I had a quick trawl through the Labour Party website, and I could only find the one policy on it, on Ed Miliband's one-off energy price freeze. However, what policies there are on the Labour side, it's obvious as to why they don't want to mention them. Labour have pledged to spend the same pot of money, coming from a bank levy, 13 times over: youth jobs guarantee; lowering VAT; reversing child benefit changes; reversing ALL of Iain Duncan Smith's benefit reforms; more regional growth funding; turning empty shops into community centres; more housing; childcare; cutting the deficit; more spending; more spending on public services.
But hold on, it's not possible to spend more and cut the deficit. It's also not possible to spend the same pot of money 13 times over. So Labour would have to increase taxes. But even if you taxed the rich at 98% (as Labour once did), there aren't enough rich people to pay for it all. So Labour would have to come up with something that hit everybody. The result? Well, look below:
That's £1,250 more tax per year for the typical worker under Ed 'n' Ed - £6,250 more tax over the next five years. Yes, I know I'm recycling old Conservative Party adverts, but it is same old Labour. So where would you save £1,250?
Well, don't worry, Labour would give you a choice:
- Save £25 per week on weekly shopping. This means giving up chocolate, for starters.
- Give up the family holiday. This may not prove too popular.
- Sell your car - that could save you £6,250. But how would you do Britain-wide journeys?
- Keep your car but take up minicabbing, giving up your evening.
- Strike - probably explaining why they go up under Labour - but it wouldn't work.
- Labour more for Labour. Work overtime.
The world recession has made it difficult for all of us, but with taxes down, strikes down, and inflation down, Britain is poised to gain most when the economy REALLY gets going. The last thing we need now is more taxes from Labour.
I was about to finish this blog post at that, and then I re-read it. And I noticed Labour have pledged to turn shops into community centres. Yes, they really are so anti-business they would let that happen. Another £5m down the drain.
What else have Labour pledged? They've pledged to renationalise energy. And EVERYONE knows this doesn't work. Between 1945 and 1987, the British taxpayer wasted £40bn to rescue failed nationalised industries - and that's not including Northern Rock, RBS, and Lloyds. There's only been one case where nationalisation has worked, and that is the NHS. "Oh", say Labour, "but prices are rising! It's the cost of living crisis, it's the end of the world!"
That argument doesn't stack up:
- Labour's figure of £1,600 does not include tax cuts by this government.
- We are exactly on the IMF inflation target of 2.0%.
- One should introduce more competition into markets, not less.
This election will be a two-party election, and, owing to the nature of the British electoral system, a vote for anyone other than the Conservatives will be a vote for Labour. David Cameron isn't the most popular Prime Ministers ever - it will be the least worst candidate who is returned to Downing Street - David Cameron is far better than Ed Miliband.