|Budget: Move alone, nothing to see here.
So it transpires that every one of my predictions came true. My Nobel Prize for Economics is in the post I expect. But you don't have to be an economics guru of my calibre to make such lucid prognostications. The most we could ever expect from our ideas-free political class is timid accountancy. This is the age where political parties stand for whatever their surveys, focus-groups and polls says they should. Rather than standing on a foundation of agreed ideas and principles, then selling them, they drift from issue to issue without anything of substance underpinning their policies.
Doubtless there shall be endless pontificating over the various talking points, but this all resembles a flock of vultures pecking at a bare skeleton than serious analysis. News is merely entertainment. Meagre tinkering will be presented as daring, minor adjustments will be painted as radical, and all debate will take place inside predefined, sanitised parameters. We have been conditioned to believe that things cannot change, and to be content with the mediocre.
There is no point whatsoever in trawling the detail of this budget looking for ideas or silver bullets. There are none. In almost every aspect of our lives the drag factor is the state itself. One need not need detail the parlous state of our public finances. One need not read the newspaper to realise there is an emerging cost of living crisis. One need not detail the stifling tax codes and regulation issues standing in the way of innovation and job creation. But nothing in this budget suggests our rulers have grasped this very simple dynamic.
So why does it remain the elephant in the room? Put simply, our political class cannot envisage any society where they do not hold all the cards, or any scenario where the great unwashed can be trusted to manage their own affairs. And why should they with a bovine, conformist, obedient electorate who bat not an eyelid at the notion that 46% of their income ends up in the state coffers? Our government will not change until the people change.
While we have elections and votes we have no actual power in the democratic sense, and without power there is only protest; and protest they can ignore. So it seems if we want them to stop spending our money, then we shall need to stop giving it to them. I expect George Osborne knows this which is why he has just granted the state the power to take money directly from our bank accounts.
If we wish to remain a first-world, free country, we will have to start saying no. I certainly do. But since that's just me, the third-world kleptocratic police-state we are descending into will be nothing less than you deserve, because you keep paying what you are told to pay, when you are told to pay it.