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Cameron knew this was coming. He needs to be more open minded about tax cuts. He tells the policy forums to be as open minded as possible then announces policies which pre-empt them.

Its said that if he comes out with policy now he'll be accused of making it on the hoof. My response to that is hes had almost 10 months to think about policy and this is pathetic.

Cameron cannot avoid these issues forever. His avoidance at present is exactly why he has this style above substance accusation above his head. If it annoys him so much, theres one quite simple way of getting round it...announce some meaty policies that the more right wing members can shout from the rooftops about. There is a very strong case for tax cuts and if Cameron wont push the case, others will.


Don't see how point 8 follows unless these flatter taxes are also lower taxes.

In the absence of a lower overall tax take, flatter taxes is likely to increase the tax take on those with lower incomes. Not a policy to sweep the country on election night.

Flatter taxes on their own are no substitute for smaller government and lower taxes.

Absolutely agree Adrian.One of the biggest mistakes made in my opinion is the Conservative Partys collective failure to try and make a case for the benefits of lower public expenditure in certain areas. To try and flatten taxes with current levels of spending would be a disaster.

I'm a believer in a flatter and simpler tax system but you cannot have everything you want when you want it! I would hope that, as circumstances permitted, there was a convergence of rates and (to clarify that point 8) a related increase in the amount at which taxation starts.

A completely flat tax is not going to work in the UK, penalising, as it does, the middle earners and benefitting those on either side, but savings on bureaucracy and on reducing tax avoidance will be of real benefit.

Regarding the first post, people may actually read what you say when you don't repeat the same thing ad nauseam. What is your opinion of flat taxes, the subject of this entry?

I dont like flat taxes and I never have. The case just hasnt been convincing. Flat taxes will hurt middle incomes a lot. In fact for them it will be a tax increase. Couple that with the increase in environmental taxes that the Conservatuves are promoting and middle earners will be hurt so bad. They are the ones who should vote Tory. Thats the middle ground. Flat taxes are a step too far and the Tories will find themselves struggling to find votes from Middle England.

"The case just hasnt been convincing. Flat taxes will hurt middle incomes a lot. In fact for them it will be a tax increase."

You know, those were the arguments made before flat taxes had ACTUALLY BEEN TRIED. Look at the countries where a flat tax was brought in and it's apparent that none of that is the case. Flattening taxes eliminates the economic drag imposed by the complexity of the tax system itself, and have led to economic growth.

Look at the countries where a flat tax was brought in and it's apparent that none of that is the case

Which countries are those, just out of interest.

If you try to say to the public that we are going to reduce public expenditure and cut taxes the same thing will happen that happened at the last election and the one before the party will lose.
Voters believe Labour`s accusation that Tory tax cuts mean cuts in health and education and until we convince voters we support public services and want to improve them it will simply be political suicide for us to commit ouselves to cut taxes.

A brilliant move by Greg Hands and CWF.

Without action on tax the party is nothing. The public expect tax cuts from us and they have every right to to have that expectation fulfilled.

Not at Bournemouth Jack?

Tsk, tsk! This is the great pilgrimage no loyal Cameroon has a right to miss.

"I dont like flat taxes and I never have. The case just hasnt been convincing. Flat taxes will hurt middle incomes a lot. In fact for them it will be a tax increase."

That depends on what level you set the tax at. I remember one proposal (I think by the Adam Smith Insistute) involved abolishing the bottom and top rate while raising the tax threshold up to about £12,000. Suffice to say this would require savings of about £20-30 billion pounds.

Exempts the poor from paying any tax
People on below average incomes should be below the Income Tax and Capital Gains thresholds and Inheritance Tax should be abolished and there be a 10% rate on all Income and Capital Gains above this rate (why not a single threshold combining both) and public spending cut, but surely Local Taxation on property and taxation on sales and value should be levelled equally regardless of income, this is the simplest way of doing it and in fact the ultimate flat tax.

"Which countries are those, just out of interest."

Estonia and Slovakia are the ones that ones first come to mind, although there are others as well, all in Eastern Europe.

Meanwhile, the Boy King says things like:
"I think taxation is necessary because we live in a country where we want to fund public services and where we have obligations towards each other and an element of redistribution to help the poorest and give people a chance to climb up the ladder is absolutely right".
What a joke!

Flat tax = simpler system = administration savings = need for less staff = cuts in staff numbers = tax saving for all.

It is dishonest to criticise a system for being bloated but not pledge to cut the wastage from it.

No-Cuts Cameron is trying to have it both ways; pledging greater efficiency without cuts. That is impossible and dishonest.

No cuts = maintaining the current bloated system.

Sure, I understand it won't be popular, election strategy, must get to number 10 above all else, etc, etc but it's dishonest to claim you can deliver one without the other.

I would get excited about this campaign but no doubt Cameron will continue with his leftist mantra that tax cuts jeopardise economic stability. We need to persuade people of the case for lower taxes, and explain to an economically illiterate public that cutting taxes does not necessarily mean cuts in public services or indeed a decrease in tax revenue. Cameron is deliberately making this impossible. We have all these policy groups just wasting their own time because they will just be totally and utterly ignored by people like Oliver Leftwing unless they come up with something that's left of Lenin.

