They really don’t grasp it, do they?

Labour threatened to impose a wave of taxes on British industry and the ­financial sector yesterday, provoking intense criticism from business groups and City leaders.

Its man­ifesto ­revealed an £11bn windfall tax on the oil and gas sector; further tax raids on dividends, capital gains and financial transactions; a mechanism to delist companies from the stock exchange if they do not take “adequate” measures to tackle climate change; and the ­nationalisation of water companies, energy firms, trains, buses, and the Royal Mail.

They don’t – emotionally, let alone more technically – grasp that these things don’t just happen. Business does not just exist, profits are not just made, transactions don’t arrive out of the air. People work to make them happen. And if you reduce the incentives enough through taxation then they’ll not do the work and the events to be taxed won’t happen.

15 comments on “They really don’t grasp it, do they?

  1. When do we get to apply your principled stance to the taxation of the sweat of our brows?

  2. Living life in the Zil lane means one assumes that industrial and commercial activity, like the tides, are inexorable and can be plundered without adverse effect.

    When the assumption turns out to be baseless, the resulting failures can be blamed on ‘saboteurs’ and repression follows.

  3. I think some of it is about all that little everyday data that you get in your life. Like, I’ve done 2 software projects working with the NHS, so my opinion on the NHS isn’t pretty. Most people don’t get behind the scenes of that organisation and see how utterly shit it is.

    If you’re the MP for Islington, who are you meeting every day? What are your local visits? Who do you know? There’s a very large number of people living there who work in the public sector. They all want more government.

    If you meet old leftists, like my neighbours, they’re people who never got those influences, or not enough to get it. They spent their whole life in the public sector. They’ve never sat in a private sector office and seen how much more efficient it is, how much easier change is. They think profit is a cost, without understanding that it’s cheaper than public sector waste.

    I know a few Labour people out here and they’re mostly rather different. They’re rather muted in their support for Corbyn because they’re more pragmatic. They know more people who run a small business, or work in a place. It’s going to rub off on them a bit.

  4. BoM4

    100%

    “Most people don’t get behind the scenes of that organisation and see how utterly shit it is.”

    On that particular subject, the people I know who really do spell out how appallingly bad it is are medics working within it. Very few punches pulled. And – like most elsewhere – the changing regulatory environment and bureaucracy more than money.

  5. At least they’ve put it in the manifesto and If people want that then ok. The main gripe is this stuff pulls Boris with’em.

  6. BoM4: I agree. I’m currently repeating the NHS IT job I did five years ago, and 50% of my time is being paid to sit around and read sites like this, while thinking: if they’d invested a fiver in another USB stick, I could be doing two upgrades right now.

    Though if Labour kill off zero-hours contracts it will mean they will be forced to pay me to do nothing for the next four years until the next roll-out comes around. 🙂

  7. Bo4M:

    that is what I call the real conflict of interest of modern politics. my (completely unworkable) theory of how to make the world a better place is to allow only those who pay more into government than they receive to vote. So people who don’t get a vote include:
    – people working for the gov. (directly or indirectly) – they already have the opportunity to influence more than enough through their jobs
    – people living on benefits

    Same should apply to people who get to stand for election.

  8. PF,

    I did some work with a district nurse service, talked to clinical staff and they were working around the tech.

    Anon,

    “BoM4: I agree. I’m currently repeating the NHS IT job I did five years ago, and 50% of my time is being paid to sit around and read sites like this, while thinking: if they’d invested a fiver in another USB stick, I could be doing two upgrades right now.”

    People have no idea. My own story was trying to get satnavs into the hands of district nurses when such things were already being used by delivery drivers. It was a massive £250/nurse no-brainer that would have paid for itself within 3-4 months.

    And of course, you can’t get a USB stick without some bureaucrat jumping through 100 hoops to get it for you. And it won’t cost a fiver because someone will have to fill out the form that said that Kingston Technology didn’t use slave labour and don’t discriminate against trannies, which turns a £5 USB stick into a £75 USB stick.

  9. a mechanism to delist companies from the stock exchange if they do not take “adequate” measures to tackle climate change

    This bit is particularly bonkers

  10. Every wavering rich person looking at Lib Dem or Labour just shuddered and cried out, like 1 trillion pounds wasted.

  11. If it wasn’t for the fact that they are boot images for building the systems, I’d go to alt-Maplin and buy a dozen and just copy the one I’ve got. I’d need a sector copier and some sort of ID imprinter.

  12. The blueprint for your very own Venezuela.

  13. They envision a poorer society as they think it will be fairer. Limiting incentives is actually a pretty effective means of achieving that. Crap schools also help.

  14. Alex Brummer: Labour’s loony Left election pledges would cripple the economy and see Britain’s brightest talent bolting for the exit
    . . In 2017 Labour proposed £48.6bn of taxes and spending – the figure has now soared to £82.9bn! If this astonishing increase is achieved, enterprise and entrepreneurship would pay a terrible price

    .
    If exit polls show Corbyn win possible UK will be bankrupt before UK markets open. ~£5 Trillion has already left UK

    The last Labour Gov’s “No money left” note will be hauntingly prescient

    @BoM4

    +1

    Entire life in public sector people are scarily clueless about real world

  15. “If exit polls show Corbyn win possible UK will be bankrupt before UK markets open. ~£5 Trillion has already left UK”

    Thats why I’m sanguine about a Corbyn win (or similar in the future) – the world moves too fast now for the socialists to be able to control it. We’re not in 1945 any more or even 1975. Money can be shifted around the world in minutes, exchange rates will react in seconds. Prices will react in days or weeks. Before Parliament could even sit to consider any of the laws required for the Corbyn Socialist Utopia the world would have moved on and the country would be in crisis and virtually ungovernable.

Leave a Reply

Name and email are required. Your email address will not be published.