As a working class boy from Sheffield, I've been a supporter of the Conservatives all my life - bar supporting a UKIP councillor in a row with Westminster Council - but I fear the Tories have lost their way right now when it comes to the UK economy.
The easiest thing in the world to get our economy moving is to cut taxes. It's the simplest, most direct route that sadly frightens David Cameron and George Osborne. They're frightened of being pointed labelled rightwing fascists with people saying, "what about the poor people who aren't earning good money?"
But if you haven't got affluent people, then you can't look after the ones who really need help in society. Benefits are paid for by people who are working. It doesn't come from the sky. Therefore you should encourage people to work and to encourage them, you have to allow them to can keep as much money as they can possibly keep so they can aspire to a better life. When you are in a situation where taxes are high, aspiration goes out of the window. People can see that they're going to get nowhere, so it's an attitude of 'what the hell'. Then you read about all the people who aren't paying taxes because they've got clever accountants. Do I think that's immoral? No. They're just looking at our tax system and working it out to their advantage.
But the man in the street doesn't get the chance to do that. That's where it's immoral, that not everyone is given the opportunity to reduce their tax. In America, the top tax rate is under 11%. Over here, the tax rate is ludicrous. What you're saying to people is don't bother earning over £150,000, because we will start taking more money off you, so you stop having aspiration. I own my own companies, and I pay myself a salary, a very big one, therefore I am very annoyed that I have to pay extra. I do everything legal, correct and proper. Not because morally I think that's the best thing in the world, but I have no alternative. If someone came to me with a scheme and said as a high salary earner in the centre of London, this could work for you, it's within the legal bounds of the tax system, I would take it up immediately.
The government has got the middle classes, the salaried people by the throat and I think it's bad that the salary earner is made to pay for just about everything that happens in Great Britain.
I am still a Conservative but I am reluctantly. The only problem I have with UKIP is their policy towards immigration. I think it's too extreme, because I know Britain's strength has come from it over the centuries and that isn't going to change. And also I see a great deal of enthusiasm from people who have come to this country to work. They are prepared to work very, very hard, and not for cheap wages either. You see the first and the second generation too turn into very good business people as we know from the Asian community. In Stringfellows, with the girls, as long as they're EC, we're fine. A lot of my dancers are EC girls. They come from other countries to make their money here with an idea of going back, but the majority of them stay and become citizens and that's how it works.
Now, going back to the tax situation, it won't change because we have this ridiculous Coalition situation. It makes me so angry. I have no respect for Nick Clegg and I sometimes feel the same way about David Cameron. They both know their ideologies don't mix and the ones who are benefiting right now are Labour. And the way they dealt with the economy in the past, they shouldn't be seen in power for at least another 25 years. But because of our ridiculous Coalition, it could be that they could win the next General Election.
What David Cameron needs to do tomorrow morning is disband the Coalition. If people say you can't do that, if I was him, I would say, well get rid of me, and we're going to form a minority government and then it would be up to the Liberals who would probably go along with Labour to throw out the Conservatives. Then, the British people would see what it's all about, that the Liberals will go with anybody to get any kind of power.
The Lib Dems have already proven that they can't deal with power, not in this day and age. They're an old finished political dogma that now should really disappear. We haven't got a Conservative government, we have people like David and George who speak like Conservatives, but sadly, don't put it into practice.
Why am I a Conservative when I'm a working class boy from Sheffield? That word again, aspiration. To aspire means you want a good life. That's what keeps everybody going.
But even if you had better tax breaks in this country, even with all the aspiration in the world, you've still got to work hard! People look at what I've got and they ask what's the secret? And I say 50 years - my life is good, but it took me that long to get here. I've been bankrupt about two or three times, but it's a matter of applying yourself and getting up and starting again, and I didn't do that with any A grades or first class diplomas, I did it with a desire to succeed and make money. And when people stop thinking that making money is a bad thing, then Great Britain will respond. I think Great Britain is a wonderful country and I think the future is still very good.
So David and George, cut the bloody taxes, so they are way, way less than 40% for anyone on over £34K. In fact, with anybody who earns over £150,000, cut it down to 10% and then nobody would bother going offshore and all the money would come back into Great Britain. In two or three years, with a major tax change like that, then Great Britain would be absolutely soaring. Cheers to that!
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