Op-ed: On April 29, 2015, days ahead of the UK General Election we wrote "Desperate David Cameron has announced yet another election promise. This time the Tories are promising to put into law a ban on various increases within 100 days of coming to office."
And on that score he was true to his word.
Our report was titled "Cameron unfunded tax lock promise" and it seems we were spot on.
Saturday the mainstream media are reporting Ameet Gill, an aide who ran Cameron's Downing Street events planning, has called the tax-lock promise "probably the dumbest economic policy ever."
In April 2015 the Labour Party, with Ed Miliband as its leader, described that promise as a "last-minute" gimmick" adding it would make tackling the deficit more difficult.
But the Tories were always going to fulfil election promises to fat friends and the poor and vulnerable were always going to be financially hit.
In late April the FT said Cameron would announce "a law banning any rise in income tax, VAT or national insurance in the next parliament, in a highly unusual move that would severely restrict the Treasury’s room to manoeuvre if he won a second term."
But the 2015 Tory manifesto was always a work of fiction.
Many voters take a political manifesto as a series of pledges or promises when in reality some politicians use it as ideas, possible plans or simply a way to say anything to win votes.
What is always telling is what becomes reality following an election win, what is conveniently forgotten and what is overturned.
BRexit is Cameron's legacy.
In 2015 he vowed to step down but stay in offce until the next scheduled election planned for 2020. He promised the electorate a referendum on EU membership and kept his word on that score.
But when a majority voted for BRexit he chickened out, again, and ran. First he quit as Prime Minister before resigning his Witney seat.
So some promises met others broken.
The country now has an unelected PM Theresa May. She has a new cabinet. A year after a general election the country is being governed by a group of people who are fairly clueless on BRexit and who are considering unknown changes.
We are weeks away from Philip Hammond's first budget as Tory Chancellor. That Autumn Statement to Parliament is scheduled for November 23, 2016.
Manifestos may be flawed but they provide an idea of the direction a government may go.
We the people have no idea what Ms May's manifesto is.
On November 23, 2016, we may get some idea of what Ms May and her government plan for us all.
Watch out for smoke and mirrors though plus spin and hyperbole as the Tories try to protect "them that has" at the expense of the rest of us.
Op-Ed: In November British government sources announced that David Cameron plans to spend £10million of taxpayers’ money on a prime ministerial jet. The jet was quickly dubbed 'Cam fly with me' and 'Con Air' and Cameron faced hefty criticism. The government tried to sell news of the PM jet as a money saving venture but they were not convincing.
But as David Cameron continues his whistle-stop tour of Europe, if not the world, we wonder about the environmental as well as financial cost and implications.
Not so long ago Cameron joined other world leaders in Paris to discuss climate change and come up with a plan to tackle and limit further damage.
It appears though that it was a plan for we the little people not our servants in government.
The Paris climate change summit dragged on with escalating costs, not least for security, and entourages including media representatives stomping huge carbon footprints all over the affair.
Political hypocrisy knows no bounds these days.
But while Cameron obsesses about a planned in / out EU referendum he appears to have abandoned the UK and its people.
Cameron has flitted around Europe for months trying to secure a renegotiation of UK membership terms to lay before the people; the electorate will then decide if they want 'Brexit' or 'Bremain'.
He forgets that some want out full stop and any deal will be immaterial.
The Tories committed to an in / out EU referendum in their election manifesto and it is one promise Cameron and his ministers want to keep. It helped bring back disenfranchised right-wing political support from parties such as Ukip and will be a big test for Cameron.
If he fails to secure a deal which voters approve by voting to stay in the EU his days as PM will be numbered. However Cameron has already said he will step aside to a successor some time before the 2020 elections.
His abusive and dismissive behaviour at PMQs each Wednesday looks rather like a man-on-the-ropes. He vents his spleen on Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn so presumably he seems that man as a threat to Tory plans.
But Cameron's PMQ appearances show a man who is out of touch, speaking from an idiot sheet penned presumably by others, because he spends more time obsessing about the EU and enjoying and extended European tour he is clueless.
Cameron pledged to hold the EU ref before the end on 2017 so why the rush?
He has gone on record to say he is not in a rush but that seems far from the truth.
Timing is important in politics and Cameron and the Tories if nothing else are good at the game of politics.
Political Pundits believe Cameron will hold the EU referendum this summer, possibly late May or June, and if so probably as there are other elections scheduled.
It will be held on his terms but voters can be unpredictable.
Op-Ed: Desperate David Cameron has announced yet another election promise. This time the Tories are promising to put into law a ban on various increases within 100 days of coming to office.
But can you trust a Tory promise, even one that on face value may sound a positive for you?
The FT reports Cameron will announce Wednesday "a law banning any rise in income tax, VAT or national insurance in the next parliament, in a highly unusual move that would severely restrict the Treasury’s room to manoeuvre if he won a second term."
You may be a self-motivated voter, and who can blame you for trying to protect your income especially if money is in short supply, but does that promise have any real clout?
This latest Tory desperate move could mean many things.
The first thing that sprang to my mind Wednesday was what will they do in the first 100 days? Will they up income tax, VAT or national insurance within 100 days and then freeze the revenue?
In truth VAT, national insurance and income tax increases will more often cripple the poor and vulnerable in the UK rather than Tory fat friend donors. They have enough money to take a hit when you live on a pittance you do not.
Even a relatively small increase can cause financial ruin if you are poor; take the Tory flagship policy the Bedroom tax. As the Queen occupies properties more often mainly empty than ever full and MPS enjoy second homes where the same applies the poor are penalised if they dare to have a spare bedroom in their home.
The Tories pre the 2010 election said they had no plans to increase VAT but it was one of the first things they did. Saying they had no plans gave them a get-out-clause but they still have room for manoeuvre even after today's announcement.
They could apply VAT to a range of other services or products.
The Conservative would like to abolish national insurance and so no increases will suit them; it will also mean business owners will not have to pay an increased contribution for their employees either so this policy does not go against Tory thinking.
Finally no tax increases obviously suits fat friends who could pay more.
And something will have to give to fund all of this and if it is a Tory government it will not be those who could afford to.
The Tories have already announced spectacular savings if they are re-elected but will not say where the money to do this will come from.
They continue to make promises leaving few resources to fund further austerity measures.
Money needed for the treasury will come from more benefit cuts, caps and freezes.
But before you sit back and say that will not affect me think again.
Labour initiated tax credits to help the working poor and implemented a minimum wage policy.
The Tories last time around implemented a 'five-years in office law' for government rather than four year terms.
So what does all of this mean?
It means if elected the Tories will have five-years to bleed the poor dry. It means the wealthy Tory election campaign will spin the truth to perfection. That means you can expect an increase in indirect taxes such as council tax as funding is cut and a reduction in the Social Security benefit now rebranded welfare to make it sound like a handout rather than a safety-net you have paid into.
Final thought: There are many ways to skin a rabbit and the Tory party, as a party of hunters, is skilfully doing just that. Related
Cameron’s conference promise: Unfunded tax cuts for all - but especially for the rich...