Today the TaxPayers' Alliance joined the Rally Against Debt, in the shadows of the Houses of Parliament. Hundreds of people young and old gathered to voice their concerns over the size of the debt mountain looming over taxpayers and to argue that spending reductions are essential if we are to tackle it.
In the two hours the rally was on, the debt increased by nearly £30 million - a rate of over £1 million every five minutes - showing the scale of the problem we face. But despite the serious message it was an enjoyable day for those in attendance.
Speaking at the Rally were:
Paul Staines, political blogger (Guido Fawkes)
Mark Littlewood, Director General of the Institute of Economic Affairs
Priti Patel MP, Member of Parliament for Witham
Harry Cole, political blogger (Total Politics)
Matthew Sinclair, Director of the TaxPayers’ Alliance
Bill Cash MP, Member of Parliament for Stone
Martin Durkin, documentary filmmaker and activist (Britain’s Trillion Pound Horror Story)
Nigel Farage MEP, Member of the European Parliament for South East England
Matthew Sinclair, Director of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:
"It was extremely encouraging to see hundreds of people turn out and speak for the normally silent majority who know that, like it or not, spending cuts are right and necessary to cut the deficit and control the national debt. It can't only be special interests who exercise their right to protest, we need to represent the vital national interest in ensuring the government lives within taxpayers’ means. At the same time, the rally sent a clear message that it can’t be acceptable for cuts at home to be squandered in Brussels. It would be awful to see more and more of our money going to pay for interest on the debt instead of sustaining public services, and it would be immoral to leave the next generation with the bill for services today. It is vital that we keep making that point loud and clear."
Paul, an accountant, who attended the Rally, said:
There are no real cuts. Every year expenses go up. Over 5 years the Collation government will increase spending by £100 million. The government are continuing to borrow to spend. I’m an accountant, it just doesn’t make sense. Debt will always grow if they don’t have a plan to pay back.
Yasin, a student from Cannock, said:
I’m interested in higher education cuts. There are vanity courses which do nothing for Britain. I think that there is only an argument for things like engineering and nursing being be subsidised. Even then, when I did an occupational therapy course they gave me £200 a week which I didn’t need, I didn’t spend it on books it was ‘beer money’. EMA is the same, there are cuts that can be made.
Neil, who runs his own business, said:
I write checks for PAYE and NI, it’s a colossal amount of money. We hear talk now of ‘stealth taxes’, but PAYE and NI were the first stealth tax. Employees don’t see it go but the money is gone. Someone has to pay the national debt back, but it’s not the people consuming now.
Annabel, 16, said:
It's my generation that will have to pay. I'm glad to see that people are concerned about the size of the national debt. Yes, cuts are difficult, but we are in a bad situation and we need to face up to it. If you have a problem and you put off dealing with it, it gets worse.