Tuesday, 28 February 2012

10 steps to get the U.K. moving. Part 1

The role of political commentary is often one of criticism and general mockery of ideas and policies. So for a change I thought I would offer some ideas in which if implemented could spark the U.K. out of the quagmire it finds itself in. So here are my 10 steps to get the country moving again.

  1. Cut VAT to 15%

One of the most crucial facets in looking to improve GDP is to get the public spending money. This is one of the biggest arguments against wiping out jobs to save money.

If they have nothing; they will spend nothing!!

The same applies when VAT is set too high. This tax affects the poorest the hardest. Who do you think will feel the pinch of an extra £20 on a new tyre? Or when they shopping bill comes in £10 more than before? A reduction in VAT will give consumers confidence to purchase and thus GDP will grow through increased expenditure.

  1. Invest in Renewable Energy.

For every reason imaginable; environmentally, economically,and security wise, we must discover and develop independently, eco-friendly energy resources. This would create a new innovative employment source and, cut our dependency on foreign oil, Particularly from an ever increasingly hostile environment.

We should be looking at ways in which wind, wave, solar and nuclear energy can be developed into effective, and durable energy sources which do less harm to our planet yet provide an vital source for our future and for generations to come.

  1. Bankers bonuses to be paid/taxed into Green jobs fund.

For far too long this country has rewarded failure within the banking system with financial reward. Any independent banking/financial system who fails to make a profit should have their bonuses taxed separately at a 50% rate. Any publicly owned bank should have their bonuses paid into a green jobs fund, until they make a profit. It is quite ridiculous for executives to make £1 million pounds annual salary and receive that again through bonuses while still running the company at a loss.

These bonuses should be used to help fund renewable energy initiatives which would provide additional employment and allow for cheaper utility charges.

  1. Toughen stance on benefit cheats/tax dodgers/drug users/knife crime.

As a developed nation, I feel it is one of our proudest achievements that we provide support for individuals and families who need it. There has however become a growing culture of idleness, drug abuse and violence. The benefit system should be in place for those who really need it. Be it;

  • An individual actively seeking employment.
  • An individual with a disability preventing them from employment.
  • A family with parents in work but not making enough to pay the bills despite FT/PT employment.
  • An individual who are suffering from long term diseases such as cancer which prevents them from work.

These are the people ours or any country should be proud to help in their hour of need. The benefits system is NOT in place for;

  • Idle people who are fit enough to work but do not seek it or do the bare minimum to qualify for benefits.
  • Drug addicts/abusers who would rather spend their days in a clouded daze than work and still have more money than some hard working families (through whatever means they accumulate this.)
  • Individuals working cash in hand while still claiming payments.

We could continue this to include plasma TVs for prisoners but that is for another article.

Most people would agree the benefit system is far from perfect, however it seems the government is more interested in a blanket cut, which will also affect those who really need/deserve the help rather than attempting to root out the bad apples in the cart.

This is especially poignant for me, as the city I was born and raised has become riddled to the point of endemic with drug users. This has led to knife crime increasing (4 killings in 1 week within a 15 mile radius.) An elderly gentleman told me of his neighbour who was on methadone treatment but refused to walk 15 minutes to the clinic and so they have been paying his taxi fares there and back every week. People in my community and communities all over Britain are sick of it.

In addition to this those who have tax shelters abroad should be punished for not paying their share of tax. It is not fair to expect to make a profit from a country while putting nothing back in. It is also not fair for this government to claim that were all in this together and yet sit idly by while these millionaires live their lavish lives tax free.

These issues really will be a massive undertaking; yet it is the only way to making this a fairer,safer society.

  1. Don't be afraid of bad businesses leaving.

This week,RBS chief Stephen Hestor warned against an anti-business culture in Britain, stating;

There is a real risk that this country forgets that job number one is to get the economy growing.”

Mr Hestor,along with many of the top business chiefs should consider themselves extremely fortunate to still be employed at all.

It has long been a British trait never to rock the apple cart. Very seldom will someone British complain about their food in a restaurant, while an American will shout across the room to voice his displeasure.

Can you imagine in Russia, or Italy, or Asia; a government/ institution/monarchy, that destroys the economy,which the public then pays for their errors, allows them to stay in such positions and then are told to appreciate what they have as it all falls apart again. The gates at the Winter Palace would have long been torn off their hinges.

Yet, in this country we are to feel privileged that they are doing so much damage with all our hard earned gains. This is not a call to mutiny or violent revolution. But changes have to be made and it may take a revolutionary effort to do this.

We should not be afraid of losing bad businesses, If they threaten to take their business elsewhere let them. How will we ever get by without a company making a £6 billion pound loss per annum?

These are the first 5 ideas to get Britain back on track. What are yours? Do you agree/disagree with these proposals. Do you have any of your own? Please comment and get involved. The 2nd part of this article, coming soon!


  1. Re: Point 5. These banks have contributed hundreds of billions to the UK treasury in the past 10 years. Banking IS the biggest industry and wealth generator in the UK. It is essential that we get banking profitable again to increase UK treasury tax receipts. The UK will not regain growth until the banks return ot profitability. Britain calling banks "bad business" is akin to Japan calling electronics "bad business" because they are currently not profitable. It's madness.

    1. The Steel works and Coal mines generated much wealth for the UK down the years yet they were dismantled and many made unemployed. Yes the banking industry does indeed generate a lot of revenue but if it makes a loss in doing that yet directors are still gaining massive salaries and even bigger bonuses it will never regain its former strength and therefore a new way needs to be found to make them profitable again.

  2. If they were providing a profit then it wouldn't be an issue just because something was once our biggest wealth generator doesn't mean that we should continue to prop it up after it has ceased to be profitable. The U.K. survived and flourished before banking became our largest generator of wealth and will do again, we really don't need unprofitable businesses who we are holding up telling us how lucky we are to have them.