My Conservative Home article – The aims of the government

          Rishi Sunak  in his New Year speech set out three economic targets and two promises on NHS waiting lists and illegal migrants. There is  nothing wrong with putting three economic matters top of his five point plan. It is” the economy stupid” as Clinton reminded us  that will determine the election result. It is the economy that is on most minds, as people navigate high inflation and worry about a recession. I am glad he regards economic improvement as central to his task over the  next two years. Most of the rest would flow from economic success.
         The problem is that economic language and overlapping economic targets do not set the pulses racing or reveal much about the vision. All main parties want inflation down, debt under control and some growth. The issue on the economy is who has the best policies to achieve those aims? Who is most likely to see it through?  What do those generalised abstractions mean for individuals trying to pay the gas bill, seeking a better job or running their own small business? If you are in government and have been in office for some time you need to show you have produced good results and have done all you can to maximise people’s life chances and minimise financial pain.
         The first aim to halve inflation should happen this year. The Bank of England has shifted from too lax a policy promoting inflation in 2021, to too tough a policy now, leading us into recession. This will bring prices down the hard way. Halving price rises still leaves inflation well above the 2% target.
          The second is to “grow the economy”. That is an excellent aim, but not one we will see for much of 2023 on current policies. The government needs urgently to present to Parliament a growth package. Several of the pro jobs and business tax proposals in the Truss/Kwarteng budget would help, along with the more vigorous Free Ports, Enterprise zones, public/private partnerships and realistic energy policies that they proposed. These need to shaped into an affordable package, balanced by some spending reductions as the government wrestles with public sector budgets that are costing too much and delivering too little. Encouraging and helping more people into work would be  an obvious win win that would help by cutting benefit payments and raising tax revenues. Stopping the Bank of England taking so many losses on its badly bought bond portfolio would also assist. Producing more something for something pay deals in the public sector to lift productivity from its current deep low could be transformational. Pushing through more UK oil and gas production would not only cut imports but boost tax revenue.
         The third of the economic aims is to “get our national debt down, so that we can secure the future of public services”. It turns out this relates to the old Maastricht target of debt falling as a proportion of GDP, a target even the EU has suspended. It  relates to five years hence, well into the next Parliament so it is no early constraint on action. The best way of achieving such a goal if you must is to promote faster growth – or reverse a recession – as debts and deficits fall when growth generates more revenue and cuts the  cost of unemployment as more get jobs. Putting up taxes this year does not lower the deficit in five years time, as the recession and energy support payments are going to mean a lot more borrowing this year than was planned in the March budget Rishi put through himself.
         The fourth aim is to cut NHS waiting lists so people can get  care more quickly. That should receive almost universal agreement. The issue is not the aim but the means. It also leaves open why hasn’t this happened before.
         The fifth aim is Rishi’s first stated priority when he became Prime Minister. He will legislate to ensure if you come illegally you will “be detained and swiftly removed”. That would be popular with many Conservatives. It assumes Ministers now know which powers they need to take to make sure the courts and lawyers do not thwart their wishes again, as this has long been the stated aim. We are awaiting early legislation in Parliament.
            The speech went on to stress the need for innovation in business to power higher productivity and higher wages, stronger communities, world class education, better healthcare for patients and placing the family at the heart of social life. Most of this was general in nature but drew on his own family background well to illustrate the themes. The one specific, more maths education for all six formers, is an idea in search of a policy. It does not mean all have to take maths A level. It  will require consideration by teachers over what can be taught to those not offering specialist maths/ There is the problem who can teach it and what assessment or qualification if any would follow.
              Many ask me if this is a winning vision. I think the Prime Minister is right that his strength must be  competence so what he needs to do is to demonstrate he can deliver on these five promises he has made. He chose the ending of illegal migration as his first priority, seeing the political significance of not being able to control our own borders. He understood the resentment felt by many to see young men pay substantial sums for a dangerous boat trip to enter illegally and to be put up in hotels with free medical care paid for by UK taxpayers. Stopping this would be an important achievement, saving lives and giving proper priority to the asylum seekers from Afghanistan or Ukraine where we have legal routes of entry for them. There will be a success to report when we see many hotels return to their proper use.
               Getting  NHS waiting lists down will be difficult. The fast growing population from migration and the backlog of health cases brought on by covid disruption of other NHS services means the NHS is under pressure. There are too  many unfilled vacancies and the employees are unhappy.  The PM will need to persuade the senior management of the NHS to expand capacity quickly, which will need more beds and medical staff. The government does  not have the time nor mandate to embark on major reform of the NHS before the election. It can encourage managers to improve staffing arrangements, reduce pressures where waiting lists and times are unacceptable and expand capacity as much as possible. It is odd how resistant NHS managers are to putting in more beds with the medical staff to support them. The latest package offers us virtual beds, not the real things in hospitals. Some of the many extra billions provided to the NHS needs to find its way into extra capacity rather than more quangos, Diversity Officers and management consultants.
                 It will be the economy that determines how most voters feel about the government come election day. You cannot hope to create a better economy just in time for the election and expect people to forget what has gone before. By 1997 the then Conservative government had recovered the economy well, but the public was not willing to forgive them for the deep  recession brought on by their policy of joining and then getting ejected from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism. It is most important this government is seen to be battling against recession as  the Bank of England and the other major Central Banks deliberately slow things down to curb inflation. Allowing the Bank to overdo  it and give us a long and deep recession would be bad economics and worse politics.
                    That is why the government urgently needs a growth package. If we can boost investment in energy, in food, in transport and all the other areas where there are shortages which create inflationary pressures we will be tackling growth and inflation at the same time. Urgent and successful interventions to limit the downturn, to increase  investment  in the future mainly through private sector action, to get more people into work and to promote better pay for more output in the public services would be a winning combination. It does now require visible improvement, not just words, from a Prime Minister who rightly stresses the  need to deliver.

146 Comments

  1. margaret
    January 12, 2023

    The needs are obvious .The plan is a response to this. Looking at the whole situation is a right one, but it’s all those individuals in the middle who take things their own way , their freedom makes them greedy , their freedom helps them bring down competitors causing bankruptcy ,their freedom makes them deal with wads of £100 notes passing from one to another avoiding taxes . It is the will of nasty people who would rather make false allegations causing trouble and an overworked system .whilst the few do all the work . There are too many of these people today. They have not been brought up in the same Kiplinesque way ( thus omitting feminism) as world cultures are too ready to bartar than have an objective monetary system.
    I look at individuals as they shout and manipulate and cause problems , as they need excessive attention, as they need to be king pin ( at the expense of bringing people down ? out of jealousy ? out of stupidity) and say little, but they are known , The stupid go along with them and imitate . then we have the boo hoo reaction and vote likewise. Too many stupid make a stupid economy.

    1. Ashley
      January 12, 2023

      At tax levels so high and over regulation under the Sunak regime so dire the triumph of the black market and benefit claimants over legitimate business is surely virtually inevitable?

      During Prime Minister’s Questions, Rishi Sunak condemned Mr Bridgen’s remarks as “utterly unacceptable” and said he was “determined that the scourge of anti-Semitism is eradicated”.

      What weasel words Rishi. Nothing Bridgen said was remotely anti-semitic he was merely quoting a Cardiologist’s perfectly reasonable comments on the substantial vaccine damage. Why is it “unacceptable” to saying things that are certainly far nearer the truth than the government’s (and vaccine regulators) line has been and still is (on what we now know are the largely ineffective, dangerous and unneeded vaccines?) Still appallingly being pushed even into 6 month old babies?

      Reply I urge contributors to this site to see it is not appropriate to liken policies, parties and leading figures in modern democracies with the deeds and leading figures of the German wartime government.

      1. Lifelogic
        January 12, 2023

        Simon Hart, the chief whip: “Andrew Bridgen has crossed a line, causing great offence in the process.

