Time to boost the economy

The Bank and Treasury have slowed the economy too much by tax hikes and monetary tightening. At a time when the USA is reflating its economy, and when Japan and the Euro area are still printing money and keeping interest rates at zero, UK policy has gone the other way with the predictable slow down. The UK’s performance has nothing to do with the Brexit vote and everything to do with domestic policy. The economy did well for the first nine months after the Brexit vote until policy was tightened and more taxes put in.

So what should the authorities do? They should plan to spend the £12 bn saving on net EU contributions from next March and make it clear to the EU we wont be paying them money after we have left. The EU is not offering us a good deal, so why pay? We need that money at home. I have set out before a mixed package of spending increases and tax cuts to spend this money, with the emphasis on more money for the NHS.

We do not want a debate about a new NHS tax or any other tax increases. Tax rates are too high in the UK. At a time when the USA is slashing its tax rates with a top rate of 37%, and the new Italian government favours a two rate Income tax at 15% and 20% the UK cannot afford to keep its rates too high. To do so is to export talent and jobs to lower tax rate regimes, and to lose possible revenue.

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  1. Lifelogic
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:18 am | Permalink

    Taxes are way too high. Particually IHT (Hammond is still ratting on the £1M each threshold promise from Osborne), CGT without even indexation, stamp duty at up to 15%, insurance premium tax recently put up by 20% to 12%, income tax, CT, fuel duty, energy rigged market taxes, planning gain taxes, the attack on private pension pots and contributions and all the rest. Tax borrow and waste is everywhere. Be Feckless or pay tax to fund others to be feckless that is the message from this government.

    Bank lending restrictions dictated by government (particularly in property lending) and a lack of real competition in banking doing huge damage too. 0.25% on deposits and 4%-68% + on lending is not a sign of a competitive market place.

    Then we have the over regulation costs, the moronic employment laws, the work place pensions, the apprentice tax, the gender pay gap drivel, the green crap costs, the restrictive planning regulations and all the rest of the obstacles and costs.

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

      “Hammond is still ratting on the £1M each threshold promise from Osborne” – exactly, but they are not bothered. They have huge assets and will get big pensions.

      • Hope
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

        We are taxed more than for two generations and more any Labour govt with Brown as chancellor! Hammond has slowed the economy while his BoE political chum talks down Brexit. Treasury still in fake scare story land over Brexit and the alleged independent OBR and ONS of no use to man or beast. Like the BoE Carney fail to get any forecast or prediction right. They are descredited institutions that can no longer can be used to gauge our economy.

        What does May have to renege on, capitulate on, how many extensions to stay in the EU years after we leave, keep in the single market or customs union because different names, skuttle off to do underhand deals with the EU before you MPs to oust her?

        • Stephen Priest
          Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

          When will Conservative MPs pull the plug on Theresa May?

          A polite person would say she is the worst Conservative Prime Minister in history. However she is worse than any Labour, Liberal, Whig prime minster.

          Winston Churchill stood up to the Luftwaffe.

          She can’t even stand up to an appalling French bureaucrat called Michel Barnier and his equally appalling colleague from Luxembourg called Jean-Claude Juncker .

          • L Jones
            Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

            Yes – gone are the hopes that Mrs May was playing ‘the long game’. How terribly sad. It could have set her up to be the greatest PM that we’d ever had. What price a mess of pottage?

            A mess of pottage indeed.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 5:07 am | Permalink

            Leaving the EU looks like taking longer the WWII too. If we do ever leave that is.

          • Hoof Hearted
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 9:01 am | Permalink

            Why should they oust her? The Tories now have a 7% lead over Labour. Tory politicians are more interested in retaining their prime positions at the trough than delivering a decent Brexit.

    • NickC
      Posted June 10, 2018 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

      At the moment business is having to plan and prepare for multiple “Brexit” outcomes and/or take risks. That is because the government won’t commit to a definite Leave on 30th March 2019. Theresa May dithers and capitulates; different Ministers have different policies.

      Removing uncertainty is the best boost to the economy, not fiddling with taxes. The only feasible policy position now is to leave and trade under WTO rules. At least business would then have policy certainty and be able sort out their strategy, tactics and systems. It is too late to implement an RTA with the EU, even if there was one.

  2. Richard1
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    All good stuff but wholly academic regrettably, as it’s clear brexit most certainly does not now mean brexit. M Barnier for the EU has given yet another contemptuous and dismissive response even to Mrs May’s attempt to bend over backwards to meet the EU’s (irrational) demands. So there will be no £12bn pa as we will be shelling out £40bn during the transition, and no doubt c £12bn pa for future market access. There will be no tariff cuts to boost the incomes of the poor as we will still be in the/a customs union (the the/a distinction is dishonest and disingenuous). It looks like the whole of the UK will be in regulatory alignment (ie the/a single market) to ‘solve’ the non-issue of the Irish border. So no changes to laws and regs and of course no new trade deals. And let’s not forget – no control over immigration.

    Funnily enough I think this might all rebound worse on Labour, who have utterly betrayed their Brexit voters. I suppose that’s some consolation!

    • Hope
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

      The U.K. Not allowed by Barnier or May to be more competitive than the EU. So no no point in trade deals withe the rest of the world while May gives literally hundreds
      of billions plus to the EU without a voice. No trade deal in the world is based on such disasterous terrible terms,. Who is more mad by allowing this bad deal and making the U.K. A vassal state and subjecting our country to such humiliation, May or those MPs letting it happen?

  3. Peter Wood
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    Good Morning,

    1) Spend whatever is needed to prepare the Nation for WTO trade on 30-03-19.
    2) Cut taxes (raise the personal allowance to assist the low waged) by 12 bn. per year.
    3) STOP paying foreign aid until the UK has a budget surplus…

    To do this you’ll have to replace the present incumbent of No.10, methinks.

  4. Lifelogic
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    Good luck to the Queen after her recent cataract operation. I see that she managed to scrape the money together to go privately, not that these ops have to cost very much at all.

    Everyone who can afford to should go privately so as to relieve pressure on the dire NHS where thousand are waiting years for these cheap, but highly rationed by the NHS, operations. Hammond should restore income tax & NI relief for medical insurance policies and get rid of his 12% IPT tax. Why should people doing the sensible thinks pay four times over!

    Indeed the NHS should give voucher out to people on the waiting lists that they can top up and go privately instead of this cruel back door rationing system from the sick joke NHS.

    Someone on a radio discussion with a serious gall inflamed bladder problem went to casualty but could not get a scan as it was weekend. They could easily have died from a ruptured, necrotising gall bladder. What sort of casualty department does not have the ability to do urgent scans at weekends, and how many die as a direct result?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:50 am | Permalink

      Hunt has been at Health for 5 years, he is quite good apologising for it in a cheery manor but has done nothing to address the system. One that can never work as currently funded and structured. Why not? I suppose because no one in government dares to touch it so the deaths, incompetence and damage to the economy continues and it gets worse by the day. They want damage limitation and to keep it out of the news.


