Gordon isn’t going to talk down the market, it will come down when the market believes recession will hit demand…
UPDATE : Larry Elliot, Guardian Economics editor reckons oil “has increased from $10 a barrel a decade ago to $135 today.” If he turns a few pages in his own paper he will see he is wrong.
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- the reasons for departing from the previous fiscal policy objectives and operating rules;
- the approach and period of time that the Government intends to take to return to the previous fiscal policy objectives and operating rules; and
- the fiscal policy objectives and operating rules that shall apply over this period
Well the government could honestly specify:
- We recklessly overspent in the good times and when things went wrong and we nationalised Northern Rock, we bust even the fiddled limits.
- We will probably carry on spending like a drunk sailor in port and leave the mess to George Osborne to sort out, just as Geoffrey Howe had to sort out our mess last time.
- We will just throw money at any electoral problem even though we seem to have run out of people and things to tax.
The penny has dropped for Denis MacShane of all people:
“the prime minister can announce that he will leave more money in the pockets of the British people by reducing their taxes. This can be targeted at the indigenous working class, furious at the incessant year-on-year council-tax increases above the rate of inflation… I do not know of a single minister who privately does not despair at the waste of money on pointless projects, publications, or legions of press officers that add no value.”
Welcome to economic reality Denis. When even former Labour Ministers are calling for tax and waste reductions the tax argument is won (without any help from the Cameroons).
Meanwhile, fresh from telling the banks to lend more mortgages at lower rates in defiance of LIBOR, Gordon is today going to tell the oil companies to drop prices in defiance of supply and demand. What is the point of Gordon’s market bucking fantasy rants? To get a photo op and show he is “doing something”, he will subsquently in interviews say that he told the oil companies to drop prices, just like he told OPEC to stop laughing at him. There is only one thing in his pwoer which will reduce petrol pump prices.
Given that some three quarters of the petrol price is tax, perhaps reducing the tax take on petrol would be the best way to help hard pressed voters. The Golden Rule is bust, we need economic growth. We can only boost the faltering economy if, as Dennis MacShane says, we “leave more money in the pockets of the British people by reducing their taxes”. You can’t buck the market Gordon, but you can borrow from the bond market…
.. and no – the source is not Drudge – a mid-level Hillary campaign source.
Johann Hari has an article today in the Indy arguing that since Gordon Brown is going to lose the election anyway, he might as well go down with all guns blazing. Liberated from the need or indeed possibility of winning an election, he can swing madly to the left. Hari reckons Gordon should apologise for Iraq to the Iraqis and in doing so shame the Americans. Then Gordon should put up tax rates to 60%, price big family cars off the road, and as a finale, fly in Iraqi refugees from Syrian and Jordanian camps. Hari advocates all this political Hari kari for Gordon with the cheerful words “If you are going to lose, Gordon, lose with style”.
Gordon will no doubt be chuffed to bits with the, errrm, sensible advice Johann offers. This follows on from Hari’s article last Thursday; “Why bananas are a parable for our times“, in which we learnt about the CIA’s use of the banana to fight communism. On Sunday Hari wrote an article entitled; “Are GM bananas the answer?“ Apparently if genetically modified they will overcome “the current bananapocalypse” caused by mega-corporations because “we have to muddle through now as best we can, trying to keep six billion people alive.”
Guido is a teensy weensy bit concerned and called Hari to ask – “Are you on drugs?” It turns out that he was but he is alright now. He was necking Modafinil earlier this month, a stimulant cognitive enhancer that is a “wakefulness promoting agent” used to treat narcolepsy, depression, schizophrenia and fatigue related conditions.
We touched on Xanax use – which he pops before hopping on a flight – Guido suggested that based on his own experience some drugs seem positively subtle at first but manifest themselves in ways not immediately recognisable by the user, but easily identified by others. No, no, no says Hari, with Modafinil he “was just able to glide into a state of deep, cool, effortless concentration.”
“It was as if I had opened a window in my brain and all the stuffy air had seeped out, to be replaced by a calm breeze… The next morning I woke up and felt immediately alert. Normally it takes a coffee and an hour to kick-start my brain; today I’m ready to go from the second I rise. And it continues like this for five days: I inhale books and exhale articles effortlessly…”
Not at all bananas…
The recommendation that MPs get a tax-free £23,000 lump sum payment is a piss-take. This is equivalent to an extra £40,000 on their salary, which together with the pay rise they want will bring their package up to £115,000 plus gold-plated non-contributory index-linked pensions. Their reasoning is that the expense fiddles have become too embarrassing and they realise they will no longer be able to get away with them now they are out in the open.
We have serving soldiers in war zones on the poverty line, their starting rate of tax just doubled. MPs award themselves £400 a month for groceries when they are in their cosy Westminster homes, those same MPs voted for soldiers to have to pay for their own rations. Children in state schools are fed on 50p per diem, MPs claim £20 per diem. MPs get their snouts deep into the public trough way ahead of more deserving children and soldiers. So much for politicians putting the public interest first…