Return to home page
Articles
SUBSCRIPTIONS
subscribe or renew now – click here!
BOOKLETS FOR SALE
buy the 23rd liberator songbook online
liberator booklets
COMMENTARY
commentary 362 – november 2013
RADICAL BULLETIN
radical bulletin 362 – november 2013
LEAD ARTICLE
362 – how to be a liberal minister
LORD BONKERS’ DIARY
lord bonkers’ diary 362
PREVIOUS ISSUES (IN PDF FORMAT)
liberator 361 – september 2013
liberator 360 – august 2013
liberator 359 – june 2013
FEATURES
really facing the future
field guide to the liberal democrats
xmas books 2008
SONGS
song – country garden
FAQS
privacy policy
guide to writing for liberator
LINKS
the really useful links page
Search...
filler graphic
Radical Bulletin 307 – December 2005
21 December 2005 (03:30:53)

I HAVE SEEN THE FUTURE

Clairvoyance is not a skill normally associated with Charles Kennedy, but it seems he has been able to foresee the conclusions of the party’s tax commission nine months before it is due to report.

His sudden announcement of a change in Liberal Democrat tax policy makes it puzzling why tax commission members bother to continue to sit.

Whatever they conclude will either be the same as Kennedy’s pronouncement, in which case their work will be superfluous, or contrary to Kennedy’s view, in which case it will be ignored.

Indeed, why set up the commission in the first place if tax policy is to be the subject of a sudden pronouncement from Kennedy instead of the result of detailed consideration?

Kennedy said the Liberal Democrats now stood for “fairer tax, not higher tax”, with an overall tax take similar to that at present prevailing.

This leaves the three main parties disputing minute differences in the level of public spending, allowing no political space to those who think it should be either significantly higher or lower.

He also argued that tax reforms should target the wealthy, and those who cause pollution, so that the poor and old can pay less. This ignores arguments about whether the old are necessarily poor, especially given there is now an effective 10p extra marginal tax rate on graduates of student loan repayments, plus largely generational barriers to entering the property market.

Shadow chief secretary Chris Huhne has been sent away to find £15bn of money that the Liberal Democrats would spend differently, to allow for an end to student tuition fees among other things.

This exercise proved to be news to both the tax commission and the Federal Policy Committee.

Speaking of which, the launch of the party’s new pension policy, of a higher pension made payable by people working until the age of 67, also took place with no consultation of the FPC whatever. Its officers were told a motion to conference would be impossible because “not enough research had been done”, only to have this policy sprung on them a few months later.

Those who recently stood for election to the FPC must be wondering why they bothered, since Kennedy is cutting it out of any input on policy.

Also in Radical Bulletin 307:

  • MORE JUMBLE SALES NEEDED
  • A DOSE OF DEMOCRACY
  • A LORD FROM THE SIDELINES
  • SIMPLE SIMON’S FINGERS IN THE PIES
  • WHAT’S IN A NAME?
  • BAY WATCH
  • LAWKS A’MERCY, IT’S A FAIR COP GUV
  • BACK FROM THE EDGE
  • ANNUS HORRIBILIS

Click here to return to the home page.
Printable Version
 


copyright ©2004-13 - liberator collective. You may not copy, reproduce, republish, download,
post, broadcast, transmit, make available to the public, or otherwise use liberator
content in any way except for your own personal, non-commercial use