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He looked me in the eye…

Who would have thunk it? Dave loves us. That’s a collective of everyone in Scotland I’m talking about. Yes all of us. He even gave an impassioned speech about it. He encouraged friends and relatives of ours who don’t live in Scotland to call us or contact us in some way and then tell us how important it is for us not to leave the UK.

It kind of threw me a bit. There we were secure in the thought that we were being carried financially by the rest of the UK (look it up and you’ll find it’s the opposite but let’s not allow the facts to get in the way of a bit of propaganda). Why would Dave want to hold onto to Scotland if we were costing his government and the other three countries of the UK real money?

I’d have thought if we were costing them money they would be very glad to get shot of us? Oh well. Who knows how politicians and the establishment on both sides of the border work? Certainly not me.

I like the bit near the end when Call me Dave looked right at the camera and looked into our eyes. It was sincere. It wasn’t a practiced cynical attempt to try to win our favour. Oh no, Call me Dave would never do that.

The “Subrosa Blog” has a post entitled “Ian Bell’s letter to David Cameron”. Ian points out that there is a fairly similar vein running though Call me Dave’s speech. Similar to what I hear you ask?

Well, it’s very similar to a speech and sentiment from the “1995 Unity scheme” which was used by the Canadian government successfully when French Canadians were also trying to pursue independence. Whilst we are also on that particular theme please bear in mind that the Prime Minister of Spain has been going on about Scotland not being able to join the EU (hurrah! and yes please) because he doesn’t want the Catalans to do the same as Scotland.

Has your phone been ringing off the hook? Have lots of complete strangers from the rest of the UK been calling you to remind you that Scotland is full of wonderful people and it would be unfair of us to vote to leave the union? No? Of course not.

Call me Dave’s speech was “sincere” and would’ve brought tears to a glass eye. No really…

It wouldn’t be so bad if the English really thought about what was happening. Billy Bragg, of all people hit the nail on the head. He suggested that Scottish Independence would be a good thing since it would force the English to think about who they actually are. What is their place in the world? What are their ambitions? What is their culture? How do they bring some sort of equality over the whole nation rather than the unbalance of London and the east and the rest?

Come on all you Englanders… Wake up!

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2014 in BBC, Politics, Scottish Independence

 

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What a gay day.

Call me Dave is the man. He’s succeeded in ways that no Conservative ever has. He’s managed to be further left than Labour, allowed the tail (libdems) to wag the dog and increasingly pandering to more and more minority groups.

If you listen carefully for a moment you will be able to hear a large number of Conservatives spinning in their graves. Dave has gone and done it. He’s managed to get his Gay Marriage Bill over the first hurdle.

It looked like there would be a revolt but the revolting party whips soon sorted out those who were following a dangerous path voting against the gay marriage bill. If the rebels hadn’t they might have been out on their ear before the next election. Some brave souls did rebel, but it was too little too late.

The BBC has made much of it being the Tories who voted “no” in larger numbers than the other parties. Really? And this is a surprise to the BBC?

Dave says there are safeguards in the Bill, which will mean that any religious group can decline from providing gay marriage ceremonies.  I wonder how that will go over the years? Who will be the first to challenge this in a court?

Wee Eck and Nippy will be smarting this morning. They said they’d do it and Dave beat them to it. Oh dear. Never mind they can always push harder for the 50P minimum pricing for alcohol. Or they could get on doing real stuff that will actually help our country.

I don’t know about you but I’m a fairly tolerant person. I can’t say I’m interested at all in how gay people live their lives etc. As long as they do what they do and they don’t impinge into anyone else’s life that’s fine by me. I feel the same about all minority groups.

Whether pandering to minorities is a good thing or not, it doesn’t seem very democratic. Here’s a bill put forward which wasn’t in ANY of the parties manifestos but has been given priority to be implemented.

Of course if this bill or any bill based on minority wants was to affect me then things would be different. If this bill means that “Husband” and “Wife” are no longer used in the marriage ceremonies or on the paperwork, I’d be a bit ticked.

What are the gay community going to push for now?

I bet they come up with something and it will be soon.

