There are two straws in the wind. And to show I’m not just being negative I’ll start with the positive news.
I’ve never made a secret that I think that the last Labour administration was too nervous of confront vested interests and sort out unfairness in the tax system, if big business and the rich don’t want it (sorry but anyone with 2 houses is rich). I think the proposal to tax capital gains at the same rate as income is overdue. After all money is money and it should help to reduce tax avoidance as well as raising revenue directly (and if that’s used to raise the income tax threshold it’s good for the average worker too). Credit where it’s due and I was pleasantly surprised to see this.
However on the other hand Labour’s record on civil liberties is one I’ve never shouted from the rooftops, so this was an area I expected to be ruefully admitting the new administration was doing well. So what happens on the day of the queen’s speech, a day when we celebrate that the queen can’t enter the commons and tell us what to do in case parliament declares war on her (the Commons have to go and be told what to do by her in the Lords instead, but still…)? Brian Hawe, who is authorised to protest outside parliament, is arrested.
It’s a bit rich to have the coalition banging on about improving civil liberties and then Westminster Council and the Mayor of London (both Conservative) attacking them outside the building with not even a comment by the Prime Minister or the Deputy?
Come off it, if civil liberties include the right to fox hunt (which I don’t think they do) they include the right to be a wear a hat with badges and use awful puns to protest for what you think is right.