A sitter for Miliband, but he still can’t score

Labour lacks a plan, as shown by its failure to capitalise on Osborne’s current misfortunes, says Jeff Randall

Even by the standards of a politician who is used to confronting adversity, last week was unusually grim for George Osborne. Setting aside tears at Baroness Thatcher’s funeral, economic developments at home and abroad were enough to make the Chancellor weep.

jamesnorton: Pack your bags Ed and join your brother across the Pond. Please leave the loot your Marxist father showed you how to accumulate out of the misery you and your ilk have inflicted on British workers and businesses.

edwardgreen: So harsh - but so true - however as they already have the less inferior and less left wing sibling perhaps N Korea would be a more likely to welcome him.

boudicca: "Surely not even a striker with two left feet could fail from there. And, yet, somehow he continues to miss the target more often than he hits it. " -------------- That's because he's an inexperienced geek who doesn't deserve to be Labour Leader.  He only got the role because the Unions saw a weakling who could be made to dance to their tune. He has done nothing of any value outside politics and nothing of any value in it.  Just a nice, metrosexual, Jewish son of a Marxist, who thought he would like to add the initials PM after his name. He has nothing to offer the country.  The fact that he may be elected in 2015 says more about the utter useless of Cameron and the CONs than it does about Miliband.

dustybloke: In an otheriwse good article, Jeff has scored a bit of an own goal himself. The £500 benefits cap applies to the sum of all benefits, not just housing. But the really important fact is that this is far in excess of the average wage, because the benefits are tax free. You have to earn £34,000 a year to get £500 per week and this is the difficulty for the Labour Party, many of whose apparently natural supporters stand no chance of earning this by working hard.

sageofwestcott: dustybloke - That's a very interesting point. Viewed from yet another perspective, £500 per week consumes the total tax contribution of somebody working hard to earn approximately £60,000. 

nickk: That's worth repeating - it means that £2000 a month by that person is paid in direct taxation. I.e from their £60K /12 £5000 a month they lose £2000. Nearly half. Then of course the myriad other taxes lumped on workers. It is obscene.

steveleeoflondon: The state spends roughly £12,000 per head on the adult population, you have to be earning ~£27,500 or more not to be a net loss to the economy. This illustrates neatly how the state and state-expenditure has got completely out of hand.

marc_farque: To a Romanian, that is a fortune. I find it really sad that some fools in government think that 'capping' benefits at £500 pw will deter people who don't earn that in a year.

tenbelly: '…Why can’t he smash the ball into the net?…' If it looks like a dork, walks like a dork and talks like a dork, the odds are…it's a DORK. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dork

johnmcevoy: Public sector pension represent the life-long taking from the many who have little and giving to the few so that they have plenty. Through out the boom years, wage inflation was encouraged by public sector unions who demanded that state pay should match that in the private sector. You don't hear that call these days, but to fulfill their demand now, public pensions must be cut across the board by 40% and every State employee required to have his or her own money-purchase scheme - just like the rest of us.


steveleeoflondon: The Tories were trying to out-Blair Blair. The (unmandated) demographic shift in the UK means that there will never be another Tory government - unless the Scots vote for independence which will lose Labour millions of votes. The ethnic and cultural make-up of England has been deliberately manipulated in Labour's favour - against the 1948 UN Genocide Act to which we are signatories.

thecccuuttsman: The reason why labour can't back any of the coalitions cuts on welfare is because 90% of their clientele is in receipt of one benefit or another…Tax credits are the modern form of subsidising state industries…They are feeding most of the North of England…After their housing & other benefits are added together they are better off than most workers grafting 50 hour weeks to make ends meet.Part time hours for full time wages…It's a joke how labour MPs can jump from one TV studio to another descibing them as "working families". My parents worked 100 hours a week between them to bring us up without any aid from government…The second reason is their paymasters the unions…Once upon a time labour used to be the party of the worker…Not any more…They only represent the scroungers like Mick Philpott & immigrants dependent on benefits imported onto these shores with the sole purpose of voting labour & breeding to ensure there's an abundance of them to fill their parents shoes in the future…Vote labour for third world mass immigration & welfare dependency.And as for the economy you only had to listen to Hilary Benn on TV today to realise they haven't got a clue…Asked eight different questions on the subject he gave the same answer to everyone of them…The "how can we tell you when we don't know what shape the economy's going to be in in 2015" one. The days of labour freebies is over & their hoardes of feckless voters better to get used to the bad news because sometime before May 2015 they'll get the confirmation on their doorsteps from their MPs but only after all their postal votes have been posted.

ultimatequestion: If Labour got in (heaven forbid), how long before the IMF takes the country into "administration"? A year? There is only one party can sort this mess out, and the pre-requisite is to free ourselves from the shackles of Europe.

edwardgreen: The economy will be either still in the can, convalescing or taking the first steps on the road to true recovery. In any of these three cases the best way to kick it to death will be to allow Balls, Miliband, Cooper, Benn et al to get their hands on the passport and pound printing presses

routemeister: Milliband will get in purely because the people who vote labour would vote for a frog if it had a red rose badge in its lapel. They are voting for free money in the end so they don't care about details. Cameron will lose his previous "support" because thinking voters who would normally vote Tory already see he isn't who they thought he would be and will prefer to vote UKIP thereby letting Labour get past that famous post first in any future election.  All politicians only work on short term policies in order to keep their long term well paid jobs, bending in a breeze of public opinion.

ga: Last poll I saw said CON 32%, LAB 40%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 10%. Most on this forum agree that Labour supports excessive benefits. At 10% UKIP is not going to be elected whatever happens. If UKIP voters switched to Conservative they'd keep Labour out. Milliband will get in because they won't switch.

omargourd: Replying to ga. I wouldn't take too much heed from polls. Apart from UKIP making Cameron play the game by threatening to oust him by nicking some of his support.I doesn't seem to matter who is taking tax payers hard earned cash for turning up in Westminster, it looks as if we have already completely ceded to Brussels !  And eventually the plan is for the UK, what will beleft of it, to become an offshore region of Europe.

tommein: "Compulsory jobs guarantee", this is the only policy that I have heard from milli ed. Let me guess that these will all be within the public sector, a policy that the Greeks have followed for years with spectacular results. Go for it ed.

Titus__Pullo: Tax and spend and then borrow more. That's Labour's economic policy. Always has been, always will be. It's not exactly a winning strategy so all they can come up with is a bogus campaign about restoring a higher rate of income tax that actually collects less revenue and banging on about the bedroom tax.

alanbutler79: Tax and spend sounds like an EU directive.

george:  given the EU will be bankrupt in 8 months time… you could be right.

Dog:  Although it will be tragic to millions of people who will be effected by it, I hope you are true, because things will be better in the long term if the EU collapses. The alternative would be much much worse.

mcduff: The bloke's a prat - end of.