|How dangerous is this man?|
Fine in theory, but this is the real world. The policies put in place by governments calling themselves socialist are inevitably counter-productive.
So why is this so dangerous?
Socialism inevitably means the government spending money:
- By raising taxes, especially from richer people
- Borrowing money, including from our pension funds
- Printing money, and we all know where that got the Weimar Republic in Germany
'SOFT' SOCIALISM - THE GORDON BROWN EXPERIMENT
Gordon Brown was Chancellor for the Labour Government 1997-2007, before he became Prime Minister. The Labour party is a socialist group, often described as "democratic socialists" (though the description appears to have been removed from the party website).
He promised "the end of boom and bust", and for a long time he was successful. His strategy was to spend to stimulate the economy, whilst transferring money from rich to poor. He introduced Tax Credits in April 2003, giving money to poorer and middle-income people, whilst raising the taxes from richer people and corporates
By running a deficit, in good times and bad, his Government's total borrowings would rise each year. But so did Gross Domestic Product (GDP) the prime measure of the size of the economy. So the ratio of Borrowings to GDP stayed roughly stable. All was fine. For a while.
What he ignored was that he only had 'control' over the UK economy. He risked the country to the mercy of global winds. The UK's economy is the equivalent of about 2,600 billion US dollars. The global total is about 75,000 billion US dollars. The UK represents less than 4%.
Along came the Global Financial Crash of 2008/09. UK tax receipts were hit, and social security payments rose. There was suddenly a massive increase in the annual deficit, whilst the economy was not growing. That key ratio of Borrowings to GDP rose dramatically, from under 40% to some 90% now.
The situation was unsustainable. In 2010 a Conservative government was voted in, albeit only with the support of the Liberal Democrats. The aim was to eliminate the deficit, but the problem was so big that has still only been partially achieved. In the meantime the UK's Borrowings have rocketed.
"Austerity" was what was needed. Arguably much tougher austerity to eliminate the deficit. But tougher would likely have been counter-productive. It is a matter of balancing spend with helping the economy generate tax revenues. The LibDems may well have been a good influence in that respect.
Nonetheless the UK now has an annual interest bill of £46 billion for 2017/18, more than is being spent on either Housing, Public Order or Transport.
Every pound the Government has to borrow is unlikely to be repaid. So you and I will be paying interest on this for ever. If interest rates rise, so will the Government's interest bill. Every penny of interest is a penny less that can be spent on the NHS, the police and other public priorities.
Gordon Brown's socialist policies back-fired. Big time.
One of the problems with the situation Gordon bestowed on us was that there was a risk of deflation. Not good news, as people wait before making purchases. And that produces deflation. A spiral downwards.
So "Quantitative Easing" was introduced to introduce a bit of inflation, and help pay for the country's expenditure. That is effectively the Government printing money.
Now that inflation is above the Government's target, this can't be risked again. The 'Printing Money' option has effectively been removed from the Government's armoury.
So please ignore people suggesting the UK can do it!
'HARD' SOCIALISM - GERMANY 1945-1980
I was lucky to visit Berlin in the late 1970s. The coach missed the turning and we ended up in the shanty towns of Potsdam, just outside East Berlin. Wooden huts. When we finally reached West Berlin it was like an oasis in a desert. That was only 30 years or so after East and West had been separated by the Second World War.
It was therefore no surprise to see the Berlin Wall falling. 9 November 1989 less than 45 years after the War. Communism had wrecked East Germany, and they knew it.
Socialist policies had back-fired.. Big time.
"Venezuela's Socialist Hell" screams the headline. Venezuela is an oil-rich country where there is now mass starvation.
Corruption is partly to blame, but this is in a 'socialist' context.
Socialist policies have back-fired/. Big time. (Are you sensing a theme here?)
BACK TO THE UK
Nonetheless Jeremy Corbyn, who as you know is the Leader of the UK Labour party still regards Venezuela as a government to emulate. As CityAM says "Corbyn is crystal clear that Hugo Chavez and his charismatic, populist, socialist Bolivarian movement – long in charge of resource rich Venezuela – is a model he is just itching to emulate"
Corbyn also backs Brexit, which threatens the UK economy. Some of his MPs are rightly concerned about the negative impact on jobs and prosperity.
Put the two together and in Jeremy Corbyn you have the most dangerous man in the UK. More dangerous than any of the dangerous Brexiters.
He is a "fanatic is who doesn’t let the facts get in the way of his theories".
UPDATE: Indeed Corbyn proved it in a TV interview later that day with Andrew Marr:
- Corbyn said he didn't promise to cancel Student Debt, and had no idea of the cost. Maybe he didn't, The message was so strong though that youngsters I spoke to just before the General Election were only interested in voting Labour. Is Corbyn liar, incompetent or both?
- Corbyn said the UK could not stay in the Single Market and leave the EU. Norway is in the Single Market but not the EU. Indeed ding something similar has long been known as the "Norway option". Is Corbyn liar, incompetent or both?
Socialist polices backfire. Big time. Socialism is dangerous. Corbyn is dangerous.
Would you vote Labour? Really?
A BALANCING WORD ON THE TORIES
Tory policy is Brexit. That's increasingly looking like a disaster, leaving the UK impoverished compared to where we could be if Brexit were to be stopped.
The harder right has taken control of the Tory party, and Theresa May is a mere puppet. They are often referred to as representing "the 1%" who are 'richer' than the other 99% combined. The selfish "I'm alright Jack" brigade. They have little interest in you and me, and our needs.
Would you vote Conservative? Really?
THE WAY FORWARD?
The only way forward is government by a proper centrist party, balancing the need for a Thriving Economy with A Caring Society. But then I would say that, wouldn't I?