Make the money central to the election

The Prime Minister rightly said we need to take back control of our money.

One of the important things the government can do in this election is to say Goodbye to the austerity economics of the EU budget rules and Mr Osborne’s tenure. One of the plessures of Brexit, a positive for voters of all persuasions, will be the ability to spend the net contributions we currently send to Brussels. Once we are out we can offer tax cuts and more spending with no rise in borrowing. Spending the money at home will help our economy and put  more of our people to work here, instead of having to send the money abroad  and run a larger balance of payments deficit.

We could remove VAT on domestic fuel, tampons and green products. We could spend more on the NHS, training more UK people as nurses and doctors. We coukd spend more in our schools and do more to promote better roads and public transport.

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  1. Duyfken
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    Although it would indeed be one of the “plessures” for there to be no rise in borrowing, would you go so far as to suggest a start on reducing our debt as a worthy aim also?

    • bigneil
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink

      Maybe we could ask the EU for a loan – they must have plenty of money spare after the daily amounts our leaders have thrown into the “Black Hole of Brussels”.

      • Bob
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

        Cancel HS2.

        • Jerry
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:16 am | Permalink

          I agree, cancel HS2. Then with the savings build a north-south & east-west North America style loading gauge primarily freight route connecting the container ports with strategic located inland ‘container ports’.

          Being a slower speed line it will be cheaper, as it could reuse existing low traffic or disused track beds, thus planning consent would be simpler, and if (re)-built to North American loading gauge it would not only be able to accommodate double-stacked container trains but also double-deck passenger trains if needs-be.

        • Hope
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:18 am | Permalink

          Osborne failed every predicted target or pledge. JR, why would you want to highlight failure? Structural deficit was to b e balanced by 2015, now kicked into the long grass while taxing us until our pups squeak! Cameron and Osborne told us that would not give the EU the extra demand £1.2 billion pounds. They gave away £2.9 billion instead! Our taxes to the EU for nothing. Additionally, A sixth of overseas aid given away to the EU to spend as it wishes i.e. exotic mating fishing programmers FFS. Funding EU students for free while giving ours a lifetime of debt. Money central to the election. Good grief.

    • Ralph Musgrave
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 11:40 am | Permalink

      As long as the rate of interest on the debt is less than inflation, the debtor (i.e. government) makes a profit at the expense of creditors. Thus as long as that’s the case, the size of the debt is irrelevant.

    • Andrew Berkeley
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      There’s no justification for reducing the debt. For a sovereign currency issuing government, the “debt” simply represents the government issued money which has been saved out of circulation. Why would we want to reduce the private sector’s savings? In fact, all we’d be doing is switching their savings back to cash form, for what reason?

    • getahead
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

      Il veut dire “blessures”.

      • stred
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:57 am | Permalink

        I am in sunny France, watching their election antics. M. Fillon has chosen an unfortunate election slogan. ‘La France une volonte’, which is being altered on posters to ‘La France un vol’. Vol means theft.

        He seems such a nice chap, compared with some of the others. If only the duckhouse syndrome had not returned.

  2. Mark B
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    Spend, spend, spend ! Can we start by getting rid of the deficit and the national debt ?

    I did not vote to take back ‘selective’ control. I voted to leave the political EU and become a sovereign nation one more.

    The negotiations are still yet to take place. We have a government that is possibly going to spend about 4-6 weeks on a GE. That is more time wasted. And if, Chairman May wins, which I expect her to do, then we are stuck with a government that will negotiate a bad deal and we will not be able to do anything about it for quite sometime. Nice move. Hope it does not come off.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:11 am | Permalink

      @Mark B; It is far cheaper for governments to borrow for investment than it would be for private business, and at the rend of the day this matters as it is always the general population who pays either way, either via their taxes or by way of the check-outs.

      “Austerity economics”, the war on the deficit, was always of political, not economic, importance. The UK has owed far more, has paid back far more, at the same time having massive public works and investment programmes.

      “I did not vote to take back ‘selective’ control. I voted to leave the political EU and become a sovereign nation one more.”

      You might have, but what about the person in front and behind you at the polling station?

      “The negotiations are still yet to take place. We have a government that is possibly going to spend about 4-6 weeks on a GE. That is more time wasted.”

      No it will not be, there will be no negotiations over the summer recess, and perhaps not until the outcome of the German elections are known. Mrs May is using a window in the negotiations, right or wrongly.

      “[thinly veiled attack in Mrs May] which I expect her to do, then we are stuck with a government that will negotiate a bad deal and we will not be able to do anything about it for quite sometime”

      We would be stuck with the government anyway, the next scheduled election was not due until 2020, a year after Brexit, your rant is thus vacuous.

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:18 am | Permalink

        @Jerry much sense in your post but is your idea of borrowing to invest the same as the person on front of you and behind you in the line?

        At what level is the debt more than there has ever been or paid back and is therefore a concern.

        Deficit should be reducing tending towards surplus. This can be adjustable if stimulus is required but at present the economy is growing (probably as a result of population increase) so should be reducing.

        • Jerry
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

          @NS; You seem to think this is a matter of opinion, rather than fact, you are wrong.

          Someone lending money will way up the risk of default, and the loan is costed to reflect that risk. What are the chances of the United Kingdom defaulting on its debt compared to a private company?

          Also ask yourself what our post WW2 war debt was, a debt that was only finally fully paid off. Our total national debt in 1952 was close to 250% (by comparison, today it is around 60%), but in the 1950s we were able to start building our motorway network, modernise the railways, never mind invest in the NHS, build several New Towns or at least large scale council housing programmes to deal with blitz damage and slum clearance. Yet Harold Macmillan was still able to make his “You’ve never had it so good.” speech.

    • S. Akin DADA
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:49 am | Permalink

      Kindly do all that’s necessary to support the PM for a successful outcome. A thousand and one people are equally qualified to lead the UK, but only one would always lead. I’m sure your advice for a better UK will not be jettisoned, as your cooperation and goodwill will be appreciated.