      It causes far more deaths that Grenfell every week I suspect but nothing is done.

      • Lifelogic.
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:18 am | Permalink


        • Hope
          Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

          This is the same Hunt who has introduced every person must go through their GP before A and E. of course, he did not comply as he is more important and took his child straight there! Hunt has never explained that the problem with the overwhelmed NHS might be down to the mass immigration policy of the EU and Government. However, nevertheless has a property letting business which takes adavantage of the overcrowding in the country!

          Could it also be there are four too many NHS non jobs that only serve bureaucracy without adding any value to the care of ill or injured people? How many managers does the NHS really require, how many diversity officers, and assorted bean counters? How come when I attend hospitals I hear people speak who clearly need to be challenged about their entitlement to service and never do? Why so many interpreters at huge cost to the NHS? Bit of a clue to the previous point. Hunt is incompetent but taxing us more will not make him competent. It means more money wasted, like overseas aid, EU Development Fund. Perhaps the £3.75 billion given to the EU Development Fund, this is in addition to the EU contribution- one of May’s KitKat funds hidden from us, should be diverted to provide health care for EU citizens in the U.K.?

          • NickC
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

            Hope, Anyone who has been to hospital (NHS) can see the waste in front of their eyes. Part of that waste is the latest fad “target”, often insisted upon by government. Medical staff are treated like morons, and overloaded with incomprehensible bureaucracy, so no wonder they are stressed out and leave.

    • acorn
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

      What do you expect for the money? The government is subsidising you for a mere £2,100 per year at the NHS. My recent cataract operation, cost me £2,300 at a private hospital. My mates hip replacement cost just under £11,000 and he got three quotes for the job.

      Free at the point of use leads to abuse.

      The UK needs to revert to a Pay-As-You-G0 economic system. The proletariat no longer understand how much things cost in this laissez faire economic model that they are currently suffering under; courtesy of the present government.

      A national ID / entitlement card should be issued to each citizen, from birth. Comprising a basic quantity of services, age related. Health; Education; Legal; Job Guarantee (MMT model) etc.

      Discuss; marks will be given for original thinking.

      • Hope
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

        I note the chap in charge of the fiasco Railtrack who earns in excess of £800,000 just been given an award! Why no one from Carillion? No one fo m Lloyds? HSBOS? Why not Fred Goodwin? Hammond happy to write off another £2 billion of our taxes in selling off RBS shares this week. Perhaps he should be given an award as well.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 5:11 am | Permalink

          Hammond certainly deserves an award for his absurdly high taxation and most idiotic, complex and damaging tax system ever in the UK.

      • libertarian
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:38 pm | Permalink


        Fell at the first old son. The TAXPAYER is subsidising free access to healthcare

        You do know the meaning of laissez faire in economics right?

      • Adam
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 7:44 pm | Permalink


        Here is a raw concept, as you request:

        Allocate each UK person an equal NHS budget share each year from age 18 to 50. All receive service at the point of need, as now, without paying. Govt maintains annual statements indicating what costs their NHS use has incurred & their budget balance. At age 50, each person receives 20% of their unspent budget to keep.

        People needing extensive NHS treatment would receive the same service as now.
        Those able to maintain good health, preventing needs for treatment build up reward.
        As now, no patient pays, but all are motivated via their personal incentive to use the service less wastefully.

        • libertarian
          Posted June 11, 2018 at 9:24 am | Permalink


          Nice thinking.

          Also check out Singapore . Some of the most expensive housing in the world being a small island . Singapore has the worlds 6th best healthcare system. The government run healthcare insurance scheme The Central Provident Fund is used to provide low cost mortgages for local first time buyers as well as free at point of use healthcare and their retirement funds.

  5. niconoclast
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    Spending increases and tax cuts? That is delusional. Its easy to cut taxes but to increase spending in tandem is economic illiteracy writ large and proves that ‘tories’ are liberals in fiscal drag. More empire building, more money on the socialist NHS. O dear….

    • Lifelogic.
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      Well we need lower spending in all sorts of areas of government much of what is does is pointless or actually damaging. We also need what is spent to deliver something of value for a change, it so rarely does. There is also a real win win in cutting regulations. These are a tax on everyone but one that does not even raise any tax. Also May want to build EU employments right, pushes green crap and forces people to waste time on the non existent (other than by choice) gender pay gap. May/Hammond non think is the problem.

  6. oldtimer
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:17 am | Permalink

    The Bank/Treasury induced slowdown provides Remainers with the excuse to blame it on Brexit – an extension of Project Fear as has been obvious from comments on, for example, the sharp decline in car sales. It goes hand in glove with the May/Robbins negotiations intended to turn the May mantra “Brexit means Brexit” into fake news and redefine it as The Great Betrayal meets The Big Lie.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      There is no Bank/Treasury induced slowdown. There is uncertainty about the future and households are cloce to affordability constraints. Besides, UK consumption has a very high import content so if consumtion grows and exports do not, GDP grows with much less than the increase in consumption. Basic national accounting..In fact the UK economy is growing as fast as it prudently can…

      • oldtimer
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

        It is clear that BoE restrictions on lending and Hammond’s tax increases on cars were specifically intended to slow the economy. You need to get into the real world. Others have chosen openly to blame it on Brexit.

      • libertarian
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 12:57 pm | Permalink


        Thats lucky as UK exports grew 9.8% Year to date at March 2017-18

        In the practical world of reality we aren’t fooled by your raw statistics.

        The UK’s main imports by cost/type are Electrical machinery, mechanical machinery, oil and aircraft

        Hardly the stuff off every day consumption, to be fair our local council estate has been buying F35 fighters and crude by the barrel on a RBS mortgage …Not

  7. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:26 am | Permalink

    Hammond doesn’t give a damn about the economy as long as he thinks his policies will make people think its the fault of the brexit vote. It’s all part of his sneaky plan. You are surrounded by idiots John. I’m amazed you have the energy to get out of bed each day knowing you will have to work amongst people like Hammond who is slowly dragging the Tory party into the gutter.

    • getahead
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

      Loathsome creature. Not you Fedup. Hammond I mean.

    • L Jones
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

      Straight to the point, Fedupsoutherner. Dr Hammond speaks much sense, but who in this self-serving Government heeds his words? As you say, how does he find the energy to keep going, let alone to keep optimistic about his chosen party?

      • L Jones
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

        Sorry – meant Dr Redwood!!!

  8. Mark B
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    We need to reduce both the deficit and the national debt. Slowing down things might prove to be the correct move in the long run.

    We also need to stop printing money and return to sound economics. Yes less tax but, also less government spending and waste.

    Yes less to the EU but also less for overseas aid and white elephant projects. As mentioned by others here, the government pleaded poverty on things we want but can find the cash when it wants to.

    We gave a soft socialist running the economy not a Conservative and does not understand that no matter how much if other people’s money you throw around other people will never vote Tory.

  9. Nig l
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Where is the evidence? Indeed there seems to be talk again of a rate rise. Unemployment appears contained/falling. Boosting the economy will require more people and where will they come from? Romania/Poland etc putting more pressure on an already overstretched housing market.

