9 thoughts on “Is George Osborne really returning us to a 1930s government? Accurate comparisons suggest a definite ‘no’”

  1. Posted 29/12/2014 at 14:08 | Permalink

    There often seems to be an implicit assumption that what we (that is, the government) spend now is somehow the ‘right amount; and therefore that any reduction in that amount is to be deplored. (Any increase, on the other hand, often seems to be welcomed. Some asymmetry here, surely?) May I suggest that if ‘we’ have been overspending it may be the right thing to do to cut back a bit — or, if we have been grossly overspending, cut back quite a lot. Governments, of course, are not the same as families, but even so perhaps it would be sensible for them to adopt one characteristic of the financial practices of most sensible households. Most households first try to establish what they can expect their income (say over the next twelve months) to be (including borrowing), and then decide what to spend that income on (including ‘saving’ as one way of ‘spending’ their income). Governments, on the other hand, often seem first to draw up a shopping list of what they want to spend (our) money on, then look around for ways to raise tax revenues or borrowing to pay for it. No doubt there are many desirable things for households to spend money on, which they simply cannot afford. Is it conceivable that there are also some things that governments desire to spend our money on, but which ‘we’ cannot afford? Dare I suggest HS2 and our nuclear deterrent as two such projects? To go ahead and commit to purchasing such unaffordables anyway reminds one of Eliza Doolittle and her song (in My Fair Lady’) ‘Wouldn’t It Be Luvverly?’

  2. Posted 31/12/2014 at 17:38 | Permalink

    It is highly debatable that we are richer as a result of governemnt spending.

    Why should a third party spend our money any more efficiently than we spend it ourselves?

    Should the government be providing a monopoly health service or a monopoly education system at our expense?

    In fact should the government be providing a monopoly anything at our expense?

    Let governments restrict themselves to defence of the realm, to ensuring full and fair competition and to looking after the interests of the poor and let the markets sort out the rest.

    Of course it will never happen but, if one day it does then 20 percent might be seen as a spend too high

  3. Posted 04/01/2015 at 10:00 | Permalink

    Following decades of innovation and growth one would have expected the need for centrally directed spensing to be almost eliminated by now, save for the public goods of law and order, military defense and very little else. The shock is that politicians are still taking so much of our output by force; actually more in money terms now than the entire national production in the 1930s.

    I wonder why the OBR included that sentence at all in their report. was it done as a gift to the left by a sympathiser in the OBR? It will be misrepresented with glee for years just like the OECD casual observation that, if you apply simple pro rata, there are “3 million jobs dependent on exports to the EU” or as the pro-EU integrationists will express it, their jobs depend on membership of the EU.

    These nonesenses don’t go away just because they are daft. They were not created by accident.

  4. Posted 04/01/2015 at 10:09 | Permalink

    There are so many dishonest people seeking 15 minutes of Fame that ordinary people do not trust any statistics that are published. Just look at all the qualifications and calculations used here to rebut the latest lie broadcast by the BBC. Voters are seeking honesty not perfection, which is why most will be voting UKIP in the next election.

  5. Posted 04/01/2015 at 14:03 | Permalink

    Yes indeed if you believe the state spends our money better than we can ourselves means that if someone steals your car they can use it better?

  6. Posted 04/01/2015 at 20:54 | Permalink

    hint that taxes on the masses might be reduced
    bbc journalist whose salary is paid by a outdated poll tax
    liberal hyperbole to protect the bbc’s backsides

  7. Posted 05/01/2015 at 10:00 | Permalink

    The creep upwards of Government controlled spending, increasingly funded out of borrowed or, worse, “printed”money, is the poisonous assumption of the Soviet/Socialist “Command Economy” model.
    It must be self-evident that as the percentage of Government directed spending extracts an increasing percentage of direct or indirect taxation, coupled with monies printed to make up the shortfall or added to the National Debt, sucking interest out of the shrinking puddle of GDP then the available drips left fund private enterprise.
    And don’t even mention the use of public supply of power forms such as electricity, gas and petroleum as another means of imposing indirect taxation.
    Can someone do a chart showing the “taxation” of a mythical average manual, middle class and upper class Toff when viewed against the visible and almost invisible State theft of taxation, duties, surcharges,levies, etc?

  8. Posted 08/01/2015 at 19:58 | Permalink

    wouldn’t it be great if there was a common sense party. there seems to be a total lack of it in politics today. if everybody agrees that there are problems with our country, why are there so many solutions to solve them, very few using “common dog….”

  9. Posted 09/01/2015 at 08:26 | Permalink

    I think beejaygeecee may find we need more than common sense from a politician but it would be agood starting point.

    I oscillate between thinking they do not understand much at all, just spin and evasion, but other times I suspect they believe the public are incapable of handling a debate with more than a binary choice. My evidence for the former proposition is the shockingly poor performance of state run projects and services; where else comes close to its cost and unsatisfactory output.

    Ultimately the fault lies with the voters who need to engage more and be prepared to abandon past tribal voting and instead chose candidates who appear competent and committed – it does not matter if the change brings in a few charlatains as we have had more than enough of them from the old parties over the years, and they were meant to have vetted them.

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