0044 (0)7401 719619 keith@wats-on.net

I am no slouch when it comes to maths but there is one thing that I fail to understand about Budgets – they just don’t add up.  Not so much the sums as the pretense of what they are about.

It was Budget day here in the UK yesterday.  The Chancellor Of The Exchequer Alistair Darling made his first budget speech. 

There is something in common with all Chancellors over the years from all political parties that has fascinated me.  We all know that they have to raise money for the things that we want – our schools, hospitals, defence, pensions, roads whatever.  Whenever there is a situation where the government coffers are short and the budget has to clearly increase taxes the speech is always full of justification for the taxes they choose to raise.

An honest approach would have been for Darling to have just said we need this amount of money and here is where we have decided to get it from.

However apparently

– we are going to have alcohol duty raised to cut out anti-social binge drinking – my last wine has already passed my lips
– we are going to have cigarette tax raised well naturally to stop us smoking  – now I say cheers to that
– we are going to have tax increased on gas guzzling cars – very worthy green approach

What I don’t get is this.  The figures are then presented about how much money this will raise in order that the measures such as give pensioners higher winter fuel charges, and child benefit increases can be done.

Hang on. 

If the tax increase to say cigarettes is really supposed to stop more people smoking – how come there will be increased revenue.  And 4p on a pint of beer is going to stop a ‘Lager Lout’ getting smashed on a Friday night.

Pah and humbug.   We will just fork out more for our pleasures.

Even as the Chancellor was speaking it was ironic that the post arrived with my local tax demands for the coming year.   Oh there’s a surprise they have increased again.

How deep are your pockets?

I can’t help hearing the name Darling without thinking about ‘Black Adder’ .  I love the relationship between Capt.
Darling and Blackadder and their insidious but uncontrollable hatred of one
another – ah just thinking about that has cheered me up.

This proves there is a bright side to anything if you search hard enough – even darling Chancellors.



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