Thursday, 26 February 2009

"We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to resign due to gross financial incompetence in running the British economy."

Number 10 have replied to the epetition that said
"We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to resign due to gross financial incompetence in running the British economy."

The reply is interesting, so I repeat it in full with my emphasis:
"The success of the Government’s macroeconomic framework, introduced in 1997, means that the UK is facing the international financial crisis and the recession it has caused around the world from a solid foundation. Credible medium term objectives and mechanisms for short-term flexibility mean that the Bank of England and the Government can deliver the necessary support to the economy without compromising their commitments to low inflation and sound public finances.

The Government’s priorities to get Britain through the recession fairly are to prevent the collapse of the banking system, so that people’s savings are secure and the banks can do their job; to get the financial system lending responsibly again so as to support businesses, jobs and growth; to support the economy and jobs through direct government action, including tax cuts and important investment projects; and to help people through these tough times, from homeowners with difficulties paying their mortgages, or people seeking employment or training, to small businesses with cashflow problems and larger businesses needing working capital.

Action has also been taken to boost our economy by putting money in people’s pockets and bringing investment plans forward. This includes:

· income tax cuts of £145 for every basic rate taxpayer;
· £60 extra for every pensioner in January 2009;
· a VAT cut worth on average over £200 to every family this year; and
· an extra £3 billion investment in projects that will protect and create jobs.

Further details of the measures the Government has put in place to provide real help now so that homeowners, families and businesses can get through the downturn fairly are available online at

In addition to discretionary fiscal policy to support the economy through these difficult times the 2008 Pre-Budget Report announced a sustained fiscal consolidation from 2010-11 when the economy is expected to be recovering and able to support a reduction in borrowing:

· restricting the income tax personal allowance for those with incomes over £100,000 from April 2010, and introducing a new additional higher rate of income tax of 45 per cent for those with incomes above £150,000 from April 2011;

· increasing the employee, employer and self-employed rates of national insurance contributions by 0.5 per cent from April 2011;

· to offset the effects of the temporary reduction in VAT, increasing alcohol and tobacco duties, maintaining these increases after December 2009 to support fiscal consolidation; and following a fall in pump prices of over 20 pence per litre from their summer peaks, a two pence per litre increase in fuel duty from 1 December 2008; and

· an additional £5 billion value for money target for 2010-11 and setting assumptions for spending growth from 2011-12 onwards.

We will continue to do everything we can in the current difficult times to give real help now to families and businesses, and help our economy to come through this recession as quickly as possible, and we will take the tough decisions in the medium-term to maintain low inflation and sound public finances. This will ensure the UK is well-placed to prosper in the new global economy which will follow the current global recession."

Would anyone agree that such bold claims are somewhat of a hostage to fortune? I was going to "fisk" the reply but it such obvious tripe that I really cannot be bothered.

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