 
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Posted by on February 6, 2013 in BBC, Politics

 

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David Cameron, world statesman in waiting

Call me Dave is a pretty clever and talented man. He’s been demonstrating this recently as I’m sure you will have noticed.

Exhibit one.

Dave addressed a class of Liberian children. I don’t know if they could speak English but I doubt they would have understood one way or another. A photo opportunity more than anything else? World statesman in the making? Snigger.

Exhibit two.

Dave gives away more of the money that the UK doesn’t have to Libya this time. Good move Dave. How long will it be before some of the Libyan rebels who are now the government there construct a Muslim state with Sharia Law? Democracy? Equality?

Exhibit three.

Dave is upsetting his own party members at a tremendous rate. He must feel very proud of that. The main issue is the gay marriage legislation or the legislation to provide tax reductions for married couples. Dave feels that the gay marriage thing is more important.

Exhibit four.

Dave finally gave his EU speech. It’s all about the future. It’s not about now. Vote for Dave at the next election and he will deliver a YES/NO referendum. Wait a minute has he not promised something very similar two and bit years ago? Is this the canvassing started for the 2015 elections is it? Maybe a previous Dave?

Exhibit five.

Dave has had some of his chums tell us all about how horrible life would be if the UK left the EU. It’s remarkable that that the unionists say the same stuff to Scotland, doom and gloom, frighten people and keep the status quo.

Exhibit six.

I definitely heard Dave say that the Coalition had reduced the debt by 25%. It kind of looks like Dave doesn’t know the difference between the budget deficit and UK debt? Either he doesn’t and he’s a fool or he does and he’s misleading people?

Exhibit seven.

His good mate and one trick pony chancellor, the esteemed George Osbourne, says there will be no change in fiscal policy. Dave likes giving our hard earned cash away to “poor third world countries”. But we’ve been doing this for years and years and years Dave with little to show for it.

Exhibit eight.

Dave has an eye on the next election or I should say winning the next election. This seems pretty ludicrous right now. It looks increasingly like his own grass roots supporters are turning away in droves.

Exhibit nine.

Dave is increasing the number of troops heading to Mali. Just for training purposes of course. No combat missions will be carried out. How long will it be before the body bags start coming into Brize Norton to be sneaked out the back gate? Any chance that the insurgents might use the same tactics in Mali as they have been doing in Afghanistan? IEDs? Shootings by insurgents dressed as Mali trainees?

Exhibit ten.

Daves father in law works as an advisor to William Hague and is about to take up a post helping to sell Kuwaits oil for them? Cronyism writ large maybe?

Things wouldn’t be so bad if there was a viable alternative. There is you say? What that Labour chap Milliband? Get real. He’s actually managed to position him and his party to the right of the Conservatives. Not to mention that he seems to have little in the way of policies and not a lot of experience and skill within his party to draw on.

No matter. Dave can rely on Nick Clegg and his adhesive (like those labels that are so stubborn to come off something you bought and it takes ages, a lot of bad language and several attempts for you to scrap it off) members of the current coalition to support him. Nick said only last week that they are looking for ways for the coalition to remain following the next election. I don’t think Dave will be too excited about that although come the time they will do another deal to stay in power of they have to.

Power is all.

Yawn!

 
 

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Statists and statistics.

It’s a fact that the number of smokers are falling but lung cancer is increasing.

It’s a fact that there has been no discernible warming of the climate for at least 15 years.

It’s a fact that obesity rates in the UK haven’t increased since 2007.

It’s a fact that Australia spent $500 million taking firearms from their population.

It’s a fact that in the first year (2012) when only the Australian police and the crims had guns gun related deaths, injury and armed robberies have risen with the latter rising an incredible 44%.

The number of people who died in car accidents in 2012 was way higher than 2011.

Edinburgh Council got their bin collection wrong again this Christmas, which saw mounds of full black rubbish bags along the roads of the affected areas in the city. They than had to bring in contractors at short notice and substantial cost to resolve the situation AGAIN!

I could go on. You get the picture.

What is government for? What is government good at?

Government is for protecting the people they represent in the most basic ways. Protecting us from aggressive attacks by foreign countries, dealing with foreign countries be they friend or foe, supporting a reasonable system of law which is impervious to wealth and emptying the bins etc.

