Coffee House

Balls tries to defuse the tax bombshell

2 August 2014

10:45 AM

2 August 2014

10:45 AM

Ed Balls’ interview with the Telegraph today is a demonstration of what he learnt working for Gordon Brown in opposition. He is at pains to deny that he is planning any major tax rises; he doesn’t want to give the Tories the chance to claim Labour are planning a ‘tax bombshell’. He stresses that he understands that ‘People feel they are paying too much tax already’ and emphasises that he ‘would rather all tax rates were lower’. He also explicitly rules out a National Insurance increase to pay for extra spending on the NHS and a so-called ‘death tax’.

Interestingly, Balls also restates his desire to limit EU immigration. He says he wants ‘fair movement not free movement’ of workers. Though, he is far less clear about how he would persuade other countries to make the kind of changes that he wants.

But, I suspect, that in Westminster there’ll be particular interest in his comments about Damian McBride When asked if McBride is still a friend, Balls replies ‘Of course he is.’ He says that the pair talk from ‘time to time’. In a way, this answer isn’t that much of a shock. But it is the warmest I can remember any Labour figure being about McBride since he was forced out of Downing Street in 2009.

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Show comments
  • Archibald Heatherington

    So man who pushed grade inflation to new heights as Education Secretary now thinks he can be trusted with fiscal inflation? Hmm.

  • lookout

    It’s like watching hyenas ( politicians ) fighting over a carcass ( Britain ) after a pride of lions ( European union ) have taken their fill ( open immigration, rules and regulations, forced wars, destruction of business, devolution.) Anybody who thinks the next government ( Labour/lib ) will improve our lot is deluded.

  • jesseventura2

    Bean and Balls up in downing street? NEVER

  • beenzrgud

    Ed Balls is a liar. What more is there to say !!

    • Inverted Meniscus

      You could add an adjective beginning with ‘f’ before the word liar.

  • RavenRandom

    Balls lies as he breathes.
    No he did not try to unseat Tony Blair, no he didn’t try to get Darling’s job. No he hasn’t being wrong about ever major economic development since 2008. No he didn’t flip houses.
    How is it duplicitous, error prone, power hungry liars like this still have a place in the opposition?

    • Holly

      Tick…bloody….tock…Hopefully.

    • HookesLaw

      …or before 2008

  • Smithersjones2013

    If Osborne is the Chancellor that robbed Peter to pay Paul, Balls will be the Chancellor who robs Paul and then robs Peter……

  • Smithersjones2013

    “Ed Balls….. Damian McBride………

    The face of the modern Labour Party

    Enough said……….

  • Paul Owen

    Balls has indeed learnt from Brown – lie endlessly. Here are some Brown quotes prior to Labour’s election in 1997:

    I have nothing to hide, I never have had. Gordon Brown, 1997

    Your pension is not safe with the Tories. Gordon Brown, 1997

    I repeat, we have no public spending commitments on Labour’s part that will lead to increases in taxes. Gordon Brown, 1997

    Lies. It’s the Conservative’s big lie technique. To state a lie, repeat it, spending millions on advertising and posters to promote it, hoping that the bigger the lie and the more often it is repeated the more people will believe it. Gordon Brown, 1996

    The Conservatives will be powerless if we stick to generalised statements which cannot be used against us. Gordon Brown, 1996

    The trick is to convince the public that taxes are not being imposed for their own sake , but to pay for worthwhile services. The deceit will not be punished if it is delicately concealed by assurances rather than expressions of vengeful spite. Gordon Brown, 1997

    We’ve learned our lessons, we’re not returning to old Labour. We’re like the Democrats in America rather than European style socialists. Gordon Brown, 1995

    Under Labour there will be no massaging of the figures and no car boot sales of national treasures. Gordon Brown, 1995

    ‘I want our government to be remembered as wise spenders, not as big spenders.’ Gordon Brown, 1994

