Deftness and badness

For how many years have we had people praise Osborne’s “deftness” on budget day, only for the deftness to fall apart as the understanding of his proposals is obtained? Remember the ‘pasty tax’?
Saw it again this year:
– a living minimum wage of £9 an hour by 2020 – trumping Labour’s manifesto commitment of £8!!
– Reduce the need for social security by making firms pay a proper wage! Why – he’s stolen Labour’s clothes!!
– A tax on firms so that those who offer apprenticeships get the money back!
– A golden rule of stopping people being dis-incentivised from taking work.
And it turns out the pessimistic spending figures he’d presented in March were not figures he believed in, in July!  My – what a clever rascal!
Now, it is nice to hear the arguments Labour has been making over the years being embraced.
But whilst listening, there were other bits that sounded very wrong. Car licence fees paying for new roads – what as opposed to roads maintenance? Attacks on green investment schemes.
And in the immediate fall-out, one curious projection arose – that productivity will fall next year, and the year after and the year after.
PTV ids GBP9 living wage reaction a0209hStill £9 an hour – and Iain Duncan Smith going bonkers – had to be the lead.
So congratulations to those who started posting news of the broken promises by the evening, the misleading statements before the General Election, the unfairness and the cruelty.
11221772_984100078290541_4981311638858474463_nThe day after, and it became clear that a central plank was undermined – the changes for a significant group of people will work against going into work.
Other “day after revelations” –
– it dramatically favours the rich against the working poor;
(the publication that explains such impacts that usually comes out with the budget was not supplied this year – so deft);
– the living wage calculation is changed if you cut tax credits;
– significant harm to the disabled, and to the young;
– tax raising, not tax cutting;
– not that concerned about balancing the budget as early as possible.
Despite plenty of restrictions on not raising income tax, NI and VAT, Osborne showed plenty of scope for change.
The risks for Labour – constraining our actions when Osborne doesn’t; portraying Osborne as pro-austerity when he’s been prepared to keep borrowing (and leftists keep going on about austerity).
What Osborne is about is restructuring society for the very rich.
Our riposte should be that that is –
– poor for the economy – money leaves the economy too quickly;
– poor for society – we can’t meet the burdens longer living is bringing and continued impact on wider range of services councils can offer, and
– poor for the environment – over £3bn released on corporation tax matched by the burden placed on the green sector.
And there’s still more revelations to come.
For instance, how if some local government workers are on £7 an hour, and some NHS workers are on £7.72 an hour, does 4 years of 1% annual increases reach £9 an hour.
NJC SCP Local Govt assume 4 1 per cent annual pay rises til 2020 a0328h AfC SCP NHS assume 4 1 per cent annual pay rises til 2020 a0308h
It don’t. 10 pay points in local government miss and 5 in the NHS.
We await a gov’t reaction.

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