Monday, May 19, 2008

Cameron Signals Change of Emphasis on Tax and Spend

This morning, in a speech in Birmingham, David Cameron will give voice to concerns over the levels of taxation, which will resonate around the country. But more important than that, for the first time he will signal that he believes goverment spending and borrowing are out of control. He will say...

"We have reached the acceptable limits of taxation and borrowing. With the rising cost of living, taxpayers can't take any more pain, and the economy can't take any more pain without losing jobs to lower tax competitors ... We need to start living within our means."

He talks about "good housekeeping" and Britain needing a government which is "careful, not casual with public money". He doesn't actually abandon George Osborne's pledge to match Labour spending for two years, but he might just as well have done. He describes a decade of "reckless" spending, waste and inefficiency.

It will be interesting to see the reaction to this speech as I think it signals the start of a major shift of emphasis to an agenda concentrating on the cost of living and the size of the State.

One thing I do wish politicians of all parties would stop are tjese constant references to 'hard working families'. I'm as much in favour of families as anyone, but isn't it about time someone also recognised that there are lots of hardworking single people too - and they are getting a bit fed up.

73 comments:

Anonymous said...

Reached the acceptable limits of taxation?

What planet does Dave live on?

New Labour breached those limits years ago.

Anonymous said...

You are quite right about single people Ian, they are treated as some sort of under class by all the main political parties.

Submariner said...

"Hard-working families" is indeed a cliche and let us hope that it was merely unthinking automatism by Cameron. Sometimes where you hear it used by politicians it seems to imply a division between the interests of "mum, dad and 2.4 children" types on one side and "loners, pensioners and other undesirables" on another. It also potentially has more sinister connotations through being used to draw distinctions between "virtuous" income (wages and salaries earned today) and "unearned" income e.g. savings and investment income (which are the fruits of one's past labour, but always seem vulnerable to tax grab).

Tim Hedges said...

Quite right and nice timing from Cameron. Good Lord, I might even vote for him.

Taxed 'til the pips squeak said...

As another hard-working singleton, I'm fed up with these constant references to families too. It's not like the rest of us are lounging about all day. We get no tax breaks and feel as though we are being milked for all we are worth.

Colin said...

If 'Dave' is starting to shift the spotl;ight on to this Government's reckless and ineffective public spending record over the last decade or so, financed by hundreds of billions of pounds ground from the faces of the poor bloody taxpayer - hard working or not - then I for one would welcome that move. Increased taxation, stealth and otherwise, is the single biggest characteristic of tghis mendacious administration. And the increased tax revenues have not been enough for them: borrowing is at an all-time high as well. Consider the PFI scam for example.

The Tories should be positioning themselves as the party of careful public spending - and Lord knows there is a raft of savings to be made - and reducing the size of the state - and the client State, where so many people are dependent on the state either for their jobs and income, or as recipients of benefits. Borrowing must come down as well and the PFI financial illusion ended.

The trick will be to counter the inevitable accusations of 'Tory cuts'. There's lots of potential for cuts in the NHS for example without affecting the delivery of front-line services. Fewer managers, more doctors and nurses, for example. police - fewer statuion-boiund senior officers, more plods and plonks out on the street. Fewer Admirals, more ships and sailors. And maybe a total ban on the non-jobs advertised in the Guardian every Wednesday.

At last we may be about to see Camerson come out of the policy closet with views that will resonate with real Conservatives.

Anonymous said...

About time too. We have a Government that loves to bandy about how much more money it spends than was spent in 1997 - but no filter was ever fitted as to thequalit yof that spend. We have had billions frittered away. I want a Government that only opnes the public purse when very tough contract negotiations have been entered into, screwing down the service provider on costs and hammering them with penalties if their product fails to deliver against timetable/quality/budgetary targets.

And at some point in the next ten years, a Government is going to be faced with nationalising the myriad PFI arrangements without compensation. Or we will go broke trying to service them.

Patrick said...

Not before time.

This will win him the next election.

stuart said...

Absolutely. For some strange reason when a politician says "hard-working families" my mind always silently adds "with hard-working hands". I don't know why.

