Azara Blog: The Lib Dems have no clue about what to do about the economy

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Date published: 2009/01/21

The Cambridge Lib Dems publish this "newsletter" (i.e. propaganda sheet) called the Cambridge Herald. The top headline in the current issue, which has just dropped through letter boxes, is that "Lib Dem economics expert Vince Cable MP tells the Herald what the British economy needs". Hallelujah, the messiah has arrived to tell us what to do, and to tell us where Gordon is getting it all wrong.

And what is this fantastic advice Cable has (allegedly) given the Herald:

What Britain needs now, and urgently, is practical action to help people who are struggling - to put money back in their pockets, to cut their energy bills, and help them keep their homes.

We need a serious plan to get Britain's economy up and running again.

Our plan will cost £12.5bn, which would be paid for by scrapping the proposed VAT cut.
Our plan would include the following:

And that is it, unbelievably.

On their first point, this probably escaped the notice of Vince Cable and the other Lib Dem economic geniuses, but the VAT cut is exactly "cutting taxes for struggling families" (whatever that phrase is taken to mean). VAT is a regressive tax and so cutting it helps the poor (relatively) more than the rich. There is the question of whether cutting taxes is a sane strategy, compared with increasing government spending. The Lib Dems do not address that.

Their second point, about "lowering energy bills" is of course blatantly misleading because they use the word "you" and they do not mean "you". They mean some certain fraction of the poorest members of society. For everybody else (the majority, in particular the workers of the world) they of course want "you" to pay more for energy. After all, the Lib Dems claim to be serious about climate change. Thus the Lib Dems are keen on carbon taxes. Carbon taxes will increase the cost of energy. (Duh, that is the whole point.)

On their third point, the Labour government has of course announced measures to partly deal with this issue. Unfortunately the Lib Dems provide no details about how they would actually do things differently.

Meanwhile back in Cambridge, the city has a Lib Dem MP, David Howarth. He has done nothing since he was elected in 2005 to promote the city economically. Indeed the major Lib Dem proposal for Cambridge is to encourage one of the largest private sector firms (Marshalls) to get lost. Yes, how stupid can they get. The Lib Dems have no clue about the economy, which is not that surprising given that they are typical members of the academic middle class (i.e. the non-workers of the world).

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