Our beaches stink – but not as much as our politics.

We are now but a week away from the result of the Tory leadership campaign which coincides with the end of the summer holiday this nation has been taking. Not all of us have stopped, but it feels as if the machinery of Government has been parked in a lay-by awaiting the arrival of a new Prime Minister.

Meanwhile Conservative MPs appear to be waking up “for the first time” to the concerns of constituents who have no idea how they are going to cope with a problem that is entirely out of their control but totally their responsibility.

Conservative MPs have voiced growing concern over the impact of energy price rises on households and business, following the regulator Ofgem’s announcement on Friday that the energy price cap would increase by 80 per cent in October, taking bills up to £3,549 for the average user.

“I’m hearing from constituents who are reaching out for the first time worried about how they will get through this winter,” one senior Tory MP told the Financial Times. “Some of the existing help packages don’t even touch the sides.”

“Out of touch” – “tone deaf”, call them what you like , it is hard not to agree with this assessment of the current Government.


To ask , as the pro-tem Prime Minister is doing, for Britain to be resilient is to assume there is a financial buffer with which that resilience can come from. For many people there is no financial buffer. There are benefits, there may be a little savings, there is money in a pension pot (or three) but there is no plan in place for the financial disaster of bills “no honest man can pay”.

Boris Johnson tells us there will be a package put in place to save “constituents” but Liz Truss is not a detail person (any more than Johnson is). We have no trusted helmsman.

I support Gina Miller in this.

Her letter to the party leaders can be accessed from this link.

I spoke to one former Treasury mandarin last week who had worked for both Truss and Sunak. Her estimate was that Sunak has an eye for sums while Truss has an eye for her image and if she is right , then we are in big trouble.

Add to that , we are likely to have yet another Cabinet clear-out, another raft of ministers and junior ministers new to their jobs and one wonders if this country is being run for or by the Conservative party,

Frankly it is not good enough that we are facing the next few months without any leadership at all. This leadership election was not brought about by necessity – nobody died. It was brought about by an Inter-Nicene row within a political party about who was best placed to lead it into the next election.

The last six months have shown us that the current Conservative party puts itself beyond its country and that stinks – almost as much as our beaches.


About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
This entry was posted in pensions and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Our beaches stink – but not as much as our politics.

  1. John Mather says:

    How does reducing taxation help the most vulnerable when 22M do not pay income tax ? VAT changes benefits high spenders so again poorly targeted and the largest employers in the uK, small businesses, have no cap on energy costs so many will close with the loss of employment. What is being done to reduce energy consumption?

    • Eugen N says:

      Overall, I think that Liz’s measures (we still need some detail) are better than Sunak’s at this moment. Not because she is smarter, just because it matches better the economic reality. I do agree that Corporate tax could be a blunt tool, and could increase saving (see below). It is also a rather late tool, increases would need to be paid in 2024! It would not put money imediately in people’s pocket!

      VAT cuts was Gordon Brown favourite measure in 2009, and it help to some extent. It actually gives back money immediately, similar with reversing NIC increases.

      The Central Bank will continue to increase interest rates with a view to soften the labour market, so there is less pressure on wage increases – this is very important to induce a recession, but to avoid stagflation. With no big wage increases, inflation could be tamed.

      On the other side, the private sector (corporate and people) has just started saving and stopped borrowing. Sales of goods outside of food and energy were very weak in August. This could lead again to a balance sheet recession, a mindset in which people save more and more, because of too much uncertainty, instead of spending and borrowing.

      The Government needs to spend more and more and pick up those savings. I would not mind a 6% deficit this year. The Government needs to create investment opportunities, so savings are invested and use to purchase goods and services, ideally produced in the UK: new windmills, small nuclear reactors, etc.

  2. Peter Tompkins says:

    I love the thought of the ecclesiastical inter-Nicene argument over the Creed presumably. Jacob Rees-Mogg? I suspect you are expecting an internecine quarrel within the Tory party.

  3. Dave C says:

    At this point it all just makes for great entertainment.

    I’m more curious how far the UK public are willing to let continued utter incompetence run for.

    April 2023 is going to be grim.

  4. Nigel Hawkes says:

    It seems as if it is the same people who a few months ago were calling on Boris to resign and now that he has are complaining about a political vacuum. But you are right – they need to get a grip on energy policy and quickly. And even if they do the small boats will sink them unless they can sort those too.
    More likely the eu will cave in to Russia, allow them to keep swathes of Ukraine, sanctions will end and oil and gas prices will tumble. Whether that happens in time to save Liz and her cronies remains to be seen. In any event expect another leadership election next year.
    Pension policy is a long way down their agenda.

Leave a Reply