How Labour’s economics of the madhouse would ruin UK, says ROSS CLARK

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Jeremy CorbynLabour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn (Image: Richard Martin-Roberts/Getty Images)

But with the launch of Labour's campaign it has become clear that an even more important choice confronts us all: do we want to carry on being a market economy, in which we are largely left alone to spend our own money and make decisions which affect our lives, or do we want to be a Soviet-style command economy in which the government makes these decisions for us? Astonishingly, Jeremy Corbyn told an audience in Telford that he finds "depressing" the thought that young people should "have to make their own way in the world".

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It says all you need to know about him - that he doesn't trust us to be put in charge of our own lives but wants an all-encompassing state to dictate just about all we do. It is the same with his attitude towards business. He talks about entrepreneurs as if they were evil and treats profit as a dirty word. Through his nationalisation plans he would put civil servants back in charge of running major industries - in spite of the mess they made in the 1970s.

And there are Labour's tax-and-spend plans which would involve a massive expansion of the state. Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell says he wants to spend £150billion over the next five years on a "social transformation fund", as well as £250billion over the next decade on a green transformation fund. An extra five per cent income tax on anyone earning more than £80,000 a year would be quite a hit in the pay packet for doctors and headteachers, but you wouldn't end up with many people fleeing Britain just over that.

But when you start to examine Labour's plans in more depth the consequences become clearer. The two commitments announced so far would mean the government spending an extra £55billion a year. That is nearly a seven per cent increase in public spending - and that is before the manifesto launch. If Labour commits to abolishing tuition fees, for example, that will add another £10billion annually.

McDonnell isn't going to raise this money through higher income tax on the

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