    ‘The Tories lied about taxation; they’re incapable in my view of telling the difference now between truth and falsehood; incapable and unable to tell the truth, or even recognise it.’ Gordon Brown, 1993

    • sarahsmith232

      Wow! Thank you for that. That was a corker of a read. Where did you get the info’? Is there some website out there? I must check it out if there is.
      Quite unbelievable. REally unbelievable.
      ‘I repeat, we have no public spending commitments on Labour’s part that will lead to increases in taxes’ Jesus Christ, beyond belief. I think every single person that’s thinking about voting come next May should be made to read your list, brilliant, could I ask you to try and get that out on to as many comments sections as you could manage. Should be mandatory reading for all.

      • Paul Owen

        You’re welcome. The full list of Gordon Brown’s quotes can be found on this post on my blog: http://paulowensblog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/deja-vu-labour.html

        I did run them all prior to the last election in 2010. I may well do so again since nothing much seems to have changed.

      • HookesLaw

        Brown borrowed insread of raising taxes. Of course he did create lots of new taxes as well.

  • andagain

    There is something inherently unconvincing about denouncing spending cuts and simultaneously promising no tax rises. It leads to so many awkward questions.

    • Holly

      Leads me to the conclusion it is all…..erm…..get past the moderator….
      ‘made up’.

      • andagain

        I don’t know how you can be so cynical about one of this countries leading politicians…

        • Holly

          Me neither, but there ya go.
          Might be because I’ve had the misfortune of seeing the results of this shower in action…

          TWICE!

    • HookesLaw

      If there are no spending cuts and no tax rises then there is more borrowing. Spending needs to be cut and controlled and Labour are incapable of that.

      • Holly

        Not their money.
        They don’t care what happens.
        Let’s hope that next year some of the wreckers will lose their seats.
        I would so love Balls to lose to UKIP.

  • Denis_Cooper

    “He says he wants ‘fair movement not free movement’ of workers.”

    Where exactly does “fair” enter into the question of whether the citizens of this country should be required to share it with foreigners?

    That formulation can only be the product of a warped and unpatriotic mindset which implicitly denies that British citizens have any special rights over their own country; so it’s really just a question of whether it would be “fair” to force them to accept so many immigrants, or maybe it should be rather fewer people from abroad being given free shares in the country or maybe it should be rather more; but on no account stop to ask the citizens what they think about it because their views are totally immaterial; and that is an attitude which is just as prevalent among the Tory politicians as among the Labour and LibDem politicians, basically they do not believe that the British people have any right to even possess their own country let alone control it.

    • Holly

      ‘Fair’ movement of workers, coming from a Labour bod, means the working, indigenous Brits will lose out again.

    • Aberrant_Apostrophe

      Indeed. ‘Fair’ to whom?

    • GnosticBrian

      Anyone likely to support Labour will be allowed in; others, excluded.

  • dado_trunking

    Balls is not trusted in Britain. The day he is replaced by Chucka is the day the bigoted far right will chuckle like brothers.

    • Holly

      Yet another self-overrated sm ug git.
      Can’t wait.

      • sarahsmith232

        the smuggist of smug gits going, as well. Has there ever been a more pompous, smug, over-rated, full of himself ****? Can’t think of any myself.

        • Holly

          Love it!
          I could even sense your sheer loathing of this slimy excuse, as I read it.
          Yet another Labour, lead balloon.

        • Inverted Meniscus

          Ed Balls. There you go.

    • saffrin

      The day labour pick a paki for party leader is the day they leave British politics.
      If the labour party think the people of the Britain would vote in a pakistani as prime minister they are as mad as you are.

      • Inverted Meniscus

        All of his sockpuppets are barking mad gibberish spouting socialist nutters not just him.

      • dado_trunking

        … and in the other news apes go chimpanzee.

  • anyfool

    Balls is stating his views on tax, his views are not policy so do not matter a jot, if Labour are elected with a majority he will not be appointed Chancellor, he will be lucky to be given a cabinet post, he is despised by Miliband and his group.

