UK Government debt reaches £1 trillion under Tory Liberal Coalition’s economic plan

Figures out today show that debt under the Tory Liberals has increased and passed the Trillion Pound mark.

Graph obtained from Coffee House Spectator blog

The Tory Liberal approach to tacking the budget deficit, cutting too far and too fast without having a plan for growth has already produced high levels of unemployment, growth revised downward from 1.6% under the Labour plan to address the deficit to 0.6% under this Tory Liberal plan.

Unemployment has not been this high since David Cameron was an advisor to the Thatcher Government. In addition, youth unemployment is having a damaging impact on our next generation.

Inflation is also higher than in previous years with the cost of living rising and the Government making things worse by increasing VAT. All this further supports Labour’s call for a five point plan for jobs which I have blogged about in the past here – LINK.

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Lib Dem claim that they tamed the Tories in Government will not work

We’ve already seen a glimpse of what is to come in the future with Liberal Democrats claiming to have tamed the Tories over the NHS reforms.

Fast forward to the 2015 General Election.

Both the Lib Dems and the Conservatives will start turning on eachother. The Tories will say that they were unable to sort out the mess left behind by Labour because the Lib Dems were a constant pain in the you know where.

The Lib Dems will say, thank god we were there to tame the Tories. Without us, they would have done some really nasty things like I dunno… treble tuition fees, cut off access to justice to the vulnerable through changes in the legal system, oversee the social cleansing of London.

I’m afraid this won’t wash off for the Lib Dems because the fundamental problem that they have caused and been party to is this decision to cut the deficit within one Parliament.

So the Lib Dems will come out with things like because of us the NHS reforms were improved and that they reigned in some of the crazy Tory ideas.

However,  the initiative to reign in the Tories should have been at the very start of this marriage and instead of holding up their hands and signing up fully to the Tory plan to reduce the whole deficit over a Parliament, they could have negotiated at the very least somewhere in between their pre-election rhetoric and the Tory plan.

This fundamental sell-out on the economy means that I will not be buying any excuses from the Lib Dems and you shouldn’t either.

Get your own Dr Fox business cards

WARNING: Sense of humour required.

No I have not joined the Government as an adviser on Defence matters. The brilliant Political Scrapbook have produced a fun website where people can insert their name on to a website and see their own exclusive ‘Adviser to Rt Hon Dr Liam Fox’ Business’ business card complete with the House of Commons Portcullis logo. You can try it out for yourself here: LINK However, please do not go around printing them off and pretending that you work for the Government as you may find yourself in a spot of trouble. 

The right of every English man and woman that their chicken tikka masala, the nation’s favourite dish, the remnants can be put in the bin without the worry that a fortnight later it is rotting and making life unpleasant.

Eric Pickles, British politician and Chairman ...
Wiki Image

More than half of all councils have switched to fortnightly collections over the past few years. Eric Pickles has pledged £250million fund to help local Councils switch to weekly collections.

Eric Pickles has justified this as a Government priority by saying that  “I firmly believe that it is the right of every English man and woman that there chicken tikka masala, the nation’s favourite dish, the remnants can be put in the bin without the worry that a fortnight later it is rotting and making life unpleasant.”

At the same time, other rights such as the right to vote is being attacked by the Conservative and Lib Dem Coalition Government.

However Eric Pickles will be delighted that under Brent’s Waste Strategy, he can enjoy his chicken tikka masala on a Friday night, put any leftover waste in his food waste bin and have it collected weekly. His food waste under Brent’s system will be recycled as organic waste weekly. If he wishes to put it in his grey bin which is for non-recyclable material however, it will be collected fortnightly.

But it makes no sense for him to do that as he has the option to put it in his green bin and have it collected weekly.

Hope that makes sense.

Council Tax freeze trap

People should be aware of the political scheming that goes behind a Government offer for a freeze in Council Tax.

Basically, what the Government agrees to do for one year is subsidise a Council Tax rise. Therefore, although it appears as if Council Tax has been frozen, when that subsidy is no longer there the year after, there will be what appears what looks like a Council Tax rise.

In addition, if a Council finds itself needing to increase Council Tax the year after, there will be an automatic double increase in Council Tax, when in reality all that has happened is a single increase from the year previous added to the removal of a Central Government subsidy to freeze Council Tax.

