There is no £50 billion bonus from cancelling Brexit

One of the more absurd claims in this election is there would be a big  bonus to share if we stopped Brexit. This is based on various false economic forecasts that claim our growth rate will be impaired by Brexit, leading to the equally false idea that if we tore up the referendum result growth would suddenly accelerate.

The UK economy performed well in the year after the Brexit vote, despite all the official and independent  forecasts of an early recession in that first year  if we voted to leave. Since then the UK economy has slowed, but by less than many other economies, as a result of a world downturn in manufacturing aggravated by a fiscal and monetary squeeze at home. The current government is now going to lift this squeeze which should lead to improvement next year.

If by a  £50 billion increase they mean   a 2% increase in the growth of GDP,  this does not suddenly become available as tax revenue. Indeed tax revenue would go up by a little under £20bn in such a circumstance. To get £50bn more tax for the state to spend there would need to be large £125bn increase in GDP, or well over 5%.

Just as the forecast of a big decline in GDP in the year or two after the vote was comprehensively wrong, so too is this forecast. As we are still in the EU with the same trading arrangements it is difficult to see how there would be anything like this fabled increase. For any company that did decide it wanted to invest more  because the uncertainty had gone there would be another company disappointed that the opportunities of Brexit had been thrown away becoming more concerned about UK investment.

As the UK adopts a better growth policy – as this government wishes to do – so investment will rise anyway. Getting Brexit done would in itself be a welcome end to uncertainty.

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  1. Mark B
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 5:22 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    I will not ask if our kind host has spoken to Ann Widdecombe recently as he seems not to want to answer it.

    Not since the 70’s has British politics been in such a parlous state. The political class, treaty after treaty, has handed more power over evermore policy areas so as to render itself useless. Hence why the nonsense over trees and more money here and there. Now we get the fatuous statements about Remaining in the EU. Do they not realise that our contributions are set to rise year in and year out ? Especially so as countries such as Albania, Bosnia and other desperately poor countries clamber to join the trough at the UK’s expense.

    There can never be any meaningful policies or change whilst we are members of the EU, they will not allow it.

    One area they can all look at, but not change, is to do with the dredging of our rivers. An independent government can make, amend or repeal law(s) which would allow such dredging. Currently under EU laws we cannot. Or at least cannot due to the high cost. So ordinary folk have their homes, business and lives ruined so that the government can save money to fulfill a promise to plant a few trees. Yeah, that’s gonna win votes ?

    Less rhetoric and more joined up thinking and policy.

    reply I have not spoken to Ann recently and do not have her contact details

    • Mark B
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:56 am | Permalink

      OK. Thank you.


    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:35 am | Permalink

      John is technically correct that there would be no “fifty billion bonus” from cancelling the UK’s departure from the European Union.

      It would simply not lose that amount, and possibly more, from its revenues owing to predicted GDP shrinkage.

      I would hope that Ms. Widdecombe’s time was in demand from other quarters, incidentally.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

        Alternatively, and rather more likely, we would not benefit from the similar, and still only marginally significant, economic gain we would have got from leaving the EU.

        How many times does it have to be repeated that despite all the vast exaggerations in reality EU membership has never had more than a marginal impact on the UK economy, whether that impact has been positive or negative – with the latter being more probable ?

        You can see the latest repetition here:

        You should not believe economic predictions produced by a Treasury with a strong pro-EU bias supervised by strongly pro-EU Chancellors with the blessing of strongly pro-EU Prime Ministers.

      • Robert mcdonald
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

        And the qualifying word in your comment is “predicted” … just as the project fear predicted mass unemployment, collapse of investment, pound collapsing (rising again please note) .. generally economic disaster … all not just wrong but contrary to the facts.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

          No, those things were not predicted.

          That is a silly, infantile, absolutist distortion of what was said.

          All that was said was that there was an unquantifiable increase in the probability of those things – and others – happening at some point after leaving the European Union.

          That is quite different.

          • Edward2
            Posted November 22, 2019 at 6:36 am | Permalink

            George Orwell would have loved your post Martin.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:30 am | Permalink

            The distortion is yours, Martin, and it will not be forgotten. From May 23 2016:


            “Leaving the European Union would tip the UK into a year-long recession, with up to 820,000 jobs lost within two years, Chancellor George Osborne says.

            Publishing Treasury analysis, he said a Leave vote would cause an “immediate and profound” economic shock, with growth between 3% and 6% lower.”

          • dixie
            Posted November 22, 2019 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

            @MiC/Andy – HM Treasury analysis, Cm 9292, May 2016 offered quantified predictions;

            It predicts in a “shock” scenario that GDP would be down 3.6%, CPI inflation would be 2.3% higher after a year and unemployment would increase by 500,000. They also predict average wages dropping by 2.8% and house prices falling by 10%

            There is also a “severe shock” scenario, a project fear on steroids, where the numbers are even worse.

            Either you are ignorant of these predictions and therefore talking silly, infantile rubbish or you are aware of those predictions.

            So which is it – are you willfully ignorant or willfully lying?

    • Everhopeful
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:56 am | Permalink

      Ditches and rivers always were dredged pre EU law. Prevented flooding and was very good for all wildlife including plants.
      “ Make Room For Water” EU/UN policy does not stop water…it believes that green areas should be used as “sponges”.!!!!
      Cynically speaking …not dredging, not pumping, not avoiding flood plains when building probably tends to help “prove” the false notion that flooding is more prevalent. Which also helps them with the creed of rising sea levels!
      Neat and uber sneaky.

  2. Shirley
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:04 am | Permalink

    We know there is no bonus from cancelling Brexit, except maybe saving the short term costs of taking competency back from the EU. Political parties can make up any old ‘fact’ and get a few tame economists to ‘confirm’ it.

    Who can we trust in politics today? None are completely honest with the electorate, and none even try to be honest. It’s all spin and massaging of the statistics. Global warming is the biggest lie going the rounds at the moment, but it will be used as a reason for requiring ‘one world government’ and the EU is just the first step towards it.

    • agricola
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:10 am | Permalink

      Your last sentence is probably what Bilderberg is all about.

    • agricola
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:12 am | Permalink

      Your last sentence is probably what Bilderberg is all about

    • oldtimer
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      Exactly. Those clamouring for higher taxes, no meat eating and more hair shirts in order to change the climate to their own image of what it should be should direct their attention and energies to China and India. I am sure they will get a warm, if not hot, welcome.