Anyway, yes, I agree that this is good news. The LibDems are even saying that we have reached the limit and might go into the next election promising a tax cut (not shifting burdens, but an actual cut).

I think that most of us have reached the end of our tolerance levels, and woken up to the fact that spending has mushroomed in the last 11 years, and for what? A possible slight improvement in some aspects of some public services.

vox populli said...

After a decade Brown and Labour appear to have finally slain "the golden goose" that bankrolled their years of tax and spend. The "Middle Class" are on the brink of financial meltdown with the burden of taxation and rising food;fuel and mortgage costs.

For too long these people have been vilified by Labour whilst they are quite willing to tax them to extinction.

Mr Brown would do well to take note that these are the people that kept Labour in power and that their faces are now set against him and his government.

Crewe & Nantwich will only be the start of payback for the years of hubris. There are scores of Labour Marginals scattered around the country together with previously "safe" Labour seats that will feel the effects of that anger in a future election.

Man in a Shed said...

Wow - so we really do want to win the next election !

Chris Paul said...

Vacuous crap. Anon 8:51 claims Labour breached limit years ago. Burden = less than under Thatch, AND more fairly distributed. Also smaller state at the time of writing than under Thatch/Major.

Cam is doing a meaningless dog whistle and if you were not trying to be a player you'd point that out Iain.

Letters From A Tory said...

Cameron is onto something here. He is talking in the right language at a time when Labour are very vulnerable. He doesn't need to go overboard - he just needs to keep prodding Labour and showing the voters what they are up to.

Anonymous said...

The emphasis on, 'hard working families' is obvious. Single people, (or Gay) can work as hard as they like, but they are not going to provide the next generation of taxpayers.

Having children is the most important thing any citizen can do, without them everything else is pointless.

Newmania said...

Oh sod off Iain as a dual income , no kids , arrangement you do what you like when n you like and really even if you run out of cash it doesn`t matter all that much . Never did to me . This means you are free to pursue fun but unstable careers roar around in shiny new Audis with all your cash and generally consume all the pies society has to offer! You could hardly have an easier time of it that’s why the pink pound is such a pulsing and tumescent source of fascination to sellers of play –gear.

BUT This whole edifice would every soon come to a halt if people like me did not struggle by in dull jobs supporting a family on one income and as we are the people who provide the spine the continuity and the source of future gay men and women on budgets tight as a drag queens corset .We need the help . You do not .


Hard Working Familes about the most mistreated selfless and virtuous people there are swimming in dirty nappies day and night we are like mangy old donkeys struggling up a hill out of habit too tired to remember why , beaten with sticks and getting bugger all tasty carrots . Meanwhile out of the corner of our eyes we have to watch Lipizzaners prancing about doing dainty dressage with nothing on their backs.

Cameron is quite right to refer to families , roll on the tax breaks we deserve them we are modern Saints

Anonymous said...

The HWF phrase also discriminates against us idles sods with lots of kids.

John Pickworth said...

'hard working families' = newspeak

A typical New Labour trick to make us feel sorry for one sector of the population so can grab more of our cash. It wouldn't be so bad if the money was actually spent on these 'good causes' but they almost never are.

The Tax Payer's Alliance tells us that £63bn of our money is wasted on a thousand+ Quangos and Agencies, many of which are tasked with raising yet more money from us in fees, fines and penalties. How the hell is that helping Mr & Mrs with their 2.4? Or indeed Mr or Miss hard working single person being bled draw by the State?

Can we not organise a tax payers strike?

Anonymous said...

Don't bitch about the 'hard working families' comment - it is a political short-hand of avoiding the 'elephant in the room' that plenty of families are living on benefits and therefore are not doing any work whatsoever...

This phrase links 'families' to 'hard work' by association, which is fair enough as bringing up kids is hard work, but it is not synonymous with working hard at a job and paying your own way - and the politicians would really like to gloss over that 'inconvenient truth'...

Anonymous said...

Dave needs to be brave enough to say that tax cuts mean spending cuts. Not just "getting rid of waste", but closing Quangos and government departments, cutting social security and sacking tens of thousands of jobsworths.

Anonymous said...

'The trend is your friend'.