    So not yet. You have an election to win and the phrase ‘it is the economy, stupid’ springs to mind.

    Wait until we have control of our borders, doing so before will further exasperate the electorate, then open the taps so that the benefit is fresh in the people’s minds.

    One thing mustn’t happen namely a promise in the Brexit agreement that we will not reduce our corporation tax. As a sovereign country we must keep control of that.

  10. Stred
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    They are deliberately running the economy into the ground in order to make it look like Brexit has caused the slowdown, then they will agree to a second referendum after the only deal on offer is deliberately unacceptable. It’s called treason. Bring back hanging.

    • L Jones
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      It is really depressing to agree with you, Stred. But it seems unavoidable. Perhaps those in Government think that we’re all too stupid to notice (like remainders?) and that they believe they can get away with anything; that by the next GE everyone will have settled back into comfortable subservience to the execrable EU.

      I do hope not. And yet the alternative is quite appalling.

  11. Kenneth
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    Mrs May says she is “getting on with delivering Brexit”.

    No she is not.

    • zorro
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

      She has a very odd manner when she says that ‘she is getting on with delivering Brexit’… She says ‘deliver’ a lot. It’s a shame that she doesn’t actually do it. She is actually a really bad PM – a ditherer unable to make a decision, she looks and acts weak, she can’t negotiate, she stoops and has no poise. She just doesn’t look or act the part, but has clearly chased the position for all it is worth. Some may think that this is uncharitable. Oh well, I don’t mind – I just so wish that she wasn’t PM because our country’s credibility has taken a nosedive. I find it hilarious that Trump has just called the politically correct coterie out regarding Russia. He clearly holds them in contempt – not an unreasonable policy position all things being considered!


  12. alan jutson
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    How about revisiting Foreign Aid, as it seems most of this is going to doubtful causes and Countries which can afford to sort out their own problems.

    Rewarding Civil Servants for giving away as much tax payer money as they can seems a rather daft idea, can we not find some worthy causes back here in the UK for most of this funding.

    • JoolsB
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

      Despite polls showing the public being against an arbitrary figure, as usual the politicians are ignoring us because being generous with OUR money makes them feel good so stuff what we think. It’s ridiculous that Civil Servants are paid to scrat around for ‘projects’ they can give our money to just for the sake of it.

    • Cheshire Girl
      Posted June 10, 2018 at 4:38 am | Permalink


      I think the Government would rather let this country sink into the sea, than cut Foreign Aid. They often talk about not being able to afford a billion or two on something important ie: Social Care etc. but refuse to reduce the amount we spend on Foreign Aid every year. They obviously havent a clue as to how to address the serious problems we have. Just as long as they stay in power, they are happy to let things remain as they are.

  13. KeithL
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:26 am | Permalink

    You can’t leave it alone- on about UK taxes and spending policy but this is only to have a swipe at the EU again..we will be leaving the EU so what is this fixation about them not offering us a good deal- we voted to leave- we did not vote to leave and then to look for a new deal- and this is where all of the confusion comes from- brexit means brexit- get it!

  14. L Jones
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    Many of us would agree wholeheartedly with you, Dr Redwood. But is anyone in the Government listening to, or reading, your wise words? Or is it a case of shouting into the wind again?

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

      Of course they are but: (1) they know better (2) they know its is unrealistic.

  15. MIke Stallard
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    Loved the interview on LBC last evening.
    Better than the BBC – eh?

    • Adam
      Posted June 10, 2018 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      Yes. Pure quality.

  16. Rien Huizer
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    Spending money that should be given back to the taxpayer (because businesses and consumers will bear the brunt of any (it remains to be seen how costly adaptation will be for incumbent employers and employees, but it is certain that the new businesses and jobs created by Brexit will not appear overnight hence there will be losers to compensate) on a socialist relic like the NHS is the most un-consercative idea I have heard since it was mentioned during the referendum campaign. And then it was simply political propaganda, transparent and quickly debunked.

    The NHS should be privatized, starved and replaced with a much more efficient way of allocating care. Not the rationing system for those who cannot afford private treatment or lack friends in the right places. In the old Soviet Union, those with power could be treated outside the official system. The People (as some people refer to the population of a country) would stand in line, lie in corridors or would simply remain sick.

    Thias is an absurg proposal, only made because you can be pretty sure that the money you propose to allocate to the NHS here, will not show up in the public accounts, at least not for a long time. Deal or no deal. Why not simply admit that the NHS has an unsustainable business anf funding model and propose reform?

  17. Turboterrier.
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    Boost the economy? Easy

    Get rid of Hammond and replace him with a chancellor closer to all of the people.

    Remove these back door taxes levied by our fuel bills to increase the march of steel at sea and across the country in the shape of wind turbines. Stop paying all the subsidies and constraint payments when the wind blows too much or to little.

    Reduce the taxes on British built cars and have a sliding scale that the older the car the more vehicle licence fee is charged. Get rid of the older higher inefficient, polluting vehicles.

    Reduce the nett income from leasing land out for renewable’s to 20% as again it is all being paid for through our energy bills. Taken at source from the energy companies.

    Cut out the waste in the civil service and local authorities and other large public organisations. Cancel all these so called feel good projects like HS2 totally a waste of money until the infrastructure is in place at the first and final destination. No good being quicker if you lose all that time sitting in traffic jams.

    Start fracking and initiate a dash for gas for energy consumption.

    If the electorate get money back from their everyday expenditure that is as good as a tax rebate.

    • getahead
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      Said, Turbo.

  18. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    JR: “We do not want a debate about a new NHS tax or any other tax increases. Tax rates are too high in the UK.”
    Agreed. As well as stopping paying money to the EU you should repeal the law enshrining overseas aid spending and increasing annually with GDP.

  19. DUNCAN
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:50 am | Permalink

    Yes, we can all see that May, Hammond, Carney and Heywood are all working hard to construct an environment that suggests an EU exit is damaging the UK economy.

    Like the EU, these 4 politicians (for they are all public servants with one fundamental political objective) have no qualms about damaging the UK if it prevents us leaving the autocratic EU political construct.

    So, yes we have a PM and a Chancellor who are working overtime to damage the interests of this nation and its people. I believe pro-EU politicians are that cynical and determined that they would behave in such an appalling manner.

    British citizens today are no more than vessels to finance tax funded political projects. We have become almost servants of the political state

    What we really need are Tory MPs with bottle to stand up and be counted.

    We want May and Hammond deposed. These two anti-Tories are pro-EU puppets doing the bidding of Brussels and Berlin. It defies belief that they’ve been tolerated for so long

    The Tory party had no qualms despatching our greatest PM while she was in Paris. The treachery of my party during that period still leaves a sour taste. If Tory MPs can dispense with our most successful PM how can they not depose our worst PM and my party’s most non-Tory leader?

    If May remains as our party’s leader she will construct a UK-EU deal that traps the UK into EU membership even after she’s left the political stage. We may never be able to leave the EU.