    • Hope
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      Shirley, The public needs to be reminded of the East Anglia university cover up to falsify records and prevent FOI into the climate warming scam. The govt has all resources to do so. It needs to lead like the US and withdraw from the Paris agreement, not be forced by the EU to remain in under Johnsons servitude plan.

      The Brexit Party are the only ones to come out and say it as it is. Farage was very good on Question Time the othe night. Despite a loaded audience of left wing momentum types he did not duck any question and answered it in a straight forward way, including climate change. He answered about the NHS, immigration and the inevitable population growth having a severe impact on our public services.

    • Brigham
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:20 am | Permalink

      Competency and EU is an oxymoron.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

        Well the senior bureaucrats are very competent and looking after themselves and their personal interest plus their overpaid and pensioned EU workers – just never the real & productive workers member state citizens. Not do they care or ever respond to them.

      • margaret howard
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:29 pm | Permalink


        “Competency and EU is an oxymoron”

        Really? Makes you wonder how it has managed to create the world’s biggest, most successful trading bloc.

        And in 2012 was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize “for over six decades [having] contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe” by a unanimous decision of the Norwegian Nobel Committee into the bargain.

        Some oxymoron.

        • Edward2
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 6:38 am | Permalink

          The EU only started in the 90’s so how did it get a prize for over six decades” in 2012?

          • Christopher Hillidge
            Posted November 24, 2019 at 9:18 am | Permalink

            Exactly! And I guess the people of Kosovo may
            wish to comment about ‘peace in Europe’ too…
            Oh, but they’re not in the EU, are they?
            So that’s OK, then – we can ignore genocide in
            Europe, so long as it doesn’t impact on any of the self satisfied bureaucrats in Brussels…

        • NickC
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

          Margaret H, According to the World bank EU GDP is USD18.756trn, and without the UK EU GDP reduces to USD15.931trn; USA GDP is USD20.494trn. So you are wrong. Again.

  3. Garland
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    Huge amounts of investment in the UK that would have happened without the threat of Brexit have been lost because of (i) the uncertainty about when Brexit will happen and (ii) the certainty that after Brexit UK export trade will be less free than it was previously. Cancelling Brexit would at a stroke remove both these drags on our growth. Cancelling Brexit is the single best thing that can be done for the UK economy

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:59 am | Permalink

      The single best thing that can be done for the economy is not to vote Labour. Brexit effects are trivial compared to that.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:37 am | Permalink

      Not just for its economy, but for its standing in the civilised world as a rational, balanced country.

      • Anonymous
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

        You cancel Brexit and you find out what happens when responsible working class people stop voting.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 10:48 am | Permalink

          If only you didn’t vote and those of a similar outlook too, then the country would not be in the mess in which it finds itself.

      • NickC
        Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

        Martin, There are 165 nations in the world that are self governing. The UK becoming the 166th is perfectly rational and civilised. And much more democratic.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:50 am | Permalink

      Far larger amounts of investment in the UK have been lost due to the failure to leave as commanded by the referendum, the expensive energy renewable agenda, the very high, complex and even still increasing tax rates, the restrictive planning laws, the endless red tape, the bloated wasteful state, the restrictive employment laws, the dire and declining public services, the threat of a Marxist government on Dec 13th and the total lack of can do vision from the appalling Theresa May.

      Let us hope Boris can finally turn things round, start by leaving the EU cleanly and undoing almost everything ever done by Blair, Brown, Osborne, Cameron, Hammond and May. Mainly the very, very many damaging tax and red tape increases.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

        The choice at the election is surely simple:-
        Sensible Cameron/May Corbyn’s/Mc
        Small Gov. Libdim type big Gov. Donnall Gov.
        Singapore. UK Venezuela

        GDP per cap PPP $. 108 K. 48K. 6K
        Inflation. 0.4%. 2.1%. 678%
        Gov spending % of GDP. 17% 49%. 40%?
        Deficit % of GDP -0.4 2.4% 26%

        The question is is Boris another Libdim or a real Conservative?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

          The table has come out a rather distorted.

          First figure is Singapore, second the UK and third is the Venezuela (that Corbyn/Mc Donnall clearly want to aim for). But does Boris want the big government/LibDim slowly declining, BBC types of UK/EU model or some real growth, smaller state, go for it vision?

          His party will still be stuffed full of dire, misguided dopes & LibDims like the PM before him and even a few appalling traitors who voted for the Benn Surrender Act.

      • steve
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:17 pm | Permalink


        “Let us hope Boris can finally turn things round, start by leaving the EU cleanly and undoing almost everything ever done by Blair, Brown, Osborne, Cameron, Hammond and May”

        …..and you trust Mr Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson to do that ?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 4:22 am | Permalink

          We shall find out shortly – certainly Boris is far better than 5th place & 9% support and total dishonesty of Libdem Theresa May and a Corbyn/SNP/Libdem disaster – the only current alternatives.

          Cameron pretended to be a low tax at heart Conservative and cast iron EU sceptic and turned out to be another appalling Libdim. Perhaps Boris was pretending to be a big state lefty but he really is a radical who want to go for growth, tax cuts, freedom of choice and a far smaller state. We shall see.

    • HJ
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:03 am | Permalink

      You are forgetting that the sole purpose of trade is to acquire imports. Outside the EU we will have the freedom to cut or eliminate import tariffs designed to protect EU producers through higher prices. If we do this, lower prices will directly make consumers richer and will cut costs for our import-consuming industries.

      Similarly, if the EU chooses to charge its own consumers and companies tariffs on imports from the UK, their costs will rise.

      You are guilty of looking at only one side of the equation.

    • Hope
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:19 am | Permalink

      Drivel and utter rubbish. Democracy trumps economics.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

        Indeed and economic success usually follows sensible democratic government. Rather than following socialist anti-democratic, state knows best, one size fits all empires such as the EU.

      • steve
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:11 pm | Permalink


        “Drivel and utter rubbish. Democracy trumps economics.”

        Not any more it doesn’t. The last parliament saw to that.

        Hey ho, they obviously want our anger to boil over, so be it.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      “Cancelling Brexit is the single best thing that can be done for the UK economy” – what complete and utter drivel. Switzerland, Singapore and many other places are far better off and are not members. We just need a smaller state, cheap reliable energy and far less red tape.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

      Sticking to facts rather than making stuff up, Garland, as dishonest people like you are always so happy to do, there is no evidence of any significant loss of economic growth attributable to either the 2016 vote to leave the EU, or the subsequent failure to leave the EU in a timely fashion thanks to anti-democratic people like you.

  4. Ian Wragg
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:16 am | Permalink

    But we’ve paid over 50 billion since the referendum and probably more again after the never ending transition period.

