As the election approaches I have been disappointed to find no political party proposing policies that make sense to me.
So just to get them off my chest, here are three policy proposals concerning the deficit, climate change and education.
Over the last 10 years the fraction of my gross income that I pay in income tax and national insurance has fallen from 28.8% to 22.3%, which currently amounts to £3,400 per year (See the graph at the head of the page).
During that period my salary (adjusted for inflation to the value of 2015 pounds) has stayed roughly constant at around £50,000.
To reduce the deficit to zero will take extreme cuts in government spending, or the raising of two or three thousand pounds a year from each working person.
It seems obvious to me that the optimum response should include some rises in general taxation, but no political party seems to even dare suggest this.
My proposal would be to:
- Increase taxes on people like me.
Nobody likes paying tax, but I could afford quite big tax increases and it would affect me relatively little. I know this because 10 years ago I used to pay additional tax and life was just fine.
Changing our way of living so that so that we can maintain decent lifestyles but reduce our negative impact on the climate is – to me – the greatest challenge facing us all.
But even the Green Party barely mentions Climate Change!
My proposal would be
- To make the target of reducing emissions by 80% by 2050 into a series of yearly targets,
So that we would know what we needed to do now to achieve our 2050 goal.
If I could choose an educational system, it would be different from what we have now. But actually, probably not too different.
The most precious thing a child can encounter is an enthused teacher – but these gentle life-enhancing creatures are becoming rarer.
Their habitat and way of life has been attacked from all sides. The constant ‘reform’ of education means that after a year or two mauling, these sensitive teachers leave the profession. One third don’t even last a year.
My proposal would be:
- To do nothing about education for 5 years
Just to give everyone a break.
Would I get your vote?
OK, I’ll stick to the day job and hope it doesn’t get cut after the election!