Ok, so I’m coming into this whole election thingy a bit late in the day, but this has been floating around my little brain in the last couple of days:
This is our car. We’ve had it for a few years now. It’s served well. It’s had a couple of knocks, but still works ok. (Perhaps I should clarify at this point, it’s not the car that’s been floating around my little brain recently – that would be jolly inconvenient, no I’m just illustrating a point – stay with me). Last month, we bought this:It’s really quite nice. There’s a lot I have yet to learn about it, but it’s nice to drive. The boys are excited by the dizzying array of cup-holders (let’s face it, who wouldn’t be?!). It’s got a bit more oomph, and hopefully will last us for a few years.
However, it cost us money. The asking price was more than we’ve ever paid for a car (though we did once have a car loan, which ended up totting up to more than we’ve paid for this fella). Not only did it cost us money, but it will also continue to cost us money. More money, in fact, than the Skoda featured in exhibit ‘A’. It has a bigger engine and is newer. It is therefore more costly to insure. It also uses more petrol. It has a bigger fuel tank, so every trip to the pump costs more, and (given the bigger engine) doesn’t actually get you any further in terms of miles. I’m assuming that services and parts will cost a bit more (let’s face it, if I was making Skoda and BMW parts, I know which I’d put a higher price on). So not only did we commit to spending more money on purchasing it, it’s also a commitment to spend more money on running it.
By this time, you’ve either forgotten that this post started with a comment about politics, or you’re wondering where on earth I’m going with this. Well, this is the thing that’s been buzzing around my head of late.
The main parties seem to be promising us bigger and better things, and yet assuring us that they’ll save us money at the same time. They are, if you like, promising us the use of a BMW for less than the cost of a Skoda. And I just can’t help thinking that’s completely stupid. For one thing, if they are in a position to do that, why on earth weren’t they doing it already? And how on earth do they expect us to believe it’s possible? “We’ll cut your taxes”, they say, “and life will be even better, or at least, we’ll make sure it doesn’t get any worse”. Piffle. Seriously, are we expected to buy that?
It makes me want to vote for the party who are promising the greatest tax increases. At least that’s one thing they’re not lying about…