Monday, November 10, 2008

Tax Cuts are the New Black

Cable and Clegg are already calling for ‘em, Brown and Darling are dumping dogma to talk about helping Britain through the recession with tax cuts, Osborne and Cameron are going to announce their tax relief plan tomorrow. Tax cuts are the new black.

Meanwhile over in Wapping, Danny Finkelstein said yesterday that Guido iseccentric in campaigning for populist tax cuts. Perhaps we have differing definitions of “eccentric”, Guido’s is: unusual or unconventional, a person who has an unusual, peculiar, or odd personality, set of beliefs, or behavior pattern. Now Guido may have been a bit ahead of the curve in advocating a tax cut based package for growth and saying it would be popular. The Fink however believes tax cuts are vote losers – yet the political leaderships of all the parties are now advocating them – why Danny? Who now really holds the eccentric view? Danny has many qualities, but his sense of timing for the political zeitgeist is not one of them. When it comes to political fashion he is what economists would describe as a “lagging indicator” .

Danny says the Tories will be “destroyed” if they advocate tax cuts, that is ridiculous, on the contrary they will be damaged if they do not. It seems to Guido that the Tories have finally realised that Fink is wrong, the old position is not right for now, the voters have moved on. One wonders if Osborne would have reached this point faster without the siren voice of his old friend. Now Nick Clegg, not the Tories, will be able to claim with some justice to have set the agenda.

[Guido also hears that the Speccie will this week be reporting Nigel Lawson claiming that he was misquoted on taxes - he is in favour of an immediate tax cut, so long as it is responsible.]

Rich & Mark’s Monday Morning View

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Lest We Forget

Cover by Holly, aged 17, in memory of her great, grandfather.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

+++ 2/3rds of Tory Grassroots Want Tax Cuts +++

ConservativeHome’s monthly survey is out.

LibDem’s Choose Dullest Candidate to be Party President Lembit Goes Nuclear

Guido despairs of the sandalistas sometimes. Why choose someone so dull and weak? Ros Scott burst into tears at one hustings because the questioning was mildly tough. They had a choice between someone who has a high media profile, someone energetic and someone who is nice but completely in the LibDem comfort zone. They opted for the latter when the problem is the LibDems are in serious trouble electorally. They have just lost their deposit in a by-election. Membership is at the lowest it has been in living memory, down to just a mere 60,357.

Presidential Election Votes Cast
Ros Scott: 20,736 votes (72%)
Lembit Öpik: 6247 votes (22%)
Chandila Fernando: 1799 votes (6%)

Lembit now says is going to campaign for some of his hobby horses – one of which is a “reassessment of our [LibDem] attitude towards nuclear power”. Presumably he wants to move the LibDems towards supporting nuclear power.

Lessons for Gordon and Dave

NZ Labour ran on exactly Gordon’s U.S.P.*, and it didn’t work. The voters in New Zealand overwhelmingly disagreed with Labour’s message, change and tax cuts won big in New Zealand. The “novice” promising tax cuts won.

Danny Finkelstein says voters don’t believe politician’s promises of tax cuts, Fink argues there is a credibility issue. John Key’s first manifesto pledge gave the three actual dates he would cut personal taxes for New Zealanders, a promise to take to the bank. His party won big.

Obama, another novice, ran promising tax cuts for 95% of Americans. The “novice” promising tax cuts won.

The incoherent Tory response to the financial crisis is manifestly weak, Osborne’s performance has disheartened even his own supporters, the lack of a clear message has weakened their credibility on economic issues significantly in the polls. Maybe Michael Ashcroft will have learnt something useful during his recent time with the NZ Nats that will influence the Tories for the better.

Times have changed, voters want the pendulum to swing back from spending towards tax cuts. Rumours are circulating in the Westminster Village that Gordon and Alastair are preparing to announce tax cuts. Which will, even if they are only rhetorical tax cuts, in a stroke make Dave and George look ridiculous as both Labour and the LibDems promise tax cuts and the Tories are left high and dry stranded on the high tax centre ground with only Danny Finkelstein for company. The old strategy may have been strategically right during the decontamination phase of Cameron’s leadership, it is so wrong for now. The recent electoral lessons from the rest of the English speaking world show that to “seal the deal” people now need a positive reason to vote for the Tories.

See also: NZ Nats Tax Calculator.

*Unique Selling Point

Friday, November 7, 2008

NO2ID : Latest Pictures

This is just in via a securely encrypted (to government standard) data transmission source. Somebody handed Guido a USB memory dongle in a pub. NO2ID are processing Jacqui Smith’s biometric data in a secure data acquisition unit at an undisclosed location.

The process is different to that required for merely identifying fingerprints – NO2ID intend to be able to reproduce Jacqui’s fingerprints. They tell Guido they are pretty confident as to the quality of the result.

Friday Caption Competition (Serious Candidate Edition)

Why South Africans Should Pay their TV Licences

Nhlanhla Nene, Chairman ANC, SA.

Labour Hold Glenrothes by Six Thousand

What is happening here – has Gordon’s Jonah curse been lifted?

  • He wished Lewis Hamilton well – and he still became World F1 champion.
  • Despite having met and been backed by Gordon, Barack won the Presidency.
  • Despite having visited the constituency, Labour didn’t lose.
The Tories beat the LibDems from third into fourth place, the LibDems had a disaster dropping ten percentage points. The SNP were very, very confident…

UPDATE : Should point out that it is fair to say that PoliticsHome’s PHI100 has now evened the score with the punters, although PoliticsHome did hedge themselves a bit with a press release splitting PHI 100 into politicians and pundits. Here’s what Rawnsley said yesterday

There’s a fascinating divide within the panel between the politicians and the media. The media panellists are political editors, leading commentators and executives. A solid majority of them are forecasting a win for the Nationalists. That puts them at odds with the politicians on the panel. They are MPs and peers, among them senior Ministers and Opposition frontbenchers, from all the main parties. A heavy majority of the politicians are predicting that Labour will hold the seat.

So the pundits still managed to get it wrong…


Seen Elsewhere

The Douglas Carswell Shock | Tim Stanley
Carswell is a True Moderniser | Charles Moore
Assembling a New World Order | Henry Kissinger
India’s Modi Bypasses Mainstream Media | Index
Bercow on the Knife Edge | Quentin Letts
Welcome to Mississippi | Conservative Women
LibDems Select Hancock Replacement | Blue Guerilla
Carswell Resigning: “Moment Labour Won Election” | Labour Uncut
Why We Need Change | Douglas Carswell
The Howard Roark of Westminster | Guardian
Carswell, the Clacton Cassandra | James Ford


VOTER-RECALL
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Douglas Carswell…

“I stab people in the front, not the back.”



Owen Jones says:

We also need Zil lanes.


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