        “As a nation we should be very proud of what has been achieved through the vaccine programme. The vaccine is the best defence against Covid that we have.

        “Misinformation about the vaccine causes harm and costs lives. I am therefore removing the whip from Andrew Bridgen with immediate effect, pending a formal investigation“.

        Not a statement that will age well I suggest Mr Hart an agricultural graduate it seems. The vaccine misinformation has largely come from governments, vaccine companies, ministers, people like Biden (if you take the vaccine you won’t catch Covid) and vaccine regulators it would seem. The coercing of experimental and dangerous vaccines into the arms even of the young & children was surely unforgivable.

        1. Enigma
          January 12, 2023

          This will certainly not age well Lifelogic. I’m grateful to Andrew Bridgen for speaking out.

          1. Hope
            January 12, 2023

            JR, I accept your reply. However, Brigden did not say this he retweated what an expert wrote! Nothing anti- Semitic whatsoever. The Nuremberg code is there for all to read and see and act as a guideline never to repeat forced or coercive medical treatment. Fact.

            This is woke beyond woke. Just like the doctors oath the first act not to cause any harm. Science has always allowed different views to progress, your govt. deliberately shut down, suppressed any and all alternative views. Your govt. even deliberately, through propaganda nudge unit, scared people into compliance.

            A group of doctors on GB news 2 days ago from other countries saying how recognised existing drugs ( Ivermectin etc) more effective than covid emergency experiment vaccines. They should be stopped now the pandemic is over. It goes against all ethics and accepted opinion to continue, there is no longer an emergency.

            The govt. was held to have acted unlawfully sending old people from hospital to care homes and the chief whip and PM comes out with this tripe!

            Reply Mr Bridgen was suspended from Parliament for a different matter. The suspension of the Cons whip was about endorsing an inappropriate comment

          2. ASHLEY
            January 12, 2023

            +1

          3. Norman
            January 12, 2023

            So am I. Andrew Bridgen and for that matter David Davis seem to be the only two MPs with biology or biochemistry degrees, so they have at least a basic knowledge of the subject, unlike Matt Hancock. Last time I looked, MH was dripping poison all over Twitter, presumably because he had no constructive response to Andrew Bridgen’s statements.

            Sadly, politics is now so debased that MPs with a conscience get expelled and (others Ed)thrive. I don’t think it was this bad decades ago, i.e. it was briefly improving, only to sink back.

          4. Lifelogic
            January 12, 2023

            @ Hope – well said. I would urge any more MPs like Starmer, Sunak and the very many others to take a look at the statistic or get an honest, decent, not compromised and statistically competent person to do so for them with full access to the figures. Until they have done so best for these people to keep rather quiet I would suggest. It is not very pretty.

            Someone like Dr Claire Craig perhaps now that that PPE chap dope one Neil O’Brian has stopped attacking her for no good reason!

        2. Paul
          January 12, 2023

          Adverse reaction to Covid vaccine is about 3 in a million- similar to other vaccines. There is no empirical evidence that the vaccine is more harmful than Covid itself, in fact quite the reverse.

          1. Lifelogic
            January 12, 2023

            All the many people who have attacked Bridgen should look at the excess death statistics, vaccine damage figures, the age breakdowns etc. and think. This is what the government experts should be doing and certainly not still vaccinating young people and children or attaching Bridgen. The Cardiologist that Bridgen (only quoting anyway) was not using words that I would personally have chosen but they we not untrue or remotely anti-semetic. But the attacks are clearly mainly driven as he was largely telling the uncomfortable truth.

            Meanwhile our dire Minister for science (Geography Girton) is still full of praise from the MRHA. Has he look at the stats?

          2. Lifelogic
            January 12, 2023

            Far far higher than that if you look at the stats, even in the safety studies done before it was rolled out.

          3. X-Tory
            January 12, 2023

            While I agree that offering the vaccine to the elderly and other vulnerable groups was perfectly sensible, and possibly saved lives, giving it to children – indeed, virtually FORCING them to have it – was neither necessary nor moral. THAT is what was evil, and Bridgen is right to campaign against this. There was also the secondary issue that the government did NOT admit to the scale of the adverse reactions, and did not make the vaccine purely voluntary, but pressured people into taking it. That was both dishonest and bullying and thus equally unacceptable.

          4. hefner
            January 13, 2023

            Lifelogic, I would take you more seriously if you were quoting proper statistics and even better the references to these statistics so that anybody interested could check the numbers.
            I have quoted (lower down on today’s blog) the latest (21/12/2022) Summary of Yellow Card Reporting.
            What is your basis for going on about the ‘far far higher’ death rate (?) if you look at the stats’?

            I am convinced that Lifelogic, X-Tory and the others have never taken the time to read properly the successive issues of the Yellow Card Reporting and only quote from secondary sources.

            Lifelogic, for someone sooooooo keen on the Science (and supposedly with some math/physics/engineering training) not going to the primary source is rather inexcusable (and rather unreasonable and illogical).

        3. Lifelogic
          January 12, 2023

          Conservative chairman Nadhim Zahawi, a former vaccines minister, said he was “proud” of the UK’s response to the pandemic, and he was “appalled” by Mr Bridgen’s remarks.
          “Any comparison made to the Holocaust is completely inappropriate, belittling one of the greatest horrors ever committed by humanity,” he added.

          So quoting a cardiologist saying something was bad, but “not” as bad as the Holocaust belittles the Holocaust in some way does it Zahawi? Perhaps he needs some lessons in reason & logic.

          1. Hope
            January 12, 2023

            LL, it is called saving their arses. Court has upheld the govt. illegal activity of sending old people from hospital to care homes! Where was the govt. speech in Recognition or apology for this?

            No, they were partying at No.10 where we read this week Johnson said it was the most socially undistanced event where people were crammed in and sitting on laps!

        4. beresford
          January 12, 2023

          I was cancelled yesterday for a less extreme post, despite my agreement that comparisons with the Holocaust were hyperbolic. It is a disgrace that Hancock and Sunak have misused Parliamentary privilege to smear Bridgen with ‘anti-semitism’, even though a number of articles criticising the ‘vaccines’ and ‘vaccination programmes’ have been published by prominent Jewish academics. Make no mistake, this is about silencing dissent with the official narrative. This is going to end up like the Iraq War, where politicians in this country clung to the Weapons of Mass Deception story years after the Americans admitted that it was all about oil.

          1. Lifelogic
            January 12, 2023

            +1

          2. Hope
            January 12, 2023

            Sunak broke the law and accepted his fixed penalty notice, where is his apology for misleading or lying to parliament? If he believed in the strict rules etc why did he not stop the party? Has he no outage in leadership skills?

        5. Iago
          January 12, 2023

          Drop of 63% in the Australian birthrate since the introduction of the covid vaccines there, reported by their Bureau of Statistics in November.

          1. Mickey Taking
            January 12, 2023

            Fear of intimacy risk or vaccine stopping conception? (sarcasm). Or even too much amber liquid?

          2. Your comment is awaiting moderation
            January 12, 2023

            @Micky Taking
            Did you know that Aussies were drinking beer a long time before 2020?

        6. Zorro
          January 12, 2023

          The MPs are a shower of xxxx. Only a handful turned up to the vaccine harms debate. That tells you all you need about how much they care about people. Were you at the debate JR or were you washing your hair?

          In any case Moderna will be producing over 200 million MRNA vaccines in the UK over the next 10 years in a sweetheart deal so you have Bob Hope and no hope of Tory MPs saying anything against it. Cowards the lot of them!

          Zorro

          Reply No I did not attend the vaccines debate. Most of my constituents wanted the vaccine and are happy with it. Anyone who had worries about it could refuse it.

          1. Barbara
            January 12, 2023

            But John, they couldn’t realistically refuse it, could they, if their jobs and livelihood were at stake? The careworkers and many others faced terrible coercion, shaming and psychological pressure from the government and the NHS. Totally unacceptable.

