Monday 26 February 2018

James Downey: Parties wanting to break mould are doomed to fail

James Downey

James Downey

WHEN George Osborne drew up the UK''s emergency budget, which he presented to the House of Commons this week, he faced exactly the same problems as finance ministers in all other European countries.

How much to cut? Where and when? And are there ways in which to "make the rich pay their share" and ease the pain for the people with the lowest incomes?

The short answers are, as anyone could have guessed, one: a great deal more than the £6bn so glibly bandied about during the British general election campaign; two: chiefly in the public sector, some quickly, some spread over a period of five years, to a total of 25pc; and three: not really. When you think of the amounts made in bonuses during the boom and even since, a bank levy of £2bn doesn't look like a very heavy hit.

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