Thursday, January 26, 2012

Clegg’s Progressive £10,000 Threshold Hike
Benefits Low Income Earners Most

A lot of chaff is being thrown up about the £10,000 tax threshold hike being pushed by Clegg this morning. Matthew Sinclair over at the Taxpayers’ Alliance has sent this chart proving the point Guido has been making all day. Those on low earnings benefit proportionately the most.

Those on lower earnings, e.g. the second decile (£10,853 according to ONS data) will see their post-tax earnings rise by 4.7%, those in the highest decile will see their post tax earnings rise by just 1.1%. Now some policy wonks on the left complain that middle income earners will see their post tax income rise by some 2% and that this is “a waste of money”. The squeezed middle-classes need some help as well, this is a good thing, not a flaw. The hike shouldn’t be paid for by once again shifting the higher rate threshold either. The coalition parties should stop piling on the pressure on the very demographic that voted them into office to cut taxes…

MacShane’s Twitter Fibs

No this isn’t about his fraudulent expense claims, this is about the whoppers MacShane tells on Twitter:

Without even checking the records, Guido recalls that the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984 were officially opened by President Ronald Reagan and saw him re-elected in November 1984. More recently the Canadian Conservative government of Steven Harper won a full majority of votes in 2011, after the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, following successive minority and coalition governments in the previous years.

Last week MacShane made the bizarre claim that €uro had got stronger against the “Osborne pound” which was “still weakest currency in world as oil prices rise”. The pound is in fact up 5% against the crisis-ridden €uro over the last three months.

UPDATE: Courtesy of William Pitt in the comments below:

1984 – Los Angeles (Reagan reelected in 1984)
1988 – Seoul (Roh Tae-woo returned in 1992)
1992 – Barcelona (Marquez returned as PM 1993)
1996 – Atlanta (Clinton reelected 1996)
2000 – Sydney (Howard reelected 2001)
2004 – Athens (Karamanlis reelected 2007)
2008 – China (no brainer)

Diane Abbott Slept Through Meeting of Group She Quit

Chasing some sympathetic headlines in a bid to redeem her reputation, Diane Abbott has stormed out of cross party talks about abortion counselling:

“Shadow public health minister Diane Abbott said she had walked out of a new cross-party abortion group set up by the Government to look at the issue of counselling following the defeat. She accused the Government of “ploughing ahead” with the controversial abortion changes, saying the new group was a “front” for pushing through the plans which were “unwanted, undemocratic and unsubstantiated with evidence”.

Department of Health sources say they have no real view on the issue and no decision has  been made, hence the point of the cross party committee. They will take the recommendations of the group and see if the public agree. Others are slightly more confused by Abbott’s outburst.

Given that she fell asleep in the first meeting of the group, was half an hour late for the second and didn’t turn up to the third, those that did make it have been left scratching their heads about what exactly she is talking about.

Another day, another Abbott mess…

Jagger Ditches Dave For Boris

Poor old Dave. Mick Jagger has poured salt in the wound. After ditching Cameron’s tea party yesterday, the ageing rocker only went and spent the night (together) with Boris instead. Ouch..

Dave Would Be a Fool to Cry about it though, and can surely understand why it happened; both Jagger and Johnson like women; both can pull a crowd and an evening out with Boris would be far more amusing than discussing trade with the Prime Minister.

Meanwhile back home Ken’s week is going from bad to worse…

Livingstone seems to determined to waste his two point poll lead. As Guido reported yesterday the “Fare Deal” fell apart after some fairly gentle probing, and now today Ken Livingstone, king of the gaffes and the personalised put downs has written to Boris declaring:

“…no one could have expected that you would react so badly to a little bit of pressure. Suddenly the Conservative party in London is flailing around and lashing out. David Cameron has told you to raise your game. And you, in turn, seem to be getting pushed around by your campaign manager, Lynton Crosby. It has not taken much for your party to turn to the dark side…. At least, I assume it’s him because you used to have something more interesting to say than resort to cheap insults.”

