Sunday, July 17, 2016

As the Cameron/Osborne era comes to an end:

Last week David Cameron stepped down as PM following the Brexit vote, and George Osborne joined him on the back benches.

Up until the referendum they were the two most powerful men in Britain: it was historically unusual, but very much in Britain's interests, that they managed to keep a good relationship between PM and Chancellor for six years, far longer than is common. DC and George Osborne were a team, and a good one, who came to power while Britain was in the most dreadful mess and made significant strides towards cleaning it up.

Here are a few images showing some of their achievements. They increased the personal allowance and took millions of people out of paying tax - an idea which the Lib/Dems had first suggested but Conservatives implemented and continued to extend even after the Lib/Dems were no longer in the government.

Partly because of this and partly because the 50p top tax rate never actually brought in more money, they reduced the share of tax paid by the poor and increased the share of tax paid by the rich.

Because of a range of measures, including taking people in low paid jobs out of the income tax system while capping benefits, the Cameron/Osborne years saw people who took jobs much better rewarded for doing so. These incentives, plus millions of apprenticeships, helped the British economy to create jobs faster than under any recent government, getting a record proportion of the population into work

And these were real, full-time jobs

Britain is the only country which kept both the national promise to spend 2% of GDP on defence and 0.7% of GDP on foreign aid, which was also a Conservative election promise honoured. Britain has done more to help the poorest people in the world than any other country except America

And although it is always right to ask whether foreign aid is actually delivering benefits just as we would for money spent in the UK, the fact is that this aid did deliver real benefits

And they also found more money for the NHS.

No government is perfect. That of Cameron and Osborne made mistakes and, although we have made great strides towards reducing the ghastly mess they inherited, Britain has gone from being in a terrible economic mess to only a bad one: there is much more still to do.

Nevertheless David Cameron and George Osborne deserve to be remembered for this:

They started Britain on the road to recovery:

Under their leadership Britain played a positive role in the world

And they did far more to help everyone in Britain, including the poor and the least fortunate, , than anyone in any of the other parties or any of their critics in the left-wing media give them credit for.

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