    If McClusky says borrow they will borrow, Miliband will nod and ask how much as he pours McClusky a cup of tea to drink, while he polishes his shoes.

  • lakelander

    At the moment it’s looking like Labour will will win by default and regardless of their unpopularity. The right-wing vote is split and we all know the reasons.

    An unpopular Labour government imposing left-wing policies on a predominantly right-of-centre electorate will be an interesting process to observe.

    • Alexsandr

      i dont buy your forecast. I see labour losing core vote to UKIP, as is seen in Rotherham and Doncaster.

      • lakelander

        Do I detect wishful thinking?

        It’s not really a forecast. Just the way it’s looking now.

        It would just be interesting to see how the nation reacts, having policies imposed on them which are against the majority view. That’s the type of situation that could bring about a ground-shift in our politics, say, a re-alignment of the right.

        • Alexsandr

          well i saw the result in rotherham council in may. UKIP got 10 out of 21 seats.

          • Lady Magdalene

            Not only that, in several other wards we were just a few dozen votes away from winning. If a few hundred had switched to UKIP, we’d be controlling the council.

            • lakelander

              Not that relevant. People were not voting for a government.

              • Alexsandr

                maybe. we shall see.
                its all to play for i reckon.

              • Holly

                I reckon UKIP will get between 4-6 seats….FIVE!

        • Denis_Cooper

          The nation is constantly having to put up with policies imposed against the majority view, and by all three of the
          anti-patriotic anti-democratic corrupt self-seeking old parties.

        • Chris Morriss

          I think you may be correct. Mind you, a radical re-alignment of the right is long overdue in English politics.

      • Holly

        I read somewhere that Labour’s ‘core’ vote was 17%.
        They just add on others to make it look better.

      • HookesLaw

        UKIP have lost the three seats they have had to defend in by-elections since they won them in the locals.
        How do UKIP follow sensible non-socialist policies if they are pandering to socialist voters?

    • Denis_Cooper

      It’s not as much the right-wing vote being split as the anti-Tory vote being much more consolidated on just one party, Labour.

      As you can see on the left hand side of the charts here:

      http://www.electoralcalculus.co.uk/polls.html

      Yellow line sloping down steeply, red line sloping up almost as steeply.

      • Colonel Mustard

        The change seemed to occur at the end of 2010 with the declining Labour vote starting to rise just as the Tory vote began to drop. What happened then? Autumn budget?

        • Denis_Cooper

          No, it started straight off after the LibDems entered into coalition with the Tories. At the general election they got almost 24% of the votes and by the end of 2010 they were down to about 10% in the polls, with Labour picking up
          most of that lost support and overtaking the Tories.

          • Colonel Mustard

            Not according to the chart you linked to. Look at it. It is after Aug 2010!

            • Denis_Cooper

              I am looking at it, and the caption is “Opinion Poll average since May 2010”, and from the very start the yellow line was going down while the red line was going up; there was no delay until the August or later, in fact by the August marker support for the LibDems was already down to 14% from 24% while Labour support was up to 36% from 30%.

              • Colonel Mustard

                I’m not referring to the Lib Dems I’m referring to where the rising Tory line starts to dip, rise again then drop sharply at the same time as the Labour line does the opposite at a point just after Aug 2010.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Yes, first of all the Tories got a bit more support while the LibDems were losing support, although not as much as the additional support that Labour was getting switched from the LibDems. Then the Tories also lost some support and by the end of 2010 they were back more or less where they were at the general election in the May, while the LibDems had lost about 14% and Labour had gained about 11% and were well ahead of where the Tories had been at the election. That is why I say that the consolidation of the leftish anti-Tory vote on Labour is more important than any supposed split on the right. The second important factor militating against a Tory victory is the refusal of the LibDems to agree to the boundary changes, which is worth another 6% or 7% to Labour; with the differential effect of rising support for UKIP being a third but actually much less important problem for the Tories, only worth a net 2% to Labour at most.

