Monday, 12 April 2010

Labour 2010 Manifesto - Fiction Or Fact?

A few 'inconsistencies' in the above:

“The direct tax and benefit measures introduced since 1997 mean that in 2010-11, households will be £1,450 a year better off on average.”
Here’s another number from respected tax and spend analysts the Institute for Fiscal Studies: -£270. The IFS found households are in fact £270 worse off, on average, as a result of all of Labour’s tax and benefit measures than they were in 1997. Labour’s claim mentions only one type of tax – direct taxes (taxes levied directly on individuals, such as income tax and national insurance).
The IFS’s figure (on which there’s much more detail here) takes into account all the tax and benefit changes introduced since 1997. That includes direct taxes, as well as indirect taxes on services such as VAT, fuel duty or stamp duty, and business taxes such as capital gains tax and corporation tax.  Should not a claim that households are 'better off' be based on overall income and expenditure?

“The Tories would cut police and PCSO numbers.”
Labour has promised to protect police numbers till 2013. The Tories haven’t made a similar commitment – they think numbers should be up to local police chiefs rather than dictated centrally. Whoever gets into power will have to make cuts; the Tories have pledged to cut faster than Labour. Labour maintain that, because the Tories aren’t promising to protect the front line, police and PCSO numbers would be at risk. Given the current financial climate, pretty much anything not protected is at risk. But that doesn’t back up the firmer claim Labour makes in its manifesto that the Tories will cut police numbers.

“We have done all we can to keep mortgage rates low – at 0.5 per cent during this recession compared to 15 per cent in the 1990s – and will continue to do so in the future.”
In October 1989 interest rates were hovering just below 15 per cent, but from October 1990 that number gradually fell (although staying in double figures). And then Black Wednesday happened. On 16 September 1992 interest rates jumped to 12 per cent as the Conservative government under John Major battled to stop the pound crashing out of the ERM. But that wasn’t enough, and rates of 15 per cent were announced. After the ERM 'crash' rates remained at 12 per cent. One month later interest rates fell to just under 8 per cent, and stayed under 6 per cent from January 1993 until May 1997. To 'cherry-pick' one statistic rather than the overall statistics is but a form of deceit and mis-representation - but then Labour are not the only guilty party in this practice.

Likewise neither has Labour acknowledged in their manifesto that the policies advocated on immigration, energy and the environment are dictated as a result of Britain's membership of the European Union.

If politicians wish to restore trust in politics and urge 'transparency' in government, then should honesty and truthfulness not be followed, when presenting to the public, their individual manifesto?

What the Labour Party have in effect done, in presenting their manifesto, is to lie to the people from whom they seek votes. In so doing the Labour Party are asking to be elected by deceit - and their representatives in Parliament will still wish to be referred to as 'Honourable' Members of Parliament?

H/T: FactCheck

No comments: