The last thing that Labour wants is for ordinary citizens to see and understand how it thinks about us. Nor do they wish us to realise how that opinion is deployed to squeeze ever more money out of the taxpayer in their relentless and unprincipled pursuit of unprincipled power. But now their shameful secret is out.

It works like this, people.

They always knew that the willingness of the British people to pay ever more tax for public services would come to an end. They know only too well that throwing more money at the Vanity Projects of health and education has, after ten years of Labour Government, hardly made a difference. This is largely because throwing money at things without having the requisite skills and knowledge of the world to make the spending effective is the Governmental equivalent of pouring pound coins into an active volcano.

If you doubt the proposition that Labour lacks such skills, I commend to you the exercise of looking at the biographies of each of Labour’s Cabinet Ministers (which may easily be found in Wikipedia) where you will see how almost to a man (or woman) they emerged from University and went straight into the world of professional politics, whether as a policy wonk in some left-leaning think-tank, as an education officer in a trades union or as a researcher for an MP or whatever. None has ever started a business which has been developed into a successful enterprise. None has held senior managerial positions in the world of free enterprise where they have had to take the sort of risk decisions which so build character and understanding of how the real world (as opposed to the milch-cow world of the public sector) works.

Thus the process of inventing ever more stealthy and subtle ways of invisibly filching money from the Taxpayer’s wallets has reached the high tide mark. The people have had ten years to understand all the eyewash and now know only too well that this or that announcement which is portrayed as being not an increase in tax but merely an adjustment of who pays it is in fact just another Labour whopper. In terms of the process of harvesting the Taxpayer for more money to come directly to the Treasury, Labour knows that the game is now well and truly up. Witness the enthusiasm which has greeted the promise of an Inheritance Tax threshold of £1 million and the consequent collapse of the standing of Gordon Brown and Labour in the polls.

Suddenly the British public, which has been silently groaning under the Socialist yoke in the hope that all the promises about improvements in the NHS and the education of their children would somehow come true, has decided to pop Labour’s balloon. It no longer believes.

Labour knows this and the mere realisation has both chilled their hearts and sent them into a profound depression: how now will all that loot be found to feed the monster that public spending has become?

The answer is to distance themselves from the next tranche of legalised looting. Just as all forms of executive action are now devolved to Quangos so that Ministers can claim that the next fiasco (and they now come along with an irritating regularity, often daily) is not their fault, so now the process of raising all that cash is to be devolved.

In the first instance the central government grant to Local Authorities is to be cut. This will force those bodies dramatically to raise Council Tax. This will enable Ministers yet again to parrot the mantra “Not Me Guv!”. This is especially convenient as most Local Government is now in the hands of the Conservatives, the Liberal ‘Democrats’ or coalitions of the same: thus blame for swingeing Council Tax rises can be laid squarely upon the shoulders of the innocent.

But the next trick is even more surreptitious. As the Mail on Sunday tells us today (here):

Government Busybody Snoops are to be sent round every home and every business in the land to make a subjective assessment of all the features which would justify revaluing your home or your business and thus enable them to ramp up the amount that is paid to Local Authorities by individuals. That this is so has was to have been concealed from the public hitherto, which will come as a surprise to nobody. Formerly the Manual which set out the criteria for local authorities to revalue your business was available on the internet. Not so the new one which was issued earlier this summer by Alistair Darling. It could only be found on the Intranets of Local Authorities. Now pressure has forced Darling to place a copy in the House of Commons Library (a place easily accessed, of course, by those whom it affects you may think) and a chilling document it is. The Mail picks out the way in which Inspectors should evaluate a Public House:

Confidential orders to council tax snoopers, obtained by The Mail on Sunday, say ‘friendly’ pubs with quiz nights, football teams or dartboards will be forced to pay higher business rates, which will pay for Labour’s public-spending programme.

Guidance on how to set the rates for a pub tells inspectors to take into account a number of factors: ‘Note any TV (including satellite) facility, quiz nights, pool, darts or football teams in leagues. Does the pub appear friendly and popular?’

In addition, pool and darts ‘facilities’ must be logged along with ‘beer gardens, children’s play areas and bowling greens’.

The inspectors must obtain price lists of beers, wines and spirits and assess the type of pub, such as ‘standard local, village pub [or] student venue’, suggesting pleasant locals will have to pay more than scruffier student bars.

Here if you needed it is proof positive of Labour’s eternal politics of envy approach to everything and how any spark of initiative and enterprise is to be met with ever greater imposts by this wastrel leech of a Socialist Government. And thus is raised yet more billions to relieve Central Government the opprobrium of finding ever more convoluted means of raising Tax at the centre.

We could, I suppose, save all these people a lot of time and effort if we simply handed all our money over now, thus avoiding the bother of doing the paperwork. That would save both time and public money, wouldn’t it?

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