          2. Zorro
            January 12, 2023

            Well I am one of your constituents who very reluctantly had it after all the extreme nudge messaging, threats about employment and not being able to travel abroad. Oh yes, that’s right JR, some people could refuse it and were sacked from their jobs, or faced other sanctions. So it wasn’t really a free choice as your life could be seriously affected if you didn’t take it for some people. Had that ever crossed your mind? Disgraceful!

            Zorro

          3. Lifelogic
            January 12, 2023

            Could refuse but might well lose their jobs or be unable to travel etc. Blatant coercion. Also they are told they we effective and safe and needed – which what all untrue certainly for young people and children.

          4. Hope
            January 12, 2023

            Reply to reply: JR, you cannot say they were happy with it when they were not given full information to provide a true informed consent not acquiesce through fear because of govt. fear propaganda programme. That is not true informed consent. Nor can a child of tender years give true informed consent! Suggest you look up the law.

            Reply I judge their view by what they say and write to me

          5. Brian Tomkinson
            January 12, 2023

            Reply to reply: In some cases they lost their jobs if they refused e.g. care workers and we are now told their is an acute shortage. Your response is one of someone with a closed mind working to instructions either voluntarily or by coercion. We expect more from MPs. Andrew Bridgen is to be praised not pilloried.

          6. The Prangwizard
            January 12, 2023

            Reply to reply.
            They could refuse it but would you punish them for criticising it?

            That is the issue here. Mr Bridgen referred to someone mentioning the holocaust and is being punished by the Tory party and Sunak says he was anti-semitic.

            What would he have suffered if the deaths in the Soviet Union or in Maoist China had been referred to instead. What would the Tory party and Sunak have said about those? Are these unmentionable too because covid vaccines criticism is not allowed.

            The Tory party and its present leadership is moving to intolerance as I have mentioned before. The words may have been a bit heavy and unwise but Mr Bridgen does not deserve what he is getting.

          7. Lifelogic
            January 12, 2023

            To reply:- once people have taken the vaccine they tend to justify their decisions to themselves as they do not want to admit to themselves they may have been wrong whatever the stats. say. Plus clearly the majority have not directly suffered – so hopefully they have got away with it.

          8. Your comment is awaiting moderation
            January 12, 2023

            @lifelogic
            “once people have taken the vaccine they tend to justify their decisions to themselves as they do not want to admit to themselves they may have been wrong”
            It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled

          9. ChrisS
            January 12, 2023

            My wife and I (aged 69 and 71 respectively) have had four Covid jabs with no side effects whatsoever. We avoided Covid right through the pandemic, but both caught it just before Christmas. Almost certainly at a lunch in a quiet pub with friends who have since not gone down with it.

            Thanks to the vaccines, we suffered no more symptoms that a moderate cold. One of us would be classed as vulnerable and might well have ended up in hospital or worse, had our brilliant scientists not developed the A-Z vaccine. Being responsible people, and caring for others we mix with, we both self-isolated over Christmas although several acquaintances asked why we bothered.

          10. Iago
            January 12, 2023

            Reply to reply,
            ‘Most of my constituents wanted the vaccine and are happy with it.’
            Pontius Pilate said something like this, did he not?

        7. Fedupsoutherner
          January 12, 2023

          Andrew Bridgen is right to speak out. I have arthritis a since having the new MNRA booster my joints have been much worse continually with new symptoms. I put it down to the weather but my hands and feet and now my back and neck have been terribly painful with no respite from it. I note this is all a possible side effect being reported world wide . It is definitely worthy of discussion as it’s obviously affecting the health of many people.

          1. turboterrier
            January 12, 2023

            F U S
            You are not alone

      2. Ashley
        January 12, 2023

        He was quoting a cardiologist and he had said “it was the worse since…” (so less bad than)… and so probably a perfectly true statement and certainly not anti-semitic in any way at all. The statistics and reality will come out in due course it cannot be hidden for long by regulators, vaccine companies and governments. Not words I would personal have chosen myself perhaps but most prob. true.

      3. R.Grange
        January 12, 2023

        The knives have been out for Andrew Bridgen for some time. This time he crossed a line in his tweet, by encouraging the public to look at official data finally released by the US Centres for Disease Control. They show around 200,000 adverse events shortly following the administration of the Covid vaccines, many of them serious. By doing this, he has also put significant pressure on our MHRA to do likewise, and show that they are also taking seriously their responsibility to monitor, analyse and report on vaccine harms, as the US CDC has now done. That may have been a step too far for the Covid establishment in this country to allow.

        1. Zorro
          January 12, 2023

          Particularly when you know what their ‘detailed investigation process’ is into adverse events which they studiously avoid explaining. I suppose that you can expect that when they are 86% funded by Big Pharma. Even Dame June Raine states that she sees them as an enabling body rather than a regulatory agency. They should be called the MHEA.

          Zorro

      4. Sir Joe Soap
        January 12, 2023

        Reply to reply
        I think the cardinal reason for Bridgen’s comment was that it was made by a leading cardiologist and related to cardiological phenomena, not that it had anything to do with German governments, past or present. It is sadly typical of politicians to take the unrelated side issue and make it the cardinal one. It’s called diversion and means nothing gets done. Rather similar to me arguing on today’s post that you’re removing the human rights of every boat person so why should your economic ideas hold any water? This is of course tosh.

      5. Cuibono
        January 12, 2023

        “widespread tendency to argue that one can only defend democracy by totalitarian methods”
        As Orwell warned.
        His books, his warnings were a complete waste of his time.

        1. Mickey Taking
          January 12, 2023

          His books were certainly set for ‘O and A’ Levels taken at grammar schools – back in the day. Secondary modern, I don’t know. Perhaps too socialist for Eton, Westminster, Winchester, Harrow and Wellington?

      6. M.W. Roberts
        January 12, 2023

        Andrew Bridgen quoted a cardiologist. The wording was since a particular event 75 years ago. I can’t see anything wrong with what the cardiologist or Andrew Bridgen said. It looks that some people want to stop Andrew Bridgen telling the covid vaccine story.

        1. Zorro
          January 12, 2023

          That’s exactly – they always go for the ludicrous anti-semite slur when trying to shut someone down. They will NOT escape justice or the disgust of their constituents.

          Zorro

        2. X-Tory
          January 12, 2023

          I completely agree. The outrage at his comments is purely synthetic and artificial. He did NOT say what his opponents are accusing him of. He did NOT compare the vaccine to the holocaust. He said “SINCE” the holocaust – ie. AFTER that event. Not only that, but he was quoting someone else! Quoting someone does NOT mean you fully agree with them, merely that you they said something worth thinking about or debating. The real reason for the hatred directed against Bridgen is that he is perceived to be ‘right-wing’ and this is a convenient stick with which to hit him. I would expect it of the Left, but for the Tory party to turn against him proves what LEFT-WING TRAITORS they truly are.

          1. Fedupsoutherner
            January 12, 2023

            Hear hear X Tory.

        3. Sharon
          January 12, 2023

          Mark Steyn should be back on GB News soon… he’ll continue highlighting things!

        4. Lifelogic
          January 12, 2023

          Looks like that to me too.

        5. JanM
          January 12, 2023

          Exactly.

      7. Barbara
        January 12, 2023

        Reply to reply

        Sir John:

        ‘Andrew Bridgen, the British politician suspended as a Conservative MP over allegations of being anti-Semitic in a tweet criticising the Covid vaccines, has been defended by the Jewish Israeli academic whose article he linked to in the tweet in question.

        Dr. Josh Guetzkow, a senior lecturer in criminology and sociology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, told the Daily Sceptic that as a Jew living in Israel he was “surprised” by the accusations against Mr. Bridgen, because “there is nothing at all anti-Semitic about his statement”. ‘

        (Article from yesterday available online at The Daily Sceptic website).

