Does he even read his own stuff?

Second, the IFS defines health care affordability in terms of capacity to tax. This too is quite simply wrong: health care is affordable if there is the capacity to supply it within the economy. That is what limits the health care we can supply, and not tax. It really is time the IFS looked at the real economy and not just the money.

But third, and worst, is the sheer poverty of the IFS thinking. Paul Johnson admitted on the Today programme this morning, which I endured on my way down to Stansted, that he might suffer from a lack of imagination. Let me assure you, I agree. And the reason is obvious. Johnson simply cannot imagine the world changing. His whole analysis exists in a world where ceterus paribus holds true. But it does not.

I have not checked the report as yet to see what it says about automation so I will stick to discussion of tax where what the IFS is saying is that nothing will change. Johnson’s commentary made this clear. We can’t tax business: he thinks it will run away. Land and wealth taxes won’t collect much, he says. And as for changes to allowances and reliefs, most especially when it comes to subsidising the already wealthy? Of that there was not a hint.

Let me put this in context. The IFS seem to be looking for about £30bn a year. That is, as I have shown, half the sum that subsidies to pension and ISA saving in the UK now cost each year. All of that sum goes as a subsidy to the City to effectively over inflate the price of shares. Johnson should know that. But he said on Radio 4 that there was nothing he could imagine cutting now that could meet health care costs. The only explanation for that is that he is not thinking, or cannot think, or wants to perpetuate the tax inequality we have in the UK where the wealthy pay no bigger a share of their income in tax than most in the population do.

And as I have also shown, we could raise this money from additional taxes on wealth.

Whether we tax or not, how we tax, is not the determinant of whether we can have more health care or not. Rather, it’s if we’ve got a few spare doctors and nurses lying about which does determine that availability.

But don’t worry folks, I’ve found a way to tax more even if I’ve not got more doctors nor nurses. So that’s alright then.

19 comments on “Does he even read his own stuff?

  1. ceterus paribus

    Well fancy that, here’s something else that Dick Croquette can’t do: Latin declensions.

    Ceteris paribus (as any schoolboy used to know) means with other things being equal which is not what he is trying to say at all.

  2. Paul Johnson admitted on the Today programme this morning, which I endured on my way down to Stansted, that he might suffer from a lack of imagination. Let me assure you, I agree. And the reason is obvious. Johnson simply cannot imagine the world changing. His whole analysis exists in a world where ceterus paribus holds true. But it does not.

    Wow the arrogance of the spud knows no bounds. Whatever you think of Johnson, his whole life revolves around tax/economics etc. I have no doubt he’s seen or thought of many different scenarios for the future, but after careful thought has come up with this report as he sees things now. He could of course copy the tuberous wanker and spunk any old crap onto the page as it occurs to him. But then his credibility would be at the level of the spud in no time.

  3. The underlying reality is that even if the entire GDP were shovelled into the NHS, it still wouldn’t be enough. That is because, Herr Professor Jersey-Royal, the NHS is a socialist construct and in the medium to long term socialism does not work.

  4. I’m all for tax rises for NHS spending.

    With one little provisio. The same percentage change should be applied to pensions (all of them) and benefits (all of them) in the opposite direction.

    Otherwise people are simply agreeing other people should pay.

  5. The supply shortage to which Tim refers is a result of women doctors, such as Mrs Murphy, filling a majority of the places in medical schools and then usually working part-time and/or taking years out and/or retiring young. [There are a few, very few, exceptions (a friend of my parents & parent of a friend worked long hours for forty-odd years because she dealt with all those of practice’s clients who wanted a female doctor, but she had to employ servants to do most of the housework and look after the kids while she was working)].
    Money will not cure this shortage – only a change in behaviour by those leaving medical schools or by those selecting candidates for admission.

  6. A delphic utterance from Capt. Potato…

    Mick Turition says:
    May 24 2018 at 12:12 pm

    I admire your borrowing rhetorical devices from Cicero but perhaps a greater familiarity with declension and the meaning of stock phrases would enhance your orotund ex cathedra declamations.
    Reply

    Richard Murphy says:
    May 24 2018 at 1:03 pm

    That is economics….
    Reply

  7. OT, but the pustulent prof posts a blog critical of limited liability for owners of companies and several proposals:

    The answer is full accounts on public record.
    And accountability to stakeholders.
    And higher tax as the risk charge.
    Plus removal of limited liability if obligations are not met.

    You’ll note Tax Research LLP’s filings at Companies House include “total exemption full accounts” each time.

    https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/OC316294/filing-history

    Mrs Murphy’s service address as a member of the LLP was changed in 2016 to be the unimpressive end terrace in Ely, yet does not seem to live there with Mr Potato. No changes in details of the members of the LLP since then have been filed.

    Any abuse here, given the LLP affords limited liability to Mr Potato, one wonders?

  8. Bravefart,

    Not forgetting the accounts listing a donor whose identity is not disclosed, but that’s OK because Ritchie says so.

    I’ve forgotten the name of the trust he hides, but searching for it at the time yielded nothing on t’internet or at the Charity Commission so it really was a dodgy looking opaque outfit to use Ritchie’s own standards.

  9. Found it, the Kenneth Miller Trust (based at the Charities Aid Foundation) so my screenshot of the Google cache said just after he edited the post.

  10. Your answer is the Kenneth Miller Trust. The main ( or only ) trustee is Anne Miller who is such a vulnerable person that she is happy to sign open letters to national newspapers calling for 20% taxpayers to be rooked so that 40% and 45% taxpayers can be more virtuous.

  11. Bongo

    How nice to see that Murphy is a man who stands solidly by his principles.

    He’s opposed to charity tax reliefs generally believing that tax relief is abusive and selective, usually granted to the richer and that government should dispense the aid and services (currently offered by charities) funded by general taxation.

    But he’s not above pocketing a donation from a charity (which expresses in print views opposed to his own) and keeping that donor secret.

    What an unspeakably repulsive cvnt

  12. I’m all for a bit more discussion of capacity and consumption and a bit less about the tokens used to exchange them. That Spud can’t even carry that discussion beyond a sentence before forgetting it completely and getting back to MOAR TAX is unnecessary additional eveidence that he can’t be part of that discussion. And he’s a moron.

  13. the tax inequality we have in the UK where the wealthy pay no bigger a share of their income in tax than most in the population do.

    Is this the Parallel Universe UK he’s referring to?

  14. Plus of course if the wealthy are indeed paying the same i.e. equal share of income in tax as the shitkickers do, that sounds suspiciously like tax equality to me.

  15. @ Southerner

    He’s probably not far off the mark. With indirect taxes, council tax etc, plus the ability of the real high earners to minimise their bill (even if legally) total tax paid over income is far closer than the headline income tax rates would suggest.

    Poorer folk get much more out in benefits, of course, and still win there after horrendous withdrawal rates (which are not tax). There’s no doubt spud would wilfully ignore the net imapact after redistribution.. both in cash terms and share of public services. But, still, I don’t think it’s a batty claim

  16. I am sure Ritchie spoke ‘truth to power’ to Anne Miller about her views on charity tax relief as well as on transparency.

    A pig has just flown past the window…..

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