Cameron is pushing at an open door on this one - but will we regret it if he privatises the NHS and ruins the post office network in the way the public bus service was ruined ??

Newmania said...

Also smaller state at the time of writing than under Thatch/Major.

Smaller state than under Churchill too and about as relevant. We overtook Germany in this ten year period as a state dominated pocket money society. A 30% increase in Public spending and nothing to show for it. Tax cuts have to come soon.

Anonymous said...

Cameron is making a mistake trying to shift the agenda along too much. He needs to stand back and let Labour self destruct without risking the current strong conservative position.

This kind of tax talk is just where Brown and Balls want him to be.

North Norfolk Blogger said...

I think it's a good starting point. He cannot say that the Conservatives will cut spending as it would drive people back to Labour by means of "Cuts, Cuts, Cuts" which would no doubt be promulgated by the Labour Spin machine. This is a comment that does resonate with all those, possibly, except who are part of the client state

Colin said...

Stuart (9.20) says something that really resonated with me:
"I think that most of us have reached the end of our tolerance levels."

Governments of whatever stripe must always remember that taxation depends on consent, and I sense that current, punitive, tax levels are beginning to nudge the boundaries of tolerance and consent, especially when coupled to all the other revenue-raising scams that this government has instigated - such as speed cameras, parking regimes, litter penalties, refuse collection charges and the rest - the whole raft of 'civil penalties' that previously would have been dealt with by a quiet word, now whack the citizen for £60 a pop.

Cameron needs to take a good look at the whole spectrum of government revenues and see where real value is offered to the taxpayer. Targeting areas of excessive taxation - such as petrol - will be a real vote-winner as well as targetimng waste and excessive spending such as those revealed in the 'efficiency' reviews a couple of years back - whatever happened to those?

This Govt has strayed to a level where taxation is no longer reasonable and tolerable -it is excessive, punitive and intolerable. People no longer see any swense of value returned for their tax pounds. If Cameron can identify that thread and run with it he will make real inroads into Labour support. And that may well mean that Osborne has to abandon the plaedge to stick with (excessive) Labour spending plans in the first years of a Tory administration.

vervet said...

As I have been urging my (Conservative) MP for some time, the election strategy needs to be 'lower tax, smaller government' ... I'd like to think that some influence has been brought to bear ! Certainly looks like Dave is listening (with his good ear, unlike Gordon !)

Anonymous said...

Listening to Cameron now, this is long long overdue. The number of times in the last couple of years Conservatives have tried talking about cutting wasteful spending, Labour screams Tory cuts in doctors teachers and nurses and the argument just stops. We need to keep pushing the point that Labour's screaming about cuts response is dishonest nonsense when so much public money has been wasted.

Anonymous said...

iain,

define 'family'? surely you and your partner can be classed as a family. We are now in more liberated and enlightened times.

Stop getting your knickers in a twist. The Tories are the party of the family. Iain Duncan Smith's excellent study showed a breakdown of the family unit.

I also disagree with anon at 8.51am (obviously from the Nose Pickers Creche) Cameron can only ditch the statements of George slowly. Of course Labour has over taxed and over spent.

This address is long long overdue.

He has got to promise a thorough overhaul on taxation especially fuel. We have got to have parity within the EU!

Desperate Dan said...

The BBC must have sent their most incompetent cameraman to cover the speech cos Dave's all out of focus.

Trev said...

Single people? yes true, but it goes with the territory, avoid responsibility and commitment and there is a price to pay back to society, the price you pay for 'freedom'.

Hard working families? Yes cliché, but I think what the phrase is trying to usually express is not quite what it immediately suggests, not so much 'working' as (as I imply above) 'responsible'. Maybe we need a new phrase to reflect on families (all right individuals if you want) who 'play by the book', obey the rules, who do the decent thing. Families that reflect the good in us not the self-serving.

If any Tories think that there is room for massive savings in the NHS by cutting 'managers' then they are living in dreamland. What's the NHS budget? £90 billion? You think that can be spent without management? Do you think that major initiatives major construction schemes can be implemented without management?

Get real.

On the other hand I have some sympathy for the evisceration of quangos. After all what are civil servants for. Let them earn their pensions.

