Tax snippet, broken government and BBC and other coverage

During the first nine years of Thatcher’s period in office the top rate of tax was 60%. Hmmmm!
Whoever wins the next election is going to have to raise taxes somewhere. Money has to be found to fill the deficit.
Like many political obsessives I take the trouble to listen to the budget live whenever I can. Every year I think to myself ‘This year the Chancellor is sure to have realised how much progress he can make on so many fronts with a bit of effort and imagination?’ and every year I am disappointed.
The principle of double effect taxation does not seem to have sunk in at the Treasury at all. If a rise in the price of alcohol is suggested the beerage and the fourth estate’s topers throw all of their toys out of the pram simultaneously, resulting in a Prime Ministerial conniption and rapid distancing from the idea.
Changing from taxing alcohol per unit to per gram would, of course, make more sense.
What about introducing a range of sumptuary taxes – all perfectly legally and easily avoidable? The range of possibilities is enormous and the richest would be the most affected as they would be making the sort of discretionary purchases that would be included.
Taxation can be bold, change inducing and beneficial in non-monetary ways. If only Chancellors and the Treasury would wake up.

Broken Government
Have a look at:
Andreas Whittam-Smith talks and writes a very great deal of sense. He has written glowingly about the virtues of Independent MPs and candidates.
Today, in The Independent, he draws our attention to the web page he has created – see above – and I would specify his introductory pages ( as being particularly informative. There are quite a lot of them.
Here is a key phrase: ‘A recent study has shown that more than a quarter of the candidates chosen by Britain’s political parties to fight the next general election have no experience of any career other than politics.’
Worrying, isn’t it?
Cameron’s mantra about broken society should be seen for what it is – electioneering. None of the parties have, to my knowledge, addressed the beams in their own eyes. Independents are the future of democracy.

BBC Politics Show
This Sunday I will be on the local part of The Politics Show as will a Carlisle and a Stockton Independent PPC.
Also in the wings are local radio from around the UK and an independent film company that is making a documentary about Independents from around the UK.
The tide is turning in favour of Independents everywhere. 2010 is the year that things change properly and for the better.

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