Friday, April 24, 2009

The Marx Brothers land in Duck Soup

After virtually universal derision in the press, Alistair Darling's latest budget will probably go down in history as perhaps one of the worst ever delivered, which is some feat, given the budgets of Labour governments' past. For instance, check out this excellent piece by the Jeffster:

=> Now we are all up to our ears in it

But if you think that's a bit predictable, being from one of my usual favourite trio in the Torygraph, then how about this from the Gramscian Grauniad:

=> Deepest budget cuts since 70s to fill '£45bn hole'

Or even this, from the multi-cultural hegemonists at The Independent:

=> Britain's new age of austerity

With actual real-term increases in government spending still planned, despite the worst recession since 1926, it's hard to imagine how anyone with the slightest sense of pride or morality could have written or delivered this budget. However, I suppose that if you have been a Scottish Marxist since childhood, as the two clowns above have been, then what better legacy can you leave the children of the English, than to have raped and pillaged their land for a decade, and then to have left it on its knees for three decades trying to repair the damage (assuming it is repairable).

Having been accused myself of being delusional, for daring to suggest that tax eaters eat tax, one can only wonder what delusions live within the minds of men who think they can get away with claiming that the British economy will be expanding by 3.5% in just two years time.

However, it would appear that the mainstream British media have failed to fall for it. Which is excellent news. Even the formerly Brownite Sun has seen through the mirage:

=> Darling's quick debt away

If you have played a part in this, in constantly harrying mainstream economics commentators in newspapers, putting them on the back foot, or defending the views of maverick writers such as Liam Halligan or Jeff Randall, allowing them to retain the support of their editors, then I salute you.

I claimed in a post a few months ago that things are different now than they were in the 1930s. Back then, only a small handful of isolated men knew what was going on, which allowed the politicians of the world to mire us in Keynesianism for 20 years.

But it is with with a sense of relief that it really does appear that there is now enough economic sense about to constantly shoot such idiocy down in flames. Check out this piece in the Daily Mail, a newspaper which Brown has spent years trying to court:

=> Darling's secret tax bombshell: Black hole to cost families £2,800 a year for TEN years

Let us hope and pray that enough of this sense still exists in fourteen months time when Brown is finally forced to the polls and Cameron gets his (probable) go with the train set.

Like George Osborne, I still haven't ruled out Gordon Brown's outside chance of winning this election; there are still plenty of client-state voters out there who know who their paymaster is. However, judging from the reaction of the British press to this budget, my fears of a gullible electorate have receded somewhat. Only knucklehead stooges such as Kevin Maguire and Mary Riddell seem to have kept the Labour faith, by producing feeble attempts to suck up to Brown, with remarkably similar titles to their Brown-nosing pieces. However, you can tell their hearts aren't really in it:

=> Kevin Maguire's verdict on the Robin Hood budget: Chancellor aimed a few well-placed arrows

=> At long last, a Robin Hood budget

(BTW, well done to anyone who can ever find the necessary energy to comment on Mary Riddell pieces, to keep this socialist muppet in her box. These days I can never summon up the will, and usually barely make it to the end of one of her pieces without wanting to throw myself under a train.)

But the third and second best pieces have to be from my usual pair of favourites, Iain Martin and Liam Halligan:

=> The country is exhausted with Labour, but help is on the way

=> The lesson from Budget 2009 is that our politicians are blind to Britain's financial risks

If we all keep up enough pressure on all of these newspaper columnists, particularly the out-and-out Keynesians, then even David Cameron may realise that he must do the right thing, if he wishes to succeed, rather than the politically expedient thing, should he get the nod in fourteen months' time.

I think this attitude is best summed up by an excellent piece by Matthew Parris, in The Times, which is perhaps a much better read than any more pontification from me, so if you haven't already read it, I heartily recommend that you do. I really have saved the best budget story newspaper link for last:

=> This is a fight the Tories cannot afford to duck

Well done, Mr Parris. Who would have thought it? He was a Thatcherite, all along. Remarkable.

Obviously, as an anarcho-capitalist myself, I think all politicians are hopeless clowns. But even we anarcho-capitalists have to occasionally come down from the delusional cloud-cuckoo land we normally occupy and live in the real world. And if forced to choose between another five years of Gordon Brown or a government which actually dares to cut government spending, as a matter of principle, then I'll take option two please.

The trick will be to actually make them do it. That's why none of us must relent in pushing forward the ideas of Rothbard, Mises, and Hayek, wherever and whenever we can summon up the energy and the will to do so.

Every little helps.


Tom H said...

I'm not sure I can share even your tiny sense of optimism that David Cameron may do the right thing.

If you can bear it, take a look at this article on ConservativeHome which put forward the very modest suggestion that doctors' pay should be cut by 10%. My goodness, the fury it generated from readers!

Economic reasoning went out the window entirely, to be replaced by emotionalism and class interest. It doesn't augur well for the future.

Jack Maturin said...


Privatisation, with absolutely no government involvement in health care, is too good for them! ;-)

Yes, although my hope always does spring eternal, I fear along with Matthew Parris that we're going to have to keep kicking hapless Dave and gormless George really hard, 27 times a day, to actually get them to do anything.

And even then, once they're sitting back in the comfort of the Downing Street limousines, and contemplating their enormous state pensions, it will take another 53 pokes a day to keep them on track.

Fortunately though, I think basic economics is going to intervene. The government is going to run out of money, and the populace are (in one way or another) simply going to refuse to stump up more tax to fund their profligacy, whether that's by avoidance tricks, simply stopping work as soon as you reach 150,000 in salary, or plain leaving the country.

I know! Anonymous accused me of being delusional the other day, for daring to suggest that public sector workers don't pay tax.

Let's twist that round. Let's just have a special tax rate for public sector workers, double that for private sector workers! Obviously it's just a pay cut rather than a tax rise, but if it pleases them to think they actually pay taxes, let them pay more, if they think 'public services' are so special! ;-)

Tom H said...

"Let's just have a special tax rate for public sector workers, double that for private sector workers!"

Nice one. I'll need to remember this as future ammunition against the socialists in all our rotten parties.

SmallFace said...

This is G.M. from the Blog Slaying Leviathan; as you may have noticed I've deleted the Blog. It's not that I'm afraid to say such things, or that I don't think we need as many people as possible doing so, it's just that there was no interest unless I wrote something proper myself as well as gave a link. The problem is I just don't have the time right now, and I also need to learn much more myself first to have anything much worth saying. So I'll limit myself to some comment warfare for now! (I'm also sending links and comments to people who were interested via email - which they pass on.)

You might as well delete the link. Maybe at some later stage I'll both have more time and knowledge to do a better job of it. I find here useful, though beyond economics I would differ a bit on some points.

All the best,


Jack M. said...

It's hard to slay Leviathan when it's just you up against Leviathan, and Leviathan is constantly bleeding you of the resources (both mental and financial) to do so.

Do keep up the good work though, in any other way you can.

The best message we can put forward is that there are two clases; the tax producers and the tax eaters. And to make this distinction clear.

As you may have seen from a post by 'Anonymous' a few days earlier, very few realise this class distinction even when it is pointed out to them and is staring them in the face.

But once people realise this distinction, they tend to become very angry indeed, angry enough to force all of the state's lies out of their minds and to start seeing the world in its real state, which fuels the anger further, thus helping bring about the end of the state one person at a time.

Good luck with your efforts.