Monday, 2 July 2012

More U-turns from the shambolic, out of touch Tories

… but on their most disastrous decisions, they’re going straight ahead

Within hours of Labour’s call for the August fuel duty rise to be put to a vote if it wasn’t dropped, David Cameron and George Osborne performed another massive U turn.

For months, Ministers have said that they can’t afford to help families on fuel – despite finding the cash to fund their millionaires’ tax cut.

This incompetent, out of touch Tory-led Government keeps making the wrong choices. That's why David Cameron and George Osborne are continually forced in to making these embarrassing U-turns.

Since their disastrous Budget, they’ve been forced to change course on the “pasty tax”, the “charity tax”, the “caravan tax” and the “skip tax” – because they hadn’t thought their unfair tax rises through.

I welcome all these U turns, but on their most disastrous decisions, they’re still going straight ahead.

For example, they are pressing on with their £40,000 tax cut for millionaires, while at the same time hitting 4.4 million pensioners with a tax rise.

And they also are going straight ahead with their failed economic plan which has pushed us into a double-dip recession, and which means borrowing is now higher than last year.

It seems to me that they are heading for a dead end – with a double-dip recession made in Downing Street.

Britain needs a change of direction. The Tories promised change, but failed to deliver. Only Labour stands for fairness in tough times.


You may have heard last week that Michael Gove, the Tory Education Secretary, announced his plans to take our education system back in time with a return to the two-tier exam system of O-levels and CSEs.

These proposals are wrong because they would create a system whereby children at only 14 years old are divided into winners or losers.

Gove failed to explain how his proposed return to O-levels for some and CSEs for the rest would improve standards for everyone. Yet another case of an out of touch, incompetent Government making the wrong choices.

But now the Tories look set for another U-turn after Labour and others opposed their plans. This U-turn will be welcomed by parents, teachers and students in Haslingden and Hyndburn – but they will be left totally confused about what exams will be taken in 2015.

I want to see a curriculum that’s robust, rigorous and broad and an exam system that parents, pupils and employers can trust. We need reform, but it has got to work for all children in all schools.

With Britain in a double-dip recession and youth unemployment sky high, the priority has to be improving standards for all, including access to the creative or innovative learning that is necessary for the modern world of work. Young people need a broad education, not a narrow one.

This Government is too out of touch to give Britain the change of direction it needs. Without a change of course soon, on major policies like education and the economy, young people will be paying for the Government’s mistakes for years to come.