Desperate Dan said...

Harriet Harman has just announced on Woman's Hour that she's setting up a new Quango to encourage black and ethnic minority women to become Councillors. Another blatant squandering of our cash to no useful purpose. Can't Gordon and his cabinet get it into their thick heads that we can't afford these wasteful luxuries in the current economic climate.

Andy said...

Couldn't agree more about "hard working families", Iain. Pisses me off no end. What about childless couples, or the single people, or lazy families? It is one of the last gasps of moralising language in an otherwise mostly socially liberal country, that politicians still think it helps them to use this obvious catch-all phrase for "the right sorts".

Trumpeter L said...

A political glossary:

"Hard working families" = Taxpayers of every description, not excluding hermits and the bone idle.

"Make more money available" = Screw more money out of you.

"Share the proceeds of growth" = Continue the reckless extravagence of the present administration.

"We understand the difficulties you face" = So what?

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

That last comment was from me. (Pressed the wrong key.)

Andy said...

Madame Dale looks into the magic crystal ball and predicts the future with uncanny accuracy.

I know that in these days of embargoes, leaks and pre-announcements, that we are all time travellers now, but it does seem a bit silly to write in the future tense with such certainty.

I wonder how it would have been in the past... "Mr Churchill will give a speech this afternoon in which he will invite us to go to the beaches and fight..."

Anonymous said...

Our Dave's tax and spend idea's are important but that could be 2 year's away,what about the EU now Brown will dump us in without a referendum by the end of this year after that the mp's in the HoC won't be needed, is he or will even give us a referendum on the Lisbon treaty or is he just another Europhile,when I hear from him on that important subject ,which seems to have been dropped by all the media then I will make my choice.

Anonymous said...

About time ,too!

This ties up with Portillo's views on Cameron 'doing nothing' on the economic front. It is simply not good enough any more to sit of ZaNu Labour's economic coat tails -Cameron, the Tories and the, eventually, the country, will fall into the abyss as well.

Anonymous said...

One way of saving Shedloads of taxpayers money and I mean shedloads, would be to do away with all the areas of duplication between the three armed services.

wrinkled weasel said...

Door, Horse, Bolted.

It proves Cameron's a weather vane, not a signpost, but I suppose he is better than Brown and his cronies, who are lying hate-filled bastards.

What a stinking choice.

Richard Nabavi said...

I think the 'hard-working families' cliche is entirely intentional. One of Blair's electoral achievements was to grab the votes of a high percentage of women in their twenties and thirties. Cameron needs to get those votes back, which means addressing concerns about child care, work-life balance, etc. So the lower-tax/lower-spend message has to be carefully thought out and carefully presented. There's still residual suspicion of the Conservatives on this point (suspicion which is completely unfounded, in my view, but it's not my vote he needs to worry about!)

Radders said...

I'd have to say that as the only employed singleton in a household of three batchelors, two of whom don't work due to genuine health problems, that I do agree with what Iain said; especially as I make considerably less money than he does!

Submariner said...

Trev

"Single people? yes true, but it goes with the territory, avoid responsibility and commitment and there is a price to pay back to society, the price you pay for 'freedom'."

Is my mother "avoiding responsibility and commitment"? Her husband died a few years ago. Is a young woman in my office who's decided she can't justify adding to global overpopulation ""avoiding responsibility and commitment"? She works a 60-hour week, has paid for her own house and pension, and is an exemplary contributor to society. Is everyone who gets dumped by their spouse "avoiding responsibility and commitment"? Or a soldier fighting in Hellmand Province, or a crewmember on one of Her Majesty's ships? Responsible behaviour, and showing commitment, do not depend on procreation - in fact, one could argue that many people are being irresponsible by expanding their families beyond a level they can really afford.

norman said...

I do not want to discriminate between singles and families. All are suffering because of the tax burden that Brown shifted on all of us. Brown keep on saying how UK is able to tackle the problems and how Europe is mired in tx and difficulties. I would rather pay the level of tax French, Germans and Dutch pay to have the kind of education system, transport and health services plus pension they have than to pay Brown's stealth taxes to witness health service which is not fit for purpose, GPs paid highest compared to their counterparts in the world and work less hours than before, education system which is probably worst in Europe, and transport which charges more and delivers unreliable service.

