THE once dishy Rishi resorted to his own personal psy-ops to gee himself up for his conference speech yesterday in a display of hubris that was mind-boggling in its dishonesty.
Never was there so much self-promotion from one so guilty, never so much conceit from one so culpable.
Words however don’t translate into truths, however confidently you mouth them. So, Mr Sunak, let’s take your ‘this is is what I stand for’ claims about yourself one by one and mark them:
Pragmatism: A tick or a cross?
A tick if you believe in the easier-to-say-yes-than-no philosophy of life. If you think training the bulk of your population to be workshy, to pay them to be at home for doing nothing on the same salary they got before, without their fares to pay, with no regard to the businesses that are going bust now the furlough gravy train has come to a halt. A cross if you don’t.
A tick if you think that machine-gunning money without any cost-benefit accountancy or accountability or any measure of decent tendering and monitoring of contracts is pragmatic. A cross if you don’t.
A cross too if you think that, far from being pragmatic, such spending was lazy and reckless and has caused massive, long-term economic disruption and damage.
Fiscal responsibility: A tick or a cross?
Once I have stopped laughing at the sheer brazenness of this claim from the least fiscally responsible, heaviest-borrowing British Chancellor in history, who has sprayed money around like confetti and as if there was no tomorrow, I’ll detail the evidence of his grotesque fiscal profligacy.
There is no possible reasoning I can provide to give this a tick.
Remember that Mr Sunak’s unprecedented spending and borrowing was designed to deal with a ‘threat’ that arguably never required lockdown of the economy in the first place – certainly not after the first three weeks.
Remember that Mr Sunak expressed some qualms about the various extensions, yet always conceded to them against his better judgment. He also acquiesced in the social distancing and pingdemic rules that had such a deleterious impact on every aspect of the economy (as well as on the nation’s health and the precious NHS).
The result, by the end of May this year, was that Rishi’s additional public spending directly attributable to Covid-19 up to May stood at a cool £372billion. As we are now at the beginning of October, my guess is that the £400billion mark has probably been well passed.
Since this sum is more than double last year’s income tax receipts, we can expect – as Boris Johnson has already announced – tax hikes all round next year and for many years to come. These are increases that a declining productive workforce can ill afford and which will further depress the economy.
Far from calling himself fiscally responsible, Mr Sunak’s tweet should read: Criminally fiscally profligate. Let’s recap where the multi-millions he seemed to think were his to borrow and spend, went:
£150billion in support for business. Where it went, who knows? But it didn’t stop the collapse of the retail or the hospitality sectors.
£97billion on additional emergency spending for health and social care, from which no one appears to have benefited. GP surgeries remained locked and the NHS turned itself into a disastrously inadequate and ‘treatmentless’ Covid care service.
Much has disappeared into the pockets of those aboard the coronavirus gravy train, a corruption the mainstream media seems conveniently to have forgotten about, but which we have done our best to investigate on TCW Defending Freedom – as with Sonia Elijah’s reports into the multi-million-pound Innova Medical Group lateral flow test contracts.
£55billion spent on furlough. How the winding-up of this scheme at the end of last month will affect the labour market and, in turn, consumer spending, we have yet to see. The informed prediction is that many more businesses will now go bust.
£65billion spent on ‘support for other public services and emergency response’. This has been sprayed through the public sector widely, from support for education – where the lockdown effectively removed the service for many in the first place – to the lamentable Transport for London. It is ‘a list that is endless with very little clear tangible benefit’, as Ewen Stewart described it.
Nor has this imprudent spendfest stopped the steep decline in gross domestic product – the measure of the size and health of the economy. It was down 9.8 per cent in 2020, the worst fall since consistent records began in 1948 and the worst in 300 years, according to some estimates. So says the most recent House of Commons Library report on the economic impact of coronavirus – which more correctly should be described as the economic impact of the arbitrary lockdown policy.
The same report also warns of rising inflation over 2021, ‘partly a result of the supply problems’, which is ‘expected to continue … heading into 2022’.
A belief in work: Tick or cross?
The most generous-minded commentator could not buy into this claim, for reasons set out above. Small businesses, which are the backbone of the country, the epitome of enterprise and infinitely more exposed to risk than the well-cushioned public sector, have suffered most.
In fact, lockdown policies have been so bad for them that it’s hard to believe they were not specifically targeted. Yes, Rishi, these are the people who work the hardest who you have been waging war on.
Unshakeable optimism about the future: Tick or cross?
Well if you are part of the extremely well-heeled global elite, insulated from the impoverishing impact of lockdown’s cruel reset, like Mr Sunak’s billionaire family, or Mr Bill Gates, it’s no wonder you are unshakeable in your optimism.
Most people I know – even those who bought into the Tories’ lockdown assault – are pretty pessimistic. The ones who have a better understanding of the huge economic disruption you have caused and been party to, who understand that we are but one supply train glitch away from stagflation, are deeply worried about the future.
Mr Sunak, your optimism is insulting. It is blind not to recognise the cruel setback your policies are proving to young people, or the huge disparities in economic effects between different groups and different generations.
You must be grossly insensitive not to see that the Government’s response to the exaggerated coronavirus threat has blighted a generation’s future. Already known as Generation Covid, they are the lost legions of millions of young people who will be left dealing with the psychological and socio-economic wounds for years to come.
It’s surely not for nothing that that great indicator of human confidence, the birth rate, is in such serious decline. Who would want to bring children into the world that you and Mr Johnson have created with your destruction and waste?
So much for your grandstanding, Mr Sunak. I tell you, you make me feel sick.