will get Corbyn.
    Its all wearing a bit thin now given so many policies from your lot are going further and further left as every week passes.

    EU negotiation a shambles, with nothing but constant capitulation.
    May does not have a clue as to what a good or bad deal is, she just wants a deal at any cost.
    Universal credit, although the idea good (not May’s) a real shambles in its application.
    Foreign Aid where not a clue is known as to how money is really spent and where it goes with 0.7% percent being a random farcical fixed amount.
    Rising crime and falling police numbers, no connection made !
    NHS in crisis, realised far too late.
    Defence and Education in survival mode only.
    Immigration still far far too high.

    The list is almost endless, but you still proceed and spend time on a sugar tax, gender pay gaps, civil partnerships for heterosexuals, and a whole host of minor environmental issues.

    Afraid this Chancellor and Prime Minister have had their day, now its time for someone new.

    Thank goodness at the moment for the DUP, although how long they will hold out is open to debate.

    Talk about Strong and Stable, more like. Clueless, Visionless and Incapable.

  8. Gordon Nottingham
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    John, I would LOVE to see this article as REQUIRED READING throughout the UK.

  9. WeToldYou_No_EU
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    “Why cant they transfer some of the toughness they show about desirable UK spending and tax cuts into determined resistance to paying so much money to the EU when there is no legal requirement to do so”.

    Because May and Hammond are ‘Poodles’ of the EU.

    And they called Blair a Poodle.

    May and Hammond behave like Poodles, on a double dose of tranquilisers…

  10. Alan Joyce
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:21 am | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    I would think that a good number of your fellow conservative MP’s also read your excellent blog. Those who who have marginal constituencies should understand the following. If they allow the prime minister to implement her plans, including tying the UK to the EU for an indefinite time period, voters will surely punish them at the next general election.

    I, for one, will take a perverse delight in voting for another party should May achieve her goal. Sometimes, one has to get worse to get better. A period of several years in the political wilderness should help to focus feeble conservative minds somewhat.

    • roger
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

      You are not alone in your perversity.
      Wreck Brexit and we WILL wreck them, for what is the point if democracy can be overturned at will by
      Politics where outcomes are at the whim of MPs elected on swiftly abandoned
      manifestos, aided and abetted by unelected Lords and Judiciary

      Philosophy transmuted into philosophistry at every flap of their mouths and

      Economics which advocates handing responsibilities that identify a nation to a
      foreign power

    • John Hatfield
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

      A period of eternity perhaps would be preferable.

  11. WeToldYou_No_EU
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Mrs May has made a ‘career ending decision’, by trying to thwart British Democracy.

    Nobody gets away with that.

    Whatever she does now, there is no way back for her in UK politics.

    Perhaps she is gambling, that the UK will stay in the EU and she will gain a ‘cushy’ appointment, with her colleagues, over there.

    She needs to get out of our UK politics now…we are into ‘damage limitation territory’, all thanks to her…May must go now!

    • Mitchel
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

      “Nobody gets away with that.”

      Blair and Mandelson did.The latter even told you the age of representative democracy was over.Did you all think he was just playing the panto villain/dame?

      • Anonymous
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

        Everything they touch now is tainted.

        Bring on Blair. He’s good for Brexit when he’s in the open.

  12. The PrangWizard
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    Surely we are well past the point where matters can be debated in the hope that leaders are open to reasonable argument. Dithering and stubborn arrogance are not leadership qualities to be admired.

    Another commentary mentions to a sense of panic in Cabinet. All of the problems we have are sourced back to the PM, and as long as nothing is done to get rid of her by MPs and the party nothing will change, the country will end up with betrayal and disaster, permanent loss of sovereignty, and shamed in the eyes of the world.

    Cabinet members who believe we are being misled must resign now if they have any self respect or honour, to follow those who did so recently. It will be no use afterwards saying ‘there was nothing we could do’ or ‘we didn’t have the numbers’. And the time has come for MPs too who hide behind ‘loyalty’ to the party to find some courage to change the leader, or they will be despised along with all the rest. The time has come.

  13. Tory Western
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    So now we know. Mrs May has decided the UK will remain in the customs union, and GB will leave the single market, so there will be checks between GB and NI. A long way from what you promised, Mr Redwood

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

      It’s not going to happen. Businesses won’t be willing to fill in customs documents to send goods within their own country. They’d rather move production out of the UK first.

