Adam Creighton

Getting it wrong on higher education

Dynamic New Labour always talks about the so-called “skills crisis”; the “need” for more funding for higher education. But we mustn’t forget that blunt spending increases for higher education may encourage an ever-larger proportion of the population to stagnate in courses that will neither teach them anything particularly useful nor improve their chances of finding

Why save?

The Chancellor made much today about the government’s attempt to encourage saving. But with up to 40 per cent of people’s income taken away from them before they even get to see it (PAYE and NI) and another 18 and a half per cent of it taken away again when they spend it (VAT), what’s

Darling’s regressive tax increases

With the tax hike on alcohol and cigarettes, Labour, supposedly the party of working people, is effectively increasing taxes on the poor as a much larger proportion of poorer people’s incomes are spent on alcohol and cigarettes. Every economist knows that these kinds of tax increases are regressive.   The public health argument for these

Debt-ridden Britain

Despite the sophistry of the Budget speech, the fact remains that Britain—after 10 years of solid economic growth—still has an enormous stock of debt, around 40 per cent of GDP. Moreover, it’s growing; this year there will be another £15 billion of borrowing to fund a bloated and enormous state. Darling made many comparisons to

A fixed rate fix

Darling banged on about how the government would encourage or facilitate the growth of a long-term, fixed-rate mortgage market for home buyers, especially first time buyers. Reviews and committees are apparently to be set up to examine this product in more depth. London is, probably, the world centre of new financial product development and it

Taxing the patience of business

The Chancellor’s claim that his Budget provides a stable tax regime for business is absurd. Far from providing a stable tax regime, Labour has repeatedly tinkered with the system, increasing confusion and weighing down businesses with paper work, retarding business creation. The government has changed corporate tax rates in seven of its 11 years in