As so often is the case with Labour, it appears too little too late.
As usual pensioners are still neglected. The extra �100 a year (which only applies to the over 80s) isn't really that much in this day and age. Far more sentiment than substance. The abolition of pension reductions for those who are in hospital is a good thing, though.
I liked the way Gordon Brown twisted these figures for the increase in his address though.
The increase in national insurance is correct and welcome but it could have gone further with a further increase in income tax, perhaps creating a new 50% supertax bracket. Hospitals need funding, but so too do schools and transport.
The child trust is an absolute farce and appears to be worth hardly anything. Certainly nowhere near three years worth of tuiton fees. Tuition fees should have been scrapped instead of this.
The war funds seem justified to me, though I hate to see public services come second to all of these.
. . . . .
Brown made a big speach about how our economy is surviving global downturn, beating that of France and Germany, ahead of Japan, superior to the Eurozone and ahead of the US. He cited Labours 'tough deicsions' as being the cause of this.
But this doesn't change the fact we have some of the worst Hospitals in western europe, with some of the lowest numbers of intensive care beds and highest rates of heart disease, it doesn't change the fact we pay our pensioners far less than the Germans, Italians or Spaniads, and it doesn't change the fact we have some of the slowest and expensive trains in the world.
We may have this super resiliant economy, thanks to New Improved Labour, but we have some of the worse public services and social security in the western world. The only notable country that probably has it worse than us in this regard is America and apparently we're trying to aspire to be like them!
You cannot judge a country on economics alone. No country can be great unless it respects its elderly, gives its young opertunity, looks out for young families and cares for its sick.
I am quite disapointed corperation tax is suspended too. But then again that is no suprise.
Are you happy with this budget?
How would you have planned the budget
Increase taxation in general
More money through increased taxes, in particular income taxes - in particular set taxes such as VAT and duty
More money through increased taxes, in particular income taxes - in particular income tax
Keep taxation the same
Reduce taxation in general
Reduce income tax
Reduce fixed tax (such as VAT and duty)
What should have got the most priority
Domestic public services
The War and humanitarian fund
The economy via tax breaks to business and industry
Making earners better off through tax cuts
Of domestic services, which needs the most investment
Police and Crime provention
Which demographic are the most neglected by this budget and those in general
Young married couples
The middle aged