All this talk about costed tax cuts is so ridiculous. The tax commission is apparently going to recommend some £19 billion of tax cuts. £19 billion! Out of what? £400+ billion?

The potential political costs of promising tax cuts far outweigh the gains to individuals that tax cuts on such a miniscule scale would bring. £19 billion would seem like an enormous number to all those terrified of supposed cuts to "health and education". It would seem a tiny figure to all those thinking that promising tax cuts should herald a significant improvement in their financial position.

Ithought you'd resolved not to post here anymore Chad? It must be boring writing nasty little editorials on your blog and getting no response.

"No-Cuts Cameron is trying to have it both ways; pledging greater efficiency without cuts. That is impossible and dishonest."

Well maybe not Chad, one small example, the NHS employs agency staff, most contracted locally at varying rates, normally rates based on how much the agency think they can get away with, sometimes the rates vary for the same job in the same hospital. Centrally negotiate a rate, costs come down but service levels remain the same. Oppositions will call it a cut of course, but it isn't. Unfortunately the private sector see the public sector as a money making opportunity, maybe a Conservative Government will get them to understand the difference between making a fair profit and a rip off, and the former will be accepted, the latter will not.

"thought you'd resolved not to post here anymore Chad? It must be boring writing nasty little editorials on your blog and getting no response."

I couldn't resist the temptation to watch nasty little people without values who launch personal attacks instead of keeping on topic Malcolm.

A bit like, um, you....

This CWF thing looks good, anything that makesus look attractive to foreign investment is good.

Oh hello Chad , nice to hear you again, how's things?

Good thanks David. Even a word of praise for Cameron for his £50k meals as I'd much rather our politicians were raising funds this way than filling their pockets with taxpayer funds.

Oh good. well now that we ( that includes you chad) are building a conservative movement across party (battle)lines the occasional word of ecumenical encouragement is always refreshing. May i for my part say how impressed i was with the piece on your site i which Mr Campbell - bannerman answered questions in an extremely sensible and understandable way. An example i wish more of our politicans would follow.

UKIP were out today handing leaflets for the launch of their flat tax policy on Tuesday the 3rd at 11 am. Open invite to those who are interested to come along and hear them out at the Bournemouth International Hotel.

He's a good man, I agree. A calm and thoughtful conservative.

I had the pleasure of meeting DCB at the leadership election count.

I voted for DCB, because he has a clear small government vision and embraced "No Preference, No Prejudice" too, but it has been very encouraging to see Nigel pushing in a similar direction, which you would expect.

To bring it right back onto topic though, of course, UKIP are clearly supporting the flat tax, and I have some ideas to help win the sceptical around, but more of that later.

keep me posted

Cameron opposes ID Cards, so he says he will scrap it.

This makes sense.

Cameron opposes Brown's tax systems and rates, but refuses to say he'll sort them out.

This does not make sense.

Don't criticise Brown for his taxes if you have no intention of removing the taxes you are criticising.

Just Google " laffer curve"

Tons of info as to how lower taxes create greater income and that is reality not theory.

Only socialists and commies argue against tax cuts, just as they argue against most of reality, but that is at least their philosophy.

That the modernisers are hell bent on not cutting tax, only shows they are just as out of touch as any good socialist. Just what is their philosophy.

"Only socialists and commies argue against tax cuts"

Yes, because tax cuts means less state-run services, means small state, means less state control.

I have seen the UKIP's tax manifesto and it is a lot better than Lord Forsyth's effort (if the leaks are true). It might not be implementable (if that's a word) on Day One but could be phased in quite easily over a couple of years.

Jack Stone @ 19.19 sets out the dilemma that we have to nail before we can really talk about tax cuts.

"Voters believe Labour`s accusation that Tory tax cuts mean cuts in health and education".

Somebody trotted this lie out on LabourHome only recently. You will remember that Tony Blair (not know for his grasp of economics) made a similar claim just before the last GE and had the rather embarrassing experience of being very publicly corrected by a TV reporter.
After nearly 10 years of spin and words, rather than solid improvements, I believe we have to work first of all on the presentational bit ourselves.
George Osborne could produce Gordon Brown's projected expenditure over the next five years on the NHS and education and DC could then pledge that the tories will contribute at least the same level of funding over that period.
This message would need repeating over and over for a period of months until people had got it.
Then we should identify some of the quangos that the tories would get rid of and estimate what the savings would be.
Finally, we could promise that the tax system will be simplified and, by then, suggest that some tax reductions will be possible from savings made.

Only socialists and commies argue against tax cuts
It does depend on the state of public finances, if there was a budget deficit then that would have to be the first priority and it might be desirable that there been spending cuts and tax increases to balance the budget in the short term, running up budget deficits just means higher interest repayments and higher spending later to deal with it - certainly though a new structure can be moved towards while doing this if neccessary, I favour cuts in Education and Health both of which have been raised by every administration since the 1930's way beyond the rate of growth in the economy to absurd levels - there has to be substantial rationalisation of spending and services but cuts in overall taxation can only be done responsibly if they are covered either by revenue from other sources (such as running public services with a strong push to break even - some countries do have quite substantial public organisations but ones that operate as businesses raising the money they need through charging for access to services) and\or cuts in the spending on those services, some recycled spending can be abolished where it is taxen out in tax and given back in a means tested way as spending to much the same people - eliminate that and the public accounts would be far healthier.

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