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back to article Brown promises Budget in a fortnight

Gordon Brown is set to announce the Budget will happen at the end of the month, increasing the likelihood that the election will be on 6 May. The Budget will be presented to Parliament on 24 March. Brown is due to speak at Reuters HQ later today. In quotes given to news agencies he will say: "We are at a turning point, a …

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Silver badge

Yep.

"And I believe the only way to overcome them is by displaying the same strength and resolve as we did during the crisis."

THAT worked. Carry on. Not.

Our Western governments need to look beyond the good ol' boy network's old money and pseudo-Christianity-in-the-name-of-money ...

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N2

And

There will be no more boom and bust...

Well Mr Clown, we never had a boom, unless you were one of the champagne socialists awarded a fat contract to piss taxpayers money down the drain.

But by fuck did we ever have a bust, the scale of which clearly demonstrates the scale of your fiscal incompetence.

Perhaps you are "not very good at maths" ?

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Bronze badge

Boom shock. A lack?

There was certainly a boom in house prices between 1997 and 2007.

And between 1997 and 2007 banks paid about £270 billion in bonuses in the UK.

You are right though that this didn't reflect any great boom in the mutual funds a lot of pensions are in and given that they pay bonuses whatever it may not reflect any boom of any sort anywhere. Bloody socialists.

And you're right that public sector pay did well in terms of percentage increase relative to private sector pay. I assume this lead to a great surge of the best talent from the private to the public sector in response to the riches available there 'cos that's how it works, right?

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Anonymous Coward

@N2

Despite the so-called "bust", I'm now better off than I was when Gordy came to power. I earn more, my house is worth more and a lot of the things I buy seem to cost me less.

So something he did has worked!

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@AC

Lucky you. You still have a job and your hours haven't been cut. Pat yourself on the back, but there are whole lot of former Labour voters who aren't as fortunate.

And WTF are you buying that seems to cost less? You don't work for the Office for National Statistics, do you: "let's take bread and petrol out of the RPI and replace them by 50" plasma TVs and laptops that are bound to drop in price every month"?

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Stop

Last chance...

... for them to bribe the electorate before the election.

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Anonymous Coward

i so hope

these load of tossers are gone come May

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Alert

RE: i so hope

... and the alternatives to this lot are going to be better, are they?

Somehow I think it will be more of the same - they'll still be painting the country in shit, they'll just be using a different brush.

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FAIL

title

Hes a Fucking idiot

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He's having a giraffe

"We have got through this storm together but there are still substantial risks ahead. There will be bumps in the road. And I believe the only way to overcome them is by displaying the same strength and resolve as we did during the crisis."

Together:

In association with or in relationship to one another; mutually or reciprocally.

By joint or cooperative effort.

I must have missed my invite to the discussions concerning the bailing out of the banks.

Seems to me that any decisions that were made to get through this storm were reached without any relationship or co-operation with the British tax payer. And were in fact, entirely unilateral.

We have got through this storm by stealing from the poor and giving to the rich whilst allowing still substantial amounts of bonuses to be leeched from the system. There are potholes in the road which will be filled by the tax payer to create a smooth surface for the rich to ride upon. I believe the only way to maintain growth is to make sure the proles are thoroughly taxed and kept in place with piecemeal laws introduced to obscure our true agenda and instill fear. This paves the way for us to display the same strength and resolve that allowed the crises to deepen in the first place, only this time our incompetence will be offset by extra taxation and hidden by statistics.

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Flame

Can't say I noticed boom or bust

I guess if you were one of the people who were living hand-to-mouth during the good times or were foolish enough to believe that your credit agreements were a source or free money then life has been pretty tough lately. I don't have a great deal of sympathy.

It annoys me that those short-sighted people are now complaining that the government should have "stepped in" or "done more". No... it is you who should have excersised a modicum of fiscal competence. Learn to take responsibility for your actions.

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Grenade

@Anonymous Coward - I would love to punch you right now...

... ever been made redundant?

... do you have any kind of clue just what the banks have done to this country?

Foreclosed loans on small business up and down the country, forcing them to cut back or close.

