I never thought I'd agree with Stephen Liars but he's absolutely right about inheritance tax. However, the question for me is does he really believe the tax should be scrapped or is he just firing the starting gun in the Blair/Brown conference battle that is looming?
I prefer the latter to the former as explanation for his motives. However, I do hope the former becomes a central plank of any future Tory manifesto (at least in some way). I realise that we're being very careful right now not to mention specific tax cuts, but scrapping, or significantly raising the inheritance tax threshold would be a sensible move.
Inheritance Tax thresholds are the most blatent example of fiscal drag on the part of the Chancellor. They're a very clear indicator of how he has slowly increased his take of individual's wealth by stealth. There probably is an argument for inheritance tax on the "mega-rich", but many today get stung simply because the housing market has risen so much. Having a highly valued proeprty is no longer a genuine indicator of wealth.