    • Nig l
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:29 am | Permalink

      And 35 billion to come for nothing and we seem to have given away the current value of our holding in the EIB.

    • Hope
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:53 am | Permalink

      Johnson needed notes for his dire scripted statements at the beginning and end of his chat with Corbyn. No vision, No passion, No individuality, Not in charge of his brief. Corbyn allowed to drip out his 1970s marxist unfunded nonsense without Johnson being able to condemn what he said with fact. Pathetic.

      Everyone knows his servitude plan is rotten, yet he kept spouting like a lunatic get Brexit done! He missed the opportunity to nail Corbyn on so many fronts.

  5. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:24 am | Permalink

    Then you need to explain how, with the constraints placed on us negotiating non-EU trade deals by the terms of the WA, you will manage to gain the confidence of the US, for example, that we will be in a position to accept US goods into our country under terms more favourable than those which the EU has. Do you expect the EU to stand idly by while we import food zero-rated from US, NZ, Africa etc. and knock imports of their farmers’ products on the head?

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:28 am | Permalink

      … and unless we accept US food etc. tariff-free, why should we be able to sell more to them?

      The election might be in the bag and some half-baked WA waved through, but then the new government might wish it had allowed BXP some leverage to re-negotiate the WA and get a clean start.

      • Mark B
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:07 am | Permalink

        The modern day, well Disraeli One Nation Tories that is, do not care. They are little more than shills for big corporates.

        • steve
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:04 pm | Permalink


          “They want to punish us, that much is clear”

          I also said that, a few days ago. It got deleted.

        • steve
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

          Mark B

          Well said, that’s exactly what they are, and some other things to boot.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:00 am | Permalink

      “Do you expect the EU to stand idly by while we import food zero-rated from US, NZ, Africa etc. and knock imports of their farmers’ products on the head?”

      Yes. Same way they stand idly by when Canada (with whom they have a FTA) does. Next question ?

    • agricola
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:05 am | Permalink

      SJP, you do it by leaving on WTO terms, an offered FTA with the advantage of stability to both sides of Art 24 of GATT. You additionally tell the EU that the Irish border will be an electronic one exchanging whatever information is required, just like all other UK borders with the EU and the rest of the World. The EU can do as it pleases on it’s own territory.

      No discussion of a £39 billion leaving fee, no bargaining of UK fishing rights in UK waters, and no dictation of how we run the UK from ths day we leave. An offer of a treaty under the Vienna Convention covering all those areas of mutual convenience such as security and citizens rights. End of story.

      • Bendo
        Posted November 22, 2019 at 5:02 am | Permalink

        Really? All our borders are electronic? Im sure I remember having to show my passport last time I was through Heathrow

        • NickC
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

          Bendo, For exports and imports. Not people. That was one of the main points of Brexit. Wake up.

    • Robert McDonald
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:26 am | Permalink

      Please explain what the eu will do in reaction to our importation of zero rated food ? Increase the cost of their cars ? Increase the cost of their cheese ? Not speak to us ? Block our ports and airports ? Invade ? The eu will be obliged to review the cost of their food and produce to compete if they want to sell to our market .. it’s called market forces.

    • graham1946
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:05 am | Permalink

      We already know that we are being ripped off in food prices by our membership of the EU and have been for the last 40 years through CAP. The WA should not (I don’t say will not, with our duplicitous MP’s) last forever, Johnson says just until the end of 2020. Then what? Will the EU reduce its food prices to us to gain market share? Seems ok to me. We don’t want tariffs on any particular EU goods as far as I know, just a straight forward deal such as Canada has. They want to punish us, that much is clear, but that becomes less credible as days go by. I have never heard any politician say why we should not get such a deal, with the size of our markets, just a wish to prop up a failing empire for some reason best known to themselves.

      • steve
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:02 pm | Permalink


        But then politicians seldom tell the truth, and go out of their way to censure facts. It’s no good telling it like it is, they’ll suppress that too, because they arrogantly think it’s not good for us, their paymaster, to know certain things.

        So until we get politicians who defend free speech and believe the truth should always be told….don’t expect the state broadcaster to behave properly either.

  6. Nig l
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    And only the foolish believe it. They are trying to take us as mugs again!

    • Kenneth
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:36 am | Permalink

      The BBC is reporting this as a serious news story and appears to be copy and pasting the script from the LibDems with no attempt at any forensic study.

      People are busy – not foolish. They rely on the media to tell them what is happening and it is not unreasonable to expect the BBC to provide not only the truth but the WHOLE truth.

      In this case it has failed to do so and has let us down yet again.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

        The BBC always fail to be sensible or impartial wrong on almost anything. Today they were discussing the Corbyn/Mc Donnall economic agenda with Anne Pettifor and the BBC Economics Editor News as if this lunacy was a remotely workable, deliverable or sensible agenda. It is the insane economic of Venezuela. Pure politics of envy, magic money forests and endless promises that would never be delivered. Complete con merchants – even by the standards of politicians.

  7. Dominic
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Yes, this assertion of a Remain tax bonus (pathetic State-centric politicians obsessed with spending taxpayers money) is a fabrication, pure and simple but then so is Johnson’s assertion that his interpretation of Brexit is indeed Brexit when we all know it isn’t Brexit by any stretch of the imagination

    ‘Adopts a better growth policy’? Oh, you mean more state waste, a greater tax burden on those who create the wealth and more State imposition and intervention in how the wealth creating sector goes about its business. It would be amusing if it wasn’t so serious.

    Johnson’s plan is simple. It is a continuation of policy that equates to ever greater increases in the tax burden on those who create and produce material wealth to finance those who are dependent. Therein lies the political cowardice of the Tory party.

    The party should try embracing reform rather than shying away from a confrontation with Labour’s client state who spends all its time expanding its budget, influence and grip at our expense. In fact the party should embrace a campaign strategy that rams home the extremism of Labour, stops boring people with tedious mantras that are excruciating to listen to and speak from the HEART

    Johnson comes across as totally fake simply because believes in nothing at all

    • Nig l
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      Re last line. Or everything depending on whose listening!

    • Sharon Jagger
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:03 am | Permalink


      “ The party should try embracing reform rather than shying away from a confrontation with Labour’s client state who spends all its time expanding its budget, influence and grip at our expense. In fact the party should embrace a campaign strategy that rams home the extremism of Labour, stops boring people with tedious mantras that are excruciating to listen to and speak from the HEART

      Johnson comes across as totally fake simply because believes in nothing at all”

      I’m inclined to agree. Boris seems to talk the talk, but is at heart, I believe, a leftie. As is most of the Conservative Party.

