A Successful Liberal Democrat Conference in Brighton

Vince Cable in Brighton 2018Like many delegates Nick and Rosemarie from Tring combined participation in the Liberal Democrat Conference with visits to rellies and a short holiday. They went down by train - taking a car to Brighton is a crazy thing to do - stayed in a convenient sea front hotel and had some excellent meals.

The trains behaved themselves well - Brighton to Berkhamsted in 1 hour 59 minutes with one change at Clapham Junction - and the weather warm with fresh winds.
The conference was at times interesting, inspiring, exciting and thought-provoking - and often all four at once.
Policies were clarified.

Yes, we want to exit from Brexit, because whatever the result of the referendum was over 2 years ago people have now changed their minds, many of the elderly who provided the leave majority have now departed and restrictions on who could or could not vote were undemocratic.

But fundamentally a free people must be free to change its mind - and that why we started the People's Vote movement.
A People's Vote on the final deal with an option to cancel Brexit and Remain is the only way to settle the matter fairly and start to heal the deep rift in our society.

Bold new policies were launched at the Conference.

The Liberal Democrats are deeply concerned about the massive levels of wealth and income inequality in this country.

We are proposing:

  1. Taxing both Income from Wealth and Income from Work in the same way and with similar rates
  2. Abolishing Tax-Free Allowances on Capital Gains and Dividends and taxing them the same way as Income.
  3. Abolishing Forgiveness of Capital Gain Tax liability at death
  4. Abolition of Inheritance Tax but,
  5. Taxing recipients of intergenerational transfers of wealth in three bands - above £250,000; above £500,000 and above £1 million.
  6. Taxes on Unusually High Value Lifetime Gifts (once above a threshold and with a lifetime £250,00 allowance)
  7. Closing Down all Tax Havens in British Crown Territories
  8. Reform of Business Rates
  9. Additional bands for higher value homes (think Kensington, think oligarchs) and considering abolishing council tax altogether and replacing it with a simple percentage-based property tax.

These and other measure will produce greater tax revenue, especially at the higher end, and this will be used to:

  1. reduce taxes for young people and low earners
  2. improve education and invest in infrastructure
  3. set up a CITIZENS' WEALTH FUND which could be used to provide a revenue stream to be split between an annual dividend to each citizen and/or increased public spending.