What a sad day for Tory Chancellor of the Exchequer Spreadsheet Phil who stood up in the commons today and confessed he was addicted to debt and like #NoMandateMay well past his sell by date!
Don’t take my word for it, ask Tory MP’s who loathe him to a man (and woman) or indeed Theresa May who seemingly can’t stand him reminding her there is no such thing as a good Brexit. Mind you, May made the same point while campaigning for the Remain Campaign before the Referendum but quickly suffered from political amnesia afterwards. Still, back to Spreadsheet Phil who is widely despised by the Tory Party not least because his last botched Budget unravelled within minutes.
The sad reality of Spreadsheet Phil was exposed the previous Sunday on the Andrew Marr programme when he ritually disembowelled himself.
Marr : “What was the National Debt as a % of GDP when the Conservatives came into power?”
Philip Hammond: “about 60%”
Marr : “And where is it now?”
Philip Hammond: “A number starting with 8*”
Marr : “High 80’s, that is a terrible record?”
Today Philip Hammond has bowed to intense political pressure and announced a “screeching” U-turn on the rollout of the universal credit – the Government’s flagship and serially incompetent welfare policy, which stands to reason as it was devised by the serially incompetent Iain Duncan Smith. Addressing concerns raised over universal credit in recent months in his Budget statement, the Chancellor said the wait for the initial payment will be cut by one week – to five – after criticism it is causing hardship for claimants.
OBR’s Robert Chote tells me at current rate UK on track to return to Budget surplus, not until 2030 – 22 years after the crisis
— Faisal Islam (@faisalislam) November 22, 2017
Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, Debbie Abrahams, said: “The Government has no idea of the reality faced by the tens of thousands of families with children who are facing a Christmas with no support thanks to the Government’s failure to pause and fix universal credit. Instead of tinkering at the edges, with only one pound put back into the programme for every ten that was cut, the Chancellor must also take action to prevent thousands more from being forced to visit food banks this Christmas”.
She won't get the credit from the Treasury, but this is a big move to close the tax loophole which benefits foreign ownership of commercial property. And it's @stellacreasy's idea. https://t.co/q738VWwwf5 pic.twitter.com/mtwFrCClmF
— Jessica Elgot (@jessicaelgot) November 22, 2017
But these alone are not the most remarkable features of a Budget from a Tory Government which has missed EVERY economic target it has announced over the past seven years:
The most remarkable
– Deficit not due to be eliminated until 2031 (16 years late).
– Growth below 2% in every forecast year for first time in modern history.
– Annual pay not due to return to 2008 peak until 2025.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan, the politician with the largest personal mandate in Europe, blasted Philip Hammond’s budget as “the most anti-London in a generation”. The Mayor of London accused the Government of “showing contempt for Londoners” through their plans for spending. The Mayor noted that the Chancellor has failed to mention counter-terrorism and had not offered any funding to the Met Police. He said: “It is sadly now inevitable that police officer numbers will continue to fall – potentially to as few as 27,500 by 2021 – and we are left with no choice but to scrap London’s strategic target for 32,000 police officers that has been in place since 2012.”
— The Labour Party (@UKLabour) November 22, 2017
A flagship government programme to deliver 200,000 discounted new homes to first-time buyers is yet to see a single one built. The 2014 Starter Home initiative was touted as part of “a major push” to help people on the housing ladder, but officials admit delivering any properties under the scheme remains an “ambition”.
It promised to achieve its target by pushing councils and developers to bring forward unused land and build on old industrial sites, measures that Chancellor Philip Hammond will again pledge to carry out as he makes housing a key plank of his Budget on Wednesday. His great housing initiative in today’s 2017 Budget was a short tem exemption in Stamp Duty for first time buyers on houses up to £300k. The independent Office of Budgetary Responsibility has told him this will not work, will drive house price inflation and will mainly benefit older property owners. We’re spending £3.2bn on a stamp duty break to get 3,500 more first time buyers on the property ladder. That’s £924,285.71 each, it would actually be considerably cheaper to give them a free £300k house!
— EL4C (@EL4JC) November 22, 2017
Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn has condemned Philip Hammond’s second Budget as Chancellor, claiming it demonstrates a “record of failure with a forecast of more to come”. Mr Corbyn told MPs that the test of a Budget “is how it affects the reality of people’s lives all around this country”, adding that he believes it will unravel in the days ahead as “the reality will be a lot of people will be no better off and the misery many are in will be continuing”. The Labour leader, who did not get advance sight of Mr Hammond’s Budget, criticised the Government for repeatedly pushing back its target to eliminate Britain’s deficit, as well as the rise in rough sleeping.
