Monday, February 23, 2009

Axe The Tax Campaigns: In Touch With The Inner Capitalist


Seems that the Tories new "Save The Great British Pub" campaign, like "Honest Food" and others before it is an exercise in collecting marketing data. There will be those who agree with sentiments expressed in comments at Conservative Home about the smoking ban, but the most telling for me is this one from blogging bog-standard teacher:

I am friendly with several landlords :) and they all tell me that the real problem is the unreasonable contracts they have with their owners. Large holding companies are screwing the life out of small pubs - what will be done about that?

Posted by: Chips of Brookfield | February 21, 2009 at 08:48



Must be said that I'm not sure of the practical politics of an incumbent party supporting any campaign that has two Xs in the title. But Unite the Union and my local Labour Party have cosied up rather with the non-party-political Axe The Beer Tax. Join that one and your email address won't find it's way onto Grant "1234" Shapps' security conscious hard drive.

Though (a) They have welcomed the Tories with open arms; and (b) Their main supporters are the alcohol industry (scroll to foot of page for the big guns); and (c) They don't really get to heart of the matter one which is BOGOFs; and (d) They don't really get to heart of the matter two which is supermarket chiselling and loss leaders; and (e) they don't really get to heart of the matter three which is excess profits and unsustainable business models. Why would they? They are United Capitalist Fronts!

Saving pubs is a good idea. Of course. Vital community centres. But neither of these campaigns is getting to the nub of the matter. That is the profitaholic pushers in the background of both the industry and the campaigns. On Saturday I went binge-drinking-lite with my middle brother Mike. In Chorlton. Pints cost 99p, 1.59, 1.85, 1.60, 1.80. There was not a pricing or tax issue interrupting our progress.

We could save local petrol stations by cutting duty and VAT on fuel, and tobacconists by cutting duty and VAT on tobacco, and clothes shops by cutting VAT on adult clothes, and all kinds of shops by simply cutting business rates. And VAT cuts in general of course. As approved by the erstwhile back bencher Ken Clarke. What revenue streams would be left to "balance" (ish) the national budget? "Axe the Tax" campaigns are, almost by definition, absurd bunkum.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

What revenue streams would be left to "balance" (ish) the national budget?...

We could start with making Brown and his bunch of useless cabinet members stay in London and save 220k a pop couldn't we? How many pubs would that save?

Yawwwwnnnnnnnn....Tory bad...Labour fab...

Do you have ANYTHING positive to say at all?

Anonymous said...

It isn't the tax that is causing the problem it is the rents and leases. If the Tories really want to do something then they should have a word with the companies who own the pubs. But of cause they are all Tory so we won't have any luck there.

benchilltory said...

what i dislike about pub going is not being able to find a seat and having to queue for ages to get served.both of these problems have got worse lately due to the vast number of non smokers flocking back into pubs since the smoking ban

Chris Paul said...

I don't think you have to queue for ages at the Benchill Old Lags rehabilitation centre aka Conservative Club now do you? And that is basically a pub, strangely enough with plenty of chairs available ...