banner calling for more taxes on the rich

Death and Taxes are supposed to be the only things we can rely on. To that we can now add government deception, lies and broken promises.

Broken Promises

Government proposals for funding social care have caused a row about broken promises on taxation and faux concern about the tax burden on Generation Z. This is a bit rich coming from a Tory press that has paid scant attention to the needs of young people before now. At the same time, the plan to scrap the triple lock on pensions for a one year adjustment has outraged pensioners’ organisations. The government claim to be ensuring fairness across the community. That will come as news to the poorest in the land who are about to become poorer with the removal of the Universal Credit uplift of £20 a week. This will affect millions of people including those who lost their jobs during the pandemic and pensioners as well. It also includes low paid workers, many of whom work in social care and the NHS.

Government Lies

So the government is lying about its commitment to fairness. Its new tax and benefits proposals are all about reducing public expenditure by 5% and placing the burden on the poor. At the same time they pretend that this is all about a proper solution to the crisis in Social Care and clearing the backlog of NHS cases. Without repeating the points I made in yesterday’s post, I would like to remind readers that there is nothing in the proposals to address the structural weakness of the Social Care market. Social Care Market. Think about that. Markets mean profits and accountants work with a model where profits of 14% are considered reasonable and Councils need to increase their spending on privatised social care provision by £1 billion pounds a year to guarantee these reasonable returns.

Government deception

As well as broken promises and lies, it is time to examine government deception. The crisis in Social Care concerns councils having to spend more than half their budget buying social care from fat cat capitalists based in tax havens. The Tories think it is about elderly home owners having to sell their houses to fund their care. So they emphasise the cap on care costs. But the cap does not apply to housing costs.

You go into a care home and your fees cover rent and care. Care is provided by people, whose wages account for between 40% and 60% of the cost. This depends on how much nursing care you need. Rent covers the cost of housing AND the cost of repairing the property for the next intake, And, do not forget that 14% profit margin. And don’t expect any difference in the next three years. The Health and Social Care Levy will be used to cover up the underfunding of the NHS. For the first three years 80% will go to NHS. Social Care will only get 20%.

Death

So, half the cost of care packages is not covered by the government cap. But, will the £86,000 cap let you keep your home and pass it on to loved ones? It is hard to tell. But if average costs for care in over 65s is £34,000 and half that is housing costs it is going to take you between 5 and 6 years to reach the cap. And here is the rub. You go into a care home or a nursing home because you are too frail to live at home. Most people will die in the first two years of residence. Of course it is complicated. Really old or sick people die sooner. Some people will live for a lot longer. But many will never reach that cap.

So, there you have it. The government is blinding us with lies and broken promises, chucking figures around with far more generosity than it does with actual money and creating a verbal smokescreen. Their media friends promote the generational divide to hide the far more important wealth divide. I don’t mind paying taxes to help the poor. It’s bailing out the rich that I cannot stand.

4 thought on “Death and Taxes: Tory lies and broken promises”
  1. What a brilliant article, Mike. I did an analysis of one private care home in Swansea. It has 36 residents, all paid for by social services or local councils. They rake in a profit of £360,000 per year. That makes the maths really easy. They make £10,000 per resident, on average. Some care homes have up to 200 residents which equates to £2 million per year transferred from the public purse to private bank accounts. This is nothing short of scandalous. We don’t need a wealth tax we need the social care sector in the public not-for-profit sector. The money is already there.

  2. Great article Mike. It is a national disgrace that older people are being used and scapegoated by this toxic government. I agree with your analysis I want my taxes to be put to good use not line the pockets of the rich. Why aren’t the government taxing the rich, after all they are recipients of our taxes, even getting lucrative pensions paid from the public purse. We deserve better than this. #ShameOnTheTories

  3. Another Tory lie. Thanks to Jason Quinn who reminded me of this.
    Please note the difference between percentage and percentage points. The first is a proportion expressed as a number out of one hundred. The second is a figure that might be used to express the difference between two percentage values.
    Why is this important?
    If National Insurance rises from 12% to 13.25%, that is a rise of 1.25 percentage points, but an actual rise of 10.4 per cent (because 1.25 is 10.4% of 12).
    When the Tories tell you they are increasing NI by 1.25 per cent, they are not. They are increasing it by over ten per cent.

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