Monday, January 05, 2009
It's freezing cold, you've waited ages for a Cameron tax cut, and then suddenly two come along at once.
But never mind. We say Yes to abolishing tax on savings income - even if it is only for basic rate taxpayers - and we say Yes to the two grand increase in tax allowances for OAPs (especially since Tyler will be one in six years time).
We also say Yes to his no-nonsense funding plan - a straight £5bn off the growth of public spending in 2009-10.
True, we're not mad about the happiness/eco/technofutures wibble Dave draped around these bankable promises in his speech, but as Mrs T keeps telling me, he's got to sell this stuff to a wider audience than just rabid small staters like me (and see Janet Daley's take here).
So overall, a good day for Dave.
Hold very tight for the election.
Just watched Mrs Balls trotting out the old line about Tory tax cuts spelling the end of public service civilisation. Perhaps when she's on Newsnight later, somebody could ask her how it is that the infamous Gershon cuts and her own post-2010 spending cuts announced in the Pre-Budget report somehow don't imply public service cuts? Surely she must believe her own rhetoric about the scope for efficiency savings. Or is it that she thinks Labour politicos are such gifted managers they can extract efficiencies the Tories cannot? And what precisely would be the evidence for that astonishing claim?
Spot the difference
From Dave's speech today:
"Let me tell you my vision of a good future for our economy. It's an economy where government and its citizens live within their means, save for a rainy day, waste not and want not. It's an economy where everyone has the chance to own their own home with space to live and breathe - and where we work to live, not live to work. It's an economy that's more productive, where people can work shorter hours and spend more time with the things that matter - family and friends. It's a better balanced economy where we spread ownership and opportunity throughout Britain, so it's not just concentrated in the hands of the few in one corner of the country. And it's a more modern economy, where we create rewarding, good-paying jobs in the green and technological industries of the future."
From another speech three decades ago:
"Let me give you my vision: A man's right to work as he will, to spend what he earns, to own property, to have the state as servant and not as master. These are the British inheritance. They are the essence of a free country, and on that freedom all of our other freedoms depend."
Yes, well, maybe things were simpler then.