Gorge is moonlighting.
In his role of Chancellor of the Exchequer, not surprisingly, he detailed a Budget this week that exclusively benefited the better off. The top 10% of the wealth owners and earners got about 50% of the booty, what with the raised threshold for the 40% rate of income tax, and the sodding about with capital gains tax. The top 20% got 80% of the lucre. Meanwhile the poor bastards at the bottom got bugger all, and the disabled got shafted to the tune of £1.4 billion. Even the Toffs are rebelling at that.
Then he decided to play at Health Minister. There’s to be a new tax on sugar, with the avowed aim of reducing obesity in children by making soft drinks more expensive. It may have this effect, because in countries that already have a tax, consumption has fallen. However, and this is quite a big qualifier, there are as yet no epidemiological studies to show this has any effect whatsoever on obesity or other health issues. Gorge just has his eye on the tax, because he keeps getting his sums wrong and he’s got a gaping hole in his books.
Mind you, if he’s really serious he should ban drinks vending machines in schools, which brings me neatly to the fact he’s now Education Minister as well. He used his Budget to usurp Nicky Morgan and announce that all schools in the UK will be academies by 2020. What the hell it is to do with him is anybody’s guess.
And on the subject of guessing, guess what? Parents won’t be consulted about this shake up. Their wishes are immaterial in GorgeWorld. It’s only their children they might be concerned about, so who gives a stuff what they think?
Academies are run autonomously, without any interference by pesky (though duly elected) local councils. They set their own curricula, which will make GCSEs and A levels a dog’s breakfast. They can even be sponsored by global businesses such as Apple. Clearly a multinational corporation has a better understanding of local educational needs than a local council has.
Oh, and while lopping subsidies for renewable energy, thus making himself Energy Minister too, he’s giving oil and gas companies tax breaks to the tune of over £1Bn.
By the way, the Bullingdon Bullshitter who’s in charge of a substantial world economy (it’s bigger than that of Russia) has a degree in history, and an A level in maths. Clearly the right man for the job.
One other thing. Do you really believe the PepsiCos of this world won’t also increase the cost of sugar free drinks in line with the cost increase for fully leaded?