  14. percy openshaw
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    As ever your comment is informative and persuasive; but the people with whom you are really reasoning – Hammond and May – are unlikely to heed you. Until and unless they are removed and replaced (by genuine Tories rather than horrible Heathite hangovers), your words will prove ever more ghostly and futile. To have possession of truth without significant power to act on it is a terrible burden; but unlike the various characters in history and myth who find themselves in this predicament, you can at least do something: topple our dreadful, overpromoted PM.

  15. Roy Grainger
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    May and Hammond think that by promoting socialist policies some Labour voters will vote for them. They won’t. All that will happen is that some Conservative voters will stop supporting them. Still, John and his colleagues enthusiastically arranged a coronation to install May as leader so it is a bit rich now for them to complain about her.

    • rose
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

      John and his colleagues did not: it was the remain majority in the party which did, and they are still the majority. If they knew what the public were saying about the PM they would do something about it, but they just listen to the Remainstream media.

  16. Dave Andrews
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    After the Asher’s Bakery debacle, perhaps it’s time to abolish the Equality Commission?
    Discrimination law is fine, but it needs to be applied fairly, not by individuals with their own political agenda.

  17. Beecee
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    It seems that Mr Hammond thinks that tax relief on Pension Contributions are ‘ eye wateringly expensive’.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps not as expensive as when their owners leave the UK to work elsewhere where they won’t be taxed twice.

    • John Hatfield
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

      Everything Hammond does is designed to promote his corporate chums and make the middle class tax-payer poorer. Despicable person.

  18. hans christian ivers
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:59 am | Permalink


    I might have misunderstood but as far as I know negotiations are still going on, so should we not let them complete the negotiations, before we come up with new solutions?

    Reply We also have to prevent them signing a bad deal for the UK which I and my colleagues will not vote for.

  19. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Many of us didn’t want Mrs May to become leader of your party and Prime Minister. We gave her the benefit of the doubt in the hope that she meant what she said about Brexit meaning Brexit, her Lancaster speech and hearing her mantra over and over againthat we would be leaving the single market, the customs union et al. It became clear quite some time ago that this was all a charade. Her actions were capitulation to the EU. Can anyone name any significant “concession” made by the EU. I don’t like writing it but the two things in which she excels are duplicity and mendacity. She should have been removed before the summer and a new Prime Minister put in place who believes in the opportunities that leaving the EU brings. Listening to MPs still talk of having confidence in Mrs May’s ability to ‘negotiate’ a good deal is tiresome and disingenuous. She must go.

  20. A.Sedgwick
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    It is staggering that that a CP leadership contest has not been triggered. May is in the process of killing off the Party. Whatever happened to the Whigs?

    Why have the Leavers in the Cabinet not left?

    From his first budget it was clear Hammond was going to be a dangerously useless Chancellor. He will not change.

  21. Caterpillar
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Cancelling HS2 will be devastating for the Midlands i.e. the heart of England, so much has already been planned around it and it’s development. Anyone with a voice for England would recognise this. The Curzon Street to Old Oak Common (with interchange to cross rail) section should be accelerated to be made operational for the Commonwealth Games, a chance for the UK to demonstrate to much of the world that it will continue to perform, and perform better after Brexit. Whether HS2 to Old Oak Common and transfer to Elizabeth Line is sufficient, instead of the costs of going further into London is debatable (so skip Euston for now). The often childish (Osbornish) nature of some politicians to refer to, and to treat England as a dichotomy between North and London is of course self-fulfillin, divisive and ignores the Midlands. Yes the North needs better integrating transport, and hence there remains an argument for the route shape North of Birmingham, but HS2 and developments around it are the start to bringing England together, the danger of not getting on with it, slipping into a Hammond-like analysis-paralysis in Hs2 will just show the UK as delay addicted. Too slow on Brexit, too slow on Hs2. Any England supporter would wish to speed both up. At least get the Old Oak Common to Curzon Street section built, and built quickly.

    • JoolsB
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

      “Anyone with a voice for England would recognise this. ”

      Therein lies the problem. Unlike the other nations of the dis-UK, England is denied a voice. UK politicians, including Tory ones squatting in English seats, couldn’t give a stuff about England except when they want our votes. They continually stick two fingers up at us. Time the English realised that.