What is government good at? Increasing the controls on our lives and taking more and more money from us in taxes. None of which is useful. None of which could ever be claimed as democratic.

Government actions do not work. Government don’t create jobs they just destroy them. Bailing out the banks destroyed hundreds of thousands of jobs. Increasing fuel duty and VAT increased costs to us all on all purchases and the raised the costs of suppliers we buy from who then cut back on staff when we cut back our spending.

Would it not have made mores sense, even although there isn’t any sense in doing this in the first place, to give the money from the quantative easing programme to us? That’s you an me. That is everyone getting a share? Every one would have gone out and spend and/or save it? It would have filtered back to the banks and also to the government via VAT, duty etc.

How small could we make government?

Which country in the world has the smallest government?

One thing is for sure, there isn’t a level of UK government which is working as it should.

Yawn.

 
 

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Political beliefs

I thought I should clarify a couple of things.

A number of people have started following my blog over the past couple of weeks and I think it’s important that I explain where I sit/stand/jump as far as my politics are concerned.

I’ve already covered this some time ago but I think it is important to cover it again.

My family were Labour Party members going back three generations. My Great-grandfather lost his job for trying to organise his workmates and then had to sell sticks for fires and vegetables depending on the time of year, from a handcart.

My Grandfather was a Labour burgh and county councillor for a long time and my Father was a Labour Party member and activist most of his adult life. Both my Grandfather and my Father supported the Labour Party because it was the party of the workingman. They believed that the Labour Party tried to improve the working mans lot subsequently helping each generation be more prosperous and better educated than the last. Labour people generally where always pleased when someone made progress and they were also very keen on education for their families even at that time when University wasn’t possible for at 80% of the population.

The dreadful strikes of the 70s and 80s caused them both to think hard about how, perhaps, some people had taken advantage of the Labour movement and things had maybe got out of hand. The miners strike closed the local mine and the town suffered due, not just the loss of jobs, to a loss of community which the miners facilitated.

My Grandfather was dead before Tony Blair took office and my Father was at the point of resigning from the party, when he became ill and died. He didn’t think that New Labour was a working mans party, far from it. He thought they had moved far too much to the right.

Due to what has transpired over the years I’m sure that all three of them are spinning in their graves. The Labour Party is no longer the party of the workingman, they are the yuppy and yummy mummy party. To their eternal shame, they have spawned Call me Dave son of Blair and have formed partnerships with the Tories. Animal Farm rings true then. Corruption in Glasgow and Edinburgh not to mention expenses scandals and the like shame the party as does the continuing lust for power for powers sake, although to be fair this stains all political parties currently.

Worst of all however, is the condescending way that the left talks down to people and stifles debate, doesn’t listen and from all levels of government piles additional costs on us all. PFI, taxes on taxes and worst of all from the global warming scam which has in effect allowed them to tax the air we breath out. The left lecture us on what we can and can’t say, what we can and can’t eat, smoke, drink and what weight we can and can’t be: this is obviously a very small percentage of the loss or rights and increasing controls we are required to live with.

In Scotland, the Labour Party clings on. It’s support is historical although not yet hysterical. The SNP have profited because of Labours arrogance at being THE party in Scotland according to the Labour Party and their lackeys, the BBC the quality newspapers etc.  The case for independence is stronger and more compelling because Labour failed to reverse the loss of jobs caused by the destruction of heavy and traditional industry over more than ten years! The heartland of their voters has suffered the worst. It’s a disgrace.

Currently there is no political party, which is left of centre or right of centre for that matter.  The Tories are no longer Tories, Labour are no longer Labour and the LibDems, well you can make your own mind up on them.

So there you have it. Scottish Independence is important to me since it will alter the Scottish political landscape significantly. Getting away from the grasping Westminster set should provide much improved opportunities for everyone living is Scotland regardless of being indigenous or not.

The best is yet to come. I think I’ll have the on my headstone. Well you have to believe in something and the above are mine for what they’re worth.

 
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Posted by on August 26, 2012 in BBC, Politics, Scottish Independence

 

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Question Time

Another week and another load of waffle is issued by the NO campaigners to Scottish independence.

