Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Labour PPC: Tories are Right on Green Taxes

Stuart King is Justine Greening's opponent in Putney. He also has a blog. He got in trouble a few months ago, and I suspect he's going to he hauled over the coals again for speaking pure common sense. The trouble is, he's crititised his own party's policy on green taxes and implicity supported the Tory position - not a good idea for a Labour PPC. He says...
People are not against green tax: they are just against politicians trying to squeeze even more money out of them on the pretense that its for the environment. Politicians need to wake up that the public aren't stupid: they can see what are stealth taxes and what are serious, honest attempts to address a particular problem. That's why the congestion charge itself was and remains broadly popular, and why the gas-guzzler surcharge (and the zone extension) was not.

I've argued in earlier posts that incentives are far more effective in dealing with climate change than taxes. I've also made clear my concern that the stampede towards the environmental agenda which we've seen in the past five years would actually do more harm than good to the cause - and we've seen that in the exploitation of green tax for more tax.

Green taxes are good - and honestly applied, they're not unpopular either. We need to start being straight with the public - transparent in their levying, ringfenced in their use, encompassing rewards and incentives as well as taxes and charges, and neutral in the overall level of tax levied as a result. That way politicians will avoid reaping the whirlwind of electoral defeat as they did last week.

What a sensible chap. Why doesn't he just join the Conservatives and have done with it?

14 comments:

Martin said...

I just heard the prat that runs British Gas on ITV news prattling on about wind farms. No one gives a stuff.

What they do care about is the 35%+ rise in fuel prices.

If ever any one issue showed just how moronic politicians are it's the cost of petrol, gas and electricity.

The gas and electricity companies should be told to get their act together (getting better contracts and storing more gas) or they will be taxed and the directors arrested.

Enough is enough. We're being screwed and Gorodn Brown is too busy eating his bogies to notice.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, show me the bit where he says "Tories are right" I must have missed it. And what "trouble" did he get in over the 10p tax rate.

Tories - please note: Gordon is over, and so, shortly, shall be your salad days.

wrinkled weasel said...

Oh caloo callay, oh me oh my. Just googled Justine. She is not just crumpet, she is the butter, melting on top of the crumpet.

I used to live in Wandsworth in the days of David Mellor. I used to be on the Tory circuit in those days. Oh how I wish I was back in Wandsworth to just get a look from Justine. Just a little nod in my direction and I would die and go to heaven. I am dismantling my Theresa Villiers shrine write after I have posted this.

Chris Paul said...

It's a load of blog prattle and anyone that takes it seriously is a fool.

Hot air.... said...

What are the taxes for?

How much warming has there been in the past 10 yrs - zero.

Christopher Monckton at least tries to question the AGW view.

If the taxes are for general cleaning up of the environment then fair enough, but to use 'Climate change' (already revised from 'Global Warming') as an excuse realy needs to be questioned

Nick said...

The problem is that Global warming has disapeared. All the temperature records bar one are completely consistant and so no temperature rises, or even small falls on their measures of what is abormal or not.

That's a problem for the Tories. People are not going to be happy when the excuse for all these news taxes are shown to be fairy stories designed to scare people into an alarmist green socialist agenda.

Fix polution, certainly.

Link taxes to temperature rises, perhaps.

Link taxes to CO2? Well CO2 is up, temperatures are down. Rock on. Where's my rebate check?

Nick

dangleberry said...

What green taxes do the Tories want to introduce? Genuine question as I'm not aware of you having announced anything specific.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for pointing me towards this website: he does indeed seem a sensible chap, as you put it Iain.

While I was there, I came across a post he put up a couple of days before titled "the real, unchanged Conservatives" though: http://www.stuartking.net/blog/2008/07/real-unchanged-conservatives.htm.

Do you still want to stick to your claim that Stuart King is a closet case Conservative, Iain?

Damon said...

Stuart King ain't a Tory Iain. He just spoke some, and only some, common sense in that article. He used to be pretty good mates with Jeremy Browne MP - going back to their Nottingham days.

Also, why does he think the Tories are right on Green Taxes, you've blogged your good self about how we've already got them in this country - and there's Dave and George threatening to hike them!

He does remarkably like David Milliband on his blog though!

Roger Thornhill said...

If the Congestion Charge was for the environment, it would either ban or heavily charge diesels including cabs and TfL buses.

There is no real reason why London Cabs cannot be electric already, why we cannot have a return of fast, smooth quiet and clean Trolleybuses and also be rid of the cacophony, fumes, soot and other particulates caused by rattling compression-ignition vehicles which are far more polluting (once they get over a few years old) than petrol.

neil craig said...

But if "green" taxes don't raise extra money the advantage to the state is at least halved. All that is left is an excuse to employ more government regulators.

Since the globe is rapodly coling the whole idea of all these carbon taxes is revealed as spurious.

Raedwald said...

Trolleybuses? Pah!

Being green is about making the best use of available resources; London has hundreds of thousands of unemployed. No one can argue that they're not an underused resource.

So rickshaws, then. Boris could give us a rickshaw rank outside each suburban tube or train station. Rickshaw-pulling would alleviate obesity and unhealthy lifestyles amongst the unemployed, offers flexible hours that would suit single mums (with the added benefit of exercise to strengthen the post-parturition pelvic floor), requires little in the way of literacy, numeracy or IT skills and would boost London's economy enormously.

With an initial fare of £2.50 a mile or part theorof, and even sluggish rickshaw-pullers being able to manage 3mph, it would also offer an income above the minimum wage. With hard work and diligence, rickshaw-pullers could graduate to pedicabs and double their income.

The streets would be quieter, less polluted and safer. And faced with the option of rickshaw-pulling or no benefits, I'm sure many would also be keen to take up vacancies in fast-food outlets instead, thus reducing our dependence on immigrant labour and the pressures on housing and services.

Winners all round, really. And very, very, green.

Anonymous said...

Quite. The world is cooling.

The fact that their models can't even get 10, 20 years predictions correct, they certainly aren't going to get 50-100 years correct.

That's the myth. It just like the bankrupt Labour government. Just give us a little more time to get things right.

Just give us a little more time to get the models right.

Same excuse.

Lola said...

The key phrase is 'start being straight with the public'. Well, stap me! This from a member of a party and government built on total deceit; deceit which is the defining charcteristic of its leader. Tell me it hasn't taken them 11 years to learn about truth?