Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Give us our money back

First, education.

Last week, we learnt that standards of education have fallen, despite the Government spending billions extra.

Now, health.

Patricia Hewitt has admitted that the NHS had not improved despite the extra billions the Government have poured into it.

Which department will be the next to confess that they have taken our money and poured it down the drain? More importantly, what is the Opposition doing about this? Isn't it time they began to talk about tax cuts? Apart from a few vague noises here and there, we have heard mostly nothing. Why the half-hearted commitments from the Conservative Party? Of what use of a centre-right party if it will not advocate personal freedom and limited government? At a time when the LibDems no longer fear to talk about a cut in income tax, the Conservative Party should be proclaiming this message, and highlighting Government waste. By now, they should be making the point to the electorate that it is our money being wasted, and that they would like to return a lot more of it to us.

The Opposition must be in a desperate state if the Government can brazenly admit to throwing our money away in this manner, safe in the knowledge that no-one will make a big deal out of it. They have managed this by promoting two ideologies. The first is that public spending necessarily equals better services. The electorate swallowed that in 1997, and are now reaping the (heavily taxed) rewards of their folly. The other was that a cut in tax would reduce public spending. The voting public drew the natural conclusion that tax cuts were incompatible with better public service. Only now is it becoming clear that they were misled. The Conservative Party should be relentless in disproving these two heresies at every opportunity. Why, for example, have I not seen any Party spokesman highlighting the education and health stories mentioned above?

There is also a third, sinister, and altogether more dangerous ideology at work. Implicit in the grossly immoral waste of taxpayers' funds is the belief that the Government knows better than us what to do with our money. It is evident they would rather waste the money than return it to its owners. In other words, even when the Government wastes taxpayers' funds, it has been put to a higher, nobler purpose than anything an individual could have done with it. This is morally wrong, and the Conservative Party must begin urgently to dismantle that ideology.

At the moment, it seems that nobody is accountable to the taxpayer. Abandoned IT projects, overpaid tax credits, surrendered EU rebates, we read these stories every day. This cannot be allowed to go on much longer. We need an alternative policy platform to high-tax and high-spend. Until the Conservative Party begins to offer one, I am not interested in anything they have to say.
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Blogger John East said...

You are correct that this state of affairs should not be allowed to continue. My worry, confirmed to some extent by the latest brazen admissions of failure by the tax and spenders, is that a growing number of voters clearly see what is happening, but will still vote Labour nonetheless, and the politicians know this.

Even assuming one isn't one of the multitude of government employees or welfare recipients, a desire to stand on ones own two feet and provide for ones own family is progressively disappearing throughout society.

From their perspective, who else are these people vote for? Someone who tells them to stop sponging off their fellow citizens, and provide for themselves. I think not.

One way forwards, convincing people that they will be better off in the long run by spending their own money as they see fit, requires a degree of foresight which I suspect is lacking today.

7:56 PM  
Anonymous Ellee said...

Bel, would you like to go to a Conservative Women's Forum with Andrew Lansley so you can express all your concerns? If so, I will email you the info and you will meet lots of like minded women. It's on 12th October, 6pm.

All these failings you mention are spot on, appalling beyond belief. I wish people could see how catastrophic this all is.

I'm thinking of posting on the health service tomorrow too, as you say, it's in the papers every day, you can't ignore it.

9:08 PM  

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