  22. Ian Lane
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    I see that Corbyn is now the bookmakers favorite as next PM, at 4/1.
    It seems to me that the bookies are being uncharacteristically generous here.
    I can not conceive how the Conservatives will win the next election, which may be nearer than we think, in the face of the greatest British humiliation since Suez.

  23. L Jones
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    You must surely know, Dr Redwood, why there aren’t more MPs who think like you, whether they be for IN or OUT. All this you speak of seems to be right-thinking stuff, for the good of people and the country.

    Why on earth are so many hell-bent on giving away a huge amount of our country’s money to a foreign entity, to support and shore up what is increasingly a German hegemony? Saying it is in the interests of trade, no less. It all seems breathtakingly immoral, if not worse.

    Can we assume self-interest on the part of those who prefer the good of the EU over that of the UK?

    • rose
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

      Some are straightforward troughers with an interest in Free Movement etc. – I can’t name them but they know know they are. Others are immature virtue signallers who fell for the propaganda about the EU stopping war and bringing peace, love and prosperity. Yet others are placemen with ambitions to get preferment. Then there are the ones who are just terribly out of touch and terribly deaf. They listen to the media and mistake it for the public. More of those than you might think. Finally there are those like Ken Clark who unaccountably do seem to believe in the thing and always have: as Gorbachev would say, one of the greatest mysteries of our time.

  24. PDubya
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    We have a Chancellor who, from day one, has run down the Economy and forecast, seemingly on a daily basis, doom and gloom every time he opens his mouth. He is also currently forecasting for the next budget to yet again hit the Tories core pensioner vote with a new tax.
    We also have a prime minister who perfectly captured in her Lancaster House speech
    that our vote to leave meant that we take back our Laws, leave the single market and the customs Union. Since then she has offered to pay the EU 39 billion of our money that we do not owe, broken every promise she made in her Lancaster House speech and yet still has the brass neck to tell us that Lancaster House is what we will get.
    For both of these underwhelming political chancers I suspect their race is nearly run.
    I cannot describe their collective attitude over our leaving as cognitive dissonance and would also not subscribe to a stupidity theory either but that leaves me with the only answer left which is they are both Traitors of the foulest kind having sold out to Brussels and are determined to keep us shackled to this rotting corpse at whatever cost.

  25. Steve
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:34 am | Permalink


    Good article as usual, but it is pointless advising the Chancellor of anything, he’s a europhile.

    In fact the only advice you could attempt to get the party to take is this;

    ‘ Get us out of the EU now. No deals, no negotiations as they were not what we voted for. Deliver anything other than precisely that and the British people will be after blood for the biggest and most serious betrayal in the history of our country. Not only will the perpetrators never again be elected, it is probable they’ll have to get out of the country.’

    I’ve warned many times that by stubbornly refusing to oust May and Hammond, you are all playing with fire. The British people will never accept being under the rule of another country.

    We are, as Churchill described us; the Island Race, we are different and unlike what happens in other countries, our Island People cannot be forced to accept that which we do not vote for, either by subterfuge, bludgeoning into submission, threats or any other mechanism.

    There is no denying trouble is coming, but what I and millions of others find truly mortifying is the fact that those in government sit on their backsides rather than oust the perpetrators of the coup. If their logic is anything to go by we might as well have let Napoleon or any other bully walk in and help themselves.

    The conservatives were warned, but clearly these criminals think they can get away it.

    Think again. Your mistake, also made by various aggressors from Europe was to underestimate the resolve of the people to defend their island and democracy.

    I advise conservatives thus; Stay well away from trees, lamp posts and public areas. The game is up.

    • margaret howard
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:11 pm | Permalink


      “We are, as Churchill described us; the Island Race, we are different and unlike what happens in other countries, our Island People cannot be forced to accept that which we do not vote for, either by subterfuge, bludgeoning into submission, threats or any other mechanism”

      But you are quite happy that we have a system whereby 17m people are allowed to dictate to 16m who will then have to buckle under? You call that ‘democracy’?
      Half the voters to lose all rights and forced to watch as their children’s future is being trashed?

      It’s as primitive as our ‘first-past-the-post voting system – Not fit for purpose.