      8. Mickey Taking
        January 12, 2023

        reply to reply …it is a major error to quote such an outrageous comment from a supposed educated and responsible source.

      9. Hope
        January 12, 2023

        JR, I fully concur with your article sentiments if made in 2010. We know as a matter of record and fact your party and successive govt.’s since 2010 never intended to implement any of the key policies it was elected on. No one serious in private comment proves this.

        13 years should have seen progress not creating further damage to economy and improvement in all public services. The responsibility of this current economic mess rests at the feet of the chancellor, Sunak. Preceded by Tory chancellors who failed to balance structural deficit and pay down debt by 2015, then abandoned. Same for lowering taxes, we had many elections since then where your party falsely claimed to believe in low taxes to reach a 75 year high! Same for public sector cuts which did not occur. Same for cuts to tens of thousands in immigration and stop all illegal immigration. The dishonest claims in public to get elected in stark contrast to what your party and govt.’s graphically show what your party actually did.

        So again, 9/10 to appeal to conservative voters. 0/10 for delivery or credibility. Too many lies and false promises over 12 years to get any right minded person to believe a word you write. You are ignored. You proved that by recent blogs to questions and answers from ministers. Implementing what Cameron called Marxist energy policy, to building on the Marxist energy policy by May!! Hiring former Blaire ministers to key govt posts over 13 years also proves your govt. is clueless, big state, high tax and shower our taxes around the world to gay abandon.

      10. agricola
        January 12, 2023

        The misinterpretation of what people say or just ignorance is not new in our virtue signalling Parliament. They still dine out on Enoch Powell and his River of Blood while even to this day not having a clue as to what allegory is. All they do is bookmark their ignorance.

    2. Nottingham Lad Himself
      January 12, 2023

      The paramount aim of this government is obvious.

      It is to hang on to power by literally any means possible, even if it means appealing to the very nastiest segment of the electorate.

      That tends not to be in the best interests of a country, history shows.

      1. agricola
        January 12, 2023

        The nasty element in our electorate are insuficient to elect anyone. Unless of course you mean all those who fail to vote for socialism in its varied manifestations.

    3. Your comment is awaiting moderation
      January 12, 2023

      Shows how out of touch I am, I didn’t even know that £100 notes were a thing.

  2. Mark B
    January 12, 2023

    Good morning

    Sorry, off topic again, and for those that ,ay have missed it.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-digital-identity-attributes-trust-framework-updated-version/uk-digital-identity-and-attributes-trust-framework-alpha-version-2

    This is due to amended : https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2017/30/contents/enacted

    Whilst some items maybe already in use it is kept to those departments that need it. Under these new proposals, any individual working for the State, whether they be police, armed forces, local council etc will be able to access all your data whether that information be relevant or not. Further. Such information would of course be of enormous benefit for third parties whether they be legitimate or not.

    1984 and Big Brother is just around the corner.

    1. Berkshire Alan
      January 12, 2023

      As usual Mark it will be the people who normally behave and live legally, and have a fixed home address who will be tracked and traced.
      Those who are of a more criminal/non compliant mind, who tend to work and live out of the system, will probably escape the clutches of the State information gathering.

      1. Ian B
        January 12, 2023

        @Berkshire Alan +1
        Exactly it has nothing to do with monitoring or catching criminal activity its about the State controlling the People and opening the UK up to more and more threats from Foreign States.
        Russia and China recently have piled in with new weapons, ‘hypersonic missiles’, the technology? all western. Facilitated by the Western so-called democracies own fear of their people and desire to control them.

    2. Cuibono
      January 12, 2023

      The elite’s “democracy” has failed, due entirely to them.
      And look..they can’t wait to tie us up in a huge totalitarian knot…
      Unseemly haste.

    3. Ian B
      January 12, 2023

      @Mark B +1 The bit, the BIG bit those with power miss, while they are frightened of the People and feel the need to control them in intrusive ways. Every opening they make and every intrusion implemented also is the identical opening they have made for Foreign Powers to steal the UK’s IP, Scientific knowledge, and so on the very fabric of the UK economy.

      Our Government is deliberately endangering the UK by enabling Foreign spying and manipulation of the UK simply because they want to control ‘everyone’ life just in case.

      Why and for what purpose do the think Foreign Countries have ‘Hackers’ – yet the UK Government the peoples protector wants to make it easier for some jobsworth to spy.

    4. a-tracy
      January 12, 2023

      If you have a digital record, every person with that digital record should be able to see who has read their record as people leave a digital footprint when they look up your record. Would it reassure you then to check who had been looking at your digital ID so that you could check why they accessed it, so it isn’t just a neighbour or ex-partner who works in an occupation to abuse your notes.

      1. Ian B
        January 12, 2023

        @a-tracy Unfortunately the greater majority of data collected in the UK, leaves UK legal jurisdiction and is then collated and sold by organisations, governments and individuals, that those in the UK have no control over. I found out recently my NHS Health Records are stored and used outside of the UK’s legal jurisdiction That is not keeping people safe

      2. hefner
        January 13, 2023

        a-tracy, Via HMRC, DVLA, the NHS, … and the credit agencies, all information about you is more or less already available to the state.
        In ‘Le Particulier’, dec.2022, n.1199, there is a long item (in French) about what the French equivalent of HMRC knows about the French taxpayers. Interestingly it reports that artificial intelligence (project Pilat) has been used these last six years (it has been running for 76 months with a budget of €103m) for linking various files and drawing conclusions related to the amount of tax that companies and individuals should be paying. A ‘funny’ conclusion is that individuals should not even have to fill a tax return as between 90 and 95% of its content is already known by the tax authorities.
        If the French state does such a thing, I doubt very much that the British one is not at the same level, possibly at an even more advanced level.

        1. a-tracy
          January 15, 2023

          Yes and every single one of those departments should leave a log on the individuals account that you can see who has been reading your information. I know a nurse disciplined for checking up on a step-child’s record, her partner told his ex what’s the notes said, she nearly lost her job over it, I don’t want random nurses or other public servants being able to check up on patients/neighbours they have no business looking into.

    5. Hope
      January 12, 2023

      Mark,

      Treacherous May introduced the Snooper charter. It gave power to many public sector bodies to spy on people through their computer usage. Even the Food Agency! David Davis MP was the only one I recall making a claim it should have safe guards by way of warrant.

      National papers revealed Recently the mayor of Bristol used snooper charter to used to target against anyone criticising his education policy!! The local authority more than any other body uses the snooper charter. Not to prevent terrorism, but to spy on the public for all manner of things.

      Teachers and TAs encouraged to snoop and report on what children say in class and playground. Writing concern reports. Outrageous. But this is the socialist controlling Tories for you.

    6. IanB
      January 12, 2023

      Today it is confirmed both the Post Office and the Guardian newspaper have been hacked, some people might find it convoluted to blame the Government. But it is those that the Government want to have people’s personal data, that are facilitating this is ease of access – it is impossible to have one without the other.

  3. Gary Megson
    January 12, 2023

    I read Mr Sunak’s speech with interest. His message was that the country has been run extremely badly over the last decade or so, and now faces many problems. But the Conservatives are now here to clear up the mess created by the … err, created by the … Conservatives!

    1. Lifelogic
      January 12, 2023

      Indeed to a very large degree by Boris & Sunak’s tax, borrow, print, currency debase, the net zero insanity & mad energy policies, the lockdowns, HS2, test and trace, net harm vaccines, PPE procurement, the dire NHS system…

      1. Fedupsoutherner
        January 12, 2023

        LL. Ha ha. And to think Starmer and Labour wanted more of the same. More lockdown and more taxes. If Labour were in now I wonder if the unions wouldn’t have insisted on so many strikes and I wonder who Starmer would be taxing to pay for it all. Conservatives have handled the economy badly but Labour would have been worse.

