Ill be voting Conservative (no shock there). And Ill be doing it on policies, not half baked second hand opinion masquerading as original thought like ‘Oh, theyre a bunch of toffs’. Flip this silly inverted snobbery round; would you say “I wont vote for her, shes only a grocers daughter!”
Were also reminded about Thatchers “decimating” of industry. Well, decimating means (coming from the Latin ‘deci’) a decline of one tenth. In fact, under Thatcher, UK manufacturing fell from 25.8% of the economy to 22.5%; indeed, decimation.
But lets take a look at this Labour government. In 1997 manufacturing accounted for 20% of our economy. By 2007 that had fallen to 12.4%. The Romans never came up with a word for that.
Labour have been an utter economic disaster for this country. Between 2002 and 2007, before a single bank needed bailing out, Labour were running budget deficits. Lest we forget, the economy was growing at the time (based on borrowing). Unemployment was low. Tax receipts were rising. Yet Gordon Brown still managed to spend more than he had coming in.
So, when the storm hit, we were buggered. Someone once described a recession as being like when the tide goes out and you find out who’s been swimming naked. We were well and truly in the bollocky buff.
And we are nowhere near out of the woods. True, the economy has returned to weak growth, but if you throw £175 billion of borrowed cash at a problem youre bound to have an effect. But what effect? Despite the ludicrous assertion above that Labour have “reduce(d) the number of unemployed and (got) people back in to work” we actually have more people unemployed than at any time since the hated Thatcher. We have a rate of economic inactivity which is higher than its ever been before.
Trouble is that you cant go on doing this and you need to stop. If you dont and you keep borrowing then you will see your interest rates go up. Put simply, the Conservatives can deal with this looming meltdown, Labour cant.
And lets not forget the disastrous role the Labour government had in bringing about this recession. In 2003 we switched the inflation target for the Bank of England from the RPI measure (which includes housing costs) to the CPI measure (which doesnt). If wed stuck with the RPI wed have had interest rates go up sooner and choke off the bubble before it reached the stratosphere. Theres alot further to fall from up there.
The economic story of this government can be simply told. They inherited, from the Conservatives in 1997, the best economic climate since before the First World War. They will leave them, in 2010, with the worst economic climate since World War Two.
We are told that Labour “are becoming tougher on immigration”. Phew, well, it only took them 13 years! But this points system only applies to those coming from outside the EU. If you are worried about Poles taking jobs then this points system wont make a blind bit of difference.
We were told about Labour’s shiny new school buildings. Bravo. Sadly the teaching that goes on in them has got worse. The Programme for International Student Assessment compares students from a range of countries. In 2000 the UK ranked 7th in reading, 8th in maths and 4th in science. By 2008 we had slumped to 17th in reading, 24th in maths and 14th in science.
I will agree with vote Conservative “if you want to pay less tax and National Insurance”. Of course, if you want to keep paying high taxes to bail out bankers, then vote Labour by all means.
Which brings us to the NI increase. Why, with unemployment high, do Labour want to put a tax on jobs? They put a tax on fags and cider because they want people to consume less fags and cider. They put a tax on jobs, however, and dont expect employers to consume less labour.
Vote Labour if you want 42 day detention and ID cards. Vote Labour if you want more dodgy wars. Vote Labour if you want more lies about European referendums. Vote Labour if you want a bloated, unproductive public sector to strangle the economy. Vote Labour to see a continuation of mean politics, with attack dogs being turned on everyone from a Conservative MP’s wife to Joanna Lumley and a survivor of the Paddington rail crash. Vote Labour if you want a CCTV camera in every home. Vote Labour if you want five more years of Gordon Brown.