Libertarian. Enjoys politics, technology, music, food and drink.
I’m worried the ‘No to AV’ campaign is going to go worse than initially expected. I remember a few months ago seeing a poll that clearly put the naysayers ahead of the yays, yet both polls out this weekend on the subject put a decisive lead for the ‘Yes’ campaign. Mike @ PoliticalBetting thinks that the existing campaign is going to be a traditional failed Westminster campaign. The ‘No to AV’ campaign is hosting a series of town hall debates over the next six weeks but, like Mike’s concern that most voters on this will be council voters, I fear the average public member won’t make it to one of these debates. I would love to go if it didn’t take me an hour to get to any of the London venues.
Another one from PoliticalBetting, they reposted a video of the first Treasury Questions though mainly to flesh out Mike’s consideration for the future. The short video itself (showing only the initial debate between Balls and Osborne) is brilliant for both sides. Ed Balls has surprisingly come across as one of the heavyweights of the Shadow cabinet, and he’s far outshining Alan Johnson in a lot of ways already (if we were to ignore policy). Balls’ good performance leads to another useful reminder: that George Osborne is actually pretty good in the Commons as well. The juxtaposition between Balls’ impassioned rants and the Chancellor’s steady as she goes rebuttals showed a lot. Without saying so, the Chancellor, managed to make Balls look like an ineffably excitable child, a lightweight, and, the dreaded, deficit denier. Perhaps TC will be the new PMQs.
Finally, also out this weekend were the new figures that showed the top 1% of earners bring in 25% of the country’s income tax. Those in favour of taxing aspiration will see this as a terrible distribution of wealth and power: for how can it be fair that those 1%, the most horrible and rich of the country, control so much wealth? They will look past the fact that 1% of the country pays for 25% of the country. 1% of our country have just paid for health care. The idea that we want them to be less rich is ridiculous. And if you think that increasing the top rate of income tax won’t stifle the economy or hinder the rich at all, let me remind you that during the supertax years of the 1970s when the top-rate was 83%, the top 1% held just 11% of the country’s wealth. Are the rich now richer? Yes they are, but are they bringing in more to our society? Yes they certainly are, and there are no complaints there. History is our side, we need a tax reduction plan to get the economy growing again.