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Monday, 10 June 2019

Boris promises to bribe the public sector

There is one part of the nation's demographic lost to the Conservative Party - the public sector. Home to agile, graduate, socially liberal Remainers, our schools, universities, hospitals, councils and every body or NDPB funded by tax are now solid Labour or LibDem territory. Not at the bottom, of course - not the young constables, cleaners, cooks and clerks - but the professional and executive ranks, say from £40k upwards, and all teachers and clinical practitioners.

These are the cohorts of our society least affected by globalism, most adapted to take advantage of AI changes, and who have suffered least from 'austerity' - which has meant closing libraries and school kitchens, not making managers redundant. They are not users of food banks, not customers of payday loan sharks, not precariously balancing food, heat or clothing against each other. These are the young, privileged new elite of Britain; the Netflix and Uber generation, with car leases and new apartments in Peckham who take one main and two weekend breaks abroad each year, visit restaurants and have surplus cash for entertainment.

So Boris is proposing to give away £10bn in tax benefits to them by raising the tax threshold from £50k to £80k. And it's quite clear who he's promising to bribe - as the Telegraph reports
Those who found themselves paying the higher rate included teachers, senior police officers and some nurses. The Conservatives subsequently increased the threshold from £41,900 to £50,000 in response to the concerns of Tory MPs. Mr Johnson's plans, however, go significantly further.
Personally I no longer have a stake in this - my post-retirement income is under the higher tax threshold. But I do care deeply for our nation, and for the welfare of all our people. The shittiest part of this public sector bribe is that the lowest-paid will fund it; the £10bn "cost of the move will be funded partly by increasing employee national insurance payments .." reports the Telegraph. Boris. you dickhead, take a look at this ONS chart -

Since 2008, the value of earnings of those on median pay (£28,400 in 2018 according to the ONS) has actually fallen.

This is not 'One Nation' Conservatism. This is naked, calculated subversion of public funds to bribe those who have electorally deserted the Conservative Party. I could not, this morning, cast my vote for Boris Johnson. For now, my vote is with Raab.

I've just split the effect by region (GOR) from the ONS tables. Below.
There was a news comment earlier that puts the gross cost at £20bn - net cost £9.6bn. Boris claims this money would go back into the economy; hmm. I suspect at this level a lot of it will go into savings, pensions and investments rather than into the tills of High Street shops, so perhaps a limited benefit for the country as a whole. And bugger all good if you're in the North East though your NHS GP (~ £100k) may look happier.


Sackerson said...

Better to widen the nil rate band and leave other thresholds unchanged.

Raedwald said...


DeeDee99 said...

The virtue-signalling, public-sector elite will no more recognise that this is a bribe than the BBC will recognise that the licence fee is basically a poll tax.

They earn and deserve it, you see.

Stephen J said...

Looking at these tory hopefuls is less like a beauty contest and more like a parade of Bettaware spivs, or one of those blokes that has just come out of chokey and have some serious dishwashing cloths for sale.

I wouldn't trust any of them as far as I could throw them...

Which makes the "lovely" Esther, my champ, she must be half the weight of the oafish Boris.

The CONservative Party, together...

Marching to Columbia.

decnine said...

Just maybe, you are focussing on the wrong thing. The most important question is not, "What percentage of this income will be taken as tax?" The most important question is, "How will the amount of tax collected change as a result?" Lowering tax rates that are too high result in more tax revenue, not less.

Raedwald said...

Decnine - the net cost has been calculated at £10bn - i.e. the UK will collect £10bn LESS income tax overall per annum.

RAC said...

I neither like or trust Boris.
Raab may be the best of a bad bunch but I wasn't impressed when he was reported as saying no deal should be kept as a bargaining ploy.
I would be happier if he'd said no deal is the goal, and if the eu doesn't want that they can come to us with some options, and they better be good ones.
I would prefer someone who sets off with the right attitude and sticks to it.

Plantman said...

Raedwald @ 09.07

Is that calculation by the same crew of treasury experts that forecast their estimate of the financial consequences of a leave vote?

Dave_G said...

You can't discuss taxation and growth without including those that control it - the banks.

People are being systematically robbed of savings by the manipulation of the countries finances that stems entirely from the banks' control of money-printing.

The country/world is in dire straits over their finances and we, as the fools that perpetuate it (by our refusal to address it), are suffering wage depression, inflation and, ultimately, bankruptcy as a result.

