The British Budget that was

Gove was, anyway, expressing his own discomfort with that fact that a large group of government high officials starting from the prime minister himself studied at Eton College: so many privileged Old Etonians David Cameron has surrounded Whitehall with that even baroness Warsi, another respected conservative voice, complained, too.

After the 2014 state budget was presented by Chancellor George Osborne, an Eton’s former pupil as you would expect, leaders of the Labour Party and trade unions have also thrown their accusations over a growing social class divide on top of which those closer to Cameron’s upbringing and wealth would sit, with the rosy cheeks of abundance having imposed further austerity on everyone else.

The truth? The truth is that the latest general budget is hardly to blame for the rich becoming richer and the poor left in a place harder to leave heading up in the world. Or for any other of the problems plaguing the UK.

The truth is that, for instance, a package of £7 billion to cut energy bills –and this is one of the rare bits the opposition would admit to like– can end saving households the sum of, attention, please, £15 per year.

What a mere £3 billion new credit line to help companies export can do is a matter for druids to discern.

The truth is that a local budget in today’s inter-connected, inter-dependent European Union comes with extreme limitations attached. So perhaps this is the reason why Osborne announced tax on pints of beer will go down by £0.001, alcohol duty on spirits will be frozen  and air passenger duty trimmed.

Exactly: no Chancellor might be able to turn the economy around, but the temptation of harvesting votes …oh, boy.

About the Author

Victor Jimenez
London contributor at, reporting about the City and the Eurozone economies. He regularly writes for Spanish newspaper group Prensa Ibérica--some of his features include shared work with journalists of The Daily Telegraph and the BBC.

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