I have become very angry over the last 24 hours listening to the absolute bollocks that has been peddled by TV news (ITV and BBC for a change) about yesterday’s increase in VAT.
Let’s look at some of the quotes that have been shown in interviews with politicians and on the street vox pops :
“My business will suffer because the increase in VAT will leave people with less disposable income” – absolute bollocks. It will have no effect whatsoever on disposable income as it is a tax on spending not income. Nice scaremongering though.
“I’m worried about the increase in food prices.” This from a student. As there is no VAT on food, the only reason I can think of for believing this – apart from the fact that he may possibly be a brian washed leftie that believes Milipede propaganda – is that a student’s version of food comes across the bar or in takeaway wrappers. That’s not real food, mate, so it doesn’t count. Learn to cook!
“We’re no going to be able to go out down the pub with our mates or eat out when we want. It’s not fair!” I think that just about sums up the out of touch with reality element in this country.
“A family on £25,000 a year is going to be £396 a year worse off.” Now what the fuck do you base that on? Needless to say the calculation is not explained. As VAT is on spending not income, exactly how are we able to make this comparison? Lies, damn lies and statistics…
“It hits the poorest families more than the rich.” More bollocks. It’s nonsensical to look at the effect on earnings as it is a tax on spending. If I earn a million quid a year and spend sod all, then there is no VAT. Ditto if I earn fifteen grand. More accurately, you should look at the effect on spending power and not income. When you do this, it actually hits the richest worst.
“Comsumer groups warn that businesses will put up prices by between 5 and 8 per cent not just the 2.5% VAT element.” Well for a start the actual increase is less than 2.5% because it’s on the NET figure not the figure that already includes tax. Furthermore, if this is the case, it is called PROFITEERING and that is fuck all to do with the VAT increase – it’s just opportunistic greed!
Miliband says it is the wrong tax at the wrong time. He refuses at all junctures to answer the question “What would you do instead?” This is because the only viable alternative is National Insurance – and that really does hit the poorest worst because it hits their wage packets and employers’ wages bills.
He also conveniently forgets that the last Labour government tried to raise VAT twice but the move was blocked by Gordon Brown. And the perpetrator of the idea was – er – Ed Miliband.
One word of common sense came from a pensioner : “We’ve all got to pull our horns in ‘cos we’ve got no money. Labour spent it all. Anyway, we’ve managed before and we’ll do it again”
That last one was on the local news. I’ll bet it doesn’t make the nationals…