      • Mark B
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

        They are not, ‘Leaders’, at least in my view. They are public servants. And she wanted the job, as did others.

        my support is for those in communities that were betrayed by the then Conservative PM, Edward Heath. Namely, Fleetwood, Grimsby, Hull and many many others when he gave away control of one of the richest fishing grounds in Europe and destroyed their industry and livelihoods.

        Never again !

        • Jerry
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:33 am | Permalink

          @Mark B; So if the UK’s own territorial waters were the “richest fishing grounds in Europe” what hell was the First, Second and perhaps even Third Cod Wars with Iceland all about (the first two being before we even joined the EEC)?!

          Funny how UKIP (styled) rants never mention the fishing raids the UK fishing industry used to go on into other countries traditional fishing grounds, if not territorial waters, before we even joined the EEC, never mind the CFP, nor the part both GATT and the WTO play.

        • APL
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:43 am | Permalink

          Mark B: “and destroyed their industry and livelihoods.”

          There is a very good chance that while Heath destroyed the fishing industry in England, his actions did the same in Scotland and led, as a consequence of the destruction of thousands of Scottish independent businesses, to the conversion of Scotland into first a Socialist stronghold that held England in a Labour half nelson, but also laid the foundations of the support for the SNP and calls for the dissolution of the Union.

          That’d be quite some epitaph.

    • S. Akin DADA
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:57 am | Permalink

      Kindly do all that’s necessary to support the PM for a successful outcome. A thousand and one people are equally qualified to lead the UK, but only one would always lead. I’m sure your advice for a better UK will not be jettisoned, as your cooperation and goodwill will be appreciated.


    • Ralph Musgrave
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

      People only object to the “national debt” because it includes the word “debt”, a word which has negative emotional overtones. It the national debt was re-named “national savings” (which in a sense it is – Gilts are ASSETS as viewed by the private sector), no one would worry about the size of the “debt”.

      As the saying goes: “Control the language, and you control peoples’ thoughts”.

      • APL
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:51 am | Permalink

        Ralph Musgrave: “Control the language, and you control peoples’ thoughts”.

        Which is exactly what the Left has been doing, very successfully. It’s not a coincidence that the BBC is teaming with Mensheviks and Bolsheviks.

        Ralph Musgrave: “because it includes the word “debt” ”

        No they object to the word debt because they instinctively know that if your debt becomes excessive you end up having to devote more and more of you income to the service of the debt.

        Excessive debt is one of the fastest routes to poverty.

        Government debt is only an asset to the private sector so long as there is a prospect that the private sector will get its interest and principle returned.

        Ask the Venezuelans if there is no limit to government debt.

    • Andrew Berkeley
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

      Getting rid of the national debt is a nonsensical proposition when you understand what the national debt is: the government issued money that has been saved out of circulation. If we get rid of it all we do is swap it back for money, then what are folk going to do with it? Same as they already are: keep saving it. So what’s the point? The national debt is frankly not a problem, it is an asset of the private sector and the basis of most savings including pensions.

      • hefner
        Posted April 21, 2017 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

        Fully agreed. But “reducing the debt” has got such an extraordinary appeal for those who want to reduce the state, some ridiculously and without any real economic argument, down to 25 percent (look in previous days’ posts who the heavy “thinker” is).

        • libertarian
          Posted April 22, 2017 at 11:45 am | Permalink


          not for the first time your point is illogical . Yes I agree that reducing government debt isn’t as big an issue as made out. However that has nothing to do with what proportion of GDP is actually spent by government. Whether its 25% or not is a matter for debate but for the moment the big issue is the vast amount of money wasted by government on pork barrel projects, boondoggles, interference and overly regulated everything.

          Oh and if you want to rely on debt why bother to collect tax revenues at all , just borrow more

          • Andrew Berkeley
            Posted April 23, 2017 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

            The size of the debt and the size of government spending are indeed distinct concepts but the link is made by folk that wish to reduce the size of government. The reason this link is made, in my opinion, is because an unthinking or uneducated public can be easily made to believe that government spending must be cut because the apparent debt is unsustainable. So the household budget analogy is pushed because it seems so intuitive and the public completely lap it up despite it being completely erroneous. Hence the last two election results. So the debt is used as a convenient but fraudulent pretext to convince the population of spending cuts that they would otherwise probably not accept. I say “fraudulent” – the economic myths are so deeply entrenched, many politicians and those in the media are possibly doing this unknowingly for all I know.

            There’s no need to “rely” on debt. Debt just needs to be seen for what it is – a consequence of the private sector saving desire. Doesn’t matter what the tax rate is, if folk want to save there will be a government deficit (unless there’s a trade surplus, e.g. Germany). The point of tax is to remove spending power from the private sector so that some resources are available for the government to use. When folk save, they are voluntarily withdrawing their spending and when they do that they reduce aggregate incomes. The government needs to replace this spending if the economy is going to be stable. We should welcome a deficit as a stabilising mechanism in an economy with saving (and/or trade deficit) and recognise the debt as the record of government issued money saved out of circulation. So the “borrowing” is driven by the private sector saving behaviour. Taxation simply creates room for government spending more generally.

  3. Jerry
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    “Once we are out we can offer tax cuts and more spending with no rise in borrowing.”

    Why not just keep direct taxes broadly as they are. Of course there is much scope for change with indirect and stealth taxes, VAT Fuel and IHT for example), then have the sort of investment programmes seen post WW2.

    Mrs May can not go far wrong if her Manifesto invokes the optimism of the Harold Macmillan era rather than more recent times that have seen much navel-gazing, focusing on our national failings and problems rather than our opportunities.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:52 am | Permalink

      Can I also plead for a shift away from a focus on Universities, not that degree level education is unimportant, just far to over subscribed now whilst our vital technical and craft skills are suffering, never mind those industries that require more brawn than a wade of paper certificates…

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:40 am | Permalink

        Aside from a sound negotiating position on exiting the EU, education policy is what will swing my vote in this poll.

