£17,000 a day

Apparently that’s what the divorce settlement is worth that you know who got from Mr McCartney.

Almost temps me into wanting to marry him!

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Conservatives need to nail inflation fudge

At long last, it looks like Gordon Brown’s record as Chancellor is being seen for what it was as a con trick. He inherited a booming economy with 5 years of economic growth, low inflation and throughout his tenure had a £20+ billion windfall of mobile phone 3G licences, global economic growth and low interest rates, cheap far eastern imports keeping down inflation and the internet revelation which has created new markets and growth. Labour ask us to believe that they had something to do with all this. Suddenly the global conditions change and it has nothing to do with them. This is the lie.
 
As the Conservatives have been arguing, we should be entering these potential bad times with low competitive tax rates and a surplus to fund them. Instead we are borrowing billions to fund pet Labour projects and the hundreds of thousands of civil servants that they’ve taken on. We have over regulated businesses because these civil servants are having to justify their existence which is causing us to slip down the world competiveness league.
 
Anyone this is just some background to what I wanted to write about and that’s the menace of inflation. A recent poll suggested that something like 90% of people don’t believe the Governments inflation figure. I find it astonishing that the rest do believe it. We have fuel up 20%, food up 10%, Energy up 20%, Council tax up 5% and so on. How on earth can they splutter out that inflation is 2.2% with a straight face. A poll suggested that 8.1% is a more accurate reflection of their personal inflation and that sounds much nearer the mark to me as well.
 
I think a portion of Labour’s weakness is the unrealistic figures they are portraying. This is where the Conservatives must pounce. As part of cleaning up politics, we must present realistic economic figures. After all, part of our current economic difficulties may well be due to the Monetary Policy Committee setting interest rates to deal with an incorrect inflation target. In short, we need to commit to restoring the Retail Price Index as the measure of inflation. Whilst that at about 4% may be an underestimate, it is certainly more accurate and trusted than the Consumer Price Index and will give the MPC a proper target to aim for.
 
We also need to look at the committee itself. Half of it is made up of Chancellor appointees. Does this make them truly independent you have to ask. Also where is the accountability? A letter to the Chancellor is hardly earth shattering is it. Perhaps there should be representation from Parliament (maybe the Treasury Select committee).
 
Changing the measure is imperative though. We need a measure that the public and business can have faith in, and it would prove the Conservatives are serious about sorting out the economic problems that Gordon Brown’s wasteful years have left us with.

MPs expenses just don't change

Over at Party Political Animal, Phillip Oppenheim has a great piece which seems to show the issue of MPs expenses is certainly not new.

Well he does have a point

On Thursday I had a chat with a Labour MP who I’ve known for quite a while.

The end of the conversation went as follows, and really amused me:-

Me: Did you know I was doing the marathon?

Him: No really

Me: Yes, for St John Ambulance – you can sponsor me if you like.

Him: Hmmm. I’ve always made it a point not to encourage suicide!

(Well he does have a point… though in fairness he did say he would sponsor me)

blind to common sense

I’ve just listened to a debate on radio and have been left flabbergasted.

Essentially Radio 2 had a deaf couple on who were arguing they should have the right to choose a deaf child. Now their argument was, that they didn’t accept deafness was a disability, and that they wanted their child to be part of their community.

I haven’t heard of anything so selfish in quite a long time. When it was pointed out that if they actively chose to have a deaf child, that child may well miss out on hearing music and so on, their response was that the child could go to a deaf group and have conversations, and the caller, a hearing person, would feel left out in that situation.

I think that fact that a hearing person could learn sign language, but a deaf person could not LEARN to hear was completely lost on them.

Now if I had a deaf child, I would want to the best I could for them, but if I was deaf, I can only imagine I would want any child to be born with ALL their senses, and not try to limit their opportunities or experiences, just so they could be part of my "community" (their word not mine).

This couple may have been deaf – but they were also blind to arguments of common sense.

Mini Conference Season thoughts

That time of year again when Political Party’s have a pretty pointless conference. I saw nothing of Labour’s conference last week even though I watched Sky News, News 24 and the terrestrial bulletins. Gordon Brown allegedly made a speech but I never saw any reports about it. Perhaps the media have got their own back over the decision to cancel it last year. It was interesting though that all the written reports were about how negative Labour were about the Tories, calling us all sexist racist homophobes. Pretty desperate stuff from a desperate party.

In contrast, the Lib Dem conference seems to have been covered extensively. Obviously the nonsense of their position on the EU treaty, and the three line whip to abstain has put them in the news again. Everyone seems to expect them to drop in the polls because of this. On the flip side it has got them noticed again, so we will see if Mike Smithson of Political Betting fame’s rule about David Cameron doing better when he’s in the news no matter the subject extends to Nick Clegg and the Lib Dems.

Anyway back to their conference. I have to say that I think Vince Cable’s VAT policy on smoothies seems to be a good idea. As long as it doesn’t extend to things like sunny delight, then it’ll be worthwhile and the idea will probably get stolen. However things did get a bit wackier after that. Vince seems to think he’s the Lib Dem William Hague who can give a comic turn. However a lot of those jokes turned into basic insults, and if he continues in this vein, I fear he will turn into the Colin Hunt of the political world, making an amusing comment once and then spending the rest of his life trying and failing to replicate it. Go out at the top Vince, you’re no William Hague.

Talking of funny comments, Richard Littlejohn’s take that the Lib Dems have replaced Captain Mainwaring with Pike amused me. Sums it up very well.

 

Hague on Europe


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Another great performance from William Hague.

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