Monday, 30 March 2015

Hat Election Special

I hear there's a new MGM series called Vikings. Not sure if it's scheduled to be shown in the UK, but a Norwegian friend sent me a link to a promotional site where you can buy Viking hats that come complete with beards. Neat!

I was watching Sunday Politics on TV yesterday and got rather annoyed with Labour's Lucy Powell, who insisted on trying to get her rather unbelievable points across rather than answering Andrew Neil's questions. It seems Labour is decrying the tripling in zero hours contracts to deflect the electorate away from the fact 1.9m more people are in work than 5 years ago. Surely a zero hours contract is better than being unemployed? It's not as if you're forced to work a zero hours contract.

Labour's strategy seems to be to a) resurrect the 50p tax threshold, which raises hardly anything and is purely populist, and b) not making deep spending cuts. This, they seem to be telling us, will reduce the deficit quicker than the Tory plan of making deep cuts. Lucy Powell must be on another planet.

When the programme moved to its West Country variant, there was a refreshing admission from a Green candidate who said the Greens would not focus on reducing the deficit at all, as many countries run on an almost permanent deficit with no ill effects. She's right - there are many economists who say a deficit is a false bogeyman..

As for the Tories not saying where the cuts will be applied, I can't blame them, as they don't want to alienate potential voters. However, being reticent is hardly going to do them any favours in the final analysis. Catch 22 comes to mind - they're damned if they do and damned if they don't.

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