Tuesday, November 25, 2008

PBR Debate Wipes Grin Off Brown's Face

The government's farcical pre-leaked, pre-election, pre-budget Budget is to come under full commons scrutiny after the speaker bowed to Tory demands for a full debate in parliament.

Now, no amount of Brown smoke and spin can get them off the hook. The full extent of the economic mess is set to be exposed and MPs will decide if we are to be saddled with a legacy of debt.

With his stock rising, shadow chancellor, George Osborne, repeated his call for a full debate over the "reckless gamble" throughout the day. Now to his credit, speaker, Michael Martin, has agreed to a three hour emergency debate tomorrow.

Yesterday's widely leaked PBR was a farce. Brown and the gang of ministers were grinning like Cheshire Cats, thinking they'd pulled a fast one on both the Tories and the voters.

Tax cuts here, tax rises there was how it eventually played out, to a cunningly spun plan. That was designed to mask the truth in this Budget, which exposed astonishing government incompetence and mismanagement and paved the way for further massive borrowing to pile on the debt.

It was the extent of the borrowing which angered many including the Orange Party who yesterday called for such a commons debate - not out of party politics but out of decency and common sense.

This was a Budget in everything but name. Tax hikes on beer, fags and petrol alone demanded such a parliamentary debate. How on earth can a government commit the people of this country to further unprecedented reckless borrowing and irresponsible spending?

Government borrowing and public debt are going through the roof. Budget deficits around 8 percent of GDP, as the government is set to borrow an unbelievable £100 billion a year. That's on top of the £30 billion a year of taxpayers cash to prop up current debt.

The astonishing scale of damage inflicted on the country was hard to swallow as Darling tried to wriggle his way out of trouble. But the solution was even harder to swallow - borrow more and get the country deeper into debt.

Brown has one thing on his mind - party politics and clinging onto power. This election Budget did nothing to ease pain and suffering with a rat-bag of pointless Christmas giveaways, clawed back by unprecedented borrowing, rises in beer, fags and petrol and tax rises later.

The government's smug arrogance had to be challenged politically. Such budget measures require a full commons debate but also a fresh mandate from the country and that requires a general election.

Both ours and our children's future are at stake. Brown, Darling and the New Labour government have set out their stall but it should be up to voters to decide if we want to be saddled with this debt for years to come. An emergency commons debate is a welcome start.

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