      • Alexsandr

        but thats too broad brush
        we need to consider each constituency separately, because UKIP seem to be doing well in the east. So their high teens showing there may result in seats.

        • Denis_Cooper

          But UKIP was only bobbing along at 3% to 4% during that period of mass desertion from the LibDems to Labour.

      • Aberrant_Apostrophe

        Has anyone used the ‘battlemap’ tool? It shows a table with Con/Lab/LibDem only. For ‘minor parties’, i.e. UKIP, you have to use the ‘sophisticated’ version, which assumes the minor parties collectively always get 8%. FFS!

  • David B

    Balls, like his master Brown, will always find a way to raise tax

    • Inverted Meniscus

      And waste the proceeds on Labour’s core vote.

  • Shazza

    Balls and the rest of the members of the PARTY OF MASS DESTRUCTION (aka the Labour Party) write their promises on water.

    • Holly

      They don’t ‘write’ them anywhere.
      They simply keep repeating the same rubbish over, and over again, because they KNOW that one day, the public will forget just how unfit for office they are, and the public WILL re-elect them.
      I can proudly say I have NEVER EVER voted for them.

  • Aberrant_Apostrophe

    So basically, he’s going to borrow off future generations to bribe his way back into power. Again.

    • Andy

      That’s the long and the short of it. He ought to be hanged.

  • toco10

    Balls is showing all the signs of an alcoholic who has broken into an off-licence but claims he is only looking for a packet of crisps.

    • Inverted Meniscus

      No he would be robbing the till. He loves spending other people’s money.

    • sarahsmith232

      ha! good one!

    • telemachus

      You ignore his Bedford visionary speech

      *

      Because here in Bedford in 2014, what voters are saying to Patrick on the doorstep is very much what people 150 miles north are saying to me in my constituency of Morley and Outwood.

      Why are we not sharing in the economic recovery?

      Where are the good jobs going to come from?

      Will my children have the same chances as my generation?

      And how will Britain earn its way in a rapidly changing world?

      These are the questions people are asking right across the UK.

      But the Tories have no answers to the cost-of-living crisis and the challenges facing Britain.

      We know the Tories are not going to deliver a balanced, investment-led recovery that benefits all working people with more of the same:

      • A race to the bottom on wages.

      • Treasury opposition to a proper industrial strategy.

      • Flirting with exit from the European Union.

      • Hoping tax cuts at the very top will trickle down.

      Working people can’t afford five more years of the same old Tory economics.

      • saffrin

        Both you and Ed Balls forget that Ed Balls was himself one of the labourite idiots that wrecked the UK’s economy in the first place and if he thinks his children will have the same opportunities as he, he shouldn’t have dumbed down their education.
        A race to the bottom of Britain’s worker class units wages is due to labour’s education, immigration and anti-white racial hatred policies.

      • whs1954

        And you seem to forget that if Labour gets in, it will open the barriers and let any immigrant who wants to pile in to Britain, claim benefits or take a British workers’ job. If people truly are saying ‘why are they not sharing in the economic recovery’ and ‘where are my kids going to get a job’, as Balls claims, then what will they say after five years of Labour letting in millions of immigrants, and upping the benefits bill and the tax bill to pay for it?

        The worst thing is, Labour will open the floodgates not because of any belief in the brotherhood of man, or because they think immigration helps the economy, or any decent reason like that. They will do so because they have a pathological fear and hatred of the Tories – more pronounced now its leadership is full of people who grew up in the 80s under Thatcher – and believes that doing anything, anything at all, to keep the Tories out of power is justified; in this case importing a new electorate who will vote Labour. Labour would sooner the country went to ruin, just so long as those wicked evil baby-eating Tories were out of power.

  • TrulyDisqusted

    What Ed was actually try to say is:

    If you want lower taxes,
    If you want qualified immigration,
    If you want a smaller State that lives within its means,
    If you want to live in a country that acknowledges the whole world, but realise that by only writing its own destiny, via its own National Sovereignty can it survive and prosper in this Global Race…

    Then you’d better vote UKIP.