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

        Well you should be happy then Margaret because thanks to May it looks like it will be the 16m who have won.

      • Steve
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

        Margaret Howard

        “But you are quite happy that we have a system whereby 17m people are allowed to dictate to 16m who will then have to buckle under? You call that ‘democracy’?
        Half the voters to lose all rights and forced to watch as their children’s future is being trashed?”

        Who’s talking of dictating to and removing the rights of those who’s vote was not in the majority ? You miss the point; we are against dictatorial rule, which is one of the reasons we voted leave, and yes it is called democracy.

        Further more it doesn’t matter if a referendum is won by the narrowest of votes, one ideology has a majority, the other a minority. That is the nature of democracy.

        It is when that democracy is threatened by those who cannot accept it that things get nasty.

        As or the children’s future, I suggest you ask yourself; would you prefer them to be British and have global opportunities when we open up to the rest of the world, or would you prefer them to be held in ignorance of their potential by EU brainwashing ?

        The EU relishes the notion that generations can arise with no sense of their national identity, no knowledge of or perverse teaching of their nation’s history. In essence; no reason to be proud of who they are.

        I think you have us confused with who the dictators really are…..the EU and it’s politically correct quisling governments who for decades have wrecked this country with impunity.

        Now they are in a new phase of their grand plan; to have each ensnared nation providing generations of EU compliant youth.

        And you think we nationalists are the bad guys? You were told wrong.

        • margaret howard
          Posted October 14, 2018 at 10:45 pm | Permalink


          “As or the children’s future, I suggest you ask yourself; would you prefer them to be British and have global opportunities when we open up to the rest of the world, or would you prefer them to be held in ignorance of their potential by EU brainwashing ?”

          Absurd suggestion. Our children should feel European, belonging to the world’s greatest continent whose ideas have shaped the whole of mankind. And it has done so for thousands of years, not some American johnny come lately.

          The brexit vote will turn us into a rump nation after the Scots and Irish decide they want to belong to the wider world, not some little England.

      • Rien Huizer
        Posted October 14, 2018 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        Are the British a (single) race?

      • libertarian
        Posted October 15, 2018 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

        margaret howard

        Fascinated to know what better system there is than one person one vote, one topic majority wins ?

  26. Anonymous
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    You are accused of risking the break up of the United Kingdom when actually it’s the Scottish and Irish nationalists who do that. Being a nationalist is romantic if you’re on the Celtic fringe, hated if you’re English.

    The DUP, it seems, are the ones holding Mrs May’s feet to the fire so I am ambivilant on letting the nationalists have their way. Instinctively I am an unassuming Little Englander and proud of it. I love the union flag, would prefer the United Kingdom to stay together but not under duress. I do not want us to be poking our noses in other nations’ affairs and our recent ventures have been utterly disasterous.

    Britain remaining in the EU is Britain only in name and not worth keeping. We are not returning to the deal we had before the referendum, whatever happens.

    Ye Olde Country is long gone. I am actually among the realists and an modernists. I cannot understand the duality of Remainers who purport to love Britain and the EU at the same time. They are the ones clinging to continuity as though it really exists . I suppose I once loved Britain and England at the same time though.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

      Peter Oborne hasn’t thought it through properly; he is in fact thinking like an EU functionary steeped in the EU’s “single market” ideology. He writes:

      “… Brussels says that Britain leaving the customs union and single market means bringing back the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic in order to prevent smuggling of goods from the United Kingdom customs area in the north to the Irish EU zone in the south.”

      First point, at present the UK is in the EU customs union and the EU single market by virtue of UK laws implementing the EU treaties and laws.

      Second point, it is those UK domestic laws which operate to keep Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK free from goods which do not comply with EU rules.

      Third point, therefore it is those UK domestic laws, not the parent EU laws, which operate to prevent such contraband crossing into the Irish Republic.

      Fourth and final point, but that is not the only way to prevent unwanted goods being carried across the border into the Republic; instead of UK laws controlling imports into Northern Ireland there could equally well be UK laws controlling exports from Northern Ireland to the Republic, and properly enforced they would have the same effect of keeping the EU Single Market free from non-compliant goods without restricting what goods were legally permitted within the UK.

