Tuesday, September 12, 2006

INDUSTRIAL POLITICAL CORRECTNESS OFFICERS - Speech against what became SLD policy - Oct conference 2005

Section 1 here is absolutely correct - Scots have a history of creating & developing businesses worldwide & WE desperately need to let them do the same here.

Unfortunately there is NOTHING in this motion which does that.

In the Allander Report on growing the Scottish economy one complaint was the propensity of politicians to make all the right noises about growth & then go do whatever they wanted in the first place.

That is what this motion does.

In a similar way Jack McConnell has said that growth is his "first priority" but, apart from being the man who raised business rates in the first place, has done nothing. However the fact that he said it proves HE knows growth is the first priority of voters. If we are ever to EARN a position as Scotland's largest party it will be because WE have provably made economic growth our true first priority.

Instead this motion would load wealth creators down with an entire new class of inspectors, committed not to any measurable standards but merely to general political correctness, rigidly enforceable on anybody who has to do business with the 54% of the economy that is the state. If this motion had been made truly voluntary I would have had no problem with it but a compulsory enforcement of government political correctness inspectors is a bad thing.

Scotland has had the lowest growth rate in Europe, itself the slowest growing continent on Earth.

That is why WE have recently cut business taxes & Nicol Stephen said, at Federal Conference, that we need further cuts to kickstart growth as Ireland has so spectacularly done.

I believe that there is nothing intrinsically wrong with Scotland which would make it impossible for us to match, or exceed, Ireland -

Their growth of 7% a year over 15 years has nearly tripled their GNP while ours has gone up barely 20%.

Ireland achieved this, not just by cutting business taxes, but also by cutting regulation.

This motion, obviously, does the opposite.

Worse - section 3 calls for wealth creators to be made "accountable" for satisfying the "expectations" of all & sundry including "special interest groups".

This is a blank cheque which could stifle any growing business.

Finally - will political correctness inspectors increase productivity & cut costs?

It says so right here on the tin in section 4 - & I do not believe it. If it were so the directors of Asda would not have to be forced to ask the builders of Holyrood how to cut costs.

If you are also unable to believe this PROMISE you CANNOT, cannot, in good conscience, vote for it & I ask you not to.
They could & did.

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