        A party that stands up and says fewer children arriving in the country means more money per child for those already here and that per child amount will be distributed equitably with account for performance and deprivation but not for language (if you can’t speak the language don’t come here or pay for your own improvement). I also want to see a party address teachers’ pensions, the payments for which are a major cause of the funding shortfall. Time to reduce the payout if the pot isn’t big enough as would happen in the private sector.

        I too want to vote for a party that will address the university quality conundrum. At the moment employers are using degrees as an application filter so it is natural school leavers feel compelled to take a degree. I would like to see tax breaks for on the job training of those between 18 and 25 over and above the current apprentice scheme. Those breaks would only kick in if reasonable levels of candidate progression within the organisation can he demonstrated.

        • Jerry
          Posted April 23, 2017 at 8:22 am | Permalink

          @NS; Your second paragraph has nothing to do with education policy, you are, mixing it up with immigration.

    • libertarian
      Posted April 22, 2017 at 11:51 am | Permalink


      One of the problems with so called “government investment” is that it actually isn’t an investment and doesn’t actually work .

      For more than 50 years various governments through various schemes have tried to invest in the North of England. 100’s of billions of pounds spent, yet still we get another set of “investments” for the north HS2 and Northern Powerhouse.

      As far as degree/university is concerned I agree with you 100% we also need a gift away from “traditional” GCSE’s too. More BTEC, NVQ and vocational qualifications are needed

      • Jerry
        Posted April 23, 2017 at 8:48 am | Permalink

        @libertarian; Regarding public spending, the facts say otherwise, otherwise all our motorway network is mirages, the railways still use steam engines, people still live in back-to-back slums, having an up to date military etc.

        The post war era seems to have passed you by, and the fact that many (private) companies both large and small made their ‘fortunes’ because of such public spending. Sorry Walter, either the (Tory governed) 1950s passed you by or you have a very selective memory, I suspect the latter…

  4. Prigger
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:09 am | Permalink

    Safe in the hands of a Chancellor and a Bank of England who slip on phantasmal banana skins.
    In the financial world past performance should not be a guide to future performance, fortunately.

  5. E.S Tablishment
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    The Labour Party will roll out a list. Gifts aplenty. Each day in time with the one o’clock news and then with a close follow-up at five o’clock. Each notable Labour person will in turn don Santa’s hat.
    Such clockwork mechanical presentation lost them the referendum. The same people will be organising this campaign as no-one in their chuckwagon of snake oil will admit their last campaign was flawed.
    The Labour Party will get personal in attack.
    Mrs May should be central to the election. The Leader who wishes to get the job done.

  6. Lifelogic
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:32 am | Permalink

    Also make it the cheap reliable energy election, the freedom of choice election (education, health and how you choose to spend your money ….), the much lower taxes election, the much smaller government elction, the (let’s finally keep Osborne’s IHT £1 threshold each the day after the election) and abolish the new probate IHT tax and have a bonfire of red tape and employment laws election ……

    Also the “yes you can take you children out of school for a day or two” without being criminalised by the state, and the no we are not going to force to you publish gender pay differences, or file to HMRC quarterly (once a year is quite enough work already). Let also make it the sensible selective & quality immigration only, let’s get the state of people’s backs and restore real UK democtracy election.

    We will need a strong government and a strong economy to get a good deal from the EU. Let us hope the May can stop her silly immitations of Ed Milliband and actually deliver a good majority and some sensible polices at last. Can she actually be made into a Conservative?

  7. Dame Rita Webb
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    JR the government you support is currently spending around £5,000 per second more than it pulls in taxes and other receipts. You need to rectify that before planning to spend money we obviously do not have.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      Indeed cut government spending. Most of it is wasted and much of it even does positive harm. Release at least half of these bureaucrats to get a real & productive job in the private sector, stop augmenting the feckless and get out of the way of business.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

        Stop over regulating everything so lots of unproductive jobs in the private sector can go. The ones advising people how to get round daft regulations, employment laws and absurdly complex tax or planning laws for example.

    • eeyore
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:16 am | Permalink

      Er, Dame Rita, I think you’ve a nought too many. The deficit is about £15bn, which works out at only £500 a second:

      Your substantive point remains, of course.

      • hefner
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

        Indeed, £475.64, so much for LL’s “Surely it is more than that per second anyway”. But who could trust any of Philip’s comments.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:48 am | Permalink

      Corporations are still not paying tax whilst they demand the policies that enable them to make lots of money – ie cheap labour via EU membership and a market which appears tariff free but comes at huge cost to our population in loss of democratic rights and also cultural and material losses.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:57 am | Permalink

      £5000 a second mainly on damaging nonsense, greencrap or unworkable state monopolies like the NHS. Perhaps giving value to the public of about 25% of this figure.

      Surely it is more than that per second anyway?

    • Andrew Berkeley
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

      Our government spends in a currency which it itself creates and controls. The notion that such a government can spend money that it does not have is daft. It’s like worrying about Sainsbury’s running out of Nectar Points.

      The government is not constrained by tax revenue when it spends at all, a fact which can be verified by any number of Treasury or BoE publications. Arguably the EU imposes deficit rules but we’ve flouted them for the past 8 years and now is obviously not the time to worry about them.

      The only consideration needs to be what the impact of the spending will be, such as inflation (as well as social outcomes). But normally the government can and should spend more than it recoups because money drains out of circulation by private saving and via the trade deficit (effectively foreign saving in sterling) and because a growing economy needs more money. That is why deficits are the norm and no government remotely balances the books over the long term.

      • Dame Rita Webb
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:26 am | Permalink

        Erm and what happens if those overseas investors (who hold around 30% of HMG debt) no longer think they are going to have their loan redeemed and start dumping their gilts or want a higher coupon rate than HMG can realistically pay for future loans? What then Zimbabwe style naked printing?

