Budget blues

So petrol and diesel are to go up, but not until October. But they are to go up again in 2009. And the top whack of road tax is to go up to £300 then £400, but the bottom rate is going down by 35%... or is it?

Yes, Gordon Brown's final budget was one of those typical Brown Budgets where he plays the magician and leaves you guessing as to what he has actually done.

Putting fuel up by 3.8p a litre over the next two years might not sound too horrific. But, that is at least £50 more tax on the average car driver's annual tax bill and it comes on top of some of the highest fuel taxes in the world.

The 35% reduction in the road tax bill for small cars is a real smoke and mirrors figure. By combining the diesel and petrol bands at the same time as reducing the tax it makes the figure look artificially good. In reality the Chancellor has only taken £5 off the car tax for petrol vehicles - a real reduction of only 12.5%!

So he didn't target 4x4s directly as some green warriors wanted him to do. Mindful, perhaps, that that would seem like a direct attack on rural road users, Chelsea Tractors maybe being unnecessary in Central London but essential in remoter areas of Wales or the Highlands, he jacked up the tax on various tax bands.

Band G was the hardest hit, with tax going up to £300 first then £400.

The justification for this is that they put out more carbon dioxide to add to the 0.45% that there is currently in our atmosphere. It appears, therefore, that that there is no argument in Government about the greenhouse gas theory. They clearly see global warming being caused by carbon dioxide emissions, rather than the other way round.

A substantial number of climate scientists believe that natural warming cycles of the planet account for the increase in carbon dioxide. In other words, they argue, carbon dioxide is not the cause but the effect.
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