      And in discussions about changes made, by government, in a leftie direction…a lot of them lead back to Teresa May.

      Let’s hope and pray this upcoming GE clears enough of the swamp to allow the necessary changes to come about. And we could do with a few dozen Brexit Party MPs too, to keep Boris’ feet to the fire over the WA and PD.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:53 am | Permalink

      It’s true. We should probably encourage a Blairite Labour to form so there would be no more “reds under the bed” scare next time, and people will be free to choose a proper right wing party. Surely had this been the case now BXP would be far higher in the polls/

    • Bernard Gallivan
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:55 am | Permalink

      If you don’t want to be upset by everything politicians say, just accept that you live in the real world where decisions have to be made that even the decision maker is often unhappy to make because the alternative is even worse.
      The PM is between a rock and a hard place, and has been since his election, purely because of decisions his predecessor made. He is trying his best to pick up the pieces and deserves our support.

      Bernard Gallivan

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

        It is true that Theresa May left him with a bad hand, but it is also true that he has played it badly … consequently he will be in a weak position when it comes to negotiating that trade agreement with the EU which he claims will prevent the disintegration of the UK:

        “So is it not the case that a UK-EU FTA may have only a marginal economic impact but Boris Johnson has staked the integrity of the UK on getting one?

        What effect will that have on the strength of the UK’s negotiating position?”

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:06 am | Permalink

        No, he is in this position because for all of his life, above all else, he apparently craved to be PM.

        • Fred H
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

          I suspect dozens of MPs take the route to H of L via failing as a politician it being not so difficult, achieving their childhood dream.

  8. Dave Andrews
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    Let them take the first £50bn off the national debt and perhaps then I might believe their promises. But hey, we’re talking about the LibDems and they aren’t going to be forming a government anyway.

  9. Everhopeful
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    I think the claim of this bonus comes from just one minor political party with ideas above its station?
    It also plans to revoke Art 50 I think.
    One wonders why these people are so triggered by democracy…after all they apparently believe they can achieve government via it!!
    What can the EU have to offer that beats serving one’s country??🤔

  10. agricola
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    The Lib/Dums are socialists so do not expect financial integrity from them.

    The battle is between those who believe in dependancy ,believing we are incapable of surviving as a sovereign nation, the pessimists, and those who welcome being unfettered because of the opportunities it provides. You have to be a special sort of person to choose self employment, a high wire act with no safety net. However ultimately the rewards can be greater, not just in monetary terms, but in self esteem for having taken the route to personal independance. Socialism, and this is what the EU is, does not welcome too many free radicals floating about. As Shakespeare said “Stiffen the sinews”, and as I say, go for it.

  11. Richard1
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    It’s extraordinary how uncritically this absurd LibDem claim has been accepted by the media. I heard a LibDem spokeswoman being interviewed yesterday who wasn’t challenged at a;l on it.

  12. Lifelogic
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    Indeed any bonus comes from leaving the EU, releasing the economy from massive over taxation, endless over regulation, expensive energy, absurd green lunacy, restrictive planning, from having to pay the huge EU fees and release for huge bloated and largely misguided government. We need to do all these things as soon as possible.

  13. Alan Jutson
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Just another LibDem Fake calculation.

    Given we have not left the EU yet, how will we get a bonus of any sort if we remain as we are.

    Is there a hidden cash pile that the EU is going to give us for remaining, who would pay for it ?

    The politics of stupidity, but some will believe it.

  14. Christine
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Have remainers factored in the increase in the EU budget, more poor countries joining, continued freedom of movement of these poor citizens, USA WTO tariff changes, the EU cohesion fund introduced to spread wealth to poorer EU states? Thought not. The deceit of these parties who don’t tell the electorate the true picture is unforgivable. Or maybe they are just so blinkered with their religious zeal they don’t know what’s coming. Politicians and the media keep the public in the dark as they want democracy destroyed so can implement their grand plan without the little people having the ability to stop it. Ask why the EU want to control the Border Force, the police, the army and the internet. It’s to put us in our place when the people find out what is really happening.

  15. Kevin
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    The Conservative Party is evidently confident that it can resolve the parliamentary deadlock single-handedly, by obtaining a majority comfortable enough to accommodate any rebels within its own ranks. We can infer this from the Party’s refusal to enter into any electoral pact. Why then is it also refusing to discard the Withdrawal Agreement so that it can really “Get Brexit done”? I hear all this talk about getting a “Canada-style” trade deal. To “Get Brexit done” we need Canada-style independence from the EU.

  16. Leaver
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    For me, the £50 billion isn’t the point.

    We voted to leave. It’s a question of respecting democracy, not money.

    • old salt
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      With the referendum result effectively set aside just what was the point of voting?

      With almost two thirds of constituencies voting to leave what chance will we ever have of leaving.

      So much for our so called representative (not) democracy!

  17. Fred H
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Once the poll outcome is known, hopefully the few Libnodemocrats MPs will quietly reflect on the nonsense their campaign was centred on, and Jo will be known as Swansong….

  18. Simeon
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    “Getting Brexit done.”

    This is indeed Tory policy. And we can see the particular species of ‘Brexit’ that they want to ‘get done’. In theory, this does provide the economy with some certainty (undoubtedly a good thing in and of itself). And in practice, with the collapse of organised opposition to this particular ‘Brexit’, certainty would seem to be forthcoming. So can we infer that you have finally be won over by the arguments of economic certainty and the sidelining of Corbyn that this ‘Brexit makes’?

  19. Lifelogic
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    I just heard Angela Rayner say ‘when I am Education Secretary on Dec 13th’ what a dire and profoundly depressing thought that is – does she know the first thing about education – has she even had any real education herself?

    Far worse still would be:-
    John McDonnell – when I am Chancellor on Dec 13th
    Keir Starmer – when I am “Secretary for (obstructing) leaving the EU”
    Diane Abbot when I am Home Secretary
    Emily ………. Thornberry when I am Foreign Secretary
    Jeremy Corbyn when I move into 10 Downing St as PM on Dec 13th

    What an appallingly depressing day this would be.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      Is it right that someone who would struggle to get a job as a primary school teacher could become the Education secretary in three weeks time?

      • Fred H
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

        LL – – please don’t demean the demanding, multiskilled unappreciated, under-paid job of Primary School teacher. That sort of ‘view’ is what is now common in our society – little respect for those who help bring balance, learning, respect and individuality to children in their most formulative years. I doubt many who will become ministers or deputies could cope with the job.