Firstly though, you’ll have heard that Call me Dave has decreed that no further fiscal powers will be devolved to Scotland if the independence vote result is a no. It’s only a matter of a few short weeks since Call me Dave said he “would” provide more fiscal powers. No surprise really. The last thing we want is politicians stating their intentions and sticking to them. That would never do now would it?

Anyway, on to Question Time. No this isn’t about that dire BBC propaganda programme which is loaded to ensure Left bias, it’s the attempt by the NO campaigners to Scottish Independence to dictate what the question on the referendum ballot paper should say. The NO camp in Scotland set up a “panel of experts” who recommend that only a single question should be on the ballot paper and it should be – “Scotland should become an independent state: I agree/I do not agree.”

State? Come on guys “country”. Country is the word if we were going to go down your road and very obviously we most certainly are not. If clarity is your driver then country is your word, not state.

The SNP question is – “Do you agree that Scotland should become an independent country?” Sounds good to me. Simple. Yes or no. Easy.

The NOs don’t like that though. It’s a question which leads. It points voters towards Yes. They can’t have that. They can’t have two questions either and handbags are now out for a spot of girly fighting by the macho politicians in the next few weeks.

One question only and this is the wording according to the NOs. If the Scottish government don’t agree then Westminster won’t provide the legal powers necessary to allow the referendum to go ahead, or of it does without their say so they will dispute the result and fight through the courts.

Now that sounds like a major threat too far. The Scottish voters voted the SNP into power knowing that a referendum on Scottish Independence would take place. Are the NOs and the Westminster clique really going to go against a democratically supported policy? It was in the manifesto and the SNP Scottish government are sticking to the commitment that this represents.

I’m sure this type of approach is pretty unfamiliar to the Westminster crew. The EU Referendum promised by call me Dave was put aside although it was in his manifesto and people voted for his party with the understanding it would happen. It hasn’t and it won’t.

The Scottish Independence Referendum will go ahead and will be based on the same system used for the UK parliament elections. That means first past the post. No percentage turnout lines to cross. No percentage of the Scottish population lines to cross.  Just simply, has YES or NO got the most votes.

The Labour Party in Scotland, who are not a unionist party, want Scotland to stay in the union. If Scotland gains Independence it’s goodbye to the gravy train and the Westminster perks for not just the labour MPS from Scotland it’s probably going to seriously damage the possibility of the Labour party in England to get back into power. Remember that Scottish Labour MPs greatly enhance the number of Labour MPs in Westminster.

It’s odd that Johan Kranky seems to think that she can “press Salmond to agree to a cross-party deal on the question when all the party leaders next met”. She’s another one who has mislaid the ability to deliver manifesto promises. The SNP have a good-sized majority and silly whining like this just won’t get Johan anywhere.

Whilst there are a huge number of issues, which need to be, clarified and addressed such as Trident, the green agenda, the EU, currency, the Head of State etc. etc. the main thing is achieving Independence.

Let’s concentrate on that alone at least for the meantime.

 
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Posted by on August 24, 2012 in Politics, Scottish Independence, SNP

 

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A dinner date.

Getting close to the famous and powerful can be pretty exciting for some people. For others just getting close enough could result in some business or influence being put their way. This is pretty shabby. Unfortunately it seems to be a scam that out politicians have been using to fill their party coffers.

The disclosure of the Tories practicing this and using the hard sell technique usually used during some sort of “hustle” stunt. If you’ve seen The Real Hustle you’ll be familiar with the techniques used to separate punters from their cash. In the video, which was made by The Sunday Times, used the hustle techniques on the Tory rather than on the victim. The Tory was given a huge carrot by being offered a potential £250K “donation” and the pound signs in his eyes got his mouth going and rest they say is history.

At best it’s tacky and at worst criminal.

There are two salient points for me. Firstly The Sunday Times is a News International newspaper belonging to a certain Mr Murdoch. Is it just co-incidence that Sunday Times investigated this? I’d like to think that this was the start of a number of exposes which will show politicians, policemen, TV people and of course the slebs as being less than innocent.

The second point is that some politicians will use this episode as a way of pushing for taxpayer funding of political parties. This would be a dreadful way to go. Taxpayers already fund MPs who then go on and do what they are told by the party whips or follow their own agenda, which does not match with their constituency voters.

