Political boffin, keen fisherman looking forward to retirement.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Is there such a thing as Blairism?

I'm a subscriber to Simon Jenkins' argument that there is no coherent New Labour ideology, merely an embracial of Thatcherite doctrine. Read more here. The much heralded Third Way has been a sham from start to finish.


Will things be different under Brown? Not likely have a look at some of his legacy, mother thatcher would be proud. Which makes it even more ridiculous and politically incoherrent that Labour have fought this campaign on the Tory bogeyman.

Stuck to the spending targets of the previous Tory Government between 1998-2001

Cut single parent benefit

Paltry basic state pension increase of only 75p in 2000

Centralist approach to public service reform

Taxation on expenditure not income

Continued Nigel Lawson’s legacy of disposing public assets, privatising services and redirecting social security towards means testing

In opposition ruled out privatisation and pfi – but fully embraced it whilst in Government

Brown privatised: Royal Mint, the Tote, air Traffic control.

Private property developers invited to bid for Government buildings

Council flats made available to private developers – Thatcher right to buy only extended to tenants

Continued John Major’s plans to privatise the tube – a project which proved catastrophic costing £500m

Across the UK over a million manufacturing jobs have been lost since this Government came to Office, and Wales has been losing jobs at a faster rate than any other area of the UK. 71,000

Welsh manufacturing jobs, nearly a third of all sector jobs have been lost since New Labour came to power

Across the UK, 2 million pensioners live below the poverty line

3.4 million children continue to live in poverty

This Government has already committed itself to an astonishing £160bn of pfi repayments over the next 26 years based on existing projects

In 1997 Government spending on consultants was £300m. By 2005 this has risen to £2.4bn – mostly companies negotiating pfi deals

By 2007 – 20% of all public expenditure is expected to be delivered by private contractors

Introduced a social security system based on means testing by announcing a range of tax credits

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