        • Fred H
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 5:30 pm | Permalink


        • Lifelogic
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

          I do not demean it at all. My younger sister was a head primary school teacher in Bristol and I agree it is a very important job indeed.

    • The Prangwizard
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

      Bad as they all are the worse by many miles is McDonnell becomong Chancellor. He is clearly a fanatical Marxist/Maoist and will introduce draconian policies and controls on business and personal activities.

      If you wish to protect your savings however small or large get as much as possible out of the country now. I’m certain he will introduce exchange controls within hours of being elected because if he doesn’t his policy announcements will cause the currency to collapse..

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

        Indeed but he will not get in and certainly not with a Majority the people are surely not that stupid.

        An SNP/Libdim/Labour/Plaid/Green disaster would however still be appallingly bad for everyone.

        • steve
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:37 pm | Permalink


          “but he will not get in”

          I hope him and his comrades do get in.

          The anarchy it would cause is a process this mess of a country now needs to go through before it can be rebuilt.

          We need to have it out once and for all with those who’s agenda is to consign the country to EU vassalage.

      • hefner
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

        TPW, will you put your money in the RoI (as some have already done 😊), in continental Europe, or further afield. Anyway do not forget the automatic exchange of information promulgated by the G20 and already applied by 90 countries and more or less enforced by the same 90. And just for fun, the deposits in “fiscal paradises” $1600bn in 2008 were ‘only’ $1048bn in 2018, according to OECD Sec.Gen. Report to the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, June 2019.
        But good luck … You might need it.

        • Edward2
          Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

          It was done back in the 1970s the last time we were foolish enough to elect socialists who wrecked the economy Hefner.
          Now the money will leave in seconds if we are foolish enough to repeat the mistake.
          The owners will leave by airplane shortly afterwards.

          • hefner
            Posted November 23, 2019 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

            OK, you might have some special dedicated channels to do that. But I would be ready to bet that any Mr Smith (not a businessman) wanting right now to move a few £100k’s from their UK bank to any of those countries (outside a genuine verified business transaction) will be asked into which foreign banks and in what account the money will go (ever heard of IBAN?) then possibly for what purpose. The whole idea of doing this at the click of a mouse by anybody not already in business or having previously initiated such a transaction framework is for the birds. Have you ever bought a property on the continent for some £100k’s without having to show some paper from a foreign solicitor to be able to initiate the transfer? If you have, lucky guy. I would have to take lessons from you.

  20. glen cullen
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    Its election madness again, with every party trying to bribe the electorate

    The electorate are now more politically savvy and these bribes and silly generalisations don’t cut it anymore. The parties need to reflect upon the results of recent elections and how the majority voted

    I would vote for any party that planned for zero borrowing and fiscal balance

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 4:29 am | Permalink

      I would vote for a party that would cut the vast level of government waste and misdirected government spending – at least 50% of it is. Plus all the misdirected red tape – about 90% of it is.

  21. Ian @Barkham
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    Tearing up Brexit logically means we have agreed to deeper integration, EU Taxes etc. Therefore as now the UK would be unable to Govern itself, we will be poorer as a consequence.

    Even what passes for a UK Government there is this perverse ideology that centralist control of everyday life is good Government. None of the parties campaigning advocate anything other than Centralist Policies.

    The left, Labour, Liberal Un-Democratic, Greens and so on all advocate rule by a remote unaccountable Commission that would be the only ones to decide what would be the right tax.

    Bizarre interpretation of Democracy

  22. Newmania
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    The forecast of increased growth and therefore increased revenues one that is supported by every authority on the subject form the IMF to the Bank of England and the treasury.
    The UK economy experienced a consumer boom after the referendum when Mr Carney cancelled the long trailed interest normalisation and the government dropped plans to bring debt under control. This is illusory and should any one reading this have any intelligence it should be insulted.
    It is fair to point out that”experts” have , in the past been slow to spot major recessions coming and they may be optimistic . A responsible government would use the Remain bonus to assist with controlling the UK`s swollen debts.
    I feel like a man trapped in car being driven by escaped lunatic ..and he keeps talking as well

    • Anonymous
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      ‘lunatic’ ‘…have any intelligence’

      Never learns, this guy.

      The insults which caused Brexit keep on coming.

    • NickC
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

      Newmania, Every forecast is a guess. Humans do not “know” the future. Remain/Treasury economic forecasts for the post Leave vote were significantly wrong. Therefore their subsequent guesses are suspect too.

  23. Gareth Warren
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    Outside of food and car sales I doubt there is much interest from companies over brexit, ours was happy to just stockpile inventory in the USA as a safety feature to simplify exporting to the EU.

    As such I too see little benefit from cancelling brexit, the political result would be so negative we likely would go into recession.

    These people also forget we no longer have so oh so capable Junkers as president, but instead Ursula. Now her record as defence minister was legendary with uboat crews always able to stay with famillys and absolutely no one was hurt by friendly fire in artic training. I trust she can work this sort of magic on the EU to keep its superb economic growth going that surpasses Antartica!

  24. acorn
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    Tax slashers should have a read of PSS for November.

    Particularly Tables 10 and 11. For instance Table 10b Public sector expenditure on services by function as a per cent of GDP shows the reduction in the share for Public Order and Safety for instance.

    Table 11 Public sector expenditure on services by economic category. See how much you can slash from the government’s procurement bill from the private sector and the government’s payroll.

    • acorn
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

      Did you spot on Chart 1 in my link above, the point where Osborne Austerity flatlined the economy in 2011/12, resulting in a UK decade of lost growth?

      • Edward2
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

        Whilst state spending continued to rise.
        Is that what you mean by “austerity” acorn?

        £340 billion in 2000 to £870 billion in 2020.

        • acorn
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 11:48 am | Permalink

          Have a look at

          You will see this primary metric has just got back to its 2008 level. It is circa £1,600 – 19% – short of where it should be today. Now that’s what I call austerity. Keep in mind that the top 1% take of GDP will skew this chart downwards.

          • Edward2
            Posted November 22, 2019 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

            Primary metric…..sounds like another statistical diversion.
            Cash spent by government has gone way up.
            It is more to do with efficient use of money and deciding priorities.

  25. nshgp
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    They are just saying they will tax the public 50 bn extra

  26. Oliver
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    It’s smoke and mirrors. They count their increase in Corporation tax from 19% to 20% as a rise from 17% to 20% – becasue that is where the Tories might have cut it to.

