For wealth creation cut National Insurance

I tell you it’s enough to shake a chap’s confidence in Her Majesty’s Press. It was barely a month ago that my trembling fingers reached for a Sunday paper proclaiming in huge type, all over the front page, that Gordon Brown was “on course” to win the election. So imagine my feelings of bewilderment yesterday morning when I went to the same newsagent to buy the very same newspaper. And there – on the same front page, in the same supersized font – was the news that David Cameron was “set to claim victory” in the very same general election.

What is going on with these headline-writers? Isn’t there some law against this kind of thing? One or other of these headlines must be false, and you would have thought that we innocent consumers were protected from such blatant deceptions. The reality is that Gordon Brown was never on course to win the election, as I pointed out at the time, any more than he is on course to win a gold medal for rhythmic gymnastics in the 2012 Olympics. Gordon Brown remains where he has been for the past two years, firmly on course to lose the general election, and lose it big.

What we have in yesterday’s paper is the belated recognition that the Conservatives are going to win, and that in so far as there has been a Wobble, that Wobble is over. The quivering has gone from the Tories’ ample frame, and rock-like confidence has returned. What was the pectin, what was the coagulant that helped to restore our rigidity? Was it the saucy snaps of SamCam? Was it Dave’s blouson? Was it the promise of some sort of extra dosh for married couples? Interesting though all of those things are, I don’t think they were decisive.

It was a big, broad statement of economic principle and priority – and it was the work of the shadow chancellor. One day, George Osborne’s children will climb his knee, and say, “What did you do in the Wobble, Daddy?” And George will tell them how some of his colleagues did indeed oscillate with apprehension at the apparent narrowing of the polls, while he, George, sat down and ran the numbers. He came up with a policy that not only encapsulates the difference between Labour and Tories, but also has the additional merit of being completely the right thing to do.

There was a particularly cretinous cartoon in one of the Sunday papers, in which the Tories’ proposed cut in National Insurance was presented as some kind of gift to the fat cats. Looking at that image, of corpulent cigar-smoking felines, you might think that cutting NI would promote boardroom greed or bankers’ bonuses.

What tosh. Labour’s decision to hike National Insurance is a direct attack on employment in all firms, large or small. It is sugar in the tank of the British economy; it is paraquat on the seedlings of recovery, and the Tories are right to cut that tax because, in the end, governments cannot end recessions, and chancellors cannot end recessions. It is businesses that end recessions when they have the confidence to take on more people and expand – and they will have that confidence only if they are not going to be hit with extortionate payroll taxes.

In the final month before polling day, the Tories are reminding the electorate that they may have changed under the Cameroons. They may have become altogether kinder, gentler, more eco-friendly and huskie-propelled, but they fundamentally understand and support the wealth creators of society, the people who have an idea, who see an opportunity, and who then get up at 5am every day to turn that dream into a reality – and into a profit.

 We should see far more giving, of money and time, and I would like a Britain where everyone with enough money felt it was positively shameful not to be doing something – mentoring kids, reading in primary schools – to help. The message is simple. You can’t have wealth creation without a social mission, and you can’t have a social mission without wealth creation.

The Daily Telegraph for this column and further news and views.

10 thoughts on “For wealth creation cut National Insurance”

  1. Boris. In the recent (useless and crap) Despatches programme about Cameron, I had to wait 42 minutes to hear those magic words ‘wealth creation’.

    And YOU were the one to speak them.

  2. George Osborne has taken a hell of a lot of flak in the past, which he has handled extremely well. He never looks rattled and he and David Cameron are obviously a close team, and trust, like and rely on each other totally.

    That makes a refreshing change from the hair pulling, bitch slapping PM/Chancellor we had with Blair and Brown. Even though Vince Cable and Alastair Darling tried to gang up on George in the debate, George never turned a hair. He has the right stuff, and he is presenting absolutely the right policies.

  3. I wish I had your confidence in the result of the forthcoming election to what will be a kindergarten parliament, but I am confused as to why it seems that so many people can still even contemplate putting McMuffin and his gang back in office. Where is the big poll lead that we should be seeing by now ?. Is it all down to the MSM and the BBC ? I dream of the day when with a reasonable majority, Cameron opens all the graves and hiding places and shows all the misdirected masses what has been really going on over the last 13 years. How is Prescott a millionaire on an mp’s salary ?, where did Fondlebum get the money to buy a £2m house for cash when 10 years ago he couldn’t get a mortgage ? Etc, etc.

  4. Wealth creation. The empty chant of the modern day alchemists and fantasists. The system is broken, beyond repair, and we are left to choose between which bunch of halfwits offer the silliest suggestion to patch it up.

  5. There are, after all, only a limited number of newspaper headlines:

    X is wonderful
    X is contemptible
    Hundreds killed
    X shares a bed with Y
    X stops sharing a bed with Y
    Press release says Z
    Why oh why?
    Strike latest
    Nasty crime
    Nothing much has happened so here’s a vacuous follow-on

    and

    Nothing much has happened so we’ve made something up

  6. @ Vicus
    “We don’t need no wealth creation..”
    There is an empty chant. You can sing along, on your way to whichever system provides a better alternative, beyond these shores.

  7. I am an ex pat Pom, now living in New Zealand.

    Sorry to say that Gordon & Tony drove us away – we simply could not bear to watch the continued ruination of the great country that a mere 60 years ago still owned and ran more than half the world.

    I wish the Conservatives every success – we might consider returning if they get in for a second term.

    We are not rich, we are just ordinary people who wanted to live in a place where school children do not stab one another, where you keep a sensible amount of what you earn, where CCTV does not spy on you 24 hours a day and so on.

    Good luck!

  8. I’m not a Tory person, I’m more of an old hippy. I wouldn’t socialise with Tories, (except Boris, of course), but I’ve always voted for them to run the economy. Capitalism is unattractive, but it works rather well.
    However, I’m getting very tempted to vote for one of the loony parties. I’m worried about the steady erosion of liberty and justice, and the Tories don’t seem concerned about reversing this trend. I fantasise about Boris taking over one day. Is it possible?

  9. I’ve tried to simulate the effect of the various manifestos on your PAYE payslip. Enter your gross income and away you go. It’s not 100% accurate especially if you earn over £100k but in general the lib dems are coming out on top. Try it at TaxCalculator.co.uk

  10. With the proposed labour national insurance hike now for most firms to 13.8% per employee still in force (excluding firms outside london discounts coming in from con/libs) – The average £25,000 salary would cost an employee £2,600 in ERs, that’s an extra £100 on 2010 rates alone. Reducing employers national insurance by 1% instead would save the average employees ER cost by £250. Try the custom tax calculator at UKTaxCalculators.co.uk and enter your own tax scheme for all rates and allowances.

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