Politically, changing the tax bands to garner support from people who would then be signing their own bankruptcy orders is stupidity piled on idiocy. Talk about shuffling the deck chairs......

Sort term gain for long term catastrophe.

Anonymous said...

There's a problem with the zero rate tax band, and that is that people paying no tax have no skin in the game, and are quite happy to see rates rise for those actually paying tax. In fact, since employee NI starts at around £8600, people earning more but still in the zero rate band are already paying tax - 12% on anything above £166 per week, and as the employer pays 13.8%, he can't pay it to the employee, so the effective rate is 25.8%. Of course, NI looks like a hypothecated tax, but it isn't.

Anyone earning more than £118 per week is treated as though they paid NI, when in fact neither they nor their employer contribute anything.

Someone on exactly £12500 is paying about seven and a half percent of it to the government.

Anonymous said...

"There's a problem with the zero rate tax band, and that is that people paying no tax have no skin in the game, and are quite happy to see rates rise for those actually paying tax."

Even those who pay no income tax do pay a good deal in VAT, for instance on fuel. If they can afford beer or petrol, they pay high taxes on those.

Don Cox

Stephen J said...


Agreed but don't point it out, they will start a war.

Domo said...

The poor can only pay no tax if the government budget is small.

If banks can print money, why did Northern Rock run out?
If banks can print money, why go through the effort of taking deposits and making loans, why not just print money and pay bumper bonuses?

RAC said...

FFS stop wasting your time debating taxes, We're always going to be robbed, always.
The question is are we to be robbed by the eu or by our own govmnt.
Equally, if not the more important question is why all the govmnt., paid jobs are infested by the scrounging greedy workshy left.

Scrobs. said...

One of the meanest ways that people are being robbed these days is through the retail power companies and their stealth schemes to keep power charges high.

It is signal that comparison websites continue to bandy 'new' rates around like confetti, but the big fiddles and cheating is still with the myriad of electricity and gas suppliers coming to the market almost hourly.

Yeah, I know we're all responsible for our own bills, but talking with less wily, elderly chums recently, the utilities are just creaming it off in most cases.

If Boris really wants to help citizens, then deal with that lot, then tell the BBC to sod off - that's a couple of billion that could be used by families to keep afloat, not piddling tax changes which, let's face it, are meaningless, unless like me, you always expect to be cheated by politicians, elitists, and the rest of them expecting huge pensions after a few years.

DiscoveredJoys said...

I wondered at first if Boris had made an unforced error... he could just have said nothing and retained his lead. And then I wondered if the tax band promise was part of a quid pro quo for someone's or some groups support.

Who ever is successful will probably choose a new Chancellor who will be charged to make all the campaign promises balance.

Anonymous said...

The comment (Anon:09:59) is about income taxation. Personally, I don't see anyone on the tax free band paying VAT on a new car, for example. Most of their spend is on tax-free items, although even supposedly tax-free things like food are transported in taxed vehicles, and produced by people who have to pay taxes on their profits, so even tax-free is a fiction..

John Downes said...

Not all high earners work in public services.
Me, I'm highly skilled in in one the learned professions and I have never worked outside private enterprise, nor would I as a matter of principle. I'm conservative by temperament and a member of the Brexit Party.
I would certainly benefit from Boris's proposals and you will forgive me, I hope, if I say that they sound like a damned good idea.

Cheerful Edward said...

RAC, if you call having 1% of your taxes sent to the EU "being robbed", then yes you are.

You must be in a right two-and-eight, about the cost of crime in the UK to you then. That's about twice the EU average per head too, incidentally.

Dave_G said...

@Michael (11:58)

I agree - the idea that energy needs to be necessarily complicated (and expensive) goes right against the idea that we should be cutting back usage and the CO2 it derives.

If the first xkWhr (say 250kWhr) was at a fixed (low) price per kW and anything over that was priced on a sliding scale of greater expense per kWhr it would help the poor/needy afford to pay for it and 'punish' the excessive users i.e. encourage them to cut back.

If the Government and suppliers were GENUINELY for CO2 reduction then they would jump at this plan/opportunity. You can tell that they are cynical thieves by their real motives and actions.

Scrobs. said...

Thank you David, nutshell-your comment; agreed!

Cheating is endemic where utilities are concerned I'm afraid.

W. Fields said...

Well done to Geoffrey Cox. No need to go through Parliament for a no deal.