The Scotsman, November 13
Last week was the occasion of the King’s Speech, the day when the Government’s programme for the next year is laid before parliament. It is a solemn occasion of pageantry and political grandstanding, a moment when the government of the day is able to reboot itself, inspire its MPs to make one more heave and declare to the public that it really is better than the other lot waiting in the wings.
In a suitably timely manner Professor Patrick Minford has published a paper for the Centre for Brexit Policy advocating an £85 billion tax cut now to avert the threat of a debt mountain crushing living standards over the next few years. (It sounds a lot but it would merely take us back to levels of tax before Sunak became prime minister.) Minford suggests a mix of corporate and personal tax cuts that could achieve UK growth averaging 2 per cent per annum over the next decade. Minford believes it is better to fund a short-term fall off in revenue with borrowing to deliver growth that will deliver long-term solvency.
I believe he’s right, but it has to be done now – not waiting until the Spring Budget, by then it will be too late. Sunak’s already in the last chance saloon, but is he going to raise our spirits or drown his sorrows?
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