James Max - James Max is a broadcaster, columnist and business expert

Economic Plan “B” was always a Bad idea

Oh how pious they were. Ed Balls, Ed Miliband and Yvette Cooper all singing from the same hymn sheet. Cutting too fast, they said. You need a Plan B for the economy they said. Meanwhile the coalition stuck to its original plan.

There’s no doubt that alongside the coalition’s plans to cut the deficit and get a grip of Britain’s ridiculously out of control public finances we need government action to stimulate the economy. However that stimulus needn’t cost much. It’s business and entrepreneurial flair that’s going to get us out of this mess. Not borrowing more, spending more through wasteful government initiatives. All you have to do is look at the international bond rates. Ours are at about 2.3% for ten-year money. Compare that to the 7+% for Italian bonds. 

We have become conditioned in this country. Conditioned that politicians are there to do what we cannot. It’s such rubbish. Government should be there to govern. Tax should be raised to spend on what we need and not just what they want. Enough of the social engineering and provision of centrally supplied goods and services. It’s so inefficient and wasteful. Whilst some are harking on about privatisation in the NHS and the reduction in public spending, we have tales that are so tragic it brings tears to the eyes. The elderly who are not cared for by the ever so wonderful NHS. Hospital Trusts that cannot manage their budgets. Disorganisation at epic levels with patients and their records in a tangled mess.

For me, it’s simple. Government should spend within its means. It should defend, educate, keep safe and enable us as people to get on with our lives. Of course they have a role in making Britain PLC a viable commodity. However the way to do that is to simplify tax. Reduce the number of laws and cut red tape. Let’s face it; if politicians were any good at running businesses, they’d go into business. They haven’t and they aren’t. Whilst profit can be considered a dirty word if managed properly a profitable organisation can provide great benefits to the people who work for them, the people they do business with and the wider community. 

As the Eurozone continues into meltdown we can thank our lucky stars that we are out of it. Now is a major opportunity for the UK to capitalise. Capitalise on our economy, our ethics, intelligence and plucky British spirit. Now is not the time to be despondent about what’s going on in the world but to work out how we reinvent ourselves for a brand new era. 
Whilst manufacturing is important we have to look to our strengths. We must also look at where the most value is added. In fact we have that ability in abundance. Creative thought. We did it with finance and banking and should allow those industries to do so again. But we have also led the world in innovation and invention in such a wide range of intellectual property business. Don’t think we cannot get out of this mess. We can. However for those calling for the Plan B to borrow more and spend it willy-nilly… back in your box please. For those calling for higher taxation to sort out what you believe to be social inequality, keep your thoughts to yourselves, thanks. It never worked and it won’t work this time. 

Tax should be raised to do what needs to be done. Yes everyone needs to pay his or her fair share and the more you earn the more you should pay. However there is a limit. It’s time to bring down tax. Invest in our industry and education but not by throwing money at them. However throw incentives for private business to invest.

Plan M
For me the economy needs Plan M. The Max plan. Maximise on what we are good at. Maximise on the reduction of waste. Maximise on entrepreneurial spirit. Maximise our efforts to reduce our personal and national debt. Maximise on making individuals free to set up on their own. Maximise the pressure on the banks to lend properly and to stop the box filling exercises that has shackled small businesses and mortgagees alike. And Maximise Britain. It’s a Great country and can be great again. The best opportunities arise when dark storm clouds are around. We are there now. It’s time to move forward and not hark back.
Plan M everyone is the answer. It’s time to maximise.

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