        1. Hope
          January 12, 2023

          I am not sure Shirley. Both May and Johnson claimed it would be unconscionable, and no PM would ever countenance, giving away N.Ireland, border down Irish Sea, check goods from one part of UK to another, allow EU to check UK books etc. that is exactly what they have done! Sunak, Hunt, Wallace and Heaton-Harris forcing DUP to cave in to EU demands over protocol and accept EU control over N.Ireland. Cleverly by his comments appears to thick to realise what he is doing.

          This shower have now allowed EU access to GB data and gave away building of our warships to Spain with fitting out under EU laws, regs, rules and tariffs making it difficult for all GB businesses! They then give a press conference to deceive the public it is good news!

          Stick up for Ukraine give away N.Ireland without a cross word or shot being fired! What are the leavers doing? Nothing.

        2. Lifelogic
          January 12, 2023

          +1 – Labour even worse I agree. Now wanting a vote on VAT on private school fees so such parents will have to pay four times over. The Starmer/Reaves dopes even think this (and killing Non Dom) will raise money when in reality they will raise far less taxes and kill many good schools to force even more onto the state system.

      2. Lifelogic
        January 12, 2023

        I am in favour of more real science, maths, stem and sensible education alas so many degrees are pointless, woke lunacy, very poor quality or even total misinformation. What proportion of MPs believe in net zero, a climate catastrophe and “renewables” circs 90%+ it seems. What proportion thing lock down and the Civid vaccines did more harm than good. Or that walking & cycling produces no CO2 direct or indirect as government web sites claim?

        Forcing people poor at maths to continue to 18 is very silly politically and in practice. Sunak himself got most of his maths wrong as Chancellor. Many schools lack any decent maths and physics teachers.

        1. Mickey Taking
          January 12, 2023

          the problem with maths continuing to 18 is that too many don’t grasp basic arithmetic which should be evident in SATS and on joining secondary schools. Trying to take alarmingly poor students along with much brighter ones will create havoc and boredom. That would mean separating the teaching of the poor ones from the brighter ones. We find ourself back at the failure in Primary years to deal with the inability.

    2. Ian Wragg
      January 12, 2023

      The conservatives won’t clear up any mess the have created they are a spent force with no ideas.
      More legislation to stop illegal gimmigrants but sadly they don’t study it so they will keep on coming.
      The speech was a cop out on every level from an unelected, unwanted billionaire.

      1. Hope
        January 12, 2023

        ECHR needs to be scrapped. Both May and Braverman made that clear. That would mean leaving them EU sell out agreement, hence why all smoke and mirrors with sham legislation announcements to con and appease the public. Take back control my foot. No wonder Starmer is now using it. If Labour get in office it will make no difference.Both are wedded to lockstep with EU, WEF, WHO, UN etc. we need a Conservative party to put the national interest first including,scrapping devolution or giving England its own parliament. Tories currently Balkanising England for EU. HS2 is another EU infrastructure project. It will not be given up no matter what a waste of our taxes it is.

      2. X-Tory
        January 12, 2023

        We DO NOT NEED any MORE legislation to stop the illegal immigrants and bogus asylum seekers. We need LESS legislation. The government already has the power to refuse to consider ALL asylum applications from people who pass through safe countries – ie. ALL asylum seekers coming here through Europe. Just read the new sections 80B and 80C of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 and you will see this for yourself. The problem is that the government – including the FAKE Braverman who pretends to oppose the current invasion but does NOTHING to stop it – are not using these powers. They are still accepting asylum applications. WHY??? We do not need to do so, and we should NOT do so.

        Refuse ALL the applications and DEPORT ALL the applicants. That’s the answer. It would instantly deter any more from coming here and would save us billions of pounds a year. But the problem then would be that they would appeal under a completely different law: the Human Rights Act. Which is why I said we need LESS legislation. We need to ABOLISH THE HUMAN RIGHTS ACT. Will Sunak do this? NO. So that proves he has NO intention of stopping the invasion and is LYING to us. He is just another Tory Traitor.

        Reply It is a contradiction to say no more legislation and to say repeal Human Rights Act

    3. Ian B
      January 12, 2023

      @Gary Megson + 1 – Then he forgets he has been in this particular Conservative Government and part of it Collective responsibility and has owned the UK’s problems since 2016, and still nothing happens. Speeches don’t solve anything they are just speeches

    4. a-tracy
      January 12, 2023

      Nothing to do with Covid 19 Gary, nothing at all!

      Nothing to do with the 2008 crash after the Labour party followed Clinton’s disastrous unchecked mortgages for people who couldn’t and wouldn’t pay free for all and packaging up the resulting bad mortgages, nothing to do with having to buy up Labours’ favourite bank.

      Student loans only for the English a Labour policy supported by the SNP!

      Retirement from 60 to 69 by 2030 started by Labour and 65 to 69 for men.

      Making dentists private a Labour policy.

      HS1 & 2 Mandelson’s big dream project to get us compliant with the EU rail networks so their rolling stock could run their freight on our lines, even Boris was talking about a rail bridge into Ireland from Scotland to end the line. We are just following the Global orders whichever colour we elect.

      A terrible Doctors contract in 2005 that was going to keep the doctors happy and productive, a failure of both parties, pushed everyone into A&E evenings, nights and weekends, part-time local clinics. Taking beds out of hospitals 26,000 under labour continued under Cameron. Why that makes every operative less productive?

    5. Bloke
      January 12, 2023

      Gary:
      The Conservative Govt has performed very badly for most of its existing tenure, and still does. Many normally-loyal Conservative supporters will have no candidate they assess as worth voting for at the next election in any party. The Reform Party appears to be the only entity worthy of support, yet their numbers are presently unlikely to achieve adequate power. When total voter turnout falls below 15% one wonders whether any parliament would be credible.

    6. glen cullen
      January 12, 2023

      Liberty Steel plans to make up to a quarter of its UK workforce redundant and halt work at two plants as high energy costs hammer the industry. Net Zero will be a death sentence to Britain’s already struggling steel industry

  4. AJPotts
    January 12, 2023

    Expanding hospital bed capacity is critically important but unlikely to happen as the leadership of the NHS is anti-hospital. The leadership is comprised of radical leftists whose priorities lie elsewhere – notably ‘public health’ ie nanny state impositions and wokery – and increasing hospital bed capacity would be seen as a distraction.

    The NHS is a Soviet era nationalised industry. It’s design features make it incapable of working well. It needs to be abolished and replaced with a system in which the consumer is empowered rather than the politician and the bureaucrat. Healthcare will continue to be third rate in this country as long as the NHS dominates healthcare provision.

    1. Anselm
      January 12, 2023

      My operation was cancelled a week before during covid and it cost me £3,000 to have it done privately. What got me was the attitude change! The Consultant and i had a nice little conversation about religion at check out time! When a (male) nurse went off duty when he should have been signing me out, THREE nurses attended, dressed the wound, smiled and chatted and even carried my bag to the car!
      Recently I had a procedure on the NHS. Different. Professional. Listening, not chatting. Smiling professionally. Working like clockwork. Done it all before. Lots to get through.

    2. Berkshire Alan
      January 12, 2023

      AJPotts
      Indeed the thinking about extra beds has not changed for decades, a couple of decades ago Reading had two hospitals, they merged them onto one site, and sold off the land of the larger Battle Hospital site to Tesco’s.
      The Royal Berks hospital capacity was enlarged to make up for the loss of Battle hospital, but ended up with only the same number of beds as the original combined hospitals had, with no plans for any expansion.
      The Chief Executive at the time was asked the question about future capacity, they had no further plans for more beds, as they thought shorter stays would mean they could cope.
      When asked about the lack of car parking on site for both patients and staff, the reply was they can come by bus !
      In the last couple of decades the area has had a huge amount of new housing, but no new hospitals.
      Now they wonder why the existing hospitals cannot cope.
      Clueless, absolutely clueless.

