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Jeremy Hunt knows Brexit Britain can’t afford to cut taxes

Jeremy Hunt knows Brexit Britain can’t afford to cut taxes

Jeremy Hunt knows Brexit Britain can’t afford to cut taxes
Mar 03, 2024 1 min, 3 secs

This clerihew was sent to me out of the blue by Martin Bell, the celebrated former BBC foreign correspondent who became known as the Man in the White Suit during his 1997-2001 spell in parliament as the independent MP for Tatton.

But the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned that the kind of tax cuts the Tories want would have to be counterbalanced by reductions in public expenditure.

The problems facing the country demand an Attlee-style grasp of the need for bold measures This ailing government is presumably making the cynical political calculation that short-term tax relief is worth trying even at the cost of yet more austerity.

Older readers may recall that early on in the post-2010 era of austerity, I quoted my late friend David Cornwell, aka John le Carré, who told me: “ It’s planned penury.” And so it turned out for so many people in this benighted country.

At a panel discussion on the report, Sir John Kingman, a former senior Treasury official, and now chairman of Legal & General, complained that international investors get a poor reception here.

Yes, Osborne was the chief begetter of Le Carré’s “planned penury”, and if Labour win they will be saddled with the consequences, as Reeves knows only too well.

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