> Not content with introducing a raft of unpopular cuts, George Osbourne also named his first child ‘Liberty’

George Osborne has a very difficult job. In conjunction with his party’s policy of reigning in the public debt they so vehemently blamed on New Labour during the election campaign, he has been responsible for savage cuts in expenditure and benefits.

As a result he has become less popular than even a member of the Irish Aristocracy who graduated from Oxford, fell into a job with the Conservative Party and named his first daughter Liberty should be.

Everyone, no matter who they are, will read what is said about them in the press. It is basic human curiosity and goes some way to explaining why prior Chancellors of the Exchequer, who by the very nature of their job and proximity to party decisions tend to generate more bad press than most, tend to become very withdrawn.

Mr. Osborne knew what he was signing up for but, in releasing statements to the press in interviews in which he compared benefit fraudster to muggers, he has shown a callous disregard for the possibility of his change into a beastly hybrid of the most unpleasant qualities of Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling combined.

The aforementioned interview was published in the News of the World and the BBC quoted him as stating:
“[A] welfare cheat is no different from someone who comes up and robs you in the street.”
Welfare fraud is without doubt a very serious issue, especially to a government trying to save money wherever they can. Such statements however, do no favours for a cabinet full of those who comfortably fall within the higher tax bracket and thus harbour a greater fear of their money being taken by those who they see as more undeserving than they.

The Chancellor’s remarks coincide with a range of new welfare reform measures, announced by Lord Freud. Yet when backed by a Government still desperately trying to crawl out from the particularly large rock of the expenses scandal that rocked the MP system, it doesn’t look all that sincere.

Further descriptions of benefit fraud as, “unacceptable and totally immoral”, show a level of hypocrisy bordering on the absurd from someone who is estimated to have owed over £50,000 to the public purse after playing the system for his second home, in order to pay less capital gains tax.

Those whose moral credibility ran out when moat maintenance was claimed as an expense (presumably to keep the black knight at bay) must be very careful when issuing double standards for themselves and others, lest the tenuous connection between the Conservative party and the majority of the nation (“surely they can’t be any worse than that other party”) be severed.

The Government must be accountable to the same laws and policies that they introduce and the road to garnering the belief of the people lies through communication and building trust in those whose decisions affect people’s future, not grandiose hypocritical statements.

Tempus Fugit Mr. Cameron.

By Benjamin Boss