When the talking heads take to the press and airwaves to witter on about tax ‘fairness’ and the need of taxpayers and businesses to pay their ‘fair share’ the comments and the kneejerk reactions to them are enough to make one lose the will to live.
For while the governmental entities, local and national, are striving to relieve us of ever greater sums of our money, too few people stand up to demand these entities explain why they need so much of it and to account for its use. The media never asks. There is no accountability. When the Americans waged a war of independence from the British one of their demands was ‘no taxation without representation’. Today in the UK we have plenty of taxation, but the only representation we see is the political class representing its own agendas at our expense.
Whenever governmental entities cite the consequences of a lower tax take from us, do you notice how they always provide examples of the effects of lower spending on essential services and describe any inability to confiscate from us whatever they want as being a ‘cost’ to the council or government? The notion of living within their means is alien to them. There’s always someone else’s bank account to raid to make up the difference. Notice also how they never provide examples where essential services are unaffected, but rather the council or government’s discretionary (non essential) spending is reduced, so their pet projects and bribes are scaled back instead instead of core services. You see, their priorities are always put before our priorities.
If we refuse to feed the parasitic beast then it will dole out punishment by protecting spending on what it wants to focus on, while reducing spending on what it has to focus on. Rather than enforce the law when it comes to taxation and illegally set fines, local authorities are not even behaving as if they are above the law – they are behaving as if they are the law. This is a matter of great concern that will be revisited here soon.
But, focusing on local government for now, we must not – like the waste of time press – ignore how council income has increased substantially through the ever growing list of charges and fees which residents have to pay for services that we already pay taxes to provide. Councils not only get their central government grant and collect council tax from residents, they also make a fortune in charges that far exceed the cost of administration they were supposedly designed to cover. The total amount that councils take from residents over the course of a year far exceeds the council tax demand we receive each year. Ask your local paper where they’ve written on that subject.
Despite all this, just over one week ago, the Local Government Association published a briefing note in which it suggested a number of amendments, one of which demanded the government in Westminster scrap its plans to embed council tax referendums in the Local Audit and Accountability Bill:
Not only is local government increasingly abusing its ability to snatch money from us at every turn (as we saw earlier this week in Barnet and is something that is happening up and down the country) its mouthpiece representative body (guess how that is funded) is demanding that we residents should not be asked for our consent via local referendum for increases above a very small percentage.
Brighton & Hove City Council has already declared its refusal to hold a referendum on any proposed council tax increase. The leader of the Green Party minority administration in Brighton, Cllr Jason Kitcat, really took the biscuit when he told the local press:
The referendum rule is mad. It’s not really workable and would cost about £300,000 to run.
There you have it. A sitting councillor who no doubt prattles on about ‘democracy’ and the ‘wishes of the people’ when trying to get elected, declaring that having to seek our democratic consent for a raid on our personal wealth, is unworkable. In other words, the council should be allowed to demand what it likes and to hell with what residents think.
No doubt Cllr Kitcat subscribes to the view of elected politicians and council officials throughout the country (which Richard articulated so effectively in a post on EU Referendum) that revenue-providers (aka citizens) are confined to expressing their wishes on council tax via approved channels – such as voting – which can be safely ignored, or funnelled into areas where the message can be discounted. Find one party political manifesto for borough or county council elections that has not been torn up mid-term so a council can do something different.
Of course, forcing residents to declare their revenue raising wishes by voting in council elections also has the happy coincidence of giving the impression these parasitic charlatans have legitimacy for their subsequent actions, which is almost impossible for voters to control once those fat arses settle on the comfy chairs in the council chamber.
Understand this. Unless you withdraw your consent and stand up to press for change, you are nothing more than a cash cow who risks being turned into a debt slave. Your rights are ignored by your public servants, you are treated with contempt by them and even the guardians of the law will not uphold the law to protect you from illegal actions that echo the outrageous, lawless and intimidatory behaviours of feudal lords, robber barons and corrupt clergy in centuries long since passed.
Have you had enough yet?
Update: Richard beat me to the punch, and with far more eloquence expands on how councils whine about having to place statutory notices in the local papers, yet won’t yield an inch when it comes to spending a small fortune producing, printing and distributing their propaganda sheets – which always give a self congratulatory take on the news they want to share.
Try and find a single story in those reams of dead trees about why councils issue liability orders to residents that are way above the cost of the administration in producing them, which is legally all they are allowed to recoup. Find one story about how the bailiffs they contract to enforce their council tax or parking fines break the law by charging illegal fees and claiming for visits that never happened. Find one explanation about why we pay an ever rising policing precept to the county council, yet the borough council uses money for local services to fund restricted-power PCSOs to make up for a shortage of real police on our streets. It’s happening everywhere, and no one is holding these slimeballs to account.