I paid additional 1% on my NI when Brown said it was required for NHS but what happened to that money?
NHS employs as many as the Indian Railways does and delivers comparable service, which is poor. We have thousands of our own young doctors unemployed and competing for jobs with 10,000+ overseas doctors who arrived a few years ago from outside the EU.

money honey said...

anon 9:52am. in case you are unaware of how our tax system works single people also cotribute to the "next generation of tax payers" as my taxes get spent on health care and education for children. I think this is entirely appropriate. What isnt appropriate is that just because I obviously spend the tiny portion of my income that is left on hookers and crack cockaine that I am in some ways irresponsible and not "hard working"

Anonymous said...

Hardworking single people?

No. Just selfish non-replacers of future workers and citizens.

People who do not marry and reproduce should pay a special tax - say 15% on all income, capital and property. This is only fair of course - since you ae not producing future taxpayers - and a very good deal.

If you don't have children - future taxpayers - raised properly in the context of Christian marriage whay should you expect to be looked after by society for nothing when you are old or sick?

Would you prefer the Conservative Party to go like the US Democratic
Party and become the party of Gays, Lesbians, single sterile bitter women, hedonistic iressponsible "BME"s and selfish uncaring boomers?

No Cameron is right. Old Roman that he is.

tapestry said...

Bang on cue.

Portillo says don't move key policy around. Just let Brown fail in policy silence. Dale agrees.

Then within 24 hours Cameron moves on size of State, levels of tax and hits on the big economic issues.

Dale should be comparing this to Portillo's advice which he seemed to agree with a day ago.

A week used to be a long time in politics!

Now 24 hours can be aeons.

Auntie Flo' said...

Hallelujah! At last! Thank you, David Cameron.

You have reinforced this former life-long Liberal's belief in you. Many now will vote for you who would not have done previously.

This new emphasis could save our increasingly recessional economy by making us more competitive.

It might also hold out some hope for the UK's crucial SMEs - employers of 99.9% of UK's workforce. We - the cradle of UK's economy - are being taxed and regulated into oblivion by nulab at the behest of their corporate giant donors.

Nothing can stop you now!

sockpuppet said...

One way of saving Shedloads of taxpayers money and I mean shedloads, would be to do away with all the areas of duplication between the three armed services.

if we're in the business of saving money, do we really need all those diversity co-ordinators?


(scary thought, mind. It's in the conservative mindset to prefer soldiers to social workers. But many soldiers spend their government pay abroad, whereas nearly all social workers spend theirs in their hometown, thus keeping it in the economy...)

Anonymous said...

Read the speech and was much more impressed than with a lot of political speak i've been hearing of late.Now lets have something definite on the E.U. and immigration and the conservatives will really start to motor.

tory boys never grow up said...

Difficult to tell whether this is just a dog whistle to the faithful - or does it mean that the Tories are planning to take the hatchet to family tax credits to subsidise tax cuts for the well off. Needless to say Campbell and Osborne will follow Dale's and Portillo's advice and keep quiet on the whole matter.

Could Iain let us know which of comments are based on feeds from CCHQ and which are his own thoughts in future - the current mixture make interpretation very difficult.

Cleethorpes Rock said...

Very sensible stuff. Cameron is making the mood music for a smaller state and greater financial responsibility.

Expect a drip-feed of small but simple policy nuggets. There will be no multiple-orgasmic mega tax-cuts- we're in the throes of "POLICY FOREPLAY"- tantalising tit-bits of things to come, but not so much as to allow Broon to throw a bucket of cold water over us by nicking them all!

Johnny Norfolk said...

He still does not get it we need to reduce public spending dramaticly. With the way Labour spends it will not be difficult without cutting proper services. Take the 12 million Labour are spending starting today, telling us we are dringing to much. what a waste it is money down the drain

Auntie Flo' said...

Iain, I agree with your resentment of the 'hard working family stereotype.

While I agree with newmania that the tax system should support families, there is, however, huge discrimination against single people, just a small minority of whom are well off. Many single people are very poor indeed.

