Wednesday, 16 March 2016


We got a "Dear Peregrin" letter today, this time from dear old Gidiot. Munguin scribbled some notes in the margin in his red biro and insisted they be shared with you.

Dear Peregrin,

Today I delivered a Budget that puts the next generation first and redoubles our efforts to make Britain fit for the future by:

  • Cutting taxes so working people can keep more of the money they earn From April next year the tax free personal allowance will rise to £11,500, a tax cut for 31 million people that means a typical basic rate taxpayer will be paying over £1,000 less income tax then when we came into government. The higher rate threshold will also increase to £45,000, a tax cut of over £400. Munguin says: It will be good, although not nearly enough, for all the people that don't die of cold or hunger before next year when it comes into effect. Why not raise it more, say £12,000, and maintain the current threshold on 40p tax? Everyone gains from that, not just those earning enough to pay the higher rate.
  • Freezing fuel duty to support household budgets and small firms. We have frozen fuel duty for the sixth year in a row, a saving of £75 a year to the average driver and £270 a year to a small business with a van. We’re also freezing beer and cider duty to back British pubs. Munguin says: We concede this is a good move as far as business goes, although, we doubt most of us would have noticed a penny or two on a litre of petrol, and it might have meant that you didn't have to reduce PIPs so much.
  • Improving our schools so our children get the best start in life. We’re providing extra money so every school in England becomes an academy and we are going to put a new sugar levy on the soft drinks industry so they reduce the sugar content of their products to tackle childhood obesity. The money raised will be used to double sports funding in primary schools and fund longer school days in secondary schools that offer their pupils a wider range of activities, including extra sport. Munguin says:  Not entirely clear to us what Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland get out of this. We assume there will be a Barnet Consequential, although it never pays to expect fairness from the UK government. 
  • Introducing a new Lifetime ISA to help the next generation to save. We know people like the simplicity of ISAs so we’re going to increase the ISA limit from just over £15,000 to £20,000 for everyone. For those under 40, many of whom haven’t had such a good deal from pensions, we’re going to introduce a completely new Lifetime ISA. You won’t have to choose between saving for your first home, or saving for your retirement – the government is going to give you money to do both. For every £4 saved, the Government will give you £1. So put in £4,000 each year and the government will give you £1,000 every year until you’re 50. Munguin says: Good move on ISAs, particularly for older people who have to live on the paltry pension, and had hoped interest on their savings might help out a bit. Why only help people under 40 to save though? There are many people who've had a rough deal on their pensions, together with looking forward to one of the lowest state pension in the developed world. You would have to be from the privileged class to think that most people can afford to save£4,000 a year. People with kids and low paid jobs are lucky to be able to afford to put away a couple of hundred a year.
  • Cutting taxes for small businesses. 600,000 small businesses will now pay no business rates at all, an annual saving of up to almost £6,000, and a further 250,000 small businesses will get a tax cut on their business rates bill. We have also cut Capital Gains Tax to boost enterprise and cut Corporation Tax to support investment and job creation. Munguin says: We agree with helping small businesses: they create jobs. Of course Business rates in Scotland are not set by the Treasury, so once again Scotland is not affected by this move. Cutting of Capital Gains tax and the 40p band rise was paid for by cutting PIP. That's low life stuff, even for you, Mr Osborne.
This Budget puts stability first with long term solutions to long term problems. It acts now so we don’t pay later. Donate today to help us continue to deliver security, stability and opportunity for people across Britain. Munguin says: Largely the budget will help better off people and hurt the poor and the sick. No more than we expected, we suppose. It's all very well putting the next generation first. What about the present generation? Some of us had nothing to do with causing the 2008 melt down. Austerity hasn't worked. At least not for those of us who have suffered it. MPs on the other hand have done rather well, as have your cousins and Buckingham Palace. If this is Better Together, we'd much rather make it on our own.



  1. Who'd have thunk the Tories would discriminate against the only folk likely to vote for them, the elderly. And yet they do. Not that I ever would!

    I am a lot older than 50, ahem, and I don't see why people over fifty shouldn't get the same deal that those under fifty apparently do.

    I'd like to have beena fly on the wall when they came up with that proposal!

    1. Aye it's a mystery. I know a few older folk who retired with smallish pensions, but a fair amount of money in the bank/building society, often relative bequests. Certain ones expected to supplement the state pension and relatively small private/company pensions, with a dose of interest from savings.

      But with interest rates kept so low for a very long time, that just hasn't happened.