So here's the deal, moron, on Broons watch, the banks failed, we bailed them out with our Taxes - so effectively, will be paying for their mistakes for the next decade or more and then, to add insult to injury...

... they won't loan any more money to small businesses, thereby crippling the economy even further!

Think your angry? - as I said, a well aimed punch at your face would be wonderful now, but as your clearly a Coward, I suspect you'd run a mile...

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in response to Foamy McFoamy-Mouth

"... ever been made redundant?" - Yes, in 2003 when the firm that I worked for was squeezed to breaking point by the strong pound which meant that exports of our products suffered.

"....what the banks have done..." - A classic example of what I was trying to illustrate. Too many people are quick to blame the banks, the government and anyone else they can when in reality they should be examining their own actions and perhaps learning from their mistakes.

If you were in a position where you were reliant on the banks & credit institutions for everything that you had and weren't able to work out which way the wind was blowing back in late 2008 into 2009 then you've got noone to blame but yourself.

Sure, go ahead and blame Gordon Brown if you like but I can assure you, if you haven't learned your lesson yet, no change in government is going to make your life any easier in the future.

I would also like to say that resorting to "violence" in a comments thread is very lame indeed. Have a nice life

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On his watch

Agree he was there when this happened but suspect that rather like going to war with Iraq events would have been little different whoever had been holding the parcel when the music stopped.

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Re: Foamy McFoamy-Mouth

"If you were in a position where you were reliant on the banks & credit institutions for everything that you had and weren't able to work out which way the wind was blowing back in late 2008 into 2009 then you've got noone to blame but yourself."

I wasn't, and still am not, in such a position. However, the big banks were and Gordon's bail-out has rewarded them, not blamed them, for this behaviour and the taxpayers of this country have been left to pay the bill.

If you are suggesting that I somehow failed to take over the country and stop Gordon screwing everything up, then indeed I have no-one to blame but myself. The saving grace is that I wasn't born in Iceland.

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Don't close the door on the way out...

Mr Broon, we won't get fooled again.

You couldn't lead this country out of a paper bag.

We're the ONLY country in Western Europe still having a shit time of it economically and it's impacted every single person in this country, bar the privileged few - some of whom are the bankers that you protected with our money!

Fuck you.

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ehem

cough GREECE cough

although thats the olympics. something else we have to 'look forward to' sigh

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Re: Don't close the door on the way out...

"Mr Broon, we won't get fooled again."

You fail to take into account the number of terminally stupid people in this country, I predict Brown will win the election.

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FAIL

@Matt 89

"We're the ONLY country in Western Europe still having a shit time of it economically..."

Oh no, we're not. Besides which, our economy is growing again, unlike many others...!

"it's impacted every single person in this country, bar the privileged few"

It hasn't impacted me and I'm not rich or priviledged. I seem to have more £££ in my pocket at the end of each month now than before the "bust".

The "bust" wasn't Gordon's fault - he didn't do any sub-prime lending, did he? He didn't persuade banks to do it and he didn't ask people to spend outside their means and live on credit either...

Apart from letting those tossers at the banks give themselves bonuses, GB seemed to do a lot of things right...

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WTF?

Not Gordys fault?

How can it NOT be Gordys fault? He was CHANCELLOR for about ten years, and then PM! He was SUPPOSED to be steering the ship - or at least having the occasional glance at the compass.

Thats kind of like me putting a brick on my accelerator on the M6, settling down for a nap on the back seat and then being startled when I crash. Denying all knowledge and blame when the whole world knows you're culpable kind of stops working when you hit 6...

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Have a clue.

"The "bust" wasn't Gordon's fault - he didn't do any sub-prime lending, did he? He didn't persuade banks to do it and he didn't ask people to spend outside their means and live on credit either..."

Err.. no blame at all? Not even a little bit? Didn't do anything to encourage the banks did he?

Guess who it was that completely deregulated the entire UK banking industry, I'll give you a clue it wasn't Ken Clarke. Try and think more along the lines of a dour bloke that was chancellor during the Blair dictatorship, who sold all our gold to Cash for Gold.com and then borrowed billions during an economic boom so that he could piss it up a wall in whitehall. Frugal he ain't and that's why we are worse off in this recession than we should be.

