Wednesday, May 31, 2006

The Gobblin' King is still a power-crazed fuckwit

The Goblin KingGordon Brown: "The fact that his clock shows 13 hours on it is merely symptomatic of his economic fucking illiteracy. The dreadful, one-eyed cock..."

Many people who loathe Blair still think that The Gobblin' King is the saviour of the world, a financial wizard and architect of the greatest economic Golden Age that Britain has ever known. After I've viciously beaten these fuckers around the head—screaming "no, he's not! He is an incompetent cunt with one eye and a ludicrous oral twitch that makes me want to slice his lips off!"—I calm down slightly and, sitting serenely beside the deluded, bloody fool, I like to explain that their faith is misplaced.

I like to mention the stupidity of selling the Bank of England's gold at a near-record low price (a low which he, himself, helped to create), the fact that unemployment figures are on the rise (even with the government attempting to massage them), the record bankruptcies, the decrease in social mobility and the increase in poverty (as measured by household expenditure).

But surely his biggest fuck-up has been the tax credits system. They are massively expensive to administer, wide open to fraud, put families from whom lump sum repayments are demanded (with menaces, naturally) and last year overpaid by £1.9 billion.

The good news is that this year the overpayment was only £1.8 billion, which I know makes me feel a lot better. Obviously the system is now well under control, even if it is not achieving the end for which it was designed, i.e. helping the poorest.

As Jackart points out, if you really want to help the working poor, there is a really simple way to do so.
I've an Idea, Brown, you fuck-wit: if you want to help the working poor DON'T FUCKING TAX THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE.

It's such a basic concept, one wonders why our Cyclopean economic colossus has not simply raised the Personal Tax Allowance. But the answer is pretty bloody simple: power. If you make as many people in the country as possible clients of the state, then they are hardly going to vote for a party that promises to take away their unearned cash.
What's more I suspect - without proof - that this may be deliberate. Here is a nightmare vision of Brown's Britian: He is trying to force large numbers of people to be beholden to the state's will, and be dependent on the exchequer for their income. The Goblin King can then divide up his minions according to whatever is "PC" that week and reward one client group over another. Calls for justice and fairness descend in to endless lobbying for state handouts to special interest groups. Gordon becomes the arbiter of everyones' standard of living. It is power to interfere he wants. Not to help the poor.

Quite so but, amongst other things, he is essentially bribing the people of the country to vote for NuLabour; it is a cynical power play worthy of Machiavelli himself. So, let us bear that in mind as we turn our attention to The Grauniad article.
The number of families facing tax credit repayments has risen despite a fall in the total sum being claimed back by the government, the new figures showed.

So, despite the fact that the overpayment is less, the number of payments that they have cocked up has actually risen; now, I'm no statistician, but this would imply that the system is actually getting worse.
More than 1.9m claims were overpaid last year, up 120,000 from the previous year, when charities warned some families were being forced into poverty by the debt.

What! 120,000 cock-ups has risen to 1,900,000 wrong claims: the system has become nearly sixteen times more inefficient! Absolutely incredible.
Some £2.2bn was overpaid in 2003-04, resulting in £1bn of debt being written off by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

HMRC: alias the taxpayer. Coincidentally, £1 billion is about the level of NHS debt at the end of last year, which has led to the sackings of nurses, doctors and the severe rationing of frontline services. That would employ 50,000 nurses at £20,000 a year, just to put that colossal number into some perspective.
The government insisted today that people will not be forced to reimburse the state if the overpayment is the system's fault, rather than a change in people's circumstances, as it admitted further overpayments would continue in the future.

That's nice of them. What kind of trauma-inducing process will the families have to go through in order to get you to admit that it is your mistake? And you are expecting this tootal arse-up to continue?
Further overpayments are nevertheless set to continue, as a minister confirmed that the new measures being implemented will reduce overpayments in future years by just one third.

By a third? Quick, break out the fireworks and bunting!
The government says it wants to retain a "flexible and responsive" system, rather than fixed payments, so the level of credits matches families' changing needs.

Yes, but every single fucking month? Why not put it to every six months, at least? Or why not make tax far simpler, as I outlined here, so that people can just fill out their own forms?
The chief secretary to the Treasury, Stephen Timms, said overpayments have already fallen by more than a fifth since the first the year of the operation as he defended the system to help worse-off families.

Overpayments might have fallen, but misallocations and incorrect payments have risen by sixteen fucking times!
"The tax credit system has delivered three vital improvements: it has increased incentives to work, reduced the tax burden on low-to-middle-income families and helped to sharply reduce child poverty," he said.

