A sad thing about the good things in life is that we can get so used to them as to take them for granted. So it is with the current state of council tax.
Under Labour, it rose by 109 per cent. Under the Coalition, it has gone up by three per cent – a fall of 11 per cent in real terms. (These are Band D figures.)
The dual means by which these low increases have been brought about are Eric Pickles’s council tax freeze plus the threat of referendums on rises of more than two per cent.
One can argue that curbing the freedom of local authorities to set council tax as they please isn’t very localist. But there is no disputing the effectiveness of Pickles’s policy.
In a nutshell, very many people in England who have been hard-pressed during the long recession have been protected from big council tax rises.
Meanwhile, in Wales, that laboratory experiment for Labour Government in Britain as a whole, it has risen by 17.8 per cent.
Who needs to gaze into the crystal ball of what a Miliband Government would be like – when it comes to council tax, anyway – when one can read the book of what Labour is already up in Wales?
Russell Brand says that there’s no difference between the parties (and utilises the capitalist system to sell his books claiming so). For a repudiation of his view, look no further than council tax.