      The UK is not, at present, an unfriendly power which might deliberately allow and encourage smuggling of contraband goods into its neighbour’s territory; and if they didn’t like our unilateral offer that we would pass and rigorously enforce a new law to prohibit the carriage of unwanted goods into the Republic then they could make their own damn arrangements on their side of the border.

      That is the solution which has been suggested to Theresa May, but she doesn’t want to know because she wants a pretext to keep us under the thumb of the EU.

      • Anonymous
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

        Thank you. Informed as ever.

    • JoolsB
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

      As Stanley Johnson correctly observed, “the tail is wagging the dog”. May has gone out of her way to appease the Celtic fringe “wanting their interests to be taken into account” with numerous no. 10 meetings with it’s First Ministers. Of course the problem is, despite England overwhelmingly voting Brexit, it doesn’t have a First Minister and so it’s interests are irrelevant. Brexit voting England has been totally excluded from any discussions.

  27. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    No comment today John. Anything to say about this chancellor who is soul destroying, job destroying, economy destroying and traitor to his own party and country is a waste time.

  28. BOF
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    The Chancellor, with his boss, is committed to remaining as close as possible to the EU, whatever the cost.

  29. Stred
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    When we have a PM who appoints a civil servant who was president of a club promoting a federal EU and wrote a thesis extolling the achievements of the USSR, the idea of not paying the federal HQ as much as they can be away with is not on.

  30. Denis Cooper
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    “Make it clear to the EU that we do not owe them money after we leave, and announce we will be leaving on 29 March 2019 with or without agreement to a Free Trade deal.”

    Regarding the second proposal I said nearly a year ago that we should not put ourselves in the weak position of asking the EU for a special trade deal before we leave. That does not necessarily mean no deal or deals on anything at all, just no special trade deal.

    Theresa May has already quite unnecessarily conceded that the EU cannot conclude a trade deal with the UK while the UK is still a member – a typical load of specious EU pseudo-legalistic drivel which she should never have accepted as a valid argument, but then of course at heart she is still one of them and is rather pathetically eager to be accepted as such – and if she asks for a special trade deal for the UK she will become a supplicant and so the EU will demand and no doubt obtain various concessions.

    The EU cannot now demand concessions for agreeing to the WTO treaties because they already exist and are in force and must be applied, with the EU and all its member states as parties solemnly bound by them; and they represent a default position which would be only marginally disadvantageous for the UK economically, by maybe 0.7% – 1.4% of GDP, compared to a free trade deal like that the EU has agreed with Canada.

    However I now have to admit that the argument I advanced then, on November 26 2017, may no longer hold in the same way if Tory MPs seal the fate of their party by allowing the pro-EU Barnier-Robbins-May troika to keep the UK under the rules of the EU Customs Union and EU Single Market in perpetuity:

    “Whatever delusions the Irish government may entertain there is no political possibility of the UK remaining in either the Single Market or the Customs Union after leaving the EU, so there is now clearly no point in the UK even trying to negotiate any “special and deep” trade deal with the EU. And of course there was never any justification for paying the EU a bribe just to get trade talks started.

    So we should now say that rather than kowtow to the stupid destructive intransigence of the EU we will fall back on WTO trade rules and only seek agreements on the practical or technical aspects of continuing trade.”

    How could I have been so naive as to think that a Tory Prime Minister would keep her word on anything to do with the EU, given the history of that party?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:57 am | Permalink

      This is also from November 26 2017:

      “Brexit: Remain in customs union and single market to solve border issue, Ireland’s European commissioner tells May”

      “Mr Hogan, the EU’s agriculture commissioner, said Ireland would “play tough to the end” over the border issue, and said it was a “very simple fact” that “if the UK or Northern Ireland remained in the EU customs union, or better still the single market, there would be no border issue”.”

      While this is from today, after almost a year which has been worse than just wasted because Theresa May could not get it clear in her head that she was supposed to be on our side not on theirs:

      “Ireland ‘cannot accept’ Brexit backstop time limit, Republic’s deputy PM says”

      In other words, notwithstanding the views of the British people as expressed in the referendum, and notwithstanding her previous promises and Tory party manifesto pledges, Theresa May is prepared to allow the Irish government to decide whether or not EU rules for the EU Customs Union and the EU Single Market will continue to apply in perpetuity within all or part of the supposedly sovereign UK.

      This is her sick version of “taking back control”.