Again the main question is – why do we put up with this?

I quite liked the description of the lunches being held by the SNP, which featured various ministers. It sounded pretty low rent in comparison to our friends in Westminster who do grand on a… well a grand scale I suppose.

It sounds like the SNP people take guests to the Holyrood café in the parliament or maybe they push the boat out and go to a local restaurant although nothing too fancy mind. Let’s hope they don’t go too far down the food chain however and end up taking people to one of the Fish and Chip Shops up the Royal Mile. They are fairly handy and the SNP and their guests could walk. The big questions would be is it a fish or a pie or a fried Mars bar supper and do you want brown sauce with it?

I suppose there would be further decisions to make also. Like who wants Irn Bru or the diet version and will anyone go the whole hog and have Red Cola. Obviously the SNP and their guests would have to stand outside and to eat, making sure that they put the wrappers in the appropriate bin.

Now that would be a bit of fun. Grand on a less grand scale.

 

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How would we cope.

How would we cope without politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” telling us what we should be doing?

It’s a major question. There isn’t a night that goes by without someone saying, “the government need to do something” on the news or on a programme of some description. Of course by the evening we have been bombarded constantly by newspapers, the radio, TV and all other communications means that for every apparent need there needs to be action which requires legislation to ensure that “we” tow the line and behave as the politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” deem that we should.

No surprises there then.

Of course there are many, many occasions; well let’s just be frank here, it’s almost all occasions isn’t it that we are being told what to do.  Mostly there is no clear evidence or real need for anyone to intervene. If it’s a non-problem then we don’t need a non-solution.

The politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” don’t see it this way and today on the early morning news we hear that Call me Dave has decided to go with a minimum price of 40p for a unit of alcohol. The reason given is that this will reduce “binge drinking” and address the growing alcohol based problem whilst also saving 3000 lives a year.

So once again, all the people who do not over-indulge in their use of alcohol will be forced to pay more for their chosen tipple.

Firstly, there are already laws, which can be used to ensure alcohol abuse is reduced significantly.  If anyone is behaving in a manner which is violent or inappropriate the Police can and do take them to the cells. They do not do this to the degree that they should and they do not enforce the law as they should. (Yes I know they are statutes and not laws but that’s another post altogether).

Secondly, there is little agreement of what a “safe” amount of alcohol intake actually is. It changes from day to day.

Thirdly, it is not for the government to tell shops how much they should charge for any product or service. The government is there to ensure consumers are not abused they are not there to dictate pricing policies which will directly increase retailers profits.

Fourthly, have they heard of prohibition, which took place in the USA? Lesson learned is a much over used and abused mantra but I’d suggest the politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” learn from that experience and quickly.

Fifthly, how will they police people bringing alcohol into the UK from the EU? EU rules allow free movement of such goods as long as duty has been paid at the point of sale

Sixthly, is this minimum pricing legal within EU law?

You may be surprised to hear that I do not drink. This is through personal choice rather than personal experience. I do not expect other people to not drink alcohol. Each to his own. Live and let live. We can all live without the excesses, which take place every weekend, and we take steps to avoid it. It would be good if it stopped.

I doubt that minimum pricing will work anyway. People will make their own from kits until Call me Dave puts more duty on those and then they’ll improvise. Organised crime will also start to import and /or manufacture and sell out the back door of white vans. People will manage. The politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” will of course deem it as a huge success regardless of any information they receive from anyone to the contrary. The evidence will be clear but perhaps not as clear as it should be. Graphs will be produced which will show falls in problems, which may not be as accurate as they should be.

Three thousand more people will be walking around alive 9on the planet each year because of this legislation. According to the hype and the following “evidence” once it’s been established or investigated.

My mantra is increasingly – why are we putting up with this?

Why indeed?

 

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George Osborne steals from Grannies.

My post yesterday, which dealt with the possible inclusions in the budget, turned out to be spectacularly wrong. Just as you would have imagined they would do.

Unfortunately the bit I got mostly wrong was that of how our older people are treated. George decided that he would phase out the age allowances for those older people who pay tax.