        • Andrew Berkeley
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

          Why would they think they are not going to get their gilts redeemed? The government CANNOT default given that it creates the currency. That is why UK gilts are know as “risk-free” assets.

          It was often claimed that those investors would baulk when the debt start to rise due to the totally erroneous logic that the larger debt might be harder to service and increase the chance of default. Well what happened when the Global Financial Crisis hit, and the UK government debt level doubled? Did the investors baulk? Did they demand a greater yield? On the contrary, yields fell and bonds auctions remain oversubscribed.

          In any case, suppose folk stop wanting to buy gilts. All that will happen is that they will continue to hold on to sterling cash instead of sterling bonds. If they simply save that sterling as they would have saved the bond then the situation is not changed at all except the government saves the coupon payment. The government can deficit spend without fear of inflation because the spending is only replacing money that is saved – static money does nothing for inflation. If the folk decide to spend their cash instead of saving it as either cash or bonds then the situation changes. The economy is boosted and tax flows to the government meaning that the deficit closes.

          Bonds/gilts are not for funding government.

  8. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    There is and never was good reason to pay £10 billion into a pot that benefits other countries in order to trade with those countries. That point was made and won during the referendum. However in the grand scheme of things you will not be able to do everything that people want with the money.

    As soon as you mention the money, the bus and the NHS will be thrown in your face. Better to concentrate on total spending and income raising plans rather than focus on minutiae. Having said that it will be politically useful to safeguard the funding we received back from our contributions to the EU for agriculture, infrastructure, science etc. as part of the manifesto.

    I do hope I do not hear the phrase low tax Conservative or more about the higher rate threshold moving towards £50K during this election. The recent headline rise of the threshold was paid for by a larger rise in the NI upper earnings limit which meant that any benefit to higher rate tax payers was negligible (£100 per year). There was no outcry from the media (many of whom are self employed) about this increase in NI for the middle.

  9. Richard1
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    I hope it’s a bit more inspiring than that. The max net EU payment seems to be £10bn – and some argue it’s less, but the budget deficit is £50bn. The key message needs to be that there will be a relentless focus on policies that make the UK competitive and attractive for investment and entrepreneurship. We can’t afford gesture policies. So damaging green crap (eg dieselgate, offshore wind farms) need to go, as should HS2 (chance for a rethink), Hinkley Point and an automatic 0.7% of GDP to overseas aid. Mrs May needs to obtain a mandate to reform the tax system to a much flatter and simpler structure. In this we really should look at the likes of Hong Kong Singapore and Switzerland which have balanced budgets, lower taxes and better public services. Labour have no chance in this election so let’s not be too cautious – get a mandate for radical policies to make Brexit a success.

  10. turboterrier
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    We could spend more on the 😕

    It is not what you spend it is how it is used and managed. Politicians have thrown money for years at their special favourite “protected” projects and never once have faced upto the obscene waste that is allowed on over interference by tiers of management that they have created.

    Drain the swamps and guillotine the quangos and all unnecessary baggage that government has created which is so detremental to how this country should be operated and not how it is.

    If it don’t bring and add value to UKplc scrap it

  11. Ian Wragg
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    I hope Mrs May gets a decent majority but I hope it won’t be used as an excuse to accept associate membership of the EU which is what Juncker et al are pushing for.
    By all means make it about the money. Not paying a ridiculous exit fee or annual tribute for access to the single market.
    I look forward to seeing your manifesto setting out the cancellation of the CCA and wasteful foreign aid.
    Here in the East Midlands I shall be supporting UKIP as the Tories don’t have a chance.

    • Dame Rita Webb
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

      Your kidding aren’t you? With a decent opposition with her track record as Home Secretary alone would have lost her an election. Remember with her at the helm, with regard to non EU immigration, it was an open door to the UK. While what about the reduction of the police force by about 20,000? There is no way she is PM material if she frightened to debate Corbyn, Farron and Nuttall.

  12. Simon
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    There you go again with our net contributions to Brussels. What extra costs are we going to incur ? And what services / benefits do we receive for our current contributions we will of necessity need to go without ? And why do you simply assume that GDP / tax revenue will not flicker up or down by a single pound sterling over the transition process at all ? Where is any Government research or evidence that we the UK will be “better off” outside the EU in the short or medium term at all ?

    And how long will the transitional period be before we are even able to contemplate VAT changes and energy taxes and so forth ? And how many of these things fall within the EU definition of “fair trade” and avoiding social dumping which they are going to ask us to keep indefinitely anyway ?

    And on WTO an FTA permits a lot of things as you say. But sensibly how long will it take to negotiate, ratify and implement ? I give you 10 years. In the meantime we are going to be in all kinds of legal difficulties with the WTO and member states.

    It performs no public service at all to keep repeating how simple it is all going to be with no meaningful data, narrative or convincing evidence to counter the mountains of eminent research about the Brexit process which is now freely available all over the interwebs.

  13. libertarian
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    “We could remove VAT on domestic fuel, tampons and green products. We could spend more on the NHS, training more UK people as nurses and doctors. We coukd spend more in our schools and do more to promote better roads and public transport.”

    You could but I guarantee you won’t, this election is as much about not being tied to the “We won’t raise taxes manifesto of Cameron” as much as anything else

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:00 am | Permalink

      Taxes and government waste is way to high already. The manifesto should promise to take government spending down – to something sensible, a 25% target is about right. Also to increase freedom of choice especially in education and health care, instead of the generally dire, virtual state monopolies we have.

      • hefner
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

        “to something sensible, a 25% target is about right”. says who? based on what criteria?

    • Richard1
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      The customary obeisances to the NHS will be required in this election as in all others

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

        Indeed the envy of the world (yeah sure) and free at the point of delivery (or more often non delivery, rationing, inefficiency and you get what your given when we feel like it, if you are lucky mate attitude).

