Skip to main content

Redwood is deadwood and Blair is in the air

An interesting contrast on the radio this morning. At 7.35 John Redwood is talking about crunchy economics. He made some valid points, but his manner was hectoring and abusive- talking all over the interviewer, whose primary point was that Redwood was strongly disagreeing with his leader. Redwood was rude and ugly- no charm, no social graces. Yet several of the points he made about economic policy were right on the money.

Twenty minutes later up popped David Cameron. His points were waffly- "sharing the proceeds of growth" "moderate choices"- intellectually it was drivel, but delivered with the easy charm of the fifth form cad. You felt that this was a cheery, reasonable sort of chap. How bad could he be?

The trouble is that the last time we elected a cheery public school chap, we ended up with a Prime Minister who ended up saying the following:

"If we are not prepared to predict and intervene far more early then there are children that we know perfectly well are completely dysfunctional, and the kids a few years down the line are going to be a menace"

"Predict"? "Intervene"? This man seriously believes that you can predict peoples lives from their circumstances. What an insult to the thousands of kids born in difficult circumstances who go on to lead rich and rewarding lives- and what an excuse for those people who refuse to accept the consequences of their own behaviour. This man does not understand the first thing about freedom- and for that alone, if not his myriad other misjudgements, he should not be in office...

...and Cameron should never get there.


Popular posts from this blog

Concert and Blues

Tallinn is full tonight... Big concerts on at the Song field The Weeknd and Bonnie Tyler (!). The place is buzzing and some sixty thousand concert goers have booked every bed for thirty miles around Tallinn. It should be a busy high summer, but it isn´t. Tourism is down sharply overall. Only 70 cruise ships calling this season, versus over 300 before Ukraine. Since no one goes to St Pete, demand has fallen, and of course people think that Estonia is not safe. We are tired. The economy is still under big pressure, and the fall of tourism is a significant part of that. The credit rating for Estonia has been downgraded as the government struggles with spending. The summer has been a little gloomy, and soon the long and slow autumn will drift into the dark of the year. Yesterday I met with more refugees: the usual horrible stories, the usual tears. I try to make myself immune, but I can´t. These people are wounded in spirit, carrying their grief in a terrible cradling. I try to project hop

Media misdirection

In the small print of the UK budget we find that the Chancellor of the Exchequer (the British Finance Minister) has allocated a further 15 billion Pounds to the funding for the UK track and trace system. This means that the cost of the UK´s track and trace system is now 37 billion Pounds.  That is approximately €43 billion or US$51 billion, which is to say that it is amount of money greater than the national GDP of over 110 countries, or if you prefer, it is roughly the same number as the combined GDP of the 34 smallest economies of the planet.  As at December 2020, 70% of the contracts for the track and trace system were awarded by the Conservative government without a competitive tender being made . The program is overseen by Dido Harding , who is not only a Conservative Life Peer, but the wife of a Conservative MP, John Penrose, and a contemporary of David Cameron and Boris Johnson at Oxford. Many of these untendered contracts have been given to companies that seem to have no notewo

KamiKwasi brings an end to the illusion of Tory economic competence

After a long time, Politics seems to be getting interesting again, so I thought it might be time to restart my blog. With regard to this weeks mini budget, as with all budgets, there are two aspects: the economic and the political. The economic rationale for this package is questionable at best. The problems of the UK economy are structural. Productivity and investment are weak, infrastructure is under-invested and decaying. Small businesses are going to the wall and despite entrepreneurship being relatively strong in Britain, self-employment is increasingly unattractive. Red tape since Brexit has led to a significant fall in exports and the damage has been disproportionately on small businesses. Literally none of these problems are being addressed by this package. Even if the package were to stimulate some kind of short term consumption-led growth boom, this is unlikely to be sustainable, not least because what is being added on the fiscal side will be need to be offset, to a great de