  31. BOF
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    OT. Paul Goodman on Conservative Home reports this morning of a shortage of candidates to stand in elections. Where will they find these candidates who would want to serve under May?

  32. ian wragg
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    but we aren’t going anywhere. May is about to sign up for another year extension to the go nowhere, do nothing transition period.
    Pray do tell us John’ what profound miracle will happen after 33 months which can’t happen in the next 6 months.
    We all know it’s a ploy to indefinitely keep us in the single market and customs union.
    As a serious political party, you are finished if you let this happen.

  33. JoolsB
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    John, you have two socialists in charge of the Conservative party at the moment. Enough said.

  34. Tad Davison
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    I would say you’re dissatisfied with your government’s performance John. A substantial number found themselves in that position quite some time ago, but try as they might, they could not alter May’s direction. It seems their government’s actions no longer represent nor coincide with the majority of their member’s views.

    So what is likely to happen as a consequence of May’s and Hammond’s intransience and unwillingness to see common sense, a Corbyn government by default because the public are so fed up with the way the country is run, they will vote for anybody but the Tories?

    If that happened, it would add massively to the national debt. If a Corbyn government then got themselves into a mess and ran to the IMF, as happened before with a previous Labour administration, half their legislative programme would probably need to be curtailed anyway leading to more dissatisfaction and disaffection with politics in general.

    It makes no sense for May and Hammond to carry on this way when they have a golden opportunity to do this nation a great service, but how do we legislate for incompetence, insanity, or some underhanded backroom ploy to keep us chained to the EU in perpetuity with all the disadvantages that brings?

    Tad Davison


  35. nhsgp9
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    Halfwit Hammond is targeting entrepreneurs in his budget. It’s been leaked.

    That the Tories are on a major tax increase path is inevitable

    It’s down to that 13 trillion pound state debt that you, yes you John, are in complete denial about.

    Obvious as to why. If you came clean about how much the state owes, people would very quickly work out that they have been defrauded. Socialist redistribution for you comes with a sting in the tail.

    The public then shoot the messenger.

    So there will be no tax cuts. There will be tax increases. There will be massive spending cuts bar one area. Debt servicing.

    What next? Another default on those state pensions to the long list of the government screwing the population over.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:41 am | Permalink


      And there was me thinking austerity had ended!! Mrs May told us that so it must be true just as it is with everything she has promised. Pie in the sky.

  36. Raymond
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    I think it incumbant on HMG to fulfill the wishes of the UK electorate expressed in the 2016 referendum and all that necessarily goes with it.

    • notachance
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      Raymond..impossible to fulfill the wishes of the people..just what were the wishes..I still don’t know..I know what the ERG group and N Farage want but that is not the same as tje wishes of the people

  37. mancunius
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    Hammond’s latest plan is to punish Tory voters by reducing SIPP allowances and hitting personal pension plans.
    It is no good merely threatening May and Hammond. She has engaged in so much bluffing herself over the years that she does not believe even credible threats.
    No, the only course left is to vote against the budget, bring down the government, and fight a GE with a new, more visionary leader on a policy to leave the EU, if necessary with no deal.

  38. John Hatfield
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Won’t happen John. I admire your optimism but Hammond and May were out in place by pro-Brussels, crony-corporatist big-businesses in whose pockets the Tories dwell, in order to destroy Brexit

    • John Hatfield
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

      put in place.

  39. Lorna
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:44 am | Permalink

    What is truly disappointing is that May and Hammond are now suggesting another year of transition that will cost many billions to be paid to the EU
    We often talk of the €39 billion to be paid but surely we add to that the budget payments we continue to pay in the transition period also .And of course free movement of EU citizens continue !
    More than enough money to solve our budget shortfall without putting up tax

    • Anonymous
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      The referendum was two years ago. I knew it was going to be difficult to extricate us but I did expect there to be effort to do so.

  40. Roy Grainger
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Hammond says he is a low tax chancellor while raising taxes. May says we are leaving the CU while arranging for us to stay in. You literally can’t believe a single word the two of them say.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted October 14, 2018 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      He is keeping taxes as low as he can and realizes that it is a bad idea to tax large. mobile corporations.

      • libertarian
        Posted October 15, 2018 at 6:48 pm | Permalink


        We have some of the highest taxes in Europe !!!