    The £125b sounds very like the whole putative gdp project fear loss over 15 years – so they’re assuming presumably that not losing something which would, project fear claimed, have dramatically harmed public finances means we both [a] don’t suffer the pain of that loss but also [b] means we can spend it twice.

    It should be criminal. The problem isn’t that the people are stupid – it’s that the MSM promote a malign agenda.

  27. Hope
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Peter Shore Labour MP clearly making the case not to be in the Common market. he made it clear the fraud Heath signed the treaty without public consent. he made it clear the handing of democracy and power to one individual in the EU not in parliament. Listen to his passion, the articulation of his senate with only minimal reference to his notes. What he said then is true of today. Moreover, it is also true fo Johnsons servitude plan. Compare to todays low calibre MPs from eh LibLabCon.

    Swinson Lib Dum leader now admitting she broke the law by smoking cannabis and seems to think this is okay! Why is it okay for her to break the law and not everyone else? She should not hold any public office let alone parliamentary one when she openly states she broke the law. That is how low these politicos have become.

  28. agricola
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    More important than their fantasy economic is their proposed legalisation of Canabis. It would be hard to dream up anything more dangerous than this metropolitan bubble idea. For many Canabis is a gateway drug to the use of even more serious narcotics.

    Longterm use can have serious damaging effect on ones mental capacity. Have these Lib/Dums considered the effect it might have on ones driving ability. When UK chemists limit the number of Paracetamol tablets you can buy what do they think will be the affect of Canabis use. Have they considered that drug use, sale of, and turf wars are what lie behind the outburst of multiple stabbings we are experiencing. If they were to legalise it’s sale what is their attitude to it’s use by our armed forces. I cannot think of anything that more comprehensively sums up their total unsuitability for power than this proposal.

  29. John Payne
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Surely the £50 billion over 5 years would be cancelled out by the contributions we would have to pay as EU Member

  30. Dominic
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Labour’s open invitation to every single person on planet Earth to come and reside in the UK is now official party policy. There’s only one caveat, you must vote Labour without thinking.

    What we are seeing is nothing less than the demographic restructuring of this country for party political gain

    If the Tories can’t destroy Labour on this one simple policy alone you deserve to be condemned

    • Chris
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

      The Tories are very good at missing open goals, Dominic, due to wrong priorities i.e. apparently trying to save their Party at all costs, as opposed to doing what is best for the country.

    • steve
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:28 pm | Permalink


      “What we are seeing is nothing less than the demographic restructuring of this country for party political gain”

      Been the left wing policy for years Dominic.

  31. Alan Joyce
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    Since Parliament was dissolved a few weeks ago it has been an unquantifiable, but certainly a huge bonus not to hear the superior remainer tones and pontifications of the likes of Grieve, Letwin, Gauke, Soubry, Stewart and Sandbach on a daily basis.

    • Fred H
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

      I assume some junior in the BBC has deleted the contact list?

  32. Mike Stallard
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

    The thing that really gets me is this. Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party pretend that the rich are paying no tax – they are paying over 40% of their income. they are claiming that the rich are getting richer (they aren’t) and teh poor poorer (they aren’t). Jeremy Corbyn himself did not admit to laying a wreath on the grave of Palestinian terrorist and he covers up his links with Hamas and Hizbollah. He praises Hugo Chavez and also Evo Morales quite openly – and gets away with it. I am notgoing to dig up his links with the IRA. Finally, he has the cheek to say that he will renegotiate (how?) the Withdrawal Treaty (by simply giving up everything so it is the same as staying in?) in a couple of months.
    And everyone believes him!
    Meanwhile Boris says he will die in a ditch, the Conservative Party mislabels its Fact Finding thinggy (to mimic a Labour identical one?) and all hell breaks loose.
    Nobody has called Jeremy out on this preposterous claim about the EU either. Well now, there’a a surprise!

    • a-tracy
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

      Now this Labour comment was fact checked unusually by C4
      Labour lies

      John McDonnell this morning. The shadow chancellor said “over £85bn” of that came from cuts to corporation tax, with the rest from changes to capital gains, inheritance and top-rate income taxes. That, he says “has benefited corporations and the wealthy. But the “£100bn” figure is misleading. It fails to account for the tax rises the government has levied on businesses and top earners. The problem is that this “£100bn” that Mr McDonnell says has been given away in tax cuts to “corporations and the wealthy” doesn’t account for the fact that those same businesses and individuals have also been subject to tax rises since 2010.”

      It’s a similar picture when we look at the top rate of income tax. Labour have focused on “£1.2 bn from cuts to income tax for the very wealthiest.” They’re referring to a 2012 policy to reduce the top rate of tax to 45p.
      But as the IFS found last week, overall, top earners are paying more: “The share of income tax provided by the top 1 per cent of taxpayers has increased from 24 per cent in 2007-08, just before the financial crisis, to 30 per cent now.”
      And “unlike the increases in previous decades, this has not been driven by a rising income share at the top. Rather, it reflects policy reforms: there have been income tax rises for high-income individuals,” including “the additional rate of income tax above £150,000” and “the withdrawal of the personal allowance above £100,000.”

  33. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Somewhat but not entirely off topic, here is my latest letter in our local paper:

    “Why no movement on Liechtenstein proposal?”

    “The heading given to the November 14 letter from Phil Jones of the federalist European Movement, “Irish border differs from Schengen Area”, accurately reflects his confusion.

    The Schengen arrangements relate to the movement of people across borders, not to the movement of goods.

    The UK and Ireland are not part of that EU inspired scheme because they had established a Common Travel Area in 1923, long before both joined the then EEC in 1973.

    This is acknowledged in Protocol 20 attached to the present EU treaties, and it has already been agreed that the current arrangements will continue.

    The ‘Liechtenstein’ solution proposed to keep the Irish land border as open as now for the movement of goods, as well as people, was described in an article published in the Financial Times on May 10, 2018, still available on the internet, when it was specifically stated:

    “One senior Whitehall official described it as ‘a very interesting idea’, with relevance to the effort to avoid a hard Northern Ireland border.

    “It is a good answer in theory,” said the official. “We need to look at how it would work in practice.””

    On October 25, 2018 the Advertiser printed a letter pointing this out, which concluded:

    “That was five months ago; so why have we heard nothing since then?”

    And it is now eighteen months, and we still have no answer; instead we have a crackpot scheme which puts the integrity of the country at risk.”

    • acorn
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

      When the UK leaves the EU, it will leave the EEA. The EEA EFTA States; the EU27 and the UK Government, have agreed that the EEA Agreement will cease to apply to the UK after its withdrawal from the EU.