BUDGET REACTION: "We are now living a reality in which the chancellor has to commit £3bn worth of extra funds to Brexit planning and only £2.8bn extra to an NHS in crisis. Stick that on the side of a bus."https://t.co/J5yTdUiWMe
— Alex Andreou (@sturdyAlex) November 22, 2017
Mr Corbyn cited cuts to police officer numbers and rising levels of in-work poverty. He also criticised the Government for failing to take action to tackle credit card debt. “Debt is being racked up because the Government is weak on those who exploit people, such as rail companies hiking up fares above inflation year on year, and water companies and energy suppliers,” said the Labour leader. Mr Corbyn also criticised the Government’s measures on housing, saying very little was mentioned about the private rented sector – even though landlords were paid £10bn in housing benefit.“With this Government delivering the worst rate of house building since the 1920s and 250,000 fewer council homes, any commitment would be welcome,” he said.
So this is grim – the Universal Credit U-turn will be too late to stop anyone going hungry this Christmas. Changes are only from Jan, Feb and even April https://t.co/g4fIOd31m9
— Dan Bloom (@danbloom1) November 22, 2017
Teresa May has previously said that there is “No Magic Money Tree.” Well today we saw the magic money tree is now being harvested for #Brexit. Another £3 Billion flushed down the toilet to keep the right wing Tory paymasters happy on top of the £10 Bn. bribe promised to the DUP in Northern Ireland out of public funds to keep this minority Tory administration barely clinging to power. No doubt the poor, weak and disabled will see more cuts to pay for it. Has there ever been a more morally corrupt government?
The context for #Budget2017:
➡️ Departmental cuts of up to 40%
➡️ 60% of brits in poverty in working families
➡️ £14bn cuts to working-age welfare
➡️Tax breaks for corporations and top 15% of earners
Only an austerity ending budget can solve this country's crises.
— Caroline Lucas (@CarolineLucas) November 22, 2017
When Jeremy replied to this weak Budget from a weak government today it was obvious the Tories don’t like it up ‘em. This is why they laughed, jeered, brayed, heckled and responded to questions by opposition parties in parliamentary debates with a tirade of lies and insults. There was a Tory Whip trying to drown out Jeremy talking about child poverty and Tory MPs crouching down on the steps between benches to try to shout down his speech, unseen by the Chair. The bullying public schoolboy mentality which so appals the electorate. But despite the public school hyenas on the other side of the House there was no escaping Corbyn’s damming conclusion:
Economic growth has been revised down!
– Productivity growth has been revised down!
– Business investment has been revised down!
– People-wages and living standards revised down!
“What sort of strong economy is that!”
Qte an achievement for small open economy like UK to be slashing growth forecasts when global economy enjoying most synchronised recovery since 2007 and our biggest trading partner is seeing best growth in a decade.
— Stephanie Flanders (@MyStephanomics) November 22, 2017
In the end Spreadsheet Phil was there to tell the Big Lie, the same one told by George Osborne with his non-existent “Long Term Plan” to eliminate the Deficit by 2015 and reduce Government Debt. Now the OBR’s Robert Chote tells us at the current rate the UK on track to return to Budget surplus, not until 2030 – 22 years after the crisis. Not only have the Tories economically illiterate policies which have caused real hardship, suffering and debt failed to eliminate the deficit they have doubled the National Debt – indeed in 7 years George Osborne and Phil Hammond have borrowed more than every Labour government put together. Far from being fit for the future, the Conservative Party is on its knees with only one story to tell – more austerity for years to come – while Labour stands ready to take over and form a government for the many, not the few.
It says everything you need to know about this government's priorities that more funding has been found for Brexit than for our struggling NHS, schools and police #Budget2017
— Vince Cable (@vincecable) November 22, 2017
Bottom line, today Spreadsheet Phil and weak and unstable Conservatives confirmed once again they are as devalued as the post Brexit Pound.
This government doesn’t just hate you, it hates your country and it’s coming for the last thing you’ve got. George Monbiot doesn't hold back:
Posted by Double Down News on Wednesday, 15 November 2017
Today, powered by its readers and contributors, from its cyber eyries in Ireland and the centres of the Irish Diaspora The Eagle casts its Cold Eye on Life and Death and much in between.