  14. Summed up
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:21 am | Permalink

    “Make the money central to the election. ”

    With Mr Osborne getting it wholly wrong and Mr Hammond and the BoE grossly under and over-estimating, no. No expert in the realms of Torydom can stand up to a six-year old with an abacus

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:03 am | Permalink

      JR has been largely in his predictions. Alas politics is not an area that rewards being right. Being wrong seems to be rewarded however, as we saw with the election of May, the appointment of Hammond and insane re-election of John Major as leader.

    • formula57
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:06 am | Permalink

      Fortunately for the Government, it is not up against those with the skills of six-year old abacus wielders.

      As for what we could do, we could have made the VAT amendments 10 months ago and told the EU and its enforcers either to talk to us after 2019 or give us a French-style exemption meanwhile. We could have been more attentive to disbursing a net £850 million a month to a club we are exiting – some £8 billion wasted since the decision and the prospect of wasting more than twice as much before our liberation day comes.

      At least we can have some confidence that HM Treasury should be in better hands come 9, June.

  15. Roger Ceccarelli
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    Sorry Mr Redwood, but the NHS doesn’t need more money spending on it. What it does need is a national review as to what the NHS is for/does. I do agree with training more medical personnel. But it’s got to be the right sort of training. Making nurses “academics” rather than “practitioners” needs reviewing. As does the training of Doctors. The health provision in the UK needs updating to reflect current and future health needs. And a move away from provider-centric to patient-centric focus is the key to this. None of which is solved by money per se.

    And the suggestion to spend “the net contributions we currently send to Brussels”? Really? How about paying off the national debt first?

    We COULD just reduce public spending and tax less. Allowing more people to keep more of their money. So why don’t we?

    • Dame Rita Webb
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

      Its grade Z management needs to be taken by the throat. Why does an organisation that employs so many ethnic minorities and women need a Director of Equality & Diversity on an equivalent wage of two junior doctors?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

      We COULD just reduce public spending and tax less. Allowing more people to keep more of their money. So why don’t we?

      It suits the lefty politicians (they nearly all are lefty) to overtax everyone and use the money to try to buy votes and have a large client state sucking on the public teat. Thus living off the backs of others.

  16. Anonymous
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    Plus dealing with the 12.5 trillion in debt (including state pensions owed.)

    A good part of Brexit is getting our own workshy into productivity.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:33 am | Permalink

      Countryfile has no basis for complaining about leaving the EU. Their claims that farmers will go bust is patently untrue. There will always be a market for their produce at home. There will be no shortage of labour and no shortage of mouths to feed.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

        Some farmers deserve to go bust as many are just living off the taxes of others through subsidy. They should start having to react to real customers for a change.

  17. fedupsoutherner
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    Something like you are suggesting John will have to be done and I feel is the only sensible way forward. Labour are already offering more in the way of handouts to those likely to vote for selfish reasons.. It was interesting to listen to the CBI this morning when they were saying that businesses need certainty to move forward. This makes a change from the negativity we normally have to listen to. Tim Farron seems to be appealing to the youngsters who didn’t vote in the referendum. I think he will try to instil fear into the younger generation making them feel there will be no future outside of the EU for them. We cannot go back to a coalition government. It is crucial we get a large majority. I just hope we don’t have to listen to Sturgeon too much. This is the time for Mrs May to implement a policy of lower taxes, cheaper energy, money for the NHS with sensible management and a better future for us all. Perhaps she should consider you for chancellor?

  18. A.Sedgwick
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    “We could remove VAT on….”

    Just remove VAT altogether and replace it with a sane sales tax.

    VAT is the EU writ large.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:04 am | Permalink

      Indeed VAT should go it is hugely inefficient and complex as a tax.

  19. Bert Young
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    An optimistic budget would do wonders for the public so the leeway that ought to exist after we cease payments to the EU should be used to achieve this . I don’t think this sort of thinking exists in the back of Hammond’s mind – another reason why he should “go”.

    Of course the money spent in Foreign Aid is another factor that annoys the public ; it is ridiculous to apply a %age factor of GDP in deciding what we allocate for this ; things like the cost of care and the NHS ought to feature far more .

    The young and the costs of the property market are other inter-related features that create headlines . The Probate Tax ought to be abolished together with other Stamp Duties that depress the market conditions .

    What John suggests what we “could do” are all cases worthy of support but it needs the right person in the Chancellor’s seat to achieve them .

  20. ChrisS
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood, you are right – up to a point but there is the little matter of the supposed “Brexit Bill”

    If this is €50-60bn, it represents five years net contributions so if we agreed to this proposterous demand, any sign of the “Brexit Dividend” would be a whole parliament away.

    As you are undoubtedly one of the so-called Brexit hardliners mentioned in the media all day yesterday as one reason for the PM calling the election, I would pose the question to you :

    If the choice is pay €50-60bn, suffer an extended period under the ECJ and a delayed end to FOM, or leave immediately under WTO terms, what would you choose ?

    For my part I would choose the latter.

    Reply I am a supporter of the PM’s stance on Brexit, not a “hardliner”. I do not accept we will be faced with the choice you propose. We can simply leave if the deal is worse than no deal.

    • ChrisS
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

      Reply To Reply.

      Thank you for taking the trouble to reply – it must have been a very busy day !

      The question perhaps should have been what constitutes a deal that is so bad that in your view we should walk away onto WTO terms ?

      Given the foolish attitudes on display from Brussels and Berlin, ( we can forget Hollande ), I find it hard to imagine that Mrs May will be able to do a deal that provides free trade, an immediate end to FOM and the supremacy of the ECJ with us only making small payments of 1/28th of the the running costs of the small number of EU institutions to which we continue to subscribe.

  21. The Prangwizard
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    If there is to be a policy of spending the savings, then it should not be frittered away on ‘revenue’ spend items. It should go into a capital spend on new projects, things we can all see and touch. I would support widening roads, not merely resurfacing and fiddling about with the existing ones. If we are to widen Mways then do it properly; don’t faff about by calling them ‘smart’ when taking over the shoulder. And lets have some decent widening of other roads too.

