Our sleuth, a Latvian woman who works for a firm of contract cleaners, has been keeping a low profile of late, but her patience paid off when she discovered what appears to be a draft of the budget speech. It appears that the Chancellor has more courage than we have given him credit for and that Land Value Taxation will be the centre of his policy to get growth back into the economy. We will listen to his statement with eager anticipation on March 21st! At the top of the document is a handwritten note – Prime minister, I think it is time for Plan B!
Mr Speaker, I have received ample advice on how I should present this budget. Opinions vary, but on these issues everyone is agreed:
I must produce growth. I must cut taxes. I must build more houses, hospitals and schools. I must put new infrastructure at the top of the agenda. Tax evasion must be stopped and I must do something with the banks. I must increase wages and get more people off benefits and into work. I must conjure up confidence and there must be a policy that ensures everyone contributes their fair share.
In addition to advice from all quarters there is daily analysis from the economists and the press. Advice and analysis, but from them not a single solution that will achieve all our aspirations.
Mr Speaker, here is a solution. Yes, a single solution. A solution that, if we are brave enough to take it, will achieve growth and prosperity in the long term.
Charlotte-Ann Schreiber interviews Sir Mervyn King...
Following the latest Bank of England’s Quarterly Inflation Report we sent our resident economist Charlotte-Anne Schreiber to interview the Governor, Sir Mervyn King, to find out if she could get a simple explanation to some aspects of his statement.
“Sir Mervyn, I gather you’ve seen it. This must be a wonderful moment for you. But what exactly?”
“Well …. I think I’ve seen it. It is hard to tell at this stage until more facts and figures can be massaged, I mean analysed, but I am pretty sure I’ve seen it.”
The two Ronnies were hilarious. The two Ronniseals are a dreadful pair. Following their mid-term ‘spectacular’, the Downing Street joke book has been binned and a new version commissioned.
David Cameron began the show quoting the advertising slogan “it does exactly what it says on the tin.” But when he held the tin up to the cameras, all that could be seen were the dabs of glue on bare metal, as the label had fallen off.
Nick Clegg’s punch line “You could call it the unvarnished truth” was true only in the sense that varnish will not stick to dry rot.
People express concern about the fate of poor widows under LVT but I am more concerned about the likes of Miss Havisham, who was unmarried but had lost her fortune through being defrauded by her husband-to-be. But there is this sad story too. A 96 year old widow is in the same two-up two-down with an outside toilet that she moved into in 1946 when she was 30 years old. She had married at the start of the war and her husband fought in the Far East and was captured by the Japanese. He bought the house, badly dilapidated, for £250 with the help of his demob money. They patched it up in what little spare time they had, and a couple of children came along. Unfortunately whilst in the hands of the Japanese he had picked up a tropical disease from which he never recovered, and after a few years of ill-health died in the early 1950s. After that his widow worked for a meagre wage to supplement her army pension. By living frugally, she managed to bring up the children and build up a pot of money in a private pension scheme. But that collapsed due to Gordon Brown's
pensions raid, and now she is left with barely enough to get by. Nevertheless, she still does a lot of work in the local Oxfam
Shop. The house is now worth £2 million. Under an LVT system she is going to be living on the streets.
The sorry story would be compounded by the problems her grandchildren will face. They are currently priced out of the market and so
she would like them to inherit the £2 million house to divide between them
and use as deposits to help them onto the ladder and give them a good
start in life.
But under LVT, houses will become even more expensive, because the price of houses will have to go up to pay the LVT. Worse still, LVT will make her grandchildren homeless as well as they will not be able to afford the rent on their current homes because the landlord will add the LVT to the rent.
Which sums up the nonsensical arguments against LVT currently doing the rounds.
“What seems to be the trouble Mr Britain? I really thought we had got you back on your feet.”
“I was feeling a bit better last week with the Jubilee and that, but now it is over I am feeling pretty groggy again. The QE treatment just doesn’t seem to be working. I have no energy, I lack drive and I’m getting more and more into debt. My output has dropped through the floor and my sales are at rock bottom. Unless you can do something quickly I’m finished.”
IS THERE GOLD IN THEM THERE MOUNTAINS OF DEBT?
Immediately following the Queen’s speech our two intrepid heroes set off on their quest to find growth – the vital ingredient necessary for a successful and prosperous economy. Growth, it is said, is the missing link between bankruptcy and prosperity. It had not been seen or heard of for ten years or so, and the people’s patience with politicians’ promises was running thin.
Dave and Nick were mates with a mission - they were determined to achieve the impossible, to put new life into old, worn out, second-rate policies and come up smelling of roses.