What would be the circumstances of an older person having to pay tax anyway? They’ve lived their life paying taxes for fifty years or so and then they retire to enjoy their later years without the constant pressure of paying bills and making ends meet. That’s how it should be is it not? Okay, people are living longer despite tobacco related cancers, alcohol related disease and eating too many fry ups and all the other nonsense the health professionals tell us is bad for us. Living longer is a good thing surely.

Some people may have saved well and/or have added private pensions to their state allowance. They may have an active investment portfolio and some might still work because they choose to. Why should they pay tax on whatever income they now have? They have to pay duty and VAT on the stuff they buy. They have to pay green taxes, which are stuck, illegally, on energy bills and they have to continue to pay council tax.

Taking more money from pensioners will mean more are less able to pay their way as they would like. More will be less likely to enjoy the retirement they had planned and before you say that those being taxed more highly are far from the breadline also bear in mind that any savings which our older people may have are attracting derisory interest returns and the value of their savings are falling whilst goods and services are getting more expensive.

This isn’t good and should have never been allowed to happen, shame on George and all his chums in parliament.

The only small upside to this is that all those public servants who get those wonderful gold plated pensions will have to pay more too. It won’t affect them much but it will affect them.

There is a much bigger question though that needs to be asked. Why are we accepting everything that is said by these politicians? Why are we putting up with the nonsense we do from all and sundry publicly employed people? We pay their wages. We pay their pensions. We provide wonderful working environments? They are there to serve us. They may want to advise us of better ways of doing things us at times but we will be the ones who decide if we will accept what they say.

Perhaps all those older people out there who have time on their hands might like to become more involved in wrenching the balance of power away from politicians and public servants?

It would be good if someone did!

 
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Posted by on March 22, 2012 in General, Politics

 

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The budget, the facts and the wild, wild rumours…

It’s that time of year again. The Budget. This year we have of course, George Osborne leading the team again, ably helped by one Mr Danny Alexander who may well need to find a new political party at the next election and a new country to live in (I’d imagine it will be both).

The rumours are out. Obviously the government will have started some and some will have been started by people who have an axe to grind. Some will be wildly wide of the mark and others will be won’t be. No matter what they have decided to do, one thing is guaranteed. We, the taxpayer, will be worse off. That is the way of things.

It shouldn’t be the way of things and it certainly wouldn’t be the way of things if we lived in a democracy for example. What’s that I hear you say? We do live on democracy? At best we get three or four votes which we can take part in over a five year period which prove we live in a democracy. The local council elections, the general elections and of course, the elections for MEP for the EU (which isn’t democratic at all). In Scotland and Wales and Northern Ireland we also get to vote for our devolved parliament or assembly.  Does that sound like a working democracy to you? Bearing in mind that there is so little difference between the parties, which we get to vote for? Bearing in mind that our MP, MSP and local councillor is held in check by the “ party whip”?

Back to the budget. The Government will no doubt increase duty on tobacco, and justify it because it’s bad for your health, alcohol, because it’s bad for your health and petrol because it’s bad for the planets health. In fact they will increase these duties because they can and because they desperately need the money because they continue to spend more money than they bring in.

This mornings little bit of joy on the BBC news was that Call me Dave is going to have private contractors look after roads with pundits claiming that this will lead to road toll charges, like the toll road around Birmingham. This is a perfect example of successive governments stealing money.

If you drive a car or any other type of motorised transport you pay road tax. The amount varies by the level of extortion the government can exert using all manner of stupid, made up nonsense. You will be familiar with the higher road taxes, which are based on fuel use. Firstly people who drive vehicles, which use more fuel, pay more fuel duty and secondly the amount of road tax gathered in by the government is not used to actually repair roads or improve road networks etc.

Road tolls work in other countries? Yes they do but then they don’t pay either the ludicrous amounts of fuel duty or road tax.

The real challenge for the Chancellor is to reduce taxation across the board for as long as it takes to reduce the size of government, reduce regulation until it’s realistic and stop giving our money to people that the government thinks are more deserving than us.

Is it going to happen? Of course not.

Government is there to govern because we can’t think for ourselves.

That may not continue to be the case however.

 

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