Thursday, March 13, 2008

Budget 2008 review

Copy & pasted from the BBC with some "witty" comments inserted:

Delay 2p rise in fuel duty for six months (why the six months delay?)
Increase in fuel duty will rise by 0.5p per litre in real terms in 2010 (should have been higher)
New non-domestic buildings to become carbon neutral from 2019 (useless, any carbon will be off-set to a third world country)
6% increase in alcohol tax - with 2% above inflation rise for each of next four years (indifferent)
4p on pint of beer, 3p on cider, 14p on wine, 55p on spirits (indifferent)
11p on packet on 20 cigarettes, 4p on five cigars (indifferent)
£950 higher first year rate of road tax for most polluting cars (not high enough)
New top band for the most polluting vehicles that emit more than 255g of carbon dioxide per kilometre (why not just increase the cost of the top tier bands?)
Air passenger duty scrapped in favour of flight tax (isn't that the same?)
Winter fuel payment up to £250 for over-60s and to £400 for over-80s (indifferent)
Require supermarkets to charge for plastic bags if they do not scrap them (good, but not enough)
More cash to tackle child poverty (not good enough)
Help with rising energy costs for poorer families (okay)
From April, key workers, such as teachers and nurses, will be able to borrow money from shared equity schemes (useless)
£26m to help make homes greener (useless)
£2bn more will be spent on troops in the frontline, including £900m on military equipment (wow)
There will be a £30m fund to improve science teaching (so £2bn EXTRA for military, and only £30m for science teaching? Wow!)

Where is the initiative to divert those new tax revenues to increasing cycling lanes and public transportation?

That concludes my review of Alistair Darling's first budget.

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