    • telemachus

      But what did James Kirkup have to say?

      *

      Ed Miliband will become prime minister if Ukip wins more than nine per cent of the vote in next year’s general election, Labour advisers have calculated.

      Mr Miliband’s strategists have calculated that a significant vote for the Eurosceptic party will cost the Conservatives enough seats to put Labour in office, The Telegraph has learnt.

      Senior Labour figures say that, despite losses to Ukip in recent local elections, Mr Miliband’s team believe their party has a lot to gain from its advances and the final result in May’s general election may hinge on how Mr Farage’s party performs.

      Ukip took three per cent of the vote in 2010, but has since seen its polling figures soar. It took 27 per cent in the European elections, and is at about 13 per cent in current opinion polls.

      Polling by Lord Ashcroft, a Tory peer, has shown that of those people who backed Ukip in this year’s European elections, 52 per cent had voted Conservative in 2010. Only 15 per cent were former Labour voters.

      • Holly

        Which just goes to show that, in reality, more people would turn to another right-leaning party over a lefty one.

        • telemachus

          What it tells you is that 2015 will be slam dunk for Labour

      • Inverted Meniscus

        Don’t panic captain mainwearing don’t panic. You really are Labour’s corporal Jones panicking up and down this thread spreading bulls**t instead of laughs.

      • Darnell Jackson

        Welcome back

      • TrulyDisqusted

        But why would you good Socialist Lefty types vote for Ed Miliband?

        He wants to be the UKs First Jewish Prime Minister and haven’t you socialist Lefty types been protesting vocally, online and in person by the millions (and burning the odd synagogue) because by your own Socialist Lefty reasoning, ALL Jews are defacto Palestinian Kiddie Killers?

        I look forward to the day you lot finally put 2 + 2 together, get 4 and March protest in your millions AGAINST Ed Miliband and the UK Labour Party who have a defacto Palestinian Kiddie Killer as their Leader…

        By selecting him, what kind of message would that send to your friends in Hamas?

        • telemachus

          Wrong at every turn
          1. Comments about the criminal actions of the Israeli State are not antisemitic
          2. The true believers await the accession of Balls. Miliband was a means to the end
          3. Miliband has spoken out against the excessive force applied to Hamas

          • telemachus

            “This is, I’m afraid, a tragic loss of life which I fear is going to recruit more people to Hamas,” Mr Miliband told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.

            Another senior Labour figure, former Deputy Prime Minister Lord Prescott, has said Israel’s actions in Gaza amount to a “war crime”.

            • Inverted Meniscus

              What Labour did to this country between 1997 and 2010 amounts to a “war crime”.

          • Inverted Meniscus

            4. What a load of rubbish you talk.

      • saffrin

        “Labour advisers have calculated.”
        Nuff said.

  • saffrin

    So that’s it then, if liar denier says it isn’t going to happen then we all know it is.

    • telemachus

      You denigrate the great charismatic leader at your peril

      *

      “For all David Cameron’s posturing, two million more people are paying the 40p rate,” he says. “I would rather cut the rates for working people by introducing the 10p tax rate.” That change, in turn, would be paid for by a mansion tax on properties worth more than £2 million — a controversial gambit which, he hopes, will raise £1 billion”

      • Inverted Meniscus

        That would be the 10p rate cancelled by….Gordon Brown.

      • CortUK

        Isn’t that the eleventh time Labour have spent the mansion tax? Nearly as bad as the bankers’ bonus tax, which they think they can spend about fifteen times.

  • http://owsblog.blogspot.com Span Ows

    Brown, Balls and McBride all in 3 paragraphs. Enough for most sensible* people without even reading the context.

    * excludes 30% that the Colonel mentions.

    • Inverted Meniscus

      Enough to make the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse turn and run for their lives.

