There are three main reasons why George Osborne will not present the spending-cuts-and-tax-rises emergency budget he promises if Britain votes to leave the EU next Thursday.
- First, because were Brexit really to lead to an immediate economic convulsion, the Chancellor would do the opposite of what he says he’d do. Rather than raise taxes and cut spending, he would cut taxes and raise spending.
- Second, because were he nuts enough to try to do the opposite, the Commons would stop him.
- And, third, because in the event of Britain quitting the EU he won’t be Chancellor for long, and will thus be in no position to present a Budget at all.
The polls must really be rattling the Remain campaign for Osborne to produce rubbish like this. The phrase he once applied to Gordon Brown applies to him: he is treating people like fools.
Perhaps he and David Cameron can take the next logical step and threaten the end of western civilisation. But I was forgetting: that one’s already been tried.