      You'd have thought the Tories would have tried to help out the old a bit. As you say, they make up a fair percentage of the Tory faithful.

      If you are saving for your old age (which often stops you collecting social security in the form of council tax relief or rent rebates) does it matter when you are saving?

      No. Saving is saving.

      Who knows who came up with it. Maybe the same bloke that suggested that old people could pick fruit as summer jobs for less than the minimum wage (because they couldn't go as fast as the young Eastern Europeans who seem to do most of it at present). Or the Tory Lord who suggested that pensioners should work in the community for their pension.

  2. I meant vote for them, should have made that clearer. I will never vote Tory.

  3. The usual, smoke and mirror, Tory chancer (not a typo) budget. Robbing the poor, and giving to the rich.
    I suppose Dean will be pleased, in his tower block.

    1. They say he is positioning himself to be Prime Minister. But then teh choice is him or Boris!

      Of course we have another choice.

  4. On the subject6 of those Lifetime Isa's. Do not be fooled. This is not a giveaway and the reason for them only bring for those under forty is that they will REPLACE the State pension just as soon as George becomes PM circa 2020. This is not only our feeling in our house but also Martin Lewis, on Good Morning, this morning.
    How much do you think the average person will manage to save towards his.her pension. How long before this wizard wheez falls flat on it's back. I said this morning had I not had a private pension which is wisely invested I could not possibly have the monthly pension I have.
    The Tories will have us back in our place, serving at table and pushed out the door once they are done, back to the hovel they own and you pay for. That and we will be growing food to feed the whilst starving. Over a century of hard work gone because of the stupidity of people whe actually believe these people have their interests at heart. Helena

    1. That is what I fer. In every way they are rolling back the achievements of the Welfare state. I wonder how long it will be before people are too poor to go to the doctor and old folk are picking fruit for £3 an hour.

  5. They've just told everyone that they are privatising education in England and hardly a peep from the MSM who keep headlining the tax on sugary drinks. I know the MSM is controlled, but this is jaw dropping. Disappointed in Jamie Oliver who is wittering on about how wonderful the ginger tax is, not seeming to realise all his work in improving school meals is about to hit the buffers.

    1. Hi Andy:

      I see some of the Scottish papers are praising the budget, saying what a good deal Scotland has got.

      It must be something I missed.

      Anyway, I think we can safely say that right reasons or none, the Tory press will print SNP BAAAAAAD headlines from now until election day.

      I wonder when it will penetrate that this is having no effect.

      I also think that most of what the papers say has little connection to the truth and a great deal of connection to their personal agenda.

      I really seriously wouldn't want to live in England now (as I have done in the past). It's scary how much is in the hands of the private companies hat have but one aim. Profit.

    2. I wonder when the penny is going to drop on the Teachers in England also Captain? My understanding is that not only will the National Curiculum go but so will organised Teacher's salaries and benefits. Perhaps they are waiting to see how it goes, I know I would not wait too long. Falls into my category of sleep walking into losing all the rights that working people fought for over the last century only to watch open mouthed as they go. Other countries in this world are not as spineless as here, they go out and rip up paving slabs when their rights are threatened, and we should realise that getting out of Europe means we will lose them even faster. If Tories want them then they are not somethings we should wish for.

    3. I have always thought that the British governments get away with murder (quite literally on occasion) because they can count on the British public to moan and grouse and do nothing.

      The only time in recent years that they have shown any stamina was when they rioted in English cities over the summer of 2010, bringing Camergoon back from his Tuscan villa to the annoyance of his wife.

      He got his own back by instructing the judiciary to come down on anyone caught like a ton of bricks.

      This saw a young guy, as student, go to prison for 6 months for taking 2 bottles of water from a wrecked shop. In perspective Lord Hanningfield, a Tory peer, did 10 days in prison for systematically stealing from the House of Lords over a protracted period, many thousands of pounds.

      Let that be a lesson to the plebs, I should imagine he said to himself.

      Since then, despite incredible provocation, there have been no more riots.

      The British government don;t listen to what the ordinary people want, and when the ordinary people take action against them, they react as if we are an enemy as despicable as ISIS.

      The French governments, who have a much more democratic system of election, listen carefully when the public is angry.

      In Iceland a few years ago, the public brought down the government.

  6. I haven't studied the budget. However if the ultimate outcome is what others say - the withdrawal of the state from provision of pensions - then perhaps Gideon has Singapore in mind.

    Take a look at this piece from the Economist, and the comments below it too.

    Saor Alba

    1. That sounds like Osborne's dream come true.

      We really have to get away from this ghastly government.