Liberal taxation policy

In an earlier post, I mentioned that I thought that the LibDems were effectively two parties: one is essentially a social democratic party and the other is classical liberal in nature, and the two come together by both being socially liberal.

The classical liberal or Orange Book wing of the party appears to be in the ascendant, if their tax proposals are to be believed. They are scrapping their policy for 50% tax over £100k for a flat tax.

A flat tax? Shurely shome mishtake?

No, the evidence is here. The LibDems have at a stroke gone from advocating the most progressive tax system to the most regressive. So regressive, in fact, that it was being argued by Kilroy-Silk's Veritas party.

It does rather worry me that parties come out with statements of principle and new, groundbreaking policies shortly after an election. The Tories are apparently rethinking themselves as a post-Thatcherite party. Labour now want a society based on Respect. The Liberals now want a flat tax.

I increasingly have the feeling that elections don't matter so much as perceived success in day-to-day polls. Elections jumble everything up, but with the increased trend for rebellion (certainly among the Labour back benches) a large or even working majority is no guarantee of being able to push things through the Commons.

The combined actions of the three parties is going to further weaken party identifications as they say one thing for an election and then, once their core vote has been mobilised, run off on whatever pet projects they're harbouring in order to do well in the day-to-day perceptions of politics.



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