‘Job retention reward’ is in effect nothing of the sort

I think Keir Starmer speaks truth unto power here – and indeed Sunak shot himself in the foot – something that this Brexit government is decidedly adept at – by admitting that there was deadweight in his own proposals,

Of course government creates its own money so it is not that it is spending money that it doesn’t have – just that it is spending money uselessly (let us not forget that most Conservatives are inordinately frightened of inflation and so even they would be unlikely to like useless spending).

We have already seen major redundancies all round – most recently at John Lewis and Boots, so rewarding temporarily furloughed employees with a government funded employer reward seems particularly stupid when £1000 each is likely to be the least of their concerns – it is no wonder that HMRC has complained.

Sunak is supposed to be the richest MP in the House of Commons but he seems to be happy to reward others in a decidedly poor way.

I’m afraid I feel obliged to endorse Rebecca Long-Bailey’s comment (remember her?):

The Conservatives are not the party of aspiration, they’re the party of privilege, funded by those who want to protect their privilege.

Until we kick big money out of politics, our political system will be rigged in favour of the obscenely wealthy.

Comments

  1. Neil Wilson -

    “just that it is spending money uselessly”

    Unless saved the spending will enter the circulation. There’s no evidence the £1000 will not enter the circulation. Which means it will have the same wider economic effect as a tax cut (and that’s what it is really).

    All government spending that enters circulation is effective, and we can certainly afford it. Quite why Starmer keeps playing the ‘afford’ card makes no sense. It will come back to bite him.

  2. GERRY BOYLE -

    Starmer actually says “we can’t afford a dead weight”, so I think he is making the point that if you have a pot of money to spend it makes much more sense to spend it effectively towards your policy goals. The £1000 payment is NOT going into general circulation – it is going to companies, from where it will go to shareholders who will either be relatively rich individuals or investment funds, in both of which cases it is more likely to be saved than spent. Using the same amount of money as pay rises (or even just bonuses) for poorly paid health and care staff would have a much bigger flow through to consumption, although admittedly maybe not in restaurants or health clubs.

    1. Peter May -

      Agree – the £1000 is effectively a headcounted bung to anyone still in business…

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