    To save UK sovereignty, there is no alternative. May and Hammond must be replaced.

    Get on with it for the sake of the UK,, its people and its democracy

    • getahead
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      Can’t argue with that Duncan. Absolutely well said. They must go. John where are you when the country needs you? May and Hammond do not work for the UK please get rid of them.

      • fedupsoutherner
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

        Said, getahead

  20. A.Sedgwick
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    A key and possibly rare skill of anyone leading an organisation is making inspired and correct appointments. T.May is a political disaster on numerous fronts, appointments being prominent. Hammond is a clear example, I find it very difficult to see how he got off the back benches or even became an MP.
    Carney, I believe, could have been replaced but was persuaded to see Brexit through. How hilarious! His appointment by the mighty Osborne looked wrong from the moment the man spoke.
    Being a tax payer for 60 years I can honestly say that I have never felt so over taxed as now. The baby boomer cry is largely rubbish, yes many of us may own over priced homes but that is not our fault and but for not wishing to pay ludicrous stamp duty, gift tax and ultimately IHT we would downsize and spread the residue within family but instead we bumble along in a “tired” house, driving an ageing and discredited diesel delaying any decisions until death or care home.

    • mike fowle
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

      I must admit I am completely dismayed by Hammond. I recall when he was in opposition he seemed to have a good grasp of economics and made some devastating criticisms of Gordon Brown but as chancellor he seems dazzled by his own brilliance (he is alone in this) and comes up with such comments as Nobody voted to be poorer – but we did. In the longer term I am absolutely sure we will be better off, but we may suffer some immediate disruption. The vote was about governance but Hammond does not seem to understand this.

      • Adam
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

        mike fowle:

        Many of us feel that regaining our sovereignty is of far higher value than trade, & some economic inconvenience for a few years would be worth it. However, predictions of poor economic performance are often based on guesswork, & freedom to govern ourselves enables us to choose the shortest path to better anyway.

  21. Dave Andrews
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Cut taxes – I agree.
    But that means reducing government spending, unless it’s proposed to increase borrowing. Please no, the national debt is already too high.
    How about relieving central and local government of the cost of elderly care homes? How much would that save?

  22. Peter
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    ‘The EU is not offering us a good deal, so why pay?’

    Indeed. Most on here agree. The problem is bringing about the circumstances where we do not pay when our negotiating politicians and civil servants are so conciliatory and easy for the EU to manipulate.

    You don’t need to convince me of the benefits of walking away, though I appreciate Leave politicians have to regularly beat the drum for this. What I look for is news of how Brexit events are playing out. Things are not looking rosy though.

  23. Ron Olden
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    This is what got us into the mess in the first place.

    As Margaret Thatcher used to point out, the idea that ‘the more you spend the richer you get’ is preposterous.

    Despite it being the top of the economic cycle, when we should be running surpluses and paying off debt, the UK still has a £40 Billion or so budget deficit.

    Our National Debt as a percentage of GDP is already about the highest in the Western World and we are still adding to it, and we have gigantic, unfunded Public Sector, and State pensions liabilities which don’t even appear in the figures.

    We should be cutting State spending, not taking advantage of a momentary respite from the verge of bankruptcy to spend yet more.

    Anyone with any common sense, knows that most State Spending gets wasted anyway.

    This is why countries like Germany, who’s underlieing economies are no better than ours, have more credibility than us. They don’t spend-spend-spend at the drop of a hat, or for the sake of it.

    • Georgy Llewor
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

      Wikipedia, List of countries by public debt:
      UK 90.4%, USA 77.4, Spain 96.7, Singapore 114.6, Portugal 127.7, Japan 223.8, Italy 13:1.2, Greece 180.0, France 96.1, Belgium 104.3, average EU 86.8%

      • Georgy Llewor
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

        I am afrraid it is not as simple as you seem to think:
        Germany 65.7%, NL 59.0, Switzerland 32.9,Sweden 39, Norway 37.0, Denmark 35.1, but Poland 46.2, Romania 38.5, Bulgaria 28.6%

        A question that might be also worth asking, who is holding that debt? For the UK (nov’17) 27% are private investors the majority of them in the USA and Japan, 23% by the Bank of England (result of the QI), 28% by int’l insurance and pension funds (potentially benefitting UK citizens), 17% by int’l banks and other finance institutions, 5% by UK households (if you own gilts in your portfolio).
        In comparison, Japan has a much bigger debt related to GDP than the UK, but the proportion held within the country is much bigger (80+%).

        • Georgy Llewor
          Posted June 9, 2018 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

          The elephant in the room might in fact be the £1.85tn other debt (2/3 of it public sector pension) and this is not whar Ron is talking about.
          Search for ‘UK PLC: Britain’s debt time bomb’ by Nigel Hawkins, available (without too much trouble) from the Adam Smith Institute website.
          And given what this debt is made of, it is not clear (to me at least) that it has much to do with the EU. Sorry, guys!

          • Edward2
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 6:40 am | Permalink

            As long as the UK can meet its repayments and the rest of the world feels the UK is safe to lend to then the debt is nothing to worry about.
            If you were a fund manager would you prefer to buy UK government debt or Romania Italy Bulgaria for example?

          • Georgy Llewor
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 9:05 am | Permalink

            Edward2, UK’s gilts obviously. People might be more convinced to address the debt problem when the annual budget deficit is actually down to nil.

          • Edward2
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 11:30 am | Permalink

            Yes gilts.

            The deficit is down from approaching 100 billion annually to under 60 billion now and is projected to slowly reduce to zero.
            Although I have my doubts.
            Even this very modest reduction has brought howls of “cuts” and “austerity” from media, trade unions CBI Church leaders and many politicians.

  24. Leslie Singleton
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Dear John–Do I understand correctly, as I think I just read, that the ridiculous so-called backstop is to be “time limited” but without an end date? If so what does that mean??

    • getahead
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

      As you have spotted. It is without meaning.

  25. George Brooks
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    This all part of Hammond’s strategy to wreck or reverse Brexit by slowing the economy and repeatedly blaming the vote to leave. He is ably supported by the BBC who report this myth at every opportunity knowing that if you say something often enough many come to believe it.

    One has to assume that Hammond and many members of the Treasury are reasonably intelligent people but what staggers me is that they appear to have completely lost sight of the fact that if Brexit was stopped or reversed we would never ever get back any of the rebates and/or concessions that we have at present and that the EU would slaughter us economically. The triggering of Article 50 set that clock running.

    What they and all ardent remainers have completely overlooked is that the EU has launched a major assault to capture the UK for all time. Ever since 1066 France, Germany, Spain and Holland have made repeated attempts to conquer the UK and all so far have failed. Thank God this attack does not result in loss of life or physical damage but it is just as critical if we are to retain our sovereignty, keep control of our borders and govern ourselves.

    Every time we attempt to put forward a solution to an EU created problem (eg the Irish border) they are very quick to discount it before it has even been discussed. Right from the outset they have adopted this tactic in the hope that we will give up.