  • High Sheriff

    It is the stance on immigration that is the most interesting here.
    There now seems to be less than a gnat’s tear between Labour. Conservative and UKIP parties.
    I think we therefore need to base our decisions on our relative belief in the veracity of pronouncements and the actual prospects of entering office.
    A very close one to call. We might consider that UKIP has now completed its task by moving all the parties save LibDems to the right of centre on this one and therefore to be spent.
    What I therefore perceive is that we are back to two party politics.
    And further that the differentiation will follow Clinton’s dictum on the economy.
    Ah yes, but whose view on this do we take.
    Life becomes interesting.

    • Emulous

      The question in your penultimate line is not worthy of even consideration.
      You observe the picture and immediately understand the track record.

      • Holly

        If someone stole all your money, you would probably get angry, and keep away from them.

        Then lets suppose that the thief stayed away for years. On their returned they looked better, had a ‘good’ tale to tell on how different they are now, learned their lessons of the past, and are now a ‘new’ person.

        After the thief being back in your life for over a decade, you discover that this time, not only have they stolen all your money, but have nicked your pension, flogged off your gold, and made it so nothing in your life works properly any more.
        You are once again naturally furious, and vow never to have anything more to do with them.

        Then, just four years later, this thieving bar steward is back. Making all sorts of pleasantries over how THIS TIME they, and their behaviour and actions will be different.

        YEAH RIGHT!
        Fluck off….LIAR!

        • Alexsandr

          fluck -nice one

        • Inverted Meniscus

          Far, far too polite to Labour filth.

          • Holly

            Thanks, I know.
            You should hear what Mr H says about them..!*!*!!**.

    • Lady Magdalene

      There is a difference.
      Labour, Conservatives (and LibDems) want to stay in the EU so their posturing is pointless because the EU will not negotiate on the free movement of people. 27 other countries would have to agree to changes in the rules and they aren’t going to vote to have their migrant-generated income reduced by agreeing to significant changes in the way welfare is controlled by the EU.
      UKIP would be able to restrict immigration because, outside the EU, we would be free to make our own decisions on how we deal with the pull factors.
      Still, I expect Nigel is thoroughly enjoying the Conservative and Labour panic and their increasingly strident attempts to whistle to what were their core voters.

  • Colonel Mustard

    Labour is a movement not a party and it is cultists of that movement who stand to profit by it, now touching 30+% of the country, who vote for it regardless.

    • Shazza

      I know what sort of ‘movement’ I believe the Labour Party to be.

      • Inverted Meniscus

        And Ed Balls is a perfect example. Indeed, he looks ‘flushed’.

        • Smithersjones2013

          Whether he looks flushed or not he should be flushed (down you know what!).

          • telemachus

            In very country on this earth

            *

            It was the labour movement that helped secure so much of what we take for granted today. The 40-hour work week, the minimum wage, family leave, health insurance, Social Security, Medicare, retirement plans. The cornerstones of the middle-class security all bear the union label.

            Barack Obama

            • David B

              You said you were going to post that receipt for £8.06. Still waiting on it. Why not send it to nice Mr Nelson and he can post it on the site for you!

              Or was that just more of your usual nonsense

              • telemachus

                I posted an image on youtube

                https://www.youtube.com/

                • David B

                  Tele give us the link to the posting not the you tube home page!

                  You can’t because it’s all made up

                • telemachus

                  A socialist browser will take you straight to it

                • Holly

                  That’ll be ya good self then eh?

                • David B

                  Like all socialist ideas it’s a figment of your imagination then!

                • telemachus

                  The scar on my belly is not a figment
                  Nor is the further demand for payment because I sent the bill on for payment to the Commissioning Group

                • David B

                  No evidence no believe!

                • Inverted Meniscus

                  No but it will teach you to use a tin opener properly.

                • David B

                  Like all socialist ideas it’s a figment of your imagination then!

              • Inverted Meniscus

                It was another lie.

                • David B

                  It’s fun to give him grief!

          • Inverted Meniscus

            Well what else would you do with a turd.

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