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Re: ehem

cough WESTERN Europe cough

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Election date

Why the big speculation about the election date.

I've known for three months that the election will be on May 6th.

How do I know?

In december I've had 2010 calanders pushed through my door from the three main political parties and all three of them had May 6th highlighted with a note reminding me to vote for the respective candidate.

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Election Date

IIRC May 6th is the date for a round of local elections, which is probably what your calenders were referring to. This does not mean that they have to have a general election on this date, but the rumours seem to suggest that they will.

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Silver badge

Who gives a shit about what Brown says

You mean, he's still Prime Minister? Damn, aren't we screwed.

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FAIL

As Basil Brush Said....

BOOM BOOM.....

Don't forget to turn the light of on your way out Brownie.............

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Heart

brown promises budget

yea right its about time people stopped voting labour for once there an utter disaster party vote for change if i get the party selection thingys come through my door im voting conservative and i dont care what people think of them david cameron is a young man with young ideas and il be voting for him as long as i get the voting cards of course heh no good if i dont them cant vote can i lol come on david you win the election

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Headmaster

I hope you don't speak like you write

It must be like a constant barrage of unstructured gibberish for those around you.

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i think...

this post actually sums up the general situation and likely outcome of the election pretty nicely, and it is absolutely terrifying.

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For "Bump in the Trade Deficit" ...

... read "The UK doesn't manufacture anything anymore, so has to rely on the banks to create wealth by jiggling columns of numbers around."

Also - a budget before the Election? What a pointless idea - just means the first year of new Government has an excuse to do sod all because "there's no room in the existing Budget put forward by our predecessors."

Just another chance for them to take more money out of our pockets for no easily discernable reason. Petrol/Diesel will go up. Booze and fags will go up. Car tax will go up. Spending won't come down where it needs to, or indeed anywhere. Tax credits will increase by a couple of pence, but income tax or NI will increase.

Woo.

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...seriously...

How hard can it be to have at least one party worth fucking voting for?

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Re: seriously

For all the talk of electoral reform and the relative merits of AV, AV+ and STV, the one system that scares ALL the parties shitless is the thought of an actual box on the ballot for "None of the above".

Now *there's* a party worth voting for.

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So you think you have plenty of Disposable Income?

@Anonymous Coward: Seriously, if you have plenty of money now then great, you've done well.... When the economy starts to pick up you'll have a lot less trust me.... taxes will sky rocket to fill the dept this country has created. I hear people complaining now that they have no money! It'll get a hell of a lot worse during the recovery!

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Pint

comfortable

Yes, it's pretty clear that taxes will have to go up pretty soon after this next election regardless of who ends up in power - all of which makes this next election a rather poisoned chalice.

However, the smart thing to do instead of bitching and moaning about it, is to prepare for it.

Trust me, keep that in mind and you should be able to avoid getting screwed over by the *inevitable* boom and bust.

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Jobs Horns

Trivia tidbit

We have elections on a Thursday because traditionally we would be paid on Friday and therefore would be in the pub getting pissed up all weekend instead of going to the polls and voting. It's our soberest day, apparently. Of course, drinking and shirking responsibility is a modern habit...

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Anonymous Coward

Recovering?????

GDP grew by 0.3%, £200 billion printed is about 12.5% of GDP, so about 3% of GDP a quarter in artificial spending, i.e. the economy really shrank 2.7% and that's just by the direct spending amount. Spending actually inflates the GDP far more than the amount spent.

You can pay a person to dig a hole and pay another to fill it in. They in turn will pay for homes and food and satellite TV and so on, and once you stop paying you have nothing, they stop digging and filling and lose their homes, cancel their satellite TV, stop going to McDonalds and you are in debt for the money you wasted.

The GDP loses all the direct and indirect fake spending.

Worse: when they had no jobs, they looked for other opportunities, they stopped becoming labourers and found other work, but you had them busy and so your economy did not restructure. You have delayed the fix.