    As you rightly state JR we need to send a very clear message that we are leaving March next year and that is when the last monthly payment will be made. We are wasting time and money at present.

    We need some Churchill spirit on the beaches and a flavour of Trump at the negotiating table!!

  26. Adam
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Allocating the £12m saving to our own priorities would achieve a substantive difference, both to the EU’s attitude & our ability to improve domestic performance.

    Including the earmarked ‘divorce penalty payment’ would add even more to what we in the UK can accomplish.

    How should the Hammond hurdle in the way be trodden over?

    • Adam
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:04 am | Permalink

      Allocating £12bn would more appropriate first.

  27. Turboterrier.
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:14 am | Permalink


    Having read through a lot of yesterdays comments this one is no worse than any of the others. It might be a hard bite to swallow but the natives are restless and if you and the party want an even chance of staying in power and doing something for this country then there has to be change, seismic change in the whole way we operate starting with the selection process. When I look at the top table of the party I despair and it is all down to May and Hammond. Its leaders that inspire people to achieve great things, but aat the moment they couldn’t lead us out of a wet paper bag.

    I do not expect this to be printed just sent in the hope you read it

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    @ Hope

    Your party is on the road to extinction.

    In the real world perception is all there is and nearly the whole country has the perception that May and Hammond for that matter, are totally at a loss what to do and how to fight for this once great country. Nobody is filled with confidence by their actions and it is time before we totally capitulate to the inevitable of remaining within the EU albeit in another format for them both to be removed. If not May on her return from Canada, may as well go back to No 10 by the scenic route and drop in to see the Queen and hand over the keys to be passed over to Corbyn and prevent us having to suffer the embarrassment of her actions through the ballot box.

    I cannot believe that there is not 60+ CONSERVATIVE yes real true blue CONSERVATIVES not new world tories who cannot set up a challenge to her lack of leadership and the way she has handled the whole Brexit process. Push has go to go to shove and very quickly.

  28. Bob
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    If Mrs May were sincere about UK independence she would have appointed you as Chancellor of the Exchequer instead of EUrophile Phil Hammond.

    Judge her by her deeds, not her words.

  29. Ian wragg
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    There will be no £12 billion net savings from March next year as May has already agreed to the a transition period when all current arrangements continue.
    There is no way we will be allowed to leave on no deal unless you start to show some backbone. I can’t understand why May is allowed to continue humiliating the country which can only result in decimating the Tory party.
    Enough really is enough.

  30. NickC
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    Of course the current performance of the UK economy has nothing to do with “Brexit”. That’s because we are still in the EU and look set to remain so for years to come. The Westminster bubble is squabbling about whether to Brexit at all, as though the Referendum never happened.

    We didn’t suffer the doom predicted by Remain subsequent to our vote to Leave because, frankly, Remain lied. Remain was so bad it became a joke in its own lifetime. But by not leaving cleanly and quickly now we are suffering massive lost opportunity costs far greater than any mooted tax adjustments.

    • hans christian ivers
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:46 pm | Permalink


      It would be very nice if you would be so kind and quantify the lost opportunity costs, please

      • NickC
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

        Hans, It is remarkable how uninformed Remains are, perhaps due to mental laziness. I suggest you research the following: Ruth Lea, Roger Bootle, Patrick Minford, Liam Halligan, Tim Congdon, Gerard Lyons, Iain Mansfield. And please don’t claim we would be better off in a “reformed” EU. The EU simply won’t reform the way we want it to reform.

  31. formula57
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    Then it is also time for a replacement Chancellor for has the present one not done enough deliberate damage?

  32. mickc
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    Best of luck trying to get this government to anything like this!
    May and Hammond are clueless, as has been shown frequently. Dump them…or lose!

  33. Rogm
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    The way to boost the economy is to face up to the hard reality, that whether we like it or not, we are firmly in the orbit of a huge trading bloc..all talk about doing new deals with countries far away is just that, talk? There are no new trade deals waiting for us that could in any way compensate for loss of trade with the EU. the people have been badly let down, lied to by charlatans and rogues, politicians and rag press, for decades so much so that in the end they had no idea as to the truth and so voted the way they did.. through ignorance- we have to get real

    • Edward2
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

      The government say there are dozens of nations waiting for us to officially leave so deals can be signed.

      Loss of trade with the EU?
      Are you claiming all trade will cease?

    • libertarian
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:54 pm | Permalink


      Hmm well lets take a look shall we . You claim leavers were mislead but you seem totally ignorant of the facts concerning trade.

      Roughly 9% of our economic activity is with the EU. Our export trade non EU is greater than our trade within the customs union. The Commonwealth has 2.3 billion people which makes it have far larger than the 27 EU countries.

      Australia, Canada, USA indeed the Commonwealth Heads have all stated they wish to agree FTA’s with us after we’ve left the EU.

      Are you trying to claim that people in Germany, France Etc will stop buying Coldplay albums, will cease using mobile phones ( 80% of mobile phone components are UK made) , that Scotch whiskey will no longer be consumed , that the drugs made by 5 of the worlds largest drug companies ( all UK based) will no longer be available in the EU etc etc etc

      I dont think you have a clue what you’re talking about , I love it when remainers who have never run so much as a whelk stall come on here and lecture us about international trade. Ron some of us actual DO IT .

      Go away and educate yourself

  34. APL
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    JR: “The Bank and Treasury have slowed the economy too much by tax hikes and monetary tightening.”

    I’d like to suggest an area where you could save £11billion each year. The Home office.

    The E&W Police service costs £11bn per year, and as we’ve seen from the Rochdale, Rotherham, Bristol, and Manchester experience, it is an institution in terminal decline. They are supposed to be impartial, they are supposed to apply the law equally. But they have failed abysmally in both aspects.

    Frankly, the British Public would be better off if the Police were abolished. And the public left to fend for themselves. As children in the afore mentioned area’s will no doubt attest, asking the police to protect them is thankless and fruitless.

    No doubt, the cancer has metastasised into the whole of the England and Wales Police ‘service’.

  35. acorn
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    Is Brexit not a major element of domestic policy?

    The Brexit vote has had a significant impact on the economy, have a look at the BoE actual recorded data. Start with https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/statistics/visual-summaries/household-credit . Consumer credit growth rate has been dropping since the vote.

    You will see the same pattern in the other six sections. Annual growth of lending to SME businesses is dropping. Capital Issuance is flat-lining. BoE’s headline growth of total money (M4) and credit (M4Lending), has halved since the vote.

    There is plenty of credit to lend, the problem is finding a borrower who will stay afloat long enough to pay it back!

    reply Untrue. Bank of E tightened form March 2017, withdrew credit lines from commercial banks and issued tough guidance re lending. That is what changed things

    • acorn
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

      Yes JR, the PRA finally confirmed amendments to the PRA’s rules on loan to income ratios in mortgage lending; which should have been done ten years earlier!