  41. Dennis
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    The extra money for the NHS – how much of that is going to service PFI? Any or none?

  42. Dennis
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    Off topic – I see no mention on this blog with all the complaining here about green crap and CO2 emissions that Germany is cutting down more forest to expand its open cast coal mining pit, the biggest in Europe or Germany.

    There were news and videos showing the protesters being ‘felled’ from their tree houses by the police etc. There has been no comment as far as I know by the BBC or not emphasised.

  43. ian
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    An English parliament in name only. That’s what needs to be started and the only people who can start that is MPs already sitting in parliament and the lords and others who know the ropes, this parliament would be artafical and MPs already sitting in the HOC would be able to join as a permanent member from any party elected to the HOC already and to all the public in all areas in England and a sitting MPs in the HOC who do not take up there seat in the English parliament, their seat would up for grabs and open to the public in each area to select someone to sit in that seat in that vacant seat, people who register in their area by way of internet can vote for people who are interested in being elected to the English parliament and can put their name forward with their CV with adds in local newspapers and on the English parliament web site and if elected talk about devolved matters and budgets and policies for England with separate overall budget for the UK, you can fund a hall for meetings in the middle of England so most people would able to get to it, have debates on the internet live, phone into the debate, have radio station so people can tune in and listen to debates and policys, blog into elected members with their say like john blog and so on, run just like a real parliament and when the real election comes round they can stand for a seat in the HOC itself as independent MPs with the aim of getting as many elected people in the English parliament into the HOC to vote into being a real English parliament for the people of England.

    All policies and budgets that are past on a vote in the English parliament can then be sent out to the house of commons, lords, think tanks, unis, councils, well any you to send it to.

    • JoolsB
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      Only UKIP are advocating an English Parliament. The present incumbents, all 650 of them including our host despite purporting to speak for England, are totally against an English Parliament and are happy with the status quo which means England has no voice, no representative in the UK Parliament, where the word England is never uttered, not even by those squatting in English seats, where MPs elected outside of England are still voting on English only matters, where we get much less money spent on us per head despite being the only net contributor to the UK coffers and where our young, sick and elderly are blatantly discriminated against on a daily basis because the Westminster Gravy train is far more important to them than equality and fairness to England because an English Parliament would mean a dilution in their powers and a dramatic cull in their numbers.

      An English Parliament will only happen when the people of England finally say enough is enough of being treated like fourth class citizens in this so called union and demand one – not before.

  44. ian
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    As for turncoat in the daily mail, yesterday saying that nationalism and Brexit are breaking up the UK couldn’t be more wrong, that happened in the late 90s with the labour party voting though devolved parliament in rest of the UK and leaving the English people with no voice and now they want more votes on breaking away from England with the English people having no say on the matter and he blames it on Brexit with the rest of the globalists who given England away to whoever wants it, in most people mind England does not exist anymore, that why they do not talk of England and its people 57 million because far as they are concerned English people are there to be taxed indebted and abused with their money going all over the world for the UK political interests and just treated like slaves to the world.

    • John Hatfield
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

      Well said, Ian.

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

        ditto. and not just their money going all over the world but the rest of the dis-UK also. English taxes are being used to provide goodies in the rest of the dis-UK that are denied to England and yet UK MPs squatting in English seats utter not one word of protest.

  45. WeToldYou_No_EU
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    Mr Redwood.

    Time is very short now…to save Brexit…and the Tory Party…

    Surely the Tory Party are not going to stand back, and just watch the self-destruction unfold.

    The time for an ‘intervention’ is at hand.

    Please don’t delay!

  46. MPC
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    I thought the £39n was to be given to the EU over an extended period of years and if so then it’s not otherwise available to use immediately on the NHS etc. I agree with your sentiments and am also sure the actual sum will be several multiples of £39n over time. Still that’s the price of the Deep and Special Partnership we voted for in the Referendum!

  47. WeToldYou_No_EU
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

    Project Fear: – Phase 2 Plan (2016/2019)
    Project Leader: – Theresa May (Brexit Thief in Chief)

    1) Waste 2 years delaying Brexit, in collaboration with the EU.
    2) Do not make plans for a Clean Brexit. Make no plans for a WTO exit.
    3) Wait until time is very short…come up with a plan that is far worse than staying in the EU, to undecided voters
    4) Continually try to instill fear over a No Deal Exit.
    5) Renege on promises about a 2nd Referendum.
    6) Hold 2nd Referendum.