    Nor would not I throw it down the money pit of the NHS, unless it were to go on entirely new buildings and equipment. We could well to reduce demand for its services.

    We could also do with new prisons and many new ships for our Navy, and missile defences. If there were a Navy of any worth people would join it. There have been too many cuts to our defence capability.

    Such things should have big notices attached; that the money is ours taken back from the EU.

    And we should add to the savings by cutting back severely on overseas aid. This is a scandalous waste; up there as the worst vanity project of recent times, and ranking as high as money wasted on the EU.

  22. David L
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    Beware of suggesting that money will available to finance this or that, because, experience shows, there’ll always be a reason why that money can’t be spent “just yet”, and the cynicism among the electorate will grow.

  23. John Probert
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    The NHS will suck us dry, it is not sustainable
    We need a new model

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      @John Probert

      Exactly right. We could make a start by expecting people to take more care of themselves and abiding by what advice they are given when diagnosed with borderline diabetes etc. Too many people think the NHS are the answer to all their ills and do not take their own health seriously enough. Also, too many appointments are being missed. In one department in our local hospital alone I notice that over 800 appointments were missed in one month. What an utter disgrace and something people should be made to paid for unless an acceptable reason is given.

      • margaret
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:11 am | Permalink

        I have been working in the NHS since 1968 and therefore have seen the changes. Attitudes have changed . All have become selfish and complaint happy . Managers like complaints to justify their role , however trivial the complaint is. I was set with many other people to use my experience to impact on health care , but long with others was shot down and have a hard daily task of trying to use our experience to know what works best .
        Patients see complaints ( and I often mean manufactured ones ) as a lever to get their cronies jobs. we have a 10 min or a 15 min slot for all pts in primary care and are boxed into these time limits whether the patient has a spot on their nose or is experiencing an acute myocardial infarction . If the heart attack patient takes more time to save his life and the spot sufferer is late they complain. It is all about their individual importance .

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

      We need freedom and competition. Let people make their own health provision, tax then far less and they would and could do. Free at the point of non delivery is a disaster.

  24. Tac Tic Tac Tic
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    The Labour , SNP and LibDem campaigns should be allowed to start as their Party machines dictate and then race ahead boring everyone in their path. Their enthusiam and barrage of abuse on Mrs May will in itself prove her right about Remoaner intentions.

  25. MikeP
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    When every household needs at least two, if not three or four, wage earners to cover their outgoings you have more than enough taxpayers to feed the unquenchable thirst of big Government. But you of all people should be advocating a smaller state – clearing our deficit, reducing debt, selling off state real estate used by all those “Departments” of Sir Humphrey lookalikes – not starting your campaign with a spending wish list. Spending is easy, as is increasing ones debt, spending within ones means is what we expect from a Conservative Government and revenues are far from secure in a turbulent world.

    • Ken Moore
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      I fear Mr Redwood is, for now, firmly ‘on message’ as he doesn’t wish to be a thorn in Mrs May’s side and perhaps ? scupper any chance of promotion.

      I regret that he will be disappointed and May will view him (wrongly in my view) as part of her absurd idea of the old ‘nasty party’ legacy and will not entertain Mr Redwood’s many talents being put to good use.
      Once the many shortcomings of Mrs May’s plan are realised it will be too late to change course from a journey that will lead to a betrayal of the Brexit vote.
      Mrs May’s actions reek of opportunism – she is simply buying herself more time having realised an election is 2020 will have the backdrop of a number of very unpopular decisions and compromises that will leave many brexiteers bitterly disappointed. The idea a workable deal can be sewn up in less than 2 years is risible.

      It would be far better if Mr Redwood would shoot from the hip and start poring over the details of Mrs May’s plans. He is one of the few politicians with the experience and intellect needed to devise a real workable plan – not a series of loosely-drafted aspirations that bare little relation to reality.

      Come on Mr Redwood – your country and party needs you more than you know right now.

      • hans chr iversen
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:10 am | Permalink

        your belief in John is rather naïve considering he does not seem to be on top of the facts on any particular subject as he should be for us to take him seriously

        Reply So why then do you read my words or bother to write in to this site? What facts do you allege I have got wrong?

        • Ken Moore
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

          I am not naïve I believe JR is one of the good guys. I would like to see more detailed analysis from him but I respect the fact he has to appeal to a broad audience.

          The problem I see is if we choose to rely solely on the WTO option, we will be out in the world without covering mutual recognition agreements and other complex fabric of agreements that serve to allow the free flow of trade.
          China for example has over 54 such agreements including 13 bilateral agreements, ranging from trade and economic co-operation to customs co-operation.
          What I fear is that the sceptics will be caught off guard by an avalanche of detail left out by Mrs May’s agenda so I am urging Mr Redwood to consider his endorsement of her polices carefully.
          May is still in the era of government by soundbites..

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:32 pm | Permalink


  26. Antisthenes
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    You must be making those claims based on no transition deal and few deals that attracts much in the way of continuing contributions to the EU. That can only mean continuing cooperation on things like security and WTO or similar access to the EU’s so called single market. I have no objections to that as long as the means are in place to cope with the many practical difficulties of the UK physically moving goods and services in and out of the EU. It is going to come across considerable difficulties because it depends on the good offices of bureaucrats and we know how slothful and obstructive they can be. They do so like to mire themselves in red tape and love to religiously adhere to rule books. Cheered on by the those in the EU and UK who are zealously opposed to Brexit and wish to discredit it in all ways possible.

  27. agricola
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    To train more doctors you need to find out where the blockage is in the system, because we are not short of qualified students. With nurses you need to create a level of caring nurse within the profession that is at less than degree level.

    Yes spend the nett EU contribution at home and re-think Overseas Aid. I read yesterday that we send money to North Korea, utterly bizarre. Overseas trade is the best thing we can offer the developing world.