      • libertarian
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:56 pm | Permalink


        So you admit it has nothing to do with Brexit. Doh

        Your credibility gets worse by the day

        • hans christian ivers
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 8:40 am | Permalink

          More Libertarian arrogance, cool down and have lime and juice in the sunshine

          • libertarian
            Posted June 10, 2018 at 1:06 pm | Permalink


            Who asked you? Im still waiting for you to

            1) Correct the incorrect “facts” you post

            2) Post evidence to back up anything you say

            3) Stop patronising people you disagree with

            I dont like lime juice and its not sunny where i am , Toddle off, theres a good chap

  36. Then there was light
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Some people make their careers out of “saving the nation” ongoing. It would not do for the BoE in a stroke to set matters straight. If they did we would need only half as many of their experts. They have a push-and-pull nationalised railway mentality complete with a sleeping guards van at the back . Yes I know! 🙂

  37. Iain Gill
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    Just been to the private ENT consultant to have a slug of dirty wax removed from my eardrum. Fixing the underlying reason for pain, infection and hearing loss. As usual the waiting room was full of NHS GP’s refusing to accept the NHS approach of anti biotics and ear drops for themselves. Why give the NHS more money when it cannot even provide basic treatment like this like the entire rest of the developed world get.

  38. Chris S
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    This morning Matthew Paris has called for Remainers to “Go For The Kill” over Brexit.
    The article just shows how arrogant and out of touch these Remainers truly are.

    Given the way the EU has treated the UK since the referendum and the changes that have occurred across the Channel, I am sure that a fresh vote would yield an even larger majority for leave. After all, even if voters agree that Mrs May has catastrophically mismanaged the negotiations, the failure of the EU to treat us as an equal in the “negotiations” demonstrates their attitude towards the UK.

    We were told that there was no prospect of an EU army, one is now being set up, the Commission is planning to increase the budget, despite Brexit, and eliminate all rebates over the next budget period. That would increase our net contribution from £10bn to well north of £15bn pa. Then they want to eliminate all vetoes so that everything will be decided on Qualified Majority voting. The list goes on.

    We also have the increasingly terminal problems of the Euro and the disagreements between Germany and almost everyone else about the economy and immigration.

    Even if we had another vote, the EU as we knew it would simply not be there for us to rejoin. By the time of the next European Parliament elections, the EU will look like a different animal entirely. By then the problems of the Eurozone might well have brought the whole House of Cards tumbling down.

    Against this very different background, how do Remainers think they can possibly win a new referendum when all the Project Fear disasters they told us would be visited upon us failed to materialised ? Nobody will believe a word they tell us.

  39. Andy
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    To clarify –

    By £12bn Brexit windfall you actually mean a £39bn fee.

    A fee for your Brexit folly that your children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren will be paying off until the 2060s.

    This is in addition to the lower growth they will experience for decades as a result of your Brexit. A Brexit they overwhelmingly do not want.

    We will not be slashing taxes. Instead we will be paying more and getting less – to appease a handful of unappeasable ideologues.

    Never before has so much been given by so many to so few.

    • Edward2
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

      If the EU cannotvagree a deal then no payment will be made by the UK.
      So you are getting ahead of yourself andy

    • Adam
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

      Forecasting growth & fees 42 years ahead clarifies guess working.

    • graham1946
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      The certain sure way that we will be paying ever higher amounts into the 2060’s and beyond is to ‘Remain’. which means less and less to spend at home. Your children and their children will be paying for it and joining the EU army etc. I’m sure they will thank Daddy wholeheartedly if you achieve it and it looks likely you will. Don’t worry about pensions for your children, there won’t be any so you’ll achieve yet another Andy ambition.

    • Dennis
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

      Andy – ‘lower growth’? If only – no one wants the UK to a be a fair society – they want to be richer. Greed will out. But oil will do the trick – without it the UK is nothing as will be the case for all others.

      Do you understand this point?

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

      No, the folly the children, grand-children and great grand-children will be paying off is the national debt at £1.8tn costing £50bn a year to service.
      Only they won’t be paying it off, as politicians will continue to bribe the electorate with even more spending and debt.
      And the costs of Brexit?

      • Andy
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

        Agreed. Debt is way too high.

        The Baby Boomers have got rich on credit – and have passed on the bills to their children.

        We are – literally – paying the bill for your lifetime of excesses.

        And many of you come on here and complain about how much tax you pay when the reality is that you are a massive drain on the system.

        You have permanently shafted your children.

        • Edward2
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

          Far from passing on debts to our children most “baby boomers” are passing on valuable estates that have amounts well above the inheritance tax liability threshold.
          They started companies saved hard spent carefully paid lots of taxes and created real wealth.

        • NickC
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

          Andy, I didn’t expect to see you on here after your embarrassing escapade with your dodgy arithmetic. Still think the EU costs only £1 per week per income taxpayer? Hmmm??

          Still, anyone can make a mistake with their arithmetic but it takes a peculiarly gullible Remain to swallow Remain propaganda without checking it first. It’s called confirmation bias and, boy, have you got it bad.

          By the way – you don’t get rich on credit. But then arithmetic is not your forte, as we’ve all found out, and laughed at.

  40. hans christian ivers
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 12:37 pm | Permalink


    Neither Italy nor the US can afford the tax-breaks proposed or implemented and it will leave significant debt issue for the future.

    So, I am not sure this is the right solution at this stage in the economic cycle.
    There are no indications that the tax-cut will have a major growth effect on the Italian economy, as the confidence in the government is not present.

    • libertarian
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:13 pm | Permalink


      Do you have any facts or evidence to support the claim about US tax breaks? No thought not. US employment seems to be working quite well. The remainers tell us more workers contribute significant amounts of new tax revenues. So how come that doesn’t work in your opinion

      Just a thought for those like you that are economically illiterate. There is an alternative and far better solution to so called “government debt issues” How about spending far less and stop wasting tax payers money …. hmmm

      • Blue and Gold
        Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

        How about the waste of taxpayers money with:

        A referendum costing around £145 million to try and settle an internal Conservative party squabble.

        The 2017 Conservative vanity project with an unnecessary General Election, costing around £135 million.

        The £1 billion bribe given to keep the Conservatives in power.

        Who had to foot the bill ALL because of the Conservative party, the British public. An absolute disgrace. The Conservatives love stealth taxes as it is, let alone the above.

        • Edward2
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 7:54 am | Permalink

          Large sums but with overall government spending over £800 billion a year they are not major items.

          PS the money hasn’t been given to the DUP, it is just extra public spending available for the whole of Northern Ireland.
          You like extra state spending.

        • libertarian
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

          B& G

          Government currently spends nearly a £trillion each year. Get a grip .

          I’m glad to see you feel that its prudent to cancel all future general elections as they are too expensive. So you’re happy for the Conservatives to stay in government for ever basically.

          You sound like one of those idiot socialists who scream the Tory government are killing us, the government are evil and deport the wrong people , the government never spends enough money on the NHS etc. And the answer is……. more government . Doh

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 8:42 am | Permalink

        I will let the LSE know so I can have my money back for my postgraduate degree in economics, thank you for the tip

        • libertarian
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 1:13 pm | Permalink


          I would because its not worth the paper its written on in the real world.