      This follows from the two-pillar structure of the EEA Agreement and Article 126, which states that the EEA Agreement applies to the territory of the EU and to three of the four EEA-EFTA States, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

      Denis, if you want the “Liechtenstein solution”, it would be much simpler to remain a full member of the EU. The EEA-EFTA States do not want the much larger and permanently belligerent UK as a member.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

        All of which commentary is totally irrelevant to the suggestion that the Irish land border could be kept just as open for the movement of goods as it is now, simply by applying the same principle of “parallel marketability” that is already being employed to avoid any checks on goods at the border between Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

        A suggestion which as it happens was readily endorsed by Professor Carl Baudenbacher, a former president of the EFTA court, who was quoted in the FT article:

        “It is high time they looked at [Liechtenstein],” said Carl Baudenbacher, the former president of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) court, which oversees the EEA agreement. “Better late than never.”

        Mr Baudenbacher, now at barristers Monckton Chambers, argued the model was “a generalised concept that could be used in other circumstances”.

        “It is not just tailor-made for Liechtenstein.””

        So the model is “a generalised concept that could be used in other circumstances”, for example the Irish land border, and Theresa May’s government was well aware of that; but she chose instead to use the largely invented problems on the Irish border as a pretext to keep the whole of the UK subject to swathes of EU laws in perpetuity.

    • steve
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

      Dennis Cooper

      “we have a crackpot scheme which puts the integrity of the country at risk”

      Expect crackpot schemes in a country run by crackpots. It’s what happens, Dennis.

  34. Polly
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    What about politicians who exceed limits on the freeway ?

    Should they be banned from office ?


    • a-tracy
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:33 pm | Permalink


  35. Derek Henry
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Fallacy number 11.

    Governments spend first then collect the tax. You cannot do a reserve drain without doing a reserve add first.

    Just ask the EU when they launched the Euro. No taxes were in collected in Euro’s until they were spent into the Eurozone first.

    • Edward2
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

      Thats just the chicken and egg argument made in monetary terms.
      But to then try to claim taxes are not needed is a huge jump.
      But I hope your theory is correct because we can all be millionaires by creating lots of magic money.

      • Derek Henry
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:41 pm | Permalink

        No it’s not Edward.

        It is written in the front of every note.

        Unless you counterfeit your money and get it from somewhere else.

        Your taxes are destroyed in the interbank market so the BOE can hit its overnight interest rate.

        There is no HUGE shed on the isle of Wight that holds our taxes for future use. It would have been empty years ago.

      • Derek Henry
        Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:42 pm | Permalink

        It is not a theory it is simple T accounts assets in one side liabilities on the other.

        • Edward2
          Posted November 22, 2019 at 6:47 am | Permalink

          So if two things balance on a balance sheet that makes your pet theory of endless magic money creation work.

          Send me my million as soon as possible Derek and tell HMRC that I don’t need to pay them taxes any longer.

    • NickC
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

      Derek H, Rubbish. The Euro was not “spent” into the economies first. Each national currency was converted into Euros at the designated rate, wherever the particular amount of national currency existed in the economic system at that point.

      The initial conversion took place at midnight on 1 Jan 1999 in the banking system (electronic transfers, etc), so taxes (eg VAT) will have been paid from accounts originally in the national currency and simply directly converted. So Euros were not spent into the economies.

      Indeed, for small cash businesses – which transacted in the national currency in the three years until Euro coins and notes were introduced – deposits were made in the national currency which was then instantly converted to Euros at the bank.

  36. BillM
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

    When I read “forecasts” from the BoE or the Treasury, I am reminded that such forecasts are based on dated Computer modelling which makes too many assumptions, sometimes ignoring real time data. After those in aid of ‘Project Fear’ I now treat them as ‘manipulated’ figures to be disregarded.
    It is now clear that our membership of the EU single market has befitted other EU member rather more than ourselves. And because of their outrageous protectionist policies we are all but forced to buy from Europe rather than the net cheaper sources from the Rest of the World.
    With ourselves free of EU domination we can and will source from wherever we like and certainly cut the huge Trade Deficits which average around £80 Billions per year that we currently carry with the EU.
    For these reasons I cannot understand why any Remainers would concoct such an outlandish monetary gain figure of £50 Billions to be established by actually remaining in the EU.
    Yep it is nowt but another recurrent and very boring scare story but with a distinct twist this time. No dice Leave means leave.

    • Hope
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

      Peter Shore Labour MP made it clear in 1975 during the Oxford debate where slimy lying Heath watched on how food prices would rise to protect EU countries in preference to ours, how the CFP was a huge detriment. What he said came to pass.

  37. ukretired123
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    One of the first rules of business:

    “There is no such thing as a free lunch!”

    which is why none of the other hopefuls would qualify for the Apprentice, never mind the PM with their ignorance of business and finance. They couldn’t run a whelk stall.
    Offering free everything’s saying they are fully costed is dubious since many of them cannot quote the exact costs not the critical assumptions on which they are based. Many of them cannot add up.
    Freebies need to be fully funded – and they are not.
    Remember Our greatest Chancellor, Labour’s uncle Gordon. He could rattle off an hour long list of his Big Spender ideas every budget year followed by (finally, relief) “and I commend this budget to the house!” .
    Except that he had no money, despite doubling the thickness of the UK Tax Handbook which launched another industry in itself and gave poor Accounting students double the headaches never mind the populace and businesses he felt should be penalised.
    It was more about how Labour can lead us into a car crash economy based on half-baked unfunded yet fully-costed woolly ideas possibly aided etc ed

  38. a-tracy
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    Lib Dems never seem to get fact-checked I just looked at C4 FactCheck twitter the last 20 articles don’t mention Lib Dems there is just one other Party mentioned than the mainly Tory checks and that is the Brexit Party. There should be a warning on their twitter ‘80% right of centre facts checked here’.

    The Lib Dems have sort of indicated they’d do away with IR35, the government one year after introducing it in 2017 gained an extra £550m -£800m in 2018 depending on which source you believe? Who is going to make this shortfall up?

    Their leaflet dropped through my door today and their blatant lies about only the Lib Dems can win here comparing their result with the Tories EU election and doesn’t mention they only secured 17% of the vote with the Brexit Party obliterating everyone else.

    I want to know, lets say you are the third biggest party and are asked to form a majority coalition, if you form with Labour which of your pledges are red lines and if you form with the Conservatives which of your pledges are your red lines? Will not breach.