      1. Mickey Taking
        January 12, 2023

        and far too many areas which undertake theatre operations or more minor procedures don’t begin before 9am, and aim to finish at 5pm. Underutilised !

      2. Original Richard
        January 12, 2023

        Berkshire Alan :

        Not clueless, deliberate action by yet another fifth column communist CE.

        Our civil service, educational establishment, judiciary, quangos and institutions are full of them.

  5. turboterrier
    January 12, 2023

    It just seems the same old words we have been fed for years. It is not enough. The people want action this day.
    Parliament should have a lock in and nobody leaves until the laws and treaties preventing this country stopping illegal immigration from being implemented to follow the examples of Sweden and Australia are thrown out.
    The top man can talk all he likes but out in the real world the country knows that less then 10% of the existing politicians are fit for purpose. Everything written by you Sir John is to a lot of people the way forward, but the people are not in place to implement your agenda.
    Those who think Labour will be the panacea for everything have heads where sun don’t shine. Too many secret , different agenda’s no cohesion and we all continue to suffer.

    1. Ian B
      January 12, 2023

      @turboterrier +1 – As part of this Conservative Government since 2016 (pre pandemic, pre Ukraine), and still nothing happens. How does making a speech even matter, when you are the problem. The Conservative Party made the big mistake of allowing any one in the Boris Johnson Cabinet to stand as PM and Leader. BJ was just their voice they all owned the problems they created.

  6. MPC
    January 12, 2023

    It’s a shame you didn’t at least mention lockdowns as contributor to, if not main determinant of, inflation, and net zero as the pervasive destroyer of prosperity, legislation for which which should be repealed.

    1. Anselm
      January 12, 2023

      =1

  7. Donna Walker
    January 12, 2023

    Billionaire Sunak could help the economy by personally refunding to HMRC the £4.5 billion lost to Covid fraud which he, as Chancellor, was directly responsible for permitting ….. since it didn’t occur to him to put in place even the most basic of checks on claimants.

    Competent? Where’s the evidence.

    1. Bryan Harris
      January 12, 2023

      Great suggestion Donna

    2. Bloke
      January 12, 2023

      Donna:
      The evidence shows his incompetence.

  8. Old Albion
    January 12, 2023

    Rishi (tax ’em more) Sunak speaks. Yadda yadda, blah blah blah. Nothing changes.

  9. Narrow Shoulders
    January 12, 2023

    Sounds like a lot more intervention to me. Conservatives used to believe in laissez faire and the free market.

    How has authoritarian intervention worked for the last 12 years (and the 10 before that)?

  10. Hat man
    January 12, 2023

    Sir John, if as you say investment in the future is to happen ‘mainly through private sector action’, why is your article not addressed to the private sector rather than to government? Or are you suggesting that this Tory government has created a tax regime hostile to private enterprise? If that’s the case, it’s surely a Tory-In-Name-Only (TINO) government, since Conservatism is all about favouring private enterprise, I always thought.

  11. Rhoddas
    January 12, 2023

    Please become Chancellor Sir J.
    There is neither hope nor vision with Hunt!

  12. Ed M
    January 12, 2023

    Just read about the poor man (RIP) who died from heart attack when the NHS ambulance failed to turn up. This is like sooo THIRD WORLD. People paying taxes and they can’t even receive basic care like an ambulance when they’ve had a heart attack. This for me is a big marker for something profoundly wrong with our country. And I am sure millions of other people are thinking the same today. And I really hope this gets discussed in detail in Parliament in the coming days. Thank you.

    1. ChrisS
      January 12, 2023

      I read that story as well. He looked a fit man and his attractive-looking wife has been made a widow for no other reason than the complete incompetence of NHS management. They both deserved better.

      The problem with bed blocking has been known about for at least two years and the government recently told the NHS to take a further £200m ( on top of £500m previously allocated ) from the existing NHS budget and buy beds in care homes to move those ready to leave hospital into some form of rehab care.

      This man should not have died. Health service management could and should have implimented this policy last year, before the winter, but didn’t even think about it.

      This is negligence of the first order. The NHS managers responsible for this man’s death and many more besides need to be dismissed without compensation and some tried for corporate manslaughter.

      1. Berkshire Alan
        January 12, 2023

        Chris

        Bed blocking (who thought up those emotive words) by patients who cannot leave, or be disharged, simply because they will not get the correct ongoing treatment (Care Plan) they should have, at home or somewhere else safely, has been going on for decades, it certainly is NOT not new phenomenon !

  13. Julian Flood
    January 12, 2023

    Sir John, in the comics of my youth the hero would frequently find himself trapped by villains with some deadly threat approaching. Once the writer got so carried away he discovered he’d made escape impossible and had to use the final get-out. “With one bound he was free.”

    Two generations of UK politicians have cornered us in a high cost, low productivity and high tax trap. Each iteration of the cycle makes the situation worse, lowering our competitiveness as we don increasingly rough hair shirts. Our competitors must think we are mad.

    Declare a national energy emergency. Legislate for generous compensation should our pursuit of cheaper energy supplies cause problems. Form joint public/private entities. Double UK gas production from on and offshore. Ban exports until we are self sufficient in oil and gas.

    Frack. With one bound…

    JF

    1. SM
      January 12, 2023

      Indeed, Julian.

  14. Sir Joe Soap
    January 12, 2023

    Sorry but the goose is already cooked with tax rises which prevent most of this from happening.
    There’s just too much to deliver here in 18 months, and it’s contrary to the drift of the past 12 years.
    Even if waiting lists fall, not a single boat arrives and inflation is halved, people have memories of length of more than a bumble bee. Doomed. The Truss budget was the last chance saloon.

  15. , George Brooks.
    January 12, 2023

    We are in the same position now as we were in 1997, as described in your penultimate paragraph, and Jeremy Hunt’s budget has guaranteed that the government will lose the next election.

    Nothing has been done so far to secure our energy or encourage growth. We get a big announcement that we are going to get several more ‘free ports’. Five minutes later we hear they are going to be a ”watered-down” version!

    Companies are being discouraged to expand or set up here by taxation and workers are being taxed to the hilt and when we get through this tunnel we will be deeper in debt by increased borrowing. Rishi and Hunt will wonder why we haven’t restored our financial base because they have absolutely no or little business acumen or imagination.

  16. Berkshire Alan
    January 12, 2023

    If only Action followed the Words John, If Only. !

    If only Politicians and Governments would understand Human Nature, if Only !

    If only Politicians would understand the problems they themselves have created, If Only. !

    If only politicians could understand that pushing for net zero too fast ahead of the science, design and manufacturing ability is ludicrous, If Only. !

  17. Anselm
    January 12, 2023

    Recently Rishi Sunak was asked by Laura Kuenessberg whether or not he had private health insurance and he refused to answer. That is because he obviously does – just like I had to during covid. I trust him economically because he is used to working in millions and thousands both because his wife and he are rich and also because of his superb education culminating in a stellar career at Goldman Sachs. Millions to him are like pounds to me.

    1. Mike Wilson
      January 12, 2023

      I trust him economically because he is used to working in millions and thousands both because his wife and he are rich and also because of his superb education culminating in a stellar career at Goldman Sachs.

      That must be sarcasm? If not, I have a London Bridge you may be interested in buying.

  18. Ian B
    January 12, 2023

    It is “the economy stupid”

    We shouldn’t need to keep repeating this – it is only with a strong vibrant and resilient economy can all these wast of time speeches have meaning.

    The economy is more than just collecting taxes and then spending them, or more correctly giving away peoples hard earned cash. The State the Establishment are over bloated and is out of Control. The man in the street has to manage, adapt and make sacrifices just to give Government their demanded money – the Government then just throws it around without accountability, responsibility or even the purpose of a result.

    The Taxpayer manages their Life, the Government refuses to Manage theirs.