To sharply reduce child poverty? Isn't it time, Tim, for you to boldly go to the P-G for some summary justice: it's hanging for a split infinitive, I believe.
"They have played a vital role in reducing child poverty, with 700,000 children lifted out of relative poverty since 1997." But the Liberal Democrats called on the paymaster general, Dawn Primarolo, to be sacked as they call for a whole-system reform.

The system has also been bedevilled by serious IT problems and targeted by organised criminal gangs using stolen identities to defraud the taxpayer.

Well, that is a surprise...
Lib Dem spokesman David Laws said: "It is surely now time to replace the paymaster general, who through oversight, incompetence, or complacency has presided over a broken system rife with incorrect payments and fraud."

Not to mention overseeing the sale of the Customs and Inland Revenue buildings to Mapely Steps Ltd, a company based in a tax haven, and then lying about it (Private Eye, passim ad nauseam). Primarolo must go.
The shadow paymaster general, Mark Francois, said: "This government is in meltdown and they have Gordon Brown to blame for it. He has created a system of tax credits which is far too complicated. Apart from failing the needy, the system is not fit for purpose."

"Gordon Brown needs to acknowledge whether the ongoing problems are a result of his obsession with fiddling and complexity or gross failure of his ministers and department to administer the payments effectively."

Brown is a fuckwit of grand stature; he is a manipulative, lying, piece of crap who—notwithstanding his low profile when scandal breaks—is, nonetheless, a terrible cunt.

Burn him now.

19 comments:

Pete in Dunbar said...

"What! 120,000 cock-ups has risen to 1,900,000 wrong claims: the system has become nearly sixteen times more inefficient! Absolutely incredible."

Errr, no. What you quoted above was:

"..1.9m claims were overpaid last year, up 120,000 from the previous year"

ie an increase of 120,000

On the complete pointlessness of the whole concept - I quite agree.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Whoops! That'll teach me to get distracted mid-post...

DK

Mr Eugenides said...

Your central point, though was sound. To paraphrase; fuck him. Fuck him.

Watertight.

prawn crackers said...

Vintage stuff, DK. The true cost of the contigent liabities foisted on the nation by this moronic control freak's policy actions will take decades to emerge. Yet he will go into retirement feeling proud to be his father's son. Proud of his compassion and righteous initiatives. Oblivious to his consigning another million souls to rotting dependency.Yet somehow the grateful dead will thank this f---wit for his munificent generosity.
But I must not be too bitter. When the f---wit sold our gold I loaded up with a mix of coins and gold shares. It had to be the bottom of the market. The bleeding idiot also didnt realise that by flogging gold he was depressing the price to cost of many emerging nations.

Wrong Un said...

Surely the point of the tax credits is to help those who need the help the most. Raising the personal tax allowance will benefit those earning say £100K a year. I think targettting tax cuts at those at the bottom end is a good thing. Of course you don't, mainly because you are a selfish cunt.

On Gordon's economic record, it still boggles belief that you refuse to believe the economy is in pretty good shape. Interest rates are tiny, inflation is low, unemployment is low (but yes, rising a little at the moment). I reckon those are pretty good economic conditions personally! But hey, they can't be eh? They can't possibly be because a Labour government has created and administered them. Only the Tories can get the economy right eh? Bollocks.

prawn crackers said...

Wrong un you have swallowed the party line about the greatest living chancellor. Yes economic conditions are benign and his forecasts on growth have been accurate. But this has v little to do with him. The idiot savant inherited a treasury flush with cash and economic policies that were developed in the previous seventeen years. He gave BoE responsibility for interest rates(to get unions off his back)but for the rest he has not performed.He has wrecked the pension system. He is pissing this legacy against the wall. The scale of waste and mismanagement are of staggering proportions but of course as long as we have a colour telly, credit card and the trinkets of consumerism, we are happy. Lawson made cock ups in late 80's and that caused a lot of damage to a lot of people. But overall the wealth of this nation has done better when Con in power.

Dr Dan H. said...

Prawn Crackers is unfortunately correct here; Brown is not and never has been the economic genius he claims to be. If he isn't fudging what an economic cycle is, or flogging off gold at the wrong time, he's inventing yet another pointlessly complex way to give away tiny amounts of money.

The way to aleviate poverty is firstly to formulate an objective definition of it, instead of the current relative one (relative to mean pay) which cannot ever be satisfied.

Then, you act to make working for a living rewarding. The way to do this is not to impose a pointlessly complex "jobs for the civil service" system like tax credits, but to massively increase the tax free allowance. In other words, you actually need to do less paperwork to help people, thus saving you money whilst making them do what you want (i.e. work for an honest crust).