          You would have been better off coming to one of my MBA lectures at the LSE

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 11:26 am | Permalink


        There are a number of economists, who believe the Trump tax cuts will pay for them selves and there are others, who believe it will lead to inflation and even more debt.

        As an economist I will need about three to four years down the line to make a final judgement on this experiment. Source Sunday Times Irvin Selzer)

        On the case of Italy it is an entirely different fish and requires a much longer explanation.

        • libertarian
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 1:19 pm | Permalink


          Yup as always with the failed discipline of economics, you can say what you like on the grounds that a stopped clock is right twice a day.

          I never mentioned Italy in this post , what you tried to ignore is this.

          Remainers keep telling us importing immigrant workers is good for the economy as it generates far more in tax revenues than it costs.

          Therefore my point is IF that is true it would also be true for the USA , i.e. the more people they have in work ( another extra 200,000 last month alone) the better off they are from a revenue point of view.

          I’m also interested in your thoughts as a leading business consultant and very academically qualified person. How much tax money is the government wasting and dont you think it would be a good idea to stop wasting it rather than try to either tax even more money out of the pockets of workers and/or increasing government debt further

      • Georgy Llewor
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 11:37 am | Permalink

        Problem with you Libertarian is that you seem unable to think that economics can be outside the not-so-fresh Friedman-Thatcher-Reagan-Minford’s stuff.

        In fact I even doubt that, as successful a businessman you might be, you understand very much of economics. Maybe a few linear plots, or the wonderful Laffer curve?

        • Edward2
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

          I’m sure Georgy that you have a few economists you believe are right.
          Like a religion.

        • hans christian ivers
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 9:14 pm | Permalink


          I could not have said it better myself but I have decided to stop commenting on the underlying arrogance altogether

        • libertarian
          Posted June 11, 2018 at 4:12 pm | Permalink


          Yeh, who wants to be economically successful, when instead you could philosophise on unmeasurable theories.

          I couldn’t care less about “economics” as a subject. 1) I prefer science, 2) I prefer real world experience 3) theories from 30 years ago have been superseded .

          As an entreprenuer I deal in future possibilities. The future is something that you create, not that you measure, creativity and innovation will ALWAYS outshine and overturn the best of thought out theories. Not one economic model factored free as a business model, not one economic model predicted the digital market, not one economic theory saw the long tail coming and factored it into a model.

          As it happens the only theoretical economist that said anything remotely accurate was Karl Marx. When he said the proletariat would own the means of production. That is turning out to be very true. Capital is no longer what it was, the driving force behind economic success, is ingenuity, creativity, talent and high emotional intelligence coupled with acuity . Capital, Oxbridge degrees and the Old Boy Network are all dead in the water for the new paradigm

          Economists try to build models that completely ignore human behaviours. Thats why economic models and forecasts are ALWAYS wrong and always will be.

          In a field where there are as many theories as there are practitioners none of whom have proved themselves consistently right I think we can safely ignore them


          You stopped commenting because your “facts” were provably made up… arrogance indeed

  41. Billy Elliot
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    ” The EU is not offering us a good deal, so why pay?”
    Well if we pay we will get a bad deal.
    If we don’t pay – things will be even worse. UK don’t have any leverage on these so called “negotiations” – which from EU:s side are considered damage control not negotiations.
    We are between a rock and hard place.
    In Brexit there are only bad options from which to choose.
    Hopefully government chooses the ones that are least harmful.
    In future I would surely like to live in UK rather than England-Wales.

  42. ian
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    Considering that the electrification of the train system was cancelled last year in favour of bi-mode trains that run on electric and diesel which are still in the design stage and not ready for production and will cost more money to buy and run, the reason for this they say is because they have not got the money. The truth of the matter is, they have got the electric.

    HS2 is still going ahead with no electric to run it while telling people to get rid of your dirty cars and pay out for new ones or we will be fined you and put your running cost up to make you change them or go without a car, they trying to force people to buy electric cars but they have no electric to run them or infrastructure to charge them, and they cost thousands of pounds extra to buy and when they are seven to ten years old these cars won;t be worth much because they will need new batterys, costing thousands to sell them on.

    Worst gov in living memory, Tory party should be disbanded along with the labour party who look worst than the Tory party, how people have the front to vote for these parties and the people in them is beyond me if brains were dynamite, they would have enough to blow their hair off.
    It might be a case of, a party is only as good as it voters, that doesn’t say a lot about voters.

  43. The Prangwizard
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Sounds like a criticism of the policies of a Labour government but then….that’s what we’ve got with Blay and Brommand. And of course how useful, for the Remainers that they are, to be able to give ammunition to those who wish to promote the remain argument and to keep us tied to the EU. Traitors. We will never get out with them in charge.

    The PM must be removed, she is directly and deliberately responsible for the mess we are in and it should be a matter of shame and embarrassment to all Tory MPs that she is being allowed to continue on her path. They make mild criticisms but do nothing. They are complicit.

  44. Peter Martin
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    “Tax rates are too high in the UK” – says a Conservative MP

    or “We need more government spending to stimulate the economy “. There’s plenty of arguments along these lines from Labour MPs.

    Both the left and right of politics are essentially saying the same thing. ie Fiscal policy is too tight. Monetary policy is no longer effective as an economic stimulus. Normally the government, or BoE if you prefer, can lower rates to encourage more private sector borrowing which in turn creates more spending. But that’s only bringing forward future consumption. Too much PS borrowing will always depress the economy in the longer term.

    That’s where we are now. We are suffering from too much credit creation in the private sector and have driven down interest rates so low we can’t lower them any further. The only option is a looser fiscal policy to prevent ongoing recession and which ardent remainers will be only too pleased to blame on Brexit. They will use any economic slowdown as a excuse for ignoring the referendum result and for staying in the EU.

    Just don’t give them the opportunity!

  45. Dennis
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    James O’ Brien on LBC yesterday accused Mr Redwood of advising investors in the UK, some time past, to take their money out of the UK implying that he has not the UK’s interest at heart.

    Is this true?

    Reply No of course not

    • Blue and Gold
      Posted June 10, 2018 at 12:36 pm | Permalink


      Google that question

    • Georgy Llewor
      Posted June 11, 2018 at 11:37 am | Permalink

      It certainly is behind the FT firewall, but try
      03/11/2017 Time to look further afield as UK hits the brakes

      But to be fair you should also consider what JR had written the previous months.

  46. Chris S
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    With your fine knowledge of the tax system, are you able too give us an idea what the effect on tax receipts and growth would be of restoring taper relief, inflation proofing the annual allowance and lowering the rates of CGT back to the levels they were before Gordon Brown and Osbourne started interfering with it ?