    • Mark B
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      The government introduced IR35 way back in 2000. Yes, a Labour government. The principle behind it was sound but the implementation was draconian. It has damaged, as many at the time thought it would, many legitimate small business and businessmen. The UK has always been about small business, a nation of shopkeepers as a infamous Frenchman once remarked.

  39. Mike Wilson
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    At the risk of stating the obvious, uncertainty causes people to keep their wallets shut. When a recession is either on, or imminent, people stop lashing out on new cars, kitchens, extensions, holidays etc. The economy is quiet at the moment. People are anxious about the future. As soon as Brexit is done – or cancelled – it will be like a recession finishing and spending will increase a fair amount. There will be a Brexit bounce regardless of whether we do actually leave or not. We just need to get the bloody thing over with.

  40. agricola
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

    While the Lib/Dums have been talking nonesense and entering the drug trade, Boris has sown the seeds of a good idea. This comes down to having a comprehensive debate on how to deal with care of the elderly. His bottom line is that confiscation of their family home must cease. A good first step. However we need a comprehensive programme that allows swift transfer from hospital to nursing home and then to a long term care home where necessary, with no financial penalty for those who need such a solution. He would like a cross party solution. The Labour party is so polarised to the extreme left that I do not see them wishing to share the solution so Boris may have to go it alone.

    • Pominoz
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 5:03 am | Permalink


      And there are some of us living in certain parts of the world (Australia, Canada, New Zealand etc.) who will not be a burden on the UK when we become old, neither are we a burden on the NHS meantime.

      For this, we are penalised by having our State pensions, towards which we contributed just as much as others, frozen. What a travesty – it must be put right as Brexit is achieved.

  41. Ian @Barkham
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    It would appear from todays launch by Labour that they want Government(their Government) to spend an extra £83 billion a year primarily funded by those they stay in the UK to endure the pain.

    The idea is to raise taxes, from some mystical entity. Of course they are starting this drive by ensuring those funding and running the Labour Party stop work for a strike for 27days in December.

    The tax hikes will of course be funded by Labour supports nationwide loosing their jobs as their jobs move overseas.

    Between Corbin and Swinson there is a deep desire to move society back to the dark ages. Promises they cant keep, promises their overlords in Brussels will never permit them to keep. After all if the UK is that flush with cash shouldn’t it be shared out around the 26 nations roped into this cabal of centrist dictators.

    • bill brown
      Posted November 24, 2019 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

      I was talking about since the referendum not jus the past 6 months

  42. bill brown
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    Sir JR,
    the UK economy , has slowed by less than many other countries”

    This is another fake news statement, besides Italy of the major countries and most of the smaller one’s as well, we have had lower growth since the referendum . (source Economist)than most other EU members.

    So, can we please just stick to the real facts, instead of facts invented or thought out by CCQ

    thank you

    Reply I do stick to facts. Germany has not grown for the last half year . Italy went into recession last year.

    • a-tracy
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      Economist 26 Sept “ Simply awful” is how Phil Smith of ihs Markit, a data provider, describes the latest survey reading of Germany’s manufacturing output. For months the purchasing-managers’ index has languished below 50, indicating contraction. An early release published on September 23rd showed it had slid to 41.4, signifying the sharpest decline in manufacturing activity since 2009. The services sector also lost momentum—for the first time in over four years, managers said they were winning less new business. A slowdown in Germany’s economy that started a year ago was initially expected to be short-lived. But the gloom has deepened. Output shrank in the second quarter, and many economists, including those at the Bundesbank, think it is still contracting—satisfying the definition of a recession. As a consequence, the euro zone seems set barely to grow.”

      24 Oct 19 “Fifteen years after they joined the eu, the four “Visegrad” states of central Europe (the v4) can be prouder of their economic achievements than of their patchy record on political reform. The Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia have increased their levels of gdp per head dramatically, and are converging with their mighty neighbour Germany. The Czechs are the richest, with a gdp per head that is 73% of Germany’s, followed by Slovakia with 63% and Hungary and Poland with around 57% each—and the gap continues to close, as their growth outpaces that of the behemoth (see chart).

      Four main external forces have driven the remarkable successes of the four extremely open v4 economies. The first is their access to generous subsidies from the eu, which make up a sizeable chunk of their respective national incomes. Second is the munificent flow of remittances from millions of expat v4 citizens who now live and work in the eu, especially in Germany, Austria or Britain. A benevolent recent economic environment has also helped, especially the success of the German economy, by far their most important trading partner and the biggest or second-biggest investor in each country. And lastly, the four all started from a low base, enabling them to serve as cheap workshops for more developed economies. The danger is that all four of these factors are now petering out.“

    • steve
      Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:12 pm | Permalink


      “I do stick to facts”

      So do most of us.

      • bill brown
        Posted November 24, 2019 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

        I was talking about overall growth since the referendum not the past 6 months

  43. Anonymous
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    There is no going back in under the terms we had before.

  44. Parsnip
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

    250,000 net come here to live permanently.
    What year will we have enough of them to pick all the carrots?

    • Fred H
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:44 am | Permalink

      and how many years will it take before we can give each of them a house?

  45. margaret howard
    Posted November 21, 2019 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

    Reply to reply:

    ” I do stick to facts. Germany has not grown for the last half year”

    “Germany’s gross domestic product grew by a seasonally-adjusted 0.1 percent on quarter in the three months to September 2019, rebounding from a revised 0.2 percent fall in the previous period and beating market expectations of a 0.1 percent contraction, a preliminary estimate showed.”

    • Fred H
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      Sir John was correct. Quarters – Minus 0.2 then plus 0.1.

  46. rick hamilton
    Posted November 22, 2019 at 12:19 am | Permalink

    It’s time we had some sort of exam for candidates for MP which proves they understand basic economics and have some grip on finance and numbers. When a member of the Labour front bench claims there are 3,000 homeless in her constituency when the actual number is 30, that’s a bad sign. When McDonnell tells us nationalising all those major businesses will cost nothing, that’s the alarm bell ringing for our future prosperity. These people are just plain incompetent and unqualified to run a corner shop, let alone a government.

    • Shirley
      Posted November 22, 2019 at 8:39 am | Permalink

      I’ve often wondered if the Labour Party deliberately choose stupid candidates who can be easily manipulated into believing any old rubbish. Just look at their front bench. If they are the best Labour has to offer, then I dread to think what the rest are like. As an ex-employer, I wouldn’t employ a single one of them.

  47. Fred H
    Posted November 22, 2019 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    Is it too late to get Farage to write the Conservative contract with the people?

  • 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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