Wednesday, 25 August 2010

The Centre Cannot Hold

So, the 'progressive coalition' will hit the poorest members of society hardest according to Te Graun which will be humiliating for the Lib Dems. The Treasury's response is brilliant:

'The Treasury said it did not accept the think-tank's analysis, saying it ignored the effects of people who would come off benefits and go into work.

"It is selective, ignoring the pro-growth and employment effects of Budget measures such as helping households move from benefits into work, and reductions in corporation tax," a spokesman said.'

So slashing jobs will drive people off unemployment benefits? Brilliant thinking lads, can't believe no one ever thought of that before.

At the same time, Labour contender Diane Abbot calls for renationalising railways:

'If Network Rail had to let go of 95 managers then it really is in a mess. Further to this there are allegations of sexual harassment against network Rail’s head of human resources Peter Bennett. All of this would be just about bearable if the railways were genuinely private but they continue to cost the taxpayer billions.

We subsidise train operators to the tune of £1billion a year and subsidise network Rail by £4billion. yet managers continue to pay themselves fat, private-sector salaries and bonuses and the companies continue to squeeze the travellers. That is why I believe it is time to take the railways back into public ownership. It was a mistake to privatise them in the first place as it’s allowed private companies to profiteer without regard to public interest.'

I've got my doubts about Abbot's electability though she is the most progressive amongst the contenders, followed by Ed Miliband (if Ed Balls or David Miliband take up the reigns we can say hello to one party Britain). However she has been the subject of some justified criticism and how tolerant a country Britain is is very much open to doubt.

Aside from that, I do think that the Tories are riding roughshod over their Lib Dem cup holders and progressives will no longer be given the third party option.

It will be curious to see what results.

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