    Gear the tax system, both corporate and individual, to creating wealth for re- investment to create further wealth and greater productivity. Push hard for fracked power and use the tax take to create a social fund that properly invested and clear of government sticky fingers will look after our social needs in twenty five years plus. Take care of those in society that really need it not the feckless and workshy.

    I will be voting for you but make sure you give us a real get up and go manifesto, platitudes we have no use for.

  28. Mockbeggar
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    Good Heavens! A reply page not kicked off by LL. He must be ill.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

      I am fine thanks, I just did not wake up until about 6.30 am this morning!

  29. Platolet
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    Whilst LibDem people have a right to freedom of speech, it is a mystery why their Party is not proscribed. It does not believe in nor accept representative democracy. It being allowed to field candidates in a democratic election is unacceptable.

  30. Eh?
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Not tongue in cheek, but why do Labour PMs and those wishing for such a position have so many advisors? These unknown people appear on TV from time to time. They have a lesser track record in theoretical economics and politics than those they advise and have no experience whatsoever in pracical politics. Yet we are suupposed to somehow value their opinion. Why?

  31. Terry
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    I wonder what the true saving will be once we are rid of EU Membership and EU membership fees. Those hidden costs like red-tape burdens on small businesses must cost a £Billion or two each year and damage productivity in the process. And the loss of our fishing industry saw around £4 Billions disappear from our GDP. In that respect I do hope the Government takes back OUR waters thus creating thousands of new jobs.

    Thinking of the other side. How on earth will the EU fund the gap left by Brexit? Will they finally realise that Brussels is over-staffed with the over-paid and make dramatic cuts? Probably not.
    It’s beginning to sound like a TV Soap already and one in which I shall be glad the UK has no role.

    • acorn
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

      The UK’s net cash balance for EU budget contributions and receipts is, on recent averages, about minus £7.2 billion a year; £140 million a week. The UK gets back on average £10.1 billion, as rebates and EU spending back into the UK public AND PRIVATE sectors. £7.2 billion is about 0.45% of UK GDP; not a lot.

      (Not £350 million a week, as written on the big red clown bus.)

      The EU will lose a similar amount from its Budget of £130 billion. But the EU28 budget is only circa 1% of current EU GDP. A rise to 1.17% of EU27 GDP, will fix the loss, no sweat. As the Sovereign issuer of the Euro currency, the EU is not going to run out of Euro anytime.

      (Just like the UK Treasury will never run out of Pounds Sterling to pay pensions; and, it does not have multi trillions of debt. The only debt that matters to the UK Treasury, is debt owed in foreign currencies.)

      BTW. Number crunchers are trying to work out the net loss to UK GDP of a “no deal / hard Brexit”. Calculations of the “multiplying factor” to be applied to the UK’s net EU contribution to GDP gained from membership, is around ten, plus or minus five. Call it £72 billion a year, plus or minus £36 billion. Eurostat has come up with a similar answer apparently.

  32. margaret
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    Yes and supposing that we still get out and have that spare money ,labour will try and say that the austerity was due to Conservative rule and furthermore if they got in and with available extra funds then it was purely down to a difference in government. Even the remainer’s would say the change is purely because of their government and ignore the reduction in national bills.

  33. Vanessa
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    So glad to hear Osborn is quitting politics to concentrate on editing !

    I always understood VAT was a European Union tax and so, hopefully, it will be abolished once we leave the EU ??

    Perhaps we should bring back a fairer Purchase Tax which is not 20% of everything we buy?

    • stred
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:27 am | Permalink

      I know of an internet based business, selling services worldwide, which has to compete with other websites based in the US and Hong Kong, where there is no VAT. They tried to incorporate in Ireland, after paying accountants for advice but their rules changed, then they looked at Hong Kong, but their fees were too high. Now it’s somewhere else. If they have to apply VAT to customers in different countries, even in the EU, it will mean they have to cease operations.

      An exemption from VAT for internet sales to other countries would attract many similar businesses to the UK and mean that British businesses would pay other taxes here instead of the Far East. It would also create employment.

  34. Genre-list
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    No TV debates thank you.
    Lib Dems=” We”ll pay £10 more than that”
    Labour – “We’ll pay £20”
    Greens= “We’ll give a £25 voucher for bean seeds
    SNP= “We want more money from the English economy which is poorer than Scotland’s

  35. Chris
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    It seems that the delightful Soubry has no intention of making money central to the election but rather is emphasising that a big win will enable Theresa May to indulge in a soft Brexit (D Express report), with no danger of any effective opposition from the “hard Brexiteers”. Oh dear. Broxtowe, can you come to the rescue?

  36. mickc
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    The vote for Brexit just keeps on giving! Cameron gone, now Osborne!
    If this keeps up there may soon be a Conservative party I can vote for…. Of course, all depends on policies, but the political demise of the originators of “heir to Blair” Conservatism is a cracking start….as is the proposed re-introduction of grammar schools.

  37. rose
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    We are having a metro mayoral election and once again a brand new election which has come in since we voted against AV is being run on Liberal lines. This happened with the Mayoral and Police Commissioner elections too. Who is rigging our elections in this way? Nick Clegg fell from power some time ago.

  38. Mike Stallard
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    Mr Redwood, you are not keeping up. The EU is supported by just a few countries – Germany and us mainly. OK the Netherlands and Italy and France throw in a bit too. The EU depends on our money and it is going to put that at the very top of their negotiating list.
    I will take you on a bet.
    Just as Mrs May has kicked the question of immigration into the long grass, she will have to accept the EU estimates of what we “owe” them. No doubt it will be dressed up as a brilliant cut back or a superb piece of debate or something like Mrs Thatcher’s rebate. I do not know. But make no mistake: we pay – they say.
    It is called Associate Membership and it is what you and the other people who have forced it on us who are to blame. We ought to have stayed in the EEA by joining EFTA.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

      Then they’d better be sure that we’re in a fit state to pay – otherwise we won’t be able to give them anything.