Rich people will always find a way to dodge taxes. Rich people employ accountants specifically to do this; the more complex a tax regime is, the more holes there will be in it. Conversely the simpler a tax regime the easier to enforce it is, the less it costs you to enforce it, and the harder it is to find holes in it.

Therefore rather than do things the Leftie Economic Dunce way by adding complications on complications (which ends up with everyone doing everything for cash-in-hand or barter, and avoiding the formal fiscal regime altogether) you do it the Right Wing Economic Minimalist way.

To help the poor, increase the tax-free allowance to around 10K per annum. For everyone else, impose a flat tax rate of around 30%; just the one tax, no lower and higher rates. Making money is not immoral, and a truly fair tax is the one that is the same percentage for everyone.

Then you start cutting the number of benefits available, and the number of things someone can claim benefit for.

The current system seems to work on the idea that the more thoroughly a person screws up their life,the more help they get. This is essentially a self-defeating policy; there is no limit to human stupidity and beyond a certain point moral corruption is so complete that people will actually choose the extra benefits over not screwing up their life.

No, stupidity should hurt. Pay basic benefits (television is not a living essential, nor are washing machines) and no more, and DO NOT reduce these benefits immediately a person starts earning money; it should be financially advantageous to work and claim benefits as opposed to just claiming. Incrementally reduce benefits, but do not do a total cut, for this traps people into dependency.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Wrong Un,

Raising the personal tax allowance will benefit those earning say £100K a year.

Neil keeps harping on about this: how does raising the Personal Allowance to £10k or £12k a year help someone earning £100k more than it helps someone earning £12k? It would mean, for instance, that someone working full time on the minimum wage wouldn't pay any tax: right now, you start paying tax if you are working for only 20 hours a week on the minimum wage. (And why being in favour of a policy that rewards those who work, when I earned about £4.5k last year, am a selfish cunt, I haven't quite worked out.)

On Gordon's economic record, it still boggles belief that you refuse to believe the economy is in pretty good shape. Interest rates are tiny, inflation is low, unemployment is low (but yes, rising a little at the moment). I reckon those are pretty good economic conditions personally!

Economic growth is also low, social mobility has dropped, poverty is -- by some measures -- up, energy prices are high (partly through extra taxes) and we are now in our second year of bankruptcies at a record high. Dr Dan H and prawncrackers sum the whole thing up rather nicely.

Only the Tories can get the economy right eh? Bollocks.

Are you sure that you aren't Neil Harding in disguise? Nah, he'd always have the courage to post as himself. I'll give you the same answer: STOP PLAYING PARTY POLITICS. Even if the Tories had cocked up the economy (and let's face it, Heath, for instance, was utterly useless), it wouldn't make Gordon Brown's management any better.

Just because x is worse, it does not make current situation y any better. Let us take interest rates: even when interest rates were, under the Tories, 15% there were fewer per quarterly bankruptcies than there have been every quarter for the last two years. Why do you think that is? If companies and people go bankrupt, other people lose their jobs? So, bankruptcy: good thing or bad thing?

DK

Allan Scullion said...

On Gordon's economic record, it still boggles belief that you refuse to believe the economy is in pretty good shape.

If, as you say the economy is in pretty good shape, then this is despite Gordon's efforts, not because of them.

The man's love for beaurocracy and red tape is killing off small businesses by the truckload.

I think targettting tax cuts at those at the bottom end is a good thing.

Tax credits are a noble idea, but in practice they are a complete shambles. They will never work. The overpayments debacle has cost the tax payers huge amounts of money and we haven't even begun to factor in the cost of administration.

Of course you don't, mainly because you are a selfish cunt.

What a way to win an argument. Socialist bigotry at its finest.

I'm curious... In your opinion, at what level of salary does one have to cross to suddenly become a selfish cunt?

Being a selfish cunt would imply a complete lack of care or empathy for low earners. The polar opposite is the case. There are better ways of helping the less well off that don't involve throwing billions down the drain in overpayments and administration.

Allan Scullion said...

From the BBC advising on what to do if you are overpayed:

If the income is greater - but the difference is £25,000 or less - since April this year the HMRC will not claim back any tax credits. For changes before 1 April 2006 much stricter rules applied, with income changes of just £2,500 resulting claims from the HMRC.

25 grand is a fairly decent wage. This sounds like a license to steal tax payers money. Now you know why the problem of overpayments will never be fixed. Scrap them now.

AntiCitizenOne said...

Wanting to stop someone extortion your money and thus enslaving your time makes you a selfish cunt?

What a buch of complete and utter pro-slavery wankers the entire left are.

I just thank god that where-ever socialism infects, it tends to kill off the lefties first and fastest.

Death to Socialism.

Wrong Un said...

