Sunday, April 27, 2008

Lib Dem Lies: Are They Using These Fibs Nationwide?

Part of the small rain forest of mendacity received from the Lib Dems this morning was a letter to my partner about "Labour's Tax Hike". This was strikingly misleading and signed in a childish hand by the candidate who appears on the top in a polka dot dress. Not an obviously well qualified commentator on Labour tax changes.

But let's not make this a personal attack. The leaflet enclosed with the letter has the air of being something Hywel "Rifleshot Leaflets" Morgan and the other clowns at Cowley Street have dashed off for cut and paste around the country. Even badder than one of Hywel's cut and paste one-shape-fits-all bar charts.

It carries a small table with five different categories of victims of "Labour's tax hike hitlist":

Not one line in this table stands up to even cursory scrutiny. Two of them are particularly outrageous. No-one wants to lose on a tax change. But it looks impossible to lose anything like the amounts quoted down the right hand side whatever exact income one has.

Single, No Children If you are single, no children and earn £17,999 you don't lose £300 as the table states. In fact on the back of an envelope basis you might be £10 or so better off. And the worst case is about £90£180 worse off.

Childless Couple, One Working If you are a childless couple with one working, earning "under £8,000" you could stay the same or perhaps lose a little. Perhaps around £90£180. But the famous back of the envelope basis does not reveal a single case which could possibly be £232 worse off.

Family with Children, Both Parents Work, Combined Income £8,000 The third scenario is quite frankly the most ridiculous of the lot. If you are a family with children where both parents work and with a combined income of under £8,000 you are more than £2,000 shy of paying any tax at all. Never mind a ludicrous £446 worse off.

Retired Women 60-64 on £8,000 The fourth one is just a tiny bit closer to the truth. But don't rely on it. One would lose about £100 on the first £2,000 after the individual allowance. And gain about a couple of pounds on the balance. Again it's about £90£180 at worst.

Early Retiree on £8,000 This fifth one also computes I think to about £90£180, not the £232 quoted by the lying Lib Dems.

The table ignores benefits completely. And the £90£180 maximum potential losses on the back of my envelope do too. Also that Gordon Brown has promised to fix these unintended consequences. Which he could do with an extra £500-£1000 individual allowance for those affected and/or by extending benefits to them. UPDATE: The latter being more attractive as it would be hard to justify an extra £1000 allowance for these groups alone.

Could Lib Dem Finance Spokesman Vince Cable MP and the mischievious idiots responsible for this catalogue of scaremongering fibs make an immediate and vociferous apology for such a pile of Lib Dem arithmetic nonsense?

It is bad enough for people to lose £90 a year at these sorts of incomes - even if presented as "no longer gain an extra £90 bonus" and even if largely compensated by benefits and rebates - but there really is no excuse for such ridiculous misrepresentations as these.

If they actually believe the figures themselves it is not difficult to see how Lib Dem Liverpool have got into a situation where a 5% Council Tax Hike and £62 Million of cuts in public services are needed to "balance" their budget.

Could anyone who has seen the same table reproduced in their area leave a comment or send an email to Scans welcome. Thanks.

Here's Lie-Anne's sign off. You couldn't make it up. Well you could actually. And she actually has. What a cheeky fibber she is.

UPDATE: Apparently the Daily Mail ran the very same lies as Lie-Anne on the tax losses. And Hywel Morgan has never worked at Cowley Street and played no part - for the party centrally - in this election. Though he did write Lib Dem campaigning manuals about Rifleshot Leaflets, Barmy Bar Charts, Lying and Cheating in Elections and the like. Apologies Hywel.

UPDATE TWO: Having reviewed both The Daily Mail figures and the back of my own envelope I come to this conclusion, posted there as a comment:

The figures in your table are UTTERLY WRONG surely? There is no loss at all for a couple earning £8000 between them. And while the maximum loss for any of the other four categories is perhaps £200 a single worker earning £18,000 would lose nothing or come out slightly ahead in fact.
Rough workings: Lose £200 by extra tax on income between £5300 and £7400 ... gain £2 per £100 thereafter. So £10,000 later - approximately £17400 - quits. Thereafter start slowly but surely to gain.
The gimmick of not factoring in benefits and rebates is pretty pathetic too.