So double dip is inevitable, because UK can't spend for 2 decades like the Japanese, they also have achieved nothing, other than huge debts and 2 lost decades.

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FAIL

Is it Gordon's Fault?

A lot of people seem to be questioning whether the crash is actually Gordon's fault. Forget that he promised no boom and bust, and just analyse the basic situation.

When Gordon became chancellor he handed interest rate setting responsibility to the Bank of England. He also tied their hands by saying you have to maintain interest rates such that inflation, measured using RPIX and then CPI, in a narrow band - essentially between 1 and 3%, with 2% as the target. This single act has created the crash that we now see. Why? Quite simply, since the late 90s we have seen a huge housing boom. Everyone knew it was happening, the newspapers constantly commented on it, everyone was talking about an eventual crash. But because house prices are explicitly excluded from the measure of inflation, and because CPI is actually politically manipulated to appear artificially low (for example putting big screen TVs in that are guaranteed to drop in price as new bigger and fancier models are released), the boom going on was not controlled. This in turn kept the "cost of money" very low which meant the banks could borrow huge amounts of money to lend into this boom. If Gordon had had the courage to allow interest rates to be set against RPI (including housing costs) then the housing boom wouldn't have happened, interest rates would have gone up to control it, and we would not now be sat in this mess. The situation in the US of course was worse, when both Clinton and Bush forced the mortgage underwriters (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) to lend to sub-prime, and some things that Gordon did have actually helped the situation in the UK (like removing mortgage interest relief from taxes). But essentially both the UK and US government have made running a high-debt company or household tax efficient. Why should someone in the UK bother with savings if interest rates are below the actual level of inflation. If interest rates are below the actual inflation rate, you should buy physical assets with debt (ie buy a house on a big mortgage). If you want to encourage saving, the interest rate has to be slightly above the actual inflation rate. Similarly, corporation taxation in both the UK and US has made running companies with high levels of debt more tax efficient. Markets work all too well, so when someone fiddles at the highest level of a market to make something bad (like running high levels of debt) more efficient, everyone has to do it to compete in the market.

Think about this at a very simple level. How many people do you know have released equity in their home to pay for a new car, or a holiday, or a new kitchen. This is only possible because house price inflation was not controlled with interest rates. This is fundamentally the Government's fault for not letting the Bank of England control interest rates against a measure of inflation that isn't corrupted by the Government.

That of course ignores the other big fiscal fiascos that Gordon Brown has managed to be involved in. Like adding about £8bn of tax to pension funds every year, which almost exactly accounts for the current pension fund deficit in the UK. Or selling half of the UKs gold at the bottom of the market. Or increasing the public sector massively which makes the country less efficient and stifles GDP growth. All these things are bad, but nowhere near as bad as keeping the cost of money too low when it should have been far higher.

Banks (and bankers bonuses) are a useful scapegoat to distract blame from where it should lie. There was certainly some problems in banks. But someone elsewhere in this thread pointed out how much was paid out in bank bonuses in the last 10 years. It would have been a little less biased if they also pointed out how much the banks (and their employees) have paid in tax over the same period. Also, if they compare the tax take in the last 10 years, with the long term impact of bailing out the banks - remembering that much of the money western governments have thrown at the banks is in the form of loans, which are getting paid back with high rates of interest. Don't forget that of the $700bn committed to TARP in 2008, the current budgetary commitment (ie the amount it has actually cost the US government) is only about $80bn. And even some of that money is still going to get paid back. Many of the bailouts are close to revenue neutral. The same is true in the UK (although I don't have the exact figures to hand).

The really scary thing is is that the markets have already figured out how bad Gordon is for the UK. The only reason the UK has now been credit downgraded is because the markets expect Gordon to not get elected. If he does get elected, his lack of a plan to reduce the deficit in the UK will almost certainly result in a credit downgrade, which makes the crazy debt he has run up for the country even more costly to service. Unless we get a government with more fiscal discipline into the UK this year, the UK faces 10-20 years of stagnation just like Japan faced, if not worse.

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MJI
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We want a decent chancellor

Bring back Ken, actually that would probably the best thing Cameron could do.

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