  19. agricola
    January 12, 2023

    Not while the present incumbents are in charge. Conservative government has produced a basket case economy, with the sea anchor of tax in all its forms, that will ensure we never escape, short of a political revolution. Refusing to use our own power sources due to Boris’s insane nett zero is responsible for inflation. Allowing the Coupe that killed off Liz Truss’s attempt to give us a path forward was the end of your party for me. It confirmed that elected government does not govern in the UK, there are more sinister forces at play. You now see the result, nothing government touches works and you are now enjoying the orchestrated protest which also will be unending because you lack the means to satisfy it. Let 2024 bring on Reform.

  20. Mark J
    January 12, 2023

    Yet we find out yesterday that HMRC has not been collecting taxes to the £42 Billion.

    You really can’t make it up!

    On one hand we are being taxed to the hilt, on the other HMRC aren’t bothering in collecting what is due.

    Is it any wonder this country is in a mess!

    I would like to know what the Government is doing to recoup this missing £42 Billion, rather than take the easy option of taxing us even more.

  21. Bryan Harris
    January 12, 2023

    If HMG have a charted course to get us on an even keel, economically, why are they wasting so much time and effort on things that were never in the manifesto, and nobody but those pulling the strings wants, and will improve nothing:

    – Digital ids – a draft paper has been written and it is out for consideration, awaiting completion of a badly advertised survey. Few people will see it in time to comment, but those that do should be aware of the way the questions are primed to get a positive response.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/draft-legislation-to-help-more-people-prove-their-identity-online/consultation-on-draft-legislation-to-support-identity-verification

    – Digital money – rejected by the Lords report who could find no justification for it. Strange how HMG insists on going off at a tangent when these things will do nothing to help, but will provide for a lot more intrusion into our lives, one way or another.

  22. Des
    January 12, 2023

    All the aims of this government are correcting the problems they caused. The covid scam and lockdowns destroyed the NHS, huge inflation and ballooned spending. The vax has ruined immune systems and caused hospitals to be overrun. The total refusal to control borders has led to an invasion of illegals, ruination of many communities and yet more public debt.
    If you set out a plan to wreck this country your government’s policies would be it. No wonder so many people think it is deliberate.

  23. ChrisS
    January 12, 2023

    If it wants to have any chance of retaining power in 2024-25 this government needs to do only three things |:

    1. Get tough with the NHS by putting the blame for the appalling performance of the health service firmly where it should rest : with health service management, and demand a plan from them to fix it. The plan needs to have measurable targets and any additional money must only be handed over against delivered targets. Personally, I think the NHS has already been given enough money.

    2. Get us out of recession as soon as possible. No more interest rate rises and a statement that as soon as possible rates will be reduced. For that, they will need to get rid of Bailey and his MPC and come up with a growth plan that can be delivered before the election. That sounds very like the intentions of Liz Truss which were intrinsically right, it’s just that she failed to bring the OBR on side, and Bailey did the dirty on her. It was his actions that doomed her plan to fail.

    3. Get the Rwanda and Albanian migrant schemes up and running before the better weather comes along so that the public can see that the government is genuinely serious about dealing with economic migrants.

    1. IanT
      January 12, 2023

      I’m not sure it’s that easy to get rid of Andrew Bailey. The real question is why he was appointed to the BoE in the first place, after a pretty dismal term at the FCA.

      1. ChrisS
        January 12, 2023

        The head of the Bank of England is appointed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer with the approval of the Prime Minister and the KIng.
        It should therefore be quite straightforward to replace him, as long as his successor is of a suitable calibre.

        1. IanT
          January 12, 2023

          It’s an 8 year Appointment Chris – and it would be a very brave Chancellor who tried to sack him, unless he does something really (really) stupid. He’s also on £575K a year, so I’m pretty sure he won’t be in a hurry to go anywhere either.

  24. IanT
    January 12, 2023

    I wished I shared your confidence that ‘Costs’ will come down over the longer term Sir John.

    We have the longer term problem that our currency has been debased and that we are busy destroying our global competitiveness. The so-called “developing” nations have growing economies, available labour and essential goods & commodities to trade. They are not ham-stringing their industry with Net Zero, that is an obsession of the West. China, India, Indonnesia, Africa & Brazil will not be converting their populations to EVs any time soon. Nor will their factories be hammered with green energy taxes. When we are so Import dependent for so many essentials (e.g. food & energy) – it’s the cost of those imports that really matter. We’d better be able to pay for them in something our ‘suppliers’ are willing to accept – or things are going to cost a great deal more in future (at least in Sterling £££ terms).

  25. Original Richard
    January 12, 2023

    So long as Parliament continues to attempt to zero our 1% contribution to global CO2 emissions with its Net Zero Strategy we are on an inevitable path of economic decline as people, commerce and industry move abroad unable to accept meagre supplies of expensive and intermittent energy and forced by legislation into living with impractical heat pumps and evs.

    Any Parliament can promise all it wants but without a strong economy underpinned by supplies of cheap, abundant always available energy it will only be pies in the sky rhetoric.

  26. Original Richard
    January 12, 2023

    The sixth promise Mr. Sunak needs to make is to reform our civil service, educational establishment, judiciary, quangos, the BBC/C4 and institutions such as the NHS, to root out the communist fifth column.

    1. hefner
      January 12, 2023

      As far as I can see, that would be the 6th to 10th promises that the PM could have given. Only someone having no idea whatsoever what reforming all these institutions could be would put all of them in one bag and assume the ‘communist fifth column’ would be ‘rooted out’ in one go.

      But OR, your lack of knowledge and understanding on most topics makes reading your comments a real pleasure, you and DOM (and at times a few others) are the stars of this blog for the quality of the entertainment you provide to a casual reader.

      1. Philip P.
        January 12, 2023

        Hefner, you could have given a little bit more thought to what OR was saying, before firing off your supercilious comment. His point seems to be that a ‘fifth column’ has permeated the various institutions he mentions. Root them out, and that will achieve the changes he thinks are required. That seems logical enough to me.

        Is there a fifth column? I don’t know if it’s what he had in mind, but Common Purpose is the obvious one. Their ‘long march through the institutions’ is surely something you are aware of, I take it.

  27. a-tracy
    January 12, 2023

    JR “The government does not have the time nor mandate to embark on major reform of the NHS before the election. It can encourage managers to improve staffing arrangements,”

    John, do you know how many of the 170 Type 1 (Major) Emergency departments in England have job vacancies?
    How many per A&E1 Department? Which departments where in England have the most significant problems?
    What Grades?
    How long have the jobs been advertised?
    Are there people claiming unemployment or underemployment with the required skills?
    Something is wrong with all this; you must check for yourself, John, with the A&E1 Department where your constituents must go. The Managers aren’t up to it if they can’t get essential manpower planning right. England wide same rates of pay aren’t right either.

    1. Mickey Taking
      January 12, 2023

      The first question to be asked is are the vacancies really needed, or just putting numbers up because nobody challenges what the staff level should be? Are there applicants but they get rejected, if so on what grounds?

    2. hefner
      January 12, 2023

      It is likely that Wokingham people go/are sent to the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. RBH has somewhat (a bit) better results than the England average in terms of A&E.

      1. Mickey Taking
        January 12, 2023

        First of all a patient needs to see, or create justification to have a doctor telephone them!
        Then a referral is required, good luck.
        After joining a queue you may attend a busy clinic and hope you can be treated – in the fullness of time.
        Does it matter whether it is RBH or somewhere else? People are often desparate enough to go anywhere.

  28. Bert Young
    January 12, 2023

    Policies and principles don’t create change only capable and decisive leadership does . Sadly this has been lacking for the many years of recent political management . Independent bodies seem to have more sway and this makes the electoral system a laughing stock . Another issue has been how our leadership lost the moral high ground leaving the public in disarray . Stability and economic growth are the key points now and every decision and follow up action must not fail .

