The Autumn Statement today saw chancellor George Osborne U-turn on tax credits, pledge 400,000 new homes by 2020 and protect police funding in real-terms.

However, possibly the most striking moment of the statement occurred in the response, when shadow chancellor John McDonnell brandished Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung, commonly known as the 'Little Red Book', at the despatch box.


He then proceeded to quote Mao Zedong, from his famed book of selected communist statements and writings, to the chancellor, apparently in reference to the government rolling out the red carpet to Chinese investment.

I think you'll find this rather valuable. Let's quote from Mao, rarely done in this chamber.

'We must learn to do economic work from all who know how, no matter who they are. We must esteem them as teachers, learning from them respectively and conscientiously. But we must not pretend to know what we do not know.'

...before tossing the book to his side of the house.

It may have been the sole moment of the statement appreciated by everyone, as shown by Osborne's acknowledgement that, yes, that had just happened.

Truly, what a time to be alive.

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