Millions of hard working single people, my daughter among them, have been priced out of the housing market by nulab's reckless migration policies.

Low paid, very ill, or mature student singles are forced to live with their parent/s (sometimes pensioners or approaching pension age) long after the young single should have had independence. That's a very uncomfortable experience for all concerned and frequently wrecks the parents' pension planning.

There are so many anomalies of this emphasis on families. Hard working single parents with dependant adult children living at home are treated as single people for tax and council tax purposes etc even if their adult child is, as is all to common now, mentally ill or a drug addict and unable to work.

Little wonder then that single people are so resentful about the unsustainable tax burden heaped on them and often on their families too.

Anonymous said...

The Aussie Labor party are playing the same game in their first budget..

http://tinyurl.com/5cv2f7

Auntie Flo' said...

Anonymous May 19 10:07 AM said...

"Cameron is making a mistake trying to shift the agenda along too much. He needs to stand back and let Labour self destruct without risking the current strong conservative position."



I don't believe that's the case, Anon, as long as - in theory and in practice - he goes about it cautiously.

There's a wind of change in the air. As this coming recession starts to bite, the eyes of even Labour supporters are being opened to the self serving and reckless unsustainablity of nulab's migration and debt fuelled tax and spend policies.

The crucial thing is for Cameron and the Conservatives not to become too over confident as they did for a time last year. They aren't in clear blue sky yet.

Windsor Tripehound said...

Chris Paul said...
Vacuous crap.


Couldn't agree more; he always does.

verity said...

Agree with 8:51.

But aren't we forgetting that Cameron has committed to maintain Labour's level of spending for X number of years? How is he going to accomplish this and cut taxes at the same time?

I really loathe this sleazy Blairesque schemer.

Jonathan M. Scott said...

About time we get back to the tax cutting agenda started by Osborne in the 2007 Tory Conference - but silenced for a while by chinless wonders in CCHQ because of supposed 'public opinion'.

'Public opinion' has moved on, especially over 10p, and it is good that Cameron is addressing this issue.

As for "hard-working families", it resonates better with the public and I don't have any problem with the phrase. After all, most people aspire to have a family (whether through childbirth or adoption)! When single people eventually start a family, as most will, they don't wish to have a crippling tax burden either...

canvas said...

Iain, I have asked David Cameron on many occasions to define the term 'family'. What does the word 'family' mean to DC? Cameron provided me with a rather vague reply. I can't say I felt it was it was a satisfactory response.

Are single people not hard working?

Are childless people not hard working?

Families come in all shapes and sizes...

I think this is one area David Cameron needs to tread carefully. I get sick and tired of hearing DC preach about 'family values'. DC should stay 'on message' and forget about the moralising.

Praguetory said...

I was at the speech - it had grit. My favourite bit was where he said we risked becoming an uncompetitive backwater with massive social problems.

PaulD said...

Cameron is using the right language - at last. Labour have not only overspent massively; listen to PMQ and even now you'll hear Brown answering almost everything with a boast about how much money he has sprayed at an alleged problem, as if pissing away our hard-earned is something to be proud of.

Londoner said...

"Hard working families" is fine so long as he doesn't really mean it. It's almost as bad an "one parent family" when applied to children who are very sure they have two actively involved parents, who just don't happen to live together any more.

Speaking as half of a two income married couple with approx 2.4 children (2 with us and a step with us some of the time), you don't have to be single to realise the phrase is nonsense. It is also interesting to reflect that it was believing in this phrase which must have convinced Brown that no poor people, hard working or otherwise, would lose out from the 10p tax band fiasco.

But I do actually agree that people without both children and a full time job probably don't know what hard work is. My issue with this is what's so virtuous about hard work? If more people could work part time with a nice investment income on the side, wouldn't that be better for all concerned?!

Anonymous said...

Not quite as snappy but have always felt that "Hardworking contributor to society" is a better phrase.
That encompasses all of those that contribute, in ways other than simply through tax. eg single mothers... providing they are contributing to society and not just creating problem offspring!
Even the elderly can and do make a contribution in ways other than financial.