Despite moaning about Lynton Crosby’s attacks and the dark arts, Ken has been unable to pledge to maintain the four-year council tax freeze at the heart of the dispute. On top of that, all this is coming from a man whose campaign strategy consists of following their opponent around yelling “chicken”. What is that if it’s not a “cheap insult”?

There are 98 days to go in this race, if things carry on at this level it’s going to be an extremely tiresome campaign. Ken should go to radio silence, come back on Monday morning and try again…

Internship Available in Tom Watson’s Office

Newt Boldly Goes Where No Candidate Has Gone Before

GOP Presidential candidate Newt Gingrich seems to be taking the old saying “aim for the moon, and even if you miss you will land amongst the stars” literally. In a speech yesterday he promised to have established a moon base by the end of his second term. How’s this for blue sky thinking:

“When we have 13,000 Americans living on the moon, they can petition to become a state… I wanted every young American to say to themselves, I could be one of those 13,000. I could be a pioneer. I need to study science and math and engineering. I need to learn how to be a technician. I can be a part of building a bigger, better future. I can actually go out and live the future, looking at the solar system and being part of a generation of courageous people who do something big and bold and heroic.”

Steve Hilton declined to comment…

Mandy on Miliband

Nothing like a bit of Mandy to liven things up and the master of the dark arts had luke-warm words for Ed on the Today programme earlier. Despite saying that he was “doing well”, there were criticisms too:

“…he’s struggling with two things. He’s trying to oppose the Government on the economy… at exactly the same time, he’s struggling to invent a new left-of-centre political paradigm… It’s a rather unenviable job…”

Well that’s almost better than saying nothing, and more than he could manage at Davos yesterday. CityAM reports:

Sir Martin [Sorrell] mentioned that some commentators haven’t been so kind about Mandy’s current party leader Ed Miliband. “Have they?” said the dark prince nonchalantly. “I’ve been travelling.” Barclays chairman Marcus Agius doubled over with laughter.

Ed will be lecturing this lot about his new capitalism this week. Guido is sure they are going take him very, very seriously…

Newsnight Fashion Report

Last night Jeremy Paxman hosted the final round of Twitter’s Next Top Model. And what a heated final it was…

Taking Newsnight by storm was GQ’s cover-girl Louise Mensch. The successful chick-lit author sported a vintage cocktail dress, with a simple yet elegant jacket, Mensch perfectly mixed old school Tory for a sexy new-age feel.

Joining her was the recent New Statesman cover-girl Laurie Penny, the former burlesque dancer turned political pundit went for the classic little black dress, accessorised with a small pink badge. A bold colour palette was on display with her hair. With Laurie wearing her political allegiances on her head, we now know why they call her Penny Red.

It’s hard to choose a winner, as all the ladies looked so lovely.

UPDATE: The full cat fight:


Seen Elsewhere

Comply or Die at Grauniad | MediaGuido
Labour Beats UKIP in South Yorkshire | LabourList
Mock the Week’s Weak Comedy | Nigel Farage
Can Jim Murphy Save Scottish Labour? | Guardian
There is Still Appetite for the Westminster Lunch | Jon Craig
Labour Turn Their Backs on Jewish Community | Dan Hodges
Chivalry is Not Dead | Laura Perrins
Jonathan Jones is a Tw*t | Iain Dale
Second Scotland Poll Suggests Labour Wipeout | Times
Paedo Probe Boss Urged to Quit | Sun
Keynesian Tories Won’t Eliminate Deficit | Tim Montgomerie


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Zac Goldsmith: “The hon. Gentleman might like to know that today’s Guido Fawkes quote of the day is the one on drug laws that we have heard cited by a number of hon. Members.”

Mike Hancock: “I am delighted to hear that Guido Fawkes is talking about something other than me.”



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Is it just me, or is Nigel Farage just a top hat and a monocle away from being a Batman villain?


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