    7) On the ballot paper the choices to be:-

    – Accept the unacceptable Chequers Deal + the indefinite lock-in to the CU
    – Chose to exit with No Deal…and watch the “World come to an End”. *
    – Stay in the EU

    * Remove this option, if necessary.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

      Apropos of 4), have you noticed how the government, that is to say in particular Dominic Raab, is deliberating using what were originally supposed to be reassuring ‘no deal’ contingency planning notices as just another means to inspire fear and drive the population to accept whatever appalling deal Theresa May may want? Do we see media reports that the government has it all in hand, with plans having been made to deal with whatever situation arises? No, all that we see again and again is “this terrible thing could happen if we left the EU without a deal”. And I repeat that the person I blame most for this is Dominic Raab, he should be ashamed of himself.

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

        Dominic Raab has proved to be a huge disappointment. A Brexiteer now firmly behind May. If he had any principles at all he should never have accepted the job offered by traitor May when Davis resigned. A taste of power and a seat at the cabinet table obviously means more than Brexit.

  48. WeToldYou_No_EU
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Extract from Theresa Mao’s Little Red Book “How to guarantee Electoral Annihilation”:-

    – “The best means of political self-destruction, is to Deceive, Double-cross and Anger
    10.6 million people…who were voters for your Party…and who also voted to Leave the EU”.

  49. WeToldYou_No_EU
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    Sorry, Mr Redwood – Correction


    Extract from Theresa Mao’s Little Red Book “How to guarantee Electoral Annihilation”:-

    – “The best means of political self-destruction, is to Deceive, Double-cross and Anger
    over 8 million people…who were voters for your Party…and who also voted to Leave the EU”.

  50. rose
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

    One of countless stupid things the PM has done is to adopt the left wing language of “austerity”. In her book, ending it means “tax more.”

    We often hear of young people and their struggles. One of their main burdens is overtaxation. They feel a keen sense of injustice, what the PM would call a “burning injustice” about this, and the anomalies of the welfare state, like some people getting child benefit and others not, but not depending on the family income.

    If the Conservatives would return once more to the party of low taxation, of the family, of property ownership, of law and order, and strong defence, they would surely see off the Corbynistas.

  51. Hardlyever
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    We talk about the 39Billion as if we have a choice..this money is due for commitments already made by’s to do with the past and unless we meet our responsibilities in this regard including resolving the Irish Border conundrum then there will be no future with EU trade not even under WTO rules. It’s nothing to do with legal requirments, it’s everything to do with’reality..get it..reality

    • JoolsB
      Posted October 13, 2018 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

      What rubbish. We currently have a £70 billion trade deficit with the EU. If they want to stop trading with us, they will be the losers. If anything they should be paying us. Anything they consider we owe them should be taken out of the 40 plus years that we have been over paying them in the billions each and every year.

      • rose
        Posted October 13, 2018 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

        And the Europhile House of Lords reported we owe the EU nothing.

        It owes us for all those years of rebate it took back in exchange for CAP reform which it never delivered.

        It owes us for the investments we have made there, and for the money in the ECB which is ours. It owes us reparations for the damage done to our infrastructure and environment by overpopulation and diesel poisoning. It owes us for students who borrowed from us and didn’t repay. It owes us reparations for the devastation of our fishing industry and our marine environment.

  52. Chris
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

    The D Express has this. Is there any truth in this, Mr Redwood?
    Brexit deal ‘DONE’ – Shock memo reveals UK exit to be ‘finalised TOMORROW’

    BREXIT is ‘done’, according to leaked documents that have revealed Britain has achieved a secret deal with the Brussels that is set to be finalised a soon as tomorrow

  53. Oracle
    Posted October 13, 2018 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    There seems much shenanigans at the top very cross-party. Just the media says so. Also a compacting in the Trump Train over the Pond with unlikely alliances eg Trump and Kanye West. The unabridged Trump/West meeting yards ( two yards across his desk apart ) and then a long touchy-touchy hug with four letter swear words ..permitted was , well, awesome.

    Then intenationally, people going missing, important people. Strange days. Can’t weigh it up.

  • 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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