  29. Atlas
    January 12, 2023

    I watched last night party political broadcast by Sunak.
    Underwhelmed by the content – but more vicerally, I felt that Sunak was somebody who had been imposed upon us and who does not command support from the wider Conservative Party or the Country.

    Unless he is changed the voters will ‘change’ most Conservative MPs at the next GE.

    1. Mike Wilson
      January 12, 2023

      Unless he is changed the voters will ‘change’ most Conservative MPs at the next GE.

      What?!! Another change! You want 4 prime ministers in one term. Many Tory MPs will be changed at the next election. Including, I think, Mr. Redwood. His seat is vulnerable. Sunak will go down in history for the biggest Tory election defeat in history. Even bigger than Major in 1997.

      I have voted Tory once in my life – in 1979. Given it is always a question of Tory or Labour, I have generally observed that the Tories are very marginally not as bad as Labour. But, now, no sane person could think that the current shower are the lesser of two evils.

      Reply You need to consider the new seats after boundary changes

      1. hefner
        January 12, 2023

        Indeed, ‘getting rid of’ Woodley and Earley might keep Sir John afloat as these two areas are rather less affluent as core Wokingham constituency … and more likely to vote Labour/LibDem when one considers the returns in the corresponding wards in previous GEs.
        Isn’t it funny that the proposed boundary change went this way? Must be random … obviously.

        Reply The Boundary Commission is independent and considers proposals from the main parties against published criteria

        1. Berkshire Alan
          January 12, 2023

          Reply – Reply

          I see in media reports it is being suggested that those who are to vote at the next election, must bring some form of photographic proof of identity.
          I have no real problem with this, so that the double voting risk is reduced, but what about postal votes, where suggestions are that this form of voting is of far higher risk of being manipulated.
          Anything planned to oversee this growing problem as more and more people choose the easy route to vote in perpetuity, without further, or annual application ?.

  30. Mike Wilson
    January 12, 2023

    The issue on the economy is who has the best policies to achieve those aims? Who is most likely to see it through?

    This stuff makes me smile. Who indeed? Not the Tory Party, obviously.

    1. agricola
      January 12, 2023

      Tory ministers talk the talk in some cases, but lack a majority within their own ranks to carry them out. This government is a holding job before electoral oblivion. It cannot satisfy the Establishment, it’s Membership, the Electorate or even it’s own MPs.

      1. turboterrier
        January 12, 2023

        agricola

        If several of the online media blogs are to be believed the troops are getting restless.
        Talk around the possibility of a Boris return on a white charger to take the party through the coming election.
        These people talking to the press should hand in their ID cards and walk off into the sunset.
        Boris if he did come back is not going to save the party because his ideas on the existing problems and our future have not changed. He will just be a King Midas in reverse. Like Trump the hearings into the No10 parties and other misdemeanors will be his swan song. Always to be remembered as the man who blew an 80+ majority
        That is why this country needs real radical change.

  31. Ian B
    January 12, 2023

    Re-phrased from the MsM – Dutch taxpayers through their state-owned company get awarded £20million of UK Taxpayer money to run a UK rail line.

    It is “the economy stupid”. The UK Government spends, spends spends so has to tax, tax, tax just to throw money away without accountability, responsibility and delivery attached. The UK Government grows the State, the taxpayer has to cut back and sacrifice – so money is not available in the economy

    1. turboterrier
      January 12, 2023

      Ian B
      They didn’t come out too well on last night’s Panorama programme either..

  32. forthurst
    January 12, 2023

    Sunak believes that the British people don’t like foreign marine invaders but do like large quantities from third world countries such as India i.e. an invasion force invited in by treasonous Tories. The former category may be more of an immediate embarrassment to the government because it demonstrates its pathological ineptitude in enforcing its purported policies but the idea that we English welcome yet more third worlders into our country when the major cities in this country have been so enriched that the English (the indigenous people of this country) find themselves in a minority in them suggests that the government is delusional and simply believes its own propaganda, a proposition which will be tested at the next general election.

    1. turboterrier
      January 12, 2023

      forthurst
      Yes, definitely a minority especially watching all the woke advertising on the television. Like watching programmes abroad.

  33. Mickey Taking
    January 12, 2023

    We all know actions speak louder than words. We wait and watch – the clock is ticking and Richi has a mountain to climb.

  34. agricola
    January 12, 2023

    Very interesting and informative interview with Jacob Rees-Mogg on GMB News this morning. He explained that the conservative party was a very broad church, where have I heard that phrase before, comprising many strands of opinion. In effect on any given subject they fall roughly into two camps. My own observation is that no HM Ship goes to sea with a divided crew and expects to return. The nett result is that nothing gets done, a fact that has been all too obvious for the life of this government. Indecision is the precursor to failure. Decisivness, even if only 75% correct usually carries the day. Look at the dither list.
    NI Protocol.
    Immigration and Repatriation.
    Repeal/adoption of circa 4000 EU laws.
    Fishing.
    Tax Law Reform.
    Housing.
    Energy Self Sufficiency.
    Water Pollution and distribution.
    NHS reform.
    Road state.
    State Spending.
    Police reform, purpose, and performance.

    Government scoring on any of the above is abysmal. Divisions within the conservative party, of whom half should be sitting with Labour, the Libdems, and SNP, render you, despite your great majority, as political eunuchs. The tectonic plates of politics in the UK need to shift, such that the label accurately defines the content of the tin.

    1. glen cullen
      January 12, 2023

      Your comments need to be emailed to every Tory MP

    2. turboterrier
      January 12, 2023

      agricola

      Addressing the waste hemorraging out of every department.

  35. Ian B
    January 12, 2023

    “grow the economy” There is a disconnect in Government on what growth actually means. Prolific spending of other peoples money is not growth, Growing the State, while stating the need for a bonfire of the Quango’s is still not growth – that’s just keeping your chums onside and quiet. The removing of real money from those that earn it by more and more taxes is not growth – all you have done is told others to cut back make sacrifices so the Government can increase spending on the State. What this Conservative Government has done is highlight that we the UK as a people are not all in it together.

    To have growth money has to stay in the real economy and get used as the resource it is. It appears naive to have to state it when money is allowed to create more money we have wealth, wealth is prosperity that all the peripheral dreams get paid for. This Conservative Government is working the opposite way around to having a plan or a fiscal policy – lets spend, make speeches, keep our fingers crossed others will work it out.

  36. John Hatfield
    January 12, 2023

    ” who has the best policies to achieve those aims?”
    Liz Tuss probably.

  37. Clough
    January 12, 2023

    I think it was rather unwise of the Conservative party whips to have rushed to judgment and dramatised a short social media comment. Andrew Bridgen has been given a lot of publicity, he will continue to state his case, and month after month the vaccine adverse effects will continue to accumulate. The party whips will not be able to draw a line under this episode and the Tories risk being seen as complacent and heartless, if the adverse effects become impossible to ignore.

    Decisions taken in haste…

  38. XY
    January 12, 2023

    I suppose that, as a Conservative MP, you can’t be too scathing.

    The bottom line here is that Sunak’s “promises” are mostly a wish-list and/or things that will happen anyway. It’s like promising that the sun will rise tomorrow or that spending will eventually fall (which may eventually be true, perhps in the year 3010?).

    Inflation is set to reduce by half anyway – he doesn’t have to do anything to achieve it other than avoid doing any more stupid things. This “promise” is merely a politician’s attempt to claim credit for the sun rising tomorrow.

    Sunak is toast. As a lifelong Conservativbe voter, for the first time I find myself not only unable to vote for that party, but determined to actively vote against – as long as Reform UK do as they say and field a candidate in every constituency – no more cunning plans.

  39. Dr John de los Angeles
    January 18, 2023

    I fully agree with Sir John, but I have little hope with Rishi and his poor bunch of Ministers in charge!

Comments are closed.