budget that never was

The Budget that never was

A sign of Spring, The daffodils bringing a ray of sunshine into our lives.

With Labour in disarray, Article 50 still to be actioned, the Liberal Democrats harmless, UKIP looking like a one trick pony, the Chancellor’s 1st and last Spring Budget was never going to be spectacular. No one was expecting ~The Budget that never was~.

Back in the 1950s, one of the best selling war books, made into a film, was written by Lt Commander Ewan Montagu, and called ~The Man who never was~, the book was still a steady seller into the early 1970s, long after the Dambusters and Reach for the Sky had stalled.

German (not so secret) secret agent

Basically the book is a spy story, without a spy, and the hero was a vagrant, who was already dead, when he was hired for the job? Ewan Montagu worked for the Intelligence service, MI17 (in the days when MI numbered around twenty?) and came up with the idea of a fictitious courier whose plane had crashed in the Atlantic, near Spain, carrying secret plans for the coming invasion of Greece by the Allied forces, with the expectation that the body would be washed up on the shoreline close to where a known German (not so secret) secret agent was active. The body was released from a submarine, and with the tide, washed up where they had predicted. And just as predicted, the Spanish Police informed the German agent, before the British Embassy was informed.

Glyndwr Michael
Glyndwr Michael, did more in death than most of us will do in life. Technically M17 (MI17) broke the Law, however the surviving relatives think it was justified.
The old adage, rules are made for the obedience of fools, and the guidance of wise people, springs to mind.

Chancellor Hammond came up with a similar plan, last November at the Autumn statement, he announced that this March would be his 1st Budget and last Spring Budget. Actually during his speech last Autumn, I was so taken by what he announced was going to be in this ~Budget~, and that no further major announcements would be made, until more details over Brexit were known, that I got it into my head, the Spring Budget would be just a statement.

So much so, I was barracking the BBC on Twitter over using the term ~Budget~? Oops.

But on reflection I was correct. It turned out to be ~The Budget that never was~. Apart from the announcement over Class 2 NIC rates for the Self Employed, and where the Treasury would allocate the monies, namely Social care, it was really a statement on how the UK Economy has to be set fair so that it can meet the battering of the coming Brexit storm. Hammond had dressed up the old Autumn Statement into the Budget in the way a vagrant, Glyndwr Michael, who had died from Pneumonia, so that it looked as though he was, a drowned Major, named William Martin.

just a pleasant jaunt

A statement, that is being made in the Spring no longer in Autumn. So no big shocks, no hike in alcohol or Tobacco that wasn’t previously known about, or change in petrol prices, just a pleasant jaunt, telling us that Hammond is keeping a tight rein on spending.

And all the opposition parties were set to get their responses wrong, Corbyn was bound to fail, he is so out of touch with working people, it beggars belief, Tim Farron is ineffectual, pleasant man though he seems to be, but also doesn’t give off the air of someone who is quietly dangerous. He also lacks a point of attack. The Scottish National Party will bang on about independence, and so be totally irrelevant.

In fact Chancellor Hammond is not a difficult target, just go for his jugular, savings, or in his case his lack of incentives for the Citizens of UK to start saving at least twice to three times our current levels, and with it, reduce consumer spending.

Danny Blanchflower oil painting
Northern Ireland Footballer not to be confused with David Blanchflower lol

There is an argument against this idea, Danny (David) Blanchflower points to the danger, that the reduction in consumer spending might not be balanced in any manner by investment in Industry and Commerce, on that point we disagree, but at least the former member Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee knows what he is talking about. Not so, most of the Politicians, the Labour Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell is Economically an ignoramus, but that stems from having a belief that Marx actually knew what he was writing about, he didn’t, it was fantasy with no basis in reality. As the rich get richer the poor become poorer, stop it, we are not poorer than our forbears, by any stretch of the imagination. And for those saying their parents and grandparents are much better off. Stop it, they are rich today, not back in the 80s, 70s and before. Not one of them could buy a Computer pre 1979, they didn’t have the money, and food took up a much larger % of their income.

ended up saving countless allied lives

Just a note on the book ~The Man who never was~ by Ewan Montagu is a cracking read, and part of its charm is the fact that, a man who was a vagrant, had few chances in life, and found it difficult to cope with life, ended up saving countless allied lives. And in death was treated with care and when put into the sea, had a prayer said for him. Plus when he was eventually buried, albeit with a fictitious name, his grave was for many years tended and fresh flowers placed on it, it is now attended by the War graves commission.

So the House of Lords thinks it can block or derail Brexit, Prime Minister Theresa May, needs to just inform them they will be abolished if they try?

Author: John Ashtone

John Ashtone, aspiring author, on Politics, Economics and History, with a few dashes of humour thrown in for good measure. I currently live in Wakefield, just south of my Home City of Leeds, both are in West Yorkshire, England.

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