Sunday, 15 September 2013

Tax and the Minimum Wage

The Lib Dems list a number of achievements in the coalition government. Whatever we might think, one does stand out as a real achievement and that is the increase in the basic tax allowance, which will be £10,000 from April 2014. A manifesto pledge fulfilled then. However, like so many reforms this could easily be left for inflation to erode if we are no longer in government. So, I'd like to see a new policy; a new target. To link the basic tax allowance to the minimum wage and take it out of the political arena altogether. 
Let's challenge the Tories and Labour. A tax allowance that is set at the minimum wage for a 35 hour week and the link permanently maintained. That would be £11485 pounds. A good policy and fair. Simply logical too. Surely a minimum wage is the minimum we should expect anyone to live on? So it shouldn't be taxed.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Party Conference and the inevitable by election

Contrary to general opinion I really have nothing against party conference. Indeed, I have been twice and enjoyed Scarborough in 1975 and Llandudno in 1976.
But ever since then I've simply never made it. By elections, dear boy, by elections. Indeed September and October by elections are such a regular feature of our local calendar I almost wonder if it's not deliberate. Some wicked Tory plot to keep me away....

Monday, 9 September 2013

Are the local Tories in Freefall?

Rumours abound that the Huntingdon and North West Cambridgeshire Conservative Associations are in the midst of a serious crisis. In the case of the Huntingdon Association this includes very serious financial difficulties. Losing seats to us Lib Dems and to UKIP in May can't be helping.
But there are more fundamental, long term causes of their decline and internal disarray. The decision some years ago to select candidates who we not local and belonged to minorities in this very 'conservative' area is the root cause. Of course they will bounce back at some point, but is this signifying a more long term decline and will they eventually reach a position from which they cannot recover? Time will tell.