Tag Archives: Prime minister’s questions

“IF THE TORIES GET IN THERE’LL BE RIOTS!”:Nick Clegg 2010 before his transformation to NeoLiberal”Democrat”.

During the 2010 election campaign Nick Clegg made the controversial claim that if the Conservatives scraped through to power and adopted a  ‘slash and burn’ austerity programme then the British people would be rioting on the streets like the Greeks in Athens.The reporter in the newsclip shown above reminded viewers of the 1990 Poll Tax riots during Thatcher’s reign of terror by way of precedent. Little did Clegg know at that time that his prophesy would come true during the August 2011 riots, which while allegedly triggered by a controversial police shooting, nonetheless have since been attributed by several social commentators and academics in no small measure  to youth unemployment and austerity-for-the-poor policies. And since Mr Clegg has been complicit in supporting Osborne’s savage slashing of budgets I imagine he’ll want to forget he ever made such a prophesy.

In a pre-election interview with Jeremy Paxman, shown in the video above, Clegg was quizzed about what the LibDems would do in the event of them having to form a Coalition government with one of the other main parties. Towards the middle of this clip Paxman asks him if he and his party would vote for the kind of  ‘savage cuts’ being promised by the Tories. After a bit of the usual waffling he said that ‘self evidently’ given their election manifesto promises which did include cuts in spending but not immediate or savage:

“We will not support cuts driven by political dogma” AND “of course I’d vote against a budget of cuts that would destroy any chance of sustainable recovery.”

When asked if he’d ‘serve in’ a government led by Gordon Brown he laughed then explained he was laughing at the idea of ‘serving’ in a government led by another party. He emphasised that any coalition he entered into would be on the basis of getting together to form a ‘sane’ government in which LibDems would play a ‘responsible role’ and ‘fight for our policies’.

Well, we all know now what a load of bullshit that was.

So what other policies has Clegg criticised in the couple of years leading to the 2010 election giving us all the impression his party wouldn’t dream of doing? Watch the following short videos and you’ll see the extent of his U turns. He must be feeling very dizzy by now.

Here he is taking Gordon Brown to task on child poverty, youth unemployment and freezing pensioners…

And here he has another go at Brown over…I kid you not…housing benefit…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=yDVDmGKz3P4

And here he gets angry about people having to pay back tax credits they couldn’t afford to pay back and being sent threatening letters from government leaving them ‘terrified’ …..a bit like the current DWP sanction letters do today…

Last but not least, he even gets self-righteous about tax breaks for the rich…

So as you can see, anyone watching his performance over the last few years and listening to his election manifesto couldn’t be blamed for expecting his party to avoid or reverse the policies he was so loudly and publicly denigrating. If they decided to vote for his party on the strength of all this they could rightly expect him to deliver on it. We all knew from experience what the other two main parties were all about but the LibDems were virgin territory and all we had was their word to judge them by.

They’ve been a massive failure and in my view have let down those people who voted for them in good faith far more than the other parties have done precisely because with those other parties we more or less knew what we’d be letting ourselves in for.

This next video illustrates just how let down one long standing card carrying LibDem voter feels…

The ex LibDem voter in the video above reminds Clegg what it says on the party’s membership card. In future I suggest they change it so we all know exactly where Clegg and Co. are coming from. It should now read:-

                                                       “WE’RE ALL NEOLIBERAL “DEMOCRATS” NOW”

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PMQ’s: Hypocritical Cameron slams Milliband over encouraging donor’s tax avoidance but Tories have been doing it for years!

 

0(Photo from Guy Fawkes blog)

During PMQ’s yesterday David Cameron took great pleasure in belittling Ed Milliband over the recent revelation that the Labour Party had advised one of its wealthy donors on how to avoid tax. He revelled in his schoolboy taunts accompanied by the usual mindless guffaws from Osborne and the rest.

This, of course, is business as usual from the shallow and integrity-deficient government benches. I’ve noticed over the hellish past three years that Cameron uses PMQ’s – when he turns up for it – primarily to blatantly ridicule  the front benches opposite instead of doing what we should expect a PM to do which is answering questions candidly.We’re paying him to turn up and inform us of what government are doing NOT engage in rowdy school yard catcalling. He comes across as a wannabe stand-up comedian rather than a serious statesman. And a pretty poor apology for one at that.

But by attempting to make party political capital from Labour’s tax avoidance gaffe he should be very careful because this is very definitely as case of the kettle calling the pot black.

Thanks to political commentator Paul Staines’ Guy Fawkes blog ( http://order-order.com/2012/07/02/tories-advised-top-donors-how-to-avoid-tax/) I discovered that generous Conservative Party donors have been offered advice on how to avoid tax through donating for years.

On the website of the Conservative Foundation –  

http://www.theconservativefoundation.co.uk/index.php?page=how

and with the declared mission ‘to strengthen the financial future of the Conservative Party’ they urge potential donors to ‘protect the country you love, defend the values you cherish’ by giving some of their wealth to the Party.

(Aside: One of the values Cameron definitely doesn’t cherish is honesty, see for instance http://wp.me/p2sftc-7TU)

Donors are encouraged to  leave some of this wealth to the Party when they die.In order to do this would be benefactors are directed to this link which explicitly mentions tax avoidance,

Obviously Mr Cameron didn’t realise when he opened his mouth in the Commons yesterday that he was putting his expensively shod foot right in it!

If you click on the link this is part of the advice you get:-

“How leaving a legacy can reduce your beneficiaries’ inheritance tax bill:

If the value of your estate is more than the current threshold your beneficiaries will have to pay inheritance tax (currently 40%) on anything beyond this.However, a legacy left to the Foundation can be subtracted from the value of your estate before inheritance tax is calculated – bringing the total value of the estate closer to the threshold so that any tax due can be reduced or even removed completely.”

According to Paul Staines ALL political parties give advice on tax issues to donors. And, of course, at present sadly its all perfectly legal.

We’re going to hear a lot more moralising about tax avoidance/evasion in the coming weeks as the G8 meeting gets under way. And I’ve no doubt Cameron and Osborne will be extracting as much political righteousness from it as possible. As we can see they’re in no position to stomp around over the moral high ground, as Cameron was doing yesterday.

This is dishonest politics and its time we stopped them.