      If not a reasonable amount then we have nothing to lose by refusing.

      Britain goes down the pan without taking the global economy with it ? In 2008 a few banks had world leaders worried. Yet otherwise sensible people seriously think Britain can go bust without affecting anything.

  39. Mick
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    I see the bias eu loving BBC/Sky/ have nailed there flag to to mast, let’s only hope the public are not taking in by there bias and vote to get rid of all the remoaners, then shut down the BBC and make it harder for the other eu loving media to operate,

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

      Peter Hitchens is on the money today.

      UKIP are out of it so can’t harm Labour (most Labour voters will never vote Tory.)

      The Lib Dems are resurgent with new purpose as the only Remain party and a repository for anti Brexit voters.

      Mrs May could well LOSE seats, not gain them !

  40. Newmania
    Posted April 19, 2017 at 10:58 pm | Permalink

    2 4 6 8
    How will we send the money we make
    Oh Oh oh what a lovely slump

    I wonder would anyone actually dare say such a thing outside their own blog. We now seem to live not only in two Nations, but in two factual universes . In one, cutting yourself off form your suppliers and markets makes you richer, losing international confidence in our currency is a good thing and exclusion form the gym of a the club you just left is a “punishment “
    Risking the whole of manufacturing , this other universe is worth it if you can..errm maintain immigration at about the same levels and no longer having any influence on anything outside a 20 mile radius is a tremendous source of National pride
    A vote delivered by the over 65s is an exciting moment of renewal ( ha ha ha ) and Conservatism is defend as “ Doing that thing which would most please Nigel Farrage”. In this odd other place a farcical plebiscite characterised by dog whistle racism outrageous lies and anti immigrant scapegoating is a triumph of democracy . A constituency who cannot spell single market delivered an invisible mandate to leave it and the less you know about any given subject the more your opinion is to be revered .

    I still live in the ordinary universe in which deficit reduction has already been cancelled debt allowed to go up and interest rates held down to avoid the slump just thinking about Brexit produced . In my universe Michael Heseltine is as Conservative hero as are John Major and George Osborne . In my universe the coalition was a good government that guided the country through the most appalling time . In my universe there was no chance of Turkey`s accession even being considered for ten years and pretty much no chance of Turkey joining in my lifetime despite the tricky strategic problems ignoring her opens up

    In my universe implicating the EU in Islamic terrorism is an extraordinary slander and a disinclination to elect an IRA sympathising EU hating disgrace to the Labour Party is not an endorsement of Brexit

    I see no sign of these two Nations having much to do with each other in the future

    • Edward2
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:43 am | Permalink

      Who has told you we are going to “cut ourselves off from our suppliers and markets…making us richer”
      Your whole post is then based on this nonsense.
      Many nations trade with Europe without being in the EU
      They do so quite successfully.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:52 am | Permalink

      The mandate won’t be invisible in 7 weeks. The general election is being called just for you ! (It’s more than you deserve.)

      After which – you must get behind your country for good or ill. Talk of two nations will then be extremely provocative of you.

      • Newmania
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:33 am | Permalink

        Ooo how terrible “provocative” you say, well that changes everything ……

        • Anonymous
          Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

          You seem utterly oblivious that attitudes like yours played a significant part in Brexit.

          If – after the 8th – we have a strengthened May government (by no means assured) then you simply must drop all resistance to Brexit. It will be both dysfunctional and damaging otherwise, in the face of negotiations abroad.

          After the passing of the Referendum Act, the referendum result, a Supreme Court case, a vote on Art 50, Royal assent – then a general election… which part of ‘mandate’ would you be unable to get ?

          There would be only one nation.

          If you dislike it then you are free to sell your house, get an EU passport and to go and live there.

  41. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:32 am | Permalink

    Sorry, Mr Redwood, you can do these things but not yet. UK State debt is still rising as a percentage of GDP and that has to be ended first. We should also be factoring in a temporary slowdown of growth, which will occur when we (fairly soon) have to end our disastrously loose monetary policy.

  42. Cheshire Girl
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:04 am | Permalink

    I see, this morning that Bill Gates is urging the UK to keep its committment to spend on Foreign Aid. Personally, I wish he would keep his nose out of our affairs. He should remember that when he gives money away it is ‘his’ money. When the UK government gives money away, it is ‘taxpayers’ money. There is a big difference!

    • rose
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

      Also, when he gives money away it is not borrowed.

  43. hans chr iversen
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:05 am | Permalink


    These comments on the relatively small amount we spend on the EU this is just a totally naïve and rather sad conclusion you have come up with. So we can then have lower taxes and spend the money on roads.
    The government finances are already so stretched that we will see tax rises next time round with the new budget. We have one of the biggest deficits of the G7 and in the EU and you are already talking about lower taxes.
    Either you do not know or you do not look at the facts or you are plainly just lying to keep people happy.

    John, stick with the facts and stop pretending we are in a good place financially because we are not.

  44. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    Make the election about money you say. Quite right the electorate always votes with its pocket.

    I am going to the polls having had the upper earnings limit for NI raised by £2,000 costing me £200 extra tax per year.

    Your government is addicted to tax and spend Mr Redwood.

    Will we see the return of universal child benefit in your manifesto or will you just keep giving only to hoarded of low earning immigrants?

    • APL
      Posted April 23, 2017 at 6:51 am | Permalink

      Narrow Shoulders: “Your government is addicted to tax and spend Mr Redwood.”

      While that is true. TINA.

      But the underlying problem, is that our government is so indebted, that it options for manoeuvre are extremely limited.

  45. NA
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 6:06 am | Permalink

    No more foreign doctors, train our own.

    • APL
      Posted April 23, 2017 at 6:53 am | Permalink

      NA: ” train our own.”

      The government has ( in true Socialistic style ) taken over the training of medical staff.

      Result: Shortage of medical staff.

      Government solution?

      Let’s not bother to train our own, lets buy in from abroad.

  • 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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