On that last point it is the case that The Mail's table is clearly marked that the figures don't account for benefits. The Fib Dems one however carries the same howlers - particularly on the single worker, which is grossly exaggerated, and the couple with combined £8000 which is completely wrong - but the warning about Benefits has been redacted. The Fib Dems also fail to acknowledge their utterly unreliable source.

Meanwhile I must concede that ignoring benefits the other three categories could lose somewhere between my optimistic £90 and the very pessimistic Lib Dem/Daily Mail figures. I needed a bigger envelope to scribble on it seems.


Anonymous said...

Have a heart Chris, we didn't let Lianne sign like that. But you're right about the figures. They're another of my little hoaxes.

Anonymous said...

Ooh a polka-dot dress! How bitchy! Dress sense is one of my main voting criteria. What's Sheila Newman wearing on her leaflets?

Chris Paul said...

Who Cares "Tim Kinsella"? At least both the extremely fibby and silly Lie-anne with her huge fucking fibs (and tiny polka dots) and the hard working councillor, Chorlton resident and mother Sheila Newman actually exist.

You on the other hand are a sock puppet of the worst kind who has been exposed before.

You do not have the courage to use your own name and just spew crap on other people's blogs. In M21 mostly.

Pathetic. Really it is.

Anonymous said...

Sorry for ruffling your feathers, Chris. I didn't know you were in such a delicate state at the moment.

I don't consider the fact that you used your wealth of journalistic experience to type two words into Google to be much of an exposé. As for being exposed, that only happens when I go to the Lib Dem Nudist Conference to receive my orders from my sock-puppeting masters.

I assume you are contrasting me with the courageous Labour supporters who post anonymously on your blog and who spew honesty and virtuosity? (See above).

If the views of everyone who disagrees with you are 'crap' then you must have been wading through a lake of sewage for most of your life.

Anonymous said...

P.S. That link should have taken you here

Chris Paul said...

Listen "Tim" ... I know all about the jazzer you stole your name from. You are a cowardly front for a Lib Dem who needs an "invisible friend" to banter for them. Pathetic. Still.

The charge sticks like the TK crap.

Anonymous said...

The same figures are quoted by the Daily Mail at

Hywel said...

"The leaflet enclosed with the letter has the air of being something Hywel Morgan and the other clowns at Cowley Street has dashed off for cut and paste around the country."

As I have never worked at Cowley Street and haven't done any work at all for the party for these elections I'd be grateful if you could correct this.

"But let's not make this a personal attack."

Gosh yes. That would be terrible.

Anonymous said...

Now now, it's only an election. Just life and death. Not like football.

Hywel said...

I think on reflection you might also want to amend or remove the comments about my having written a manual on how to cheat in elections as that is a pretty serious allegation.

Tameside Eye said...

Chris, the love hearts above the signature seem to be of a higher quality res than the signature itself. Have you done this or the Lib Dems?

Anonymous said...

are you not in any way ashamed by your governments actions?
re read your missive, your are bragging about cuts in income for the low paid
how shameful!

Giacomo said...

Oh dear.

First of all what is a lie.

Well it’s something that is:

• Not a matter of opinion,
• is factually incorrect and
• Is known by the teller to be factually incorrect.

I’d love to live in your world, where so much appears to be clear cut and black and white.

I disagree with the Daily Mail/Lib Dem figures, but I can see it is a matter of opinion as to who’s figures are right. What do you factor in when working these things out? Benefits? But we’re talking about the tax changes, not the mitigating factors. The changes to normal tax thresholds? It can be argued that in real terms this untaxed income hasn’t changed for all but the over 65s, so to get an accurate picture you need to compare income above the thresholds.

Personally if it were me I would have rationalised things by keeping the 22% tax rate and raised tax thresholds in real terms. That would have been fairer. In my opinion.