Janus said...

Umm I thought it was Conservative party policy to tax singletons more than the married.

(Apologies if someone already made this observation)

Judge Elvis said...

Why has this blog been taken over with semantics on the rights and wrongs of Cameron using the phrase 'hard working families'? Who really cares, it really is pedantry to be making such a big deal about this, and it sure beats 'We're going to crack down on the dole scum' which would be far more appropriate and in line with how most of us taxpayers feel, regardless of the political correctness of such a statement...

He gets my vote.

Anonymous said...

I think the HWF phrase is being used as a subtle reference by all politicians to mean "middle class people who won't bring up yobbos and will provide the next generation of middle class".

I've long thought one of the biggest problems with house prices rising as they have done for the last 10 years is that realistically you either have to be very poor or very rich to afford kids and certainly more than one. This is personal anecdotal evidence but my situation cannot be unusual: It costs me £1000 a month in childcare for my son, we would love another but childcare for two would wipe out my salary and, as we wouldn't be able to pay the mortgage etc on just my husband's salary we stick with one. This is not a whinge, I had the same chip about couples and families when I was single and life was far from a bed of roses (£700 pcm to rent a one bedroom flat - not good!). That said, I think politicians are wise to think about where the next generation of decent, non knife-touting kids are coming from.

verity said...

Canvas opined the standard Gramscian mantra: "Families come in all shapes and sizes...".

No, they don't.

The definition of a family is blood relatives. Stop trying to redefine the English language. It's bigger than you and bigger than the destructive left.

canvas said...

Verity, the definition of a 'family' in 2008 is NOT blood relatives.

Are Iain and his partner not a family? Yes, they are.

Your narrow minded views of what makes a family a family are exactly the reason why Cameron should heed this warning...

We are all equal.

IanPJ said...

So, no REAL changes then, nothing fundamentally different, just more tinker around the edges of policy.

Still no removal of Osborne's spending pledge.

This honestly sounds like a sound-bite to grab voters attention in Crewe and Nantwich rather than a real policy change.

http://tinyurl.com/43g944

J said...

The moral difficulty many of us who are yet to have children have is this:

We, the UK, need more children being born; however, we, the world, don't. The global population is far too high and spiralling out of control: how can we justify adding to it? But the population of this country is ageing: how can we justify not producing future taxpayers?


It's a moot point for me, as the woman I would quite happily marry tomorrow if she were interested just shacked up with some other guy :(

Talia said...

It’s particularly galling when it’s the singles who have to subsidise the “families” and are not eligible for the extensive tax-breaks they are.

tapestry said...

Verity

With inflation at 5% government finances will rise at 5% without any increases in tax rate (except in years which combine inflation with recession known as stagflation). Taxes will stay at the same level if tax rates are reduced 5%.

Cameron might see an increased government revenue stream of 10-25% over 5 years depending on the rate of inflation. There is no need to cut the original figure as a total figure, but allocate the increase to either further spending as Brown has done, or to lower rates of tax.

No need to cut spending...only reduce its proportion relative to what people are permitted to keep. Often reducing tax rates increases the amount of tax paid. Brown has raised many taxes beyond their efficiency level with the intention of reducing wealth levels.

If Corporation Tax was cut to a more competitive level, business in Britain might grow faster. Right now companies are quitting the country and urgently need an incentive to stay.

Labour and Lib Dem politicians have no understanding of the dynamics of tax, including that genius who is our Sub-prime minister.

single income no kids ever said...

I am a hardworking single bloke with no intention whatsoever of having my lifestyle encumbered by the sort of small chap/chapesse I see running about supermarkets making the most fearful nuisances of themselves.

That's my choice, and I see no reason why I should be taxed into oblivion to fund those who make their own choice to produce these menaces.

As for those going on about the 'taxpayers of the future', give the quality of those leaving education now, and given that future 18+ year olds are likely to be even worse, I suspect we are actually talking about the 'dole-scroungers' of the future and the fewer of them there are the better for everyone.

Anonymous said...

Tony Blair coined the phrase 'hard working family' but the clapping heir Cameron parrots this expression as he does with everything else that Blair said and did.