  47. Newmania
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    Growth came to a virtual standstill in the first quarter of 2018 The housing market is dead. Demand for credit is weak. The long wished for interest rate rise has been abandoned . In this context how on earth does John Redwood manage to tell us the lurch towards Brexit driven disaster in the UK economy is due to monetary tightening ?
    Perhaps by monetary he is using the term simply as “Money “( its hard to know with these people ). Well just in case, let’s have the facts . Government Debt to GDP in the United Kingdom averaged 43.17 percent from 1975 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 85.30 percent in 2017
    Meanwhile the Brexit Bus promised significantly increased funding for the NHS and just about everything else , including duplicating all the EU`s UK spend which takes out half that£12bn leaving less than 1% of our annual state spend if anything is left form the spectacular cost of Brexit itself , never mind the vastly more important loss of growth.
    I said to my wife as we left to support our local school( funding for which has been brutally slashed ), its terrifying to think the country is full of people who believe this stuff . I don`t know whether to pity despise or fear such ignorance

    Reply The economy has slowed whilst we remain in the EU! Remember the big recession the ERM gave us. We will be better off out when we can spend our £12bn on ourselves.

    • Binding in the marsh
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

      “..The Brexit bus promised…” Absolutely remarkable that a side of bus advertisement was the deciding factor on how people voted. 🙂 Newmania, try not to take in syrup of figs advertisements or you may embarrass yourself in polite company like Brexiteers

    • Chris S
      Posted June 9, 2018 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      Newmania, you have to compare the financial environment when we have left with what the EU will throw at us if we Remain.

      Remember they are planning to remove all budget rebates during the next budget round as well as increase the overall budget. Furthermore, they are looking to take in more impoverished countries which will require huge investment to bring them anywhere close to the average member state. This will pile more pressure on the very small number of net contributor countries of which, without our substantial rebate, we would become by far the second-largest net contributor.

      That would mean net payments from Britain of AT LEAST £15bn pa, not £10bn as now. That £15bn figure is only based on the current budget. The actual figure with increases, inflation and adjusted for our growth rate could be anywhere from £16bn-£18bn pa ! In a few years there is little doubt that we would be handing over £20bn net every single year.

      Apart from nonsense like the EU Army which is now going ahead, Juncker has also stated that they intend to remove all National vetoes. As everything will then be decided on QMV there can be little doubt that we will then be outvoted on almost every issue.

      So Remaining in the EU is very far removed from what the alternative to Leaving looked like before the referendum.

      Would you vote for this “new look” EU ??

      • Newmania
        Posted June 10, 2018 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

        You are referring to a report I think as misrepresented in the Brexit press , and the wish amongst some people within the EU to get rid of rebates ,Brexit providing the opportunity .
        Brexit provides such an opportunity because our agreement would be needed .I somehow doubt our agreement would have been forthcoming.

        On the EU army , I struggle to understand the power this myth had during the referendum ( whereas the millions of fictional Syrians are clear enough). The EU has cooperated on procurement , mounted Naval patrols under an EU banner . I have no special objection to this or to a n extension of such cooperation…..ooooer . It is especially attractive to Germany allowing them to increase their presence in an acceptable form and thereby support the a disintegrating NATO

        The scale is miniscule but as the US is less and less interested in Europe Europe must defend itself . That means Germany has to up its game and disparate small forces have to find a way to work better together .Its not a bad idea but that is pretty much all it is

        • Edward2
          Posted June 10, 2018 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

          During the referendum campaign people who spoke about the EU’s ambition for an army were ridiculed.
          Yet now the EU tells us this is an objective.
          And even you tell us it’s true.

  48. Gina Dean
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    If we get to actually leave the Eu, will that mean that vat might get repealed. Though I will not hold my breath on that one. I am waiting for the day when a chancellor says that he will not be changing anything on taxes. Also speaks for a few minutes, not drones on.

  49. The Prangwizard
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    I don’t suppose Mrs Blay has learned anything from her trip to Canada. Virtue signalling about plastic in the oceans is kids stuff.

    She should learn from President Trump but she suffers from Trump Derangement Syndrome, ie. she is unable to contemplate anything at all like he has implimented taxwise because she hates him so much. In the US there is positivity and optimism in the main, outside the failing Democrats and their Hard Left Progressive wing. (Momentum) And its media. Pity we in the Uk are not allowed a Fox type broadcaster which they do have thankfully.

    Anyway, it’s back shortly to a small island with a small mind and leadership hell bent on demoralising the entire population.

    • Georgy Llewor
      Posted June 10, 2018 at 11:48 am | Permalink

      BTW, who said ‘I like the poorly educated. We’re the smartest, we are the most loyal’?
      D.J.Trump in a primary speech on 24/02/2016.

      • libertarian
        Posted June 11, 2018 at 4:20 pm | Permalink


        Ah the arrogance of academics eh. People who spend years learning how to pass tests set by other people who learned how to pass tests. Thinking that they’re smarter than everyone else. You ought to read the work of Howard Gardner at Harvard on how that pans out in the real world.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted June 11, 2018 at 10:19 pm | Permalink


        Don’t despair arrogance comes in many shapes and forms

  50. Termite
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

    My heart goes out to The Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP Minister of Transport. I commented on here months ago about his magnificent performance answering questions to a Parliamentary Select Committee. He was very much on top of his game and as will be noticed I am usually hyper-critical of politicians in general.

    I feel no-one is going to sort out the transport mess. Of course there are yawns, moans, shakings of heads and guffaws of what seems to be but is not a cliché.

    ££££ Too many people on these islands!

    Ants leave formic acid trails for a guide yet they often bump into one another. The Daily Telegraph is probably man’s best guide but the editor does not manage railways, unfortunately.

  51. Prigger
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 9:55 pm | Permalink


  52. Mark
    Posted June 9, 2018 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

    Leaders of the Group of Seven industrialized nations agreed at the conclusion of their summit on Saturday on the need for “free, fair, and mutually beneficial trade” and the importance of fighting protectionism, their communique said.

    European Council President Donald Tusk, British Prime Minister Theresa May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, U.S. President Donald Trump, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, French President Emmanuel Macron, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker

    So that’s the Brexit EU trade deal sewn up then. Or do we not trust a word they say?

  53. rick hamilton
    Posted June 10, 2018 at 12:19 am | Permalink

    JR can you kindly explain why the Cons cannot change their leader without letting Corbyn into government as the media claim ?

    It would boost their credibility mightily to get rid of May and put in somebody decisive who actually believes in Brexit, which is after all the stated policy of the elected government. Parliament has decided we are leaving so why should Remainers be allowed call the shots? Why isn’t the cabinet more than 50% Leave supporters ?

    If I may say so, you seem to be too loyal to your party to touch on this.

    • Newmania
      Posted June 10, 2018 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

      There is no question of a change inleader even leading to an election, and if there was one , Corbyn would lose it . He is Brexit`s greatest friend and , in fact , it is Corbyn as much new UKIP in blue that has set the country on its catastrophic trajectory .
      The reason the Brexit crew will not act is that they are on course for leavingthe EU.
      They will disturb nothing until that is achieved.
      After that look forward to carnage

  • 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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