Friday, May 21, 2010
For various reasons, Tyler hasn't got time right now for a full blog on yesterday's coalition manifesto launch. So we've summarised our reading in the handy cut-out-and-keep checklist above.
Overall, there are definitely reasons to be cheerful. They are going to cut borrowing, mainly though cuts in public spending. They are going to cut some taxes - although only at the price of increasing others. They are going to cut red tape, and they are going to publish detailed public spending data online.
On welfare there will be more conditionality and more use of private contractors to get people back to work. But no mention of reverting to a 50% poverty line from the current 60% - the key change to discourage idleness and vice.
In education, we're promised the full Gove, so hurrah for that.
No hurrahs for the health plans - more top-down direction under a new wrapper.
Fiscal decentralisation? Yes, it's there, and Clegg has assured us they understand the criticality of money - ie unless you dencentralise control over the money, you've decentralised nothing. But we can see nothing on the real issue - decentralisation of tax raising power.
Law and order gets one big tick for elected sheriffs, but nothing for locking up more bad guys (ie the 100,000 villains who are responsible for half of all crime).
There will be an immigration cap on non-EU migrants, but no detail on the tricky stuff like overstaying students.
With the Reich in flames, you might think now is the time to get on with renegotiating ourselves back to a free trade arrangement. Nothing on that.
And the eco-lunacy carries on unabated.
Still, there are some words we can definitely tick.
We'll be filling in the Deeds column as and when.
PS This evening at 7.30pm Tyler will be talking to a select group of Conservative activists about the fiscal choices we now face. It's been organised by that Man in A Shed and will take place at Churchill House, Chobham Road, Woking. Not quite sure what the entry arrangements are, but if anyone wanted to come, I'm sure we could squeeze you in.