The BBC’s Daily Politics show on Monday gave a ‘preview’ of what the government has told it will be the key themes in the government’s Budget next month – and it was an object lesson in reading the real meaning of Tory statements.
Here are the points trailed to the BBC by the government – and what they really mean:
1. “This will be a revolutionary Budget”
“We’re going to tinker round the edges of the real problems and hope calling it ‘revolutionary’ will stick – just like when we say ‘let me be completely clear’ when we want to avoid something.“
2. “Austerity rules on borrowing may be relaxed to aid further investment”
“We’re not going to give anyone more funds – but we might let them go into more debt to temporarily fill some holes. We hope this will make us look less damaging.”
3. “The previously announced house building programme of 25k social homes will likely feature again as this was lost in Tory Conference headlines.”
“We’re not going to offer anything new – we don’t do that kind of thing. We’re going to re-announced something we abandoned in our chaos. And then abandon it again when you’re not looking.”
4. “We will allow Councils to borrow a lot more £ to build new homes.”
“See item 2!”
5. “Younger voters are in for a windfall. We will offer a special lower tax rates for people under a certain age.”
“We’re going to give young people cuts they’ll barely notice under the weight of student loan repayments and impossible housing costs – and we’ll find ways to take it back again with the other hand anyway.”
6. “We will cut pension tax relief to pay for NI cuts for people in 20s and 30s.”
“The dementia tax alienated our pensioner base – but we’re going to go even further and hope the young don’t realise when we put student loan interest up later!”
7. We’ll focus on intergenerational “fairness”.
“We’re going to piss off everyone equally across the whole age spectrum!”
8. “Brexit Secretary David Davies is lobbying Hammond to write off “additional” student debt – incurred since we increased tuition fees in 2012 – at a cost of at least £10bn.”
“We pretended Corbyn promised to write off student debt and then ridiculed it. Now we’re going to promise it ourselves. We might as well – we’ve already announced watered-down versions of all Labour’s other policies. And we’ll break the promise later anyway so it doesn’t really matter.”
9. “Regardless of exact detail we hope this Budget will be a ‘reset’ for the government.”
“We’re hoping against hope that this will somehow fool the public into forgetting we’re con artists!”
Meanwhile, one Tory Minister told the Sunday Times that people are starting to say “Corbyn Is Coming”.
Which translates as: “The only real reason we’re doing all this is we’re scared stiff of Corbyn!“
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