Pffft. I'm not a socialist in the slightest.

The reason, DK, that I keep comparing things to the Tories is because that is, like it or not, the alternative to the Labour Government. Therefore it only seems fair to look at how they could handle the situation. You, being a rightwing lunatic, presumably support the Tories therefore a critique of them is perfectly justified in responding to your claims re Labour.

As for the point re bankruptcy - I don't think the government can be blamed for that. People are in huge amounts of personal debt that have been pushed on them by banks and the individuals must take responsibility for their own actions. It's not the govt's fault that loads of people have lost control of their credit card spending etc

The thing with all Conservatives is that they will never recognise the legitimacy of leftwing parties being in power. Therefore if something actually goes right, like the economy, they say it was 'going to happen anyway' regardless of the policies the Labour Party enacted. If it were a Tory Chancellor in power you'd be further up his arse than Max Hasting is up Camerons

Yours

Shaun (there you go, there's my real name xx )

Wrong Un said...

As for your comment about Poverty, it simply isn't true and is bandied about by rightwing types who are horrified to see that progressive policies do actually make a difference. Although Labour did miss it's child poverty target (which was very ambitious)it has reduced Child Poverty:

http://www.ifs.org.uk/pr/hbai06.pdf

The Remittance Man said...

I've mentioned a phenomenon before that I call "fiscal stickiness". Basically it describes the fact that if the state wishes to 1 quid's worth of good deeds, it needs to levy 2 quid from the general populus.

The extra quid is used to pay for all the baggage needed to administer any state run system: civil servants, stationary, office space, computers, ministers, ministerial aids, ministerial junkets overseas and everything else.

Strangely enough this phenomenon is pretty constant worldwide and under governments that are both of the left and the right. One pound of good deed costs the taxpayer two pounds.

Not only has Gordon developed a system that takes people's money away from them only to give it back which hardly seems sensible in the first place. Even if it worked perfectly the system he's devised would still be taking 2 quid away from us in order to give us one quid back.

Can someone please tell me how this can be logical, ethical or even concievable to anyone not intent on building a client state of drones and suplicants dependent on that person's munificence?

In the same perverse way that you have to admit that 9/11 was horrifyingly spectacular, you have to credit Gordon with a certain amount of evil genius: he's found a way to bribe the people into supporting him in perpetuity AND HE'S GOT THOSE VERY SAME PEOPLE TO PAY FOR IT. Fucking brilliant (in an Emperor Ming/ Dr evil kind of way)!

Those Nigerian 419 scammers must be sitting in Lagos internet cafes just kicking themselves because they will never be able to match NuLabour and its scammer in chief, Gordon the Cyclops.

RM

prawn crackers said...

wrong un

stick with your name; you just don't get it. res ipsa loquitur.

Anonymous said...

Wrong un - the problem with you socialists is that youe entire world view is shaped by jealousy.

As evidence, I present the fact that you would rather give a poor person £50 than £300 is giving the poor the larger amount also meant giving a rich person the same. This is the case with tax credits. By lifting the personal allowance to £12k both a poor person on £12k and a rich person on £100k would both benefit to the same degree. This is anathema to you so you would rather than £300 from the rich person AS WELL as £300 from the poor person just to administer some blatantly crap system that can only give the poor person £50

Neil Harding said...

I'm in total agreement with wrong un. I notice he actually links to the IFS which backs his statement while you right-wingers have such a poor grasp of economics.

For example anon says that 'us leftwingers' would rather give £50 to the poor than £300 to everyone. That is not true, I for one support the citizen's income which is universal. I also would like to see large increases in child benefit which is also universal.

In fact I think universal benefits are the best way forward because they are popular with everyone and lack stigma. Also a flat rate paid to everyone is worth more to someone on a low income than someone on a high income and is redistributive as generally it is raised from progressive taxation which is largely paid by the rich.

As for the tax credits which I think you refer to. Yes I agree they are too complicated and admin heavy, but your made up figures are nonsense. Tax credits have done a lot to reduce poverty, as wrong un's figures suggest.

B. L. S. Ibbub said...

I just cant agree with the person who wrote that stuff about Gordon Brown its so obvious that you hold him in high esteem that you find it dificcult to make a criticism of either him or his work - you appear to be saying that he is far more evil than any other politician and thats just not the case I prefer Tony Blair he was far more evil - Gordon would think it high praise indeed that you feel he i almost fit to be the devil himself but I know better - he is a prostitute and you are just pimping him to evil people so they will vote for him more.
you love him too much for my liking

Gordoncunt brown said...

How did we ever get to the stage that a useless, lying, total bastarding fucking cunt of a man like Gordoncunt brown was in charge of our country?