So Miliband`s answer, when faced with massive doubts about his ability to lead the Labour party to an election victory, is to show his party would be little different from the Tories if elected. Joining Cameron and Clegg, the two people most responsible for the imposition of callous austerity policies, in paying homage to the CBI, could well have done as much damage to the party`s election hopes as his pro-Establishment visit to Scotland in referendum week. Labour`s proposal for a minimum wage of £8 an hour by 2020, with "CEOs earning 257 times the average worker`s salary", is so feeble as to beggar belief. And they wonder why votes are haemorrhaging elsewhere!!
The CBI, representing business leaders who are sitting on over £500bn which they have "refused to channel into the economy", in a recent report,"A Better Off Britain", suggested ways to improve living standards. Instead of advocating that all companies should pay at least the living wage to all employees, or end their tax avoidance policies. currently costing the country at least £40bn a year, or even bosses taking a cut in pay, the report called for an increase in the National Insurance threshold to £10,500. Also recommended was the extension of free childcare and extended maternity pay, both funded presumably by the taxpayers. The CBI`s director general, John Cridland, thinks these proposals "would make a difference". No, Mr Cridland! What would make a difference is the CBI acknowledging both the debt business owes to workers and their families and paying them accordingly, and the role taxation plays in allowing companies to function; and of course, having a Labour party remembering where its priorities lie!
By saying that business leaders have been "at the sharp end of the most difficult times", and that his government would provide a minimum wage of £8 an hour but not until 2020, Miliband demonstrated exactly why Labour is floundering in the opinion polls.