Councils that wish to freeze Council Tax are therefore much better off if they do so in their own accord and not take up the national Government’s offer of subsidising their Council Tax rise.

New NH$

A bit exaggerated but there are elements of truth in this. Our friends at Unison have produced a video about the Conservative and Lib Dem proposed changes to the NHS.

Sarah Teather’s Education proposals Con-Demned by her own Lib Dem Party members

The Liberal Democrats today gave their overwhelming backing to a campaign against the expansion of Sarah Teather’s Education policy on school academies and have called for a boycott of free schools in the strongest public show of concern by rank and file activists over the party’s role in Coalition Government. They called on all Lib Dems to actively “urge people not to take up the option” of creating the “free” schools championed by Tory Education Secretary Michael Gove and Brent Central MP and Education Minister Sarah Teather.

Teather branded it an “illiberal boycott” and according to the BBC, Teather pleaded to delegates “Don’t vote for a boycott, don’t tie councils’ hands.” However, Former Lib Dem MP Dr Evan Harris argued that it was not illiberal for Lib Dems to be allowed to campaign on issues they felt strongly about.”We must be free to fight the Tories at a local level up and down the country,” he said.

While Sarah Teather pleaded with members of her party to vote against the motion, her Department’s policy was ConDemned for treating pupils like tins of beans.

According to the Guardian, Lib Dem Councillor Peter Downes, who moved the motion said, “Just as the supermarket drives the corner shop out of business, so it will be with schools. When Sainsbury’s provides some new products to lure people away from their competitors, the unsold items in the failing shops can be returned to the wholesaler or sold off in a sale. But not so in schools. Pupils are human beings, not tins of beans.”

What the motion said:

F23. Free Schools and Academies

In relation to ‘free schools’, conference calls on all Liberal Democrats to urge people not to take up this option because it risks:

1.       Creating surplus places which is prejudicial to the efficient use of resources in an age of austerity.

2.       Increasing social divisiveness and inequity into a system which is already unfair because of the multiple tiers and types of schools created by successive Conservative and Labour governments and thus abandoning our key goal of a high quality education system for all learners.

3.       Depressing educational outcomes for pupils in general.

4.       Increasing the existing complexity of school admissions and exclusions.

5.       Putting at risk advances made in making appropriate provision for children with special needs.

6.       Putting in jeopardy the programme of improving school buildings.

7.       Wasting precious resources, both human and material, at a time when all efforts should be focused on improving educational outcomes by enabling effective teaching and learning to take place in good local schools accessible to all.

Point 6 is particularly interesting as it indicates that Lib Dem members want to ditch the ‘Free Schools’ policy and revert back to a scheme similar to Labour’s Building Schools for the Future programme.

However, Sarah Teather responded “I will take into account what they say but it is not going to change government policy, because Government policy is formed by Government ministers,” Potentially rendering the whole episode entirely useless in terms of delivering change.

Meanwhile, out on the doorstep, resentment was strife among residents who had voted for Sarah Teather in May 2010. A former Labour supporter who voted for Teather said “I’m quite distraught because what I voted for was totally the opposite to what I got. I didn’t vote for a Tory Government basically and I will definitely be voting Labour next time.”

I imagine many who voted for a Lib Dem MP across the country will be doing the same.

Did Britain really become a nation of benefit scroungers under Labour?

Did Britain really become a nation of benefit scroungers under Labour? This is the type of rhetoric that has pointed many to mark their vote in the Tory box on polling day. The reality couldn’t be any more different.

With the Department for Work and Pensions proposing to reassess every individual recipient on incapacity benefits, they have issued a call for evidence. Within the document is a graph displaying the caseload over time from 1978 to 2009.

What the data shows is that the caseload stayed pretty much at the same levels that Labour inherited in 1997. The sharp rises occurred under Tory years from 1986 to 1995.

Source: Department for Work and Pensions
Source: Department for Work and Pensions

These rises are not necessarily a bad thing as prior to the increased caseloads, it could have meant that those that should have had extra support to meet their additional needs.

Now, the Tories are proposing a reversal in the changes that occurred under their watch to take the caseload numbers down. My concern is that vulnerable people who need extra support to help them carry out their daily routines will have support withdrawn from them and find themselves struggling to cope with the financial pressures on them and not being able to live their lives with dignity as many didn’t in the early 1980s.