Monday 12 October 2015

Remote Control Begging

Yesterday saw the rare occurrence of those weekday nine-to-fivers finding something urgent to tweet about on the day of rest.

This is because the BBC faithfully covered the pitiful sight of a vacant MP holding out a begging bowl for ASH.
Tobacco tax increase urged by parliamentary group
Tax on tobacco should be raised to persuade more smokers to quit, a parliamentary group has said. 
The tax rate currently goes up by 2% above inflation each year, but the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Smoking and Health wants that increased to 5%. 
It says an extra £100m per year would be generated to spend on anti-smoking projects
Would this be the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Smoking and Health which is secretaried by ASH and is just a mouthpiece for whatever their latest piece of anti-smoker gobshitery happens to be? Indeed it is.

So he wants his government to raise tobacco taxes so that an extra £100m per year would be raised to spend on anti-smoking? Like projects that his puppet-master ASH might benefit from you mean? What a fine example of democracy in action that is, I'm sure poodle Bob has also been instructed how proud he is supposed to be with himself for this selfless display of getting ASH's noses further into the tax trough.

Meanwhile in Ireland.
What this means is that, over the past eight budgets and two governments, much-vaunted tax increases on tobacco have, in reality, left Ireland with a budget gap of €367 million.
Is that so?
As the price of a pack of cigarettes has risen over the past decade or so, tobacco smuggling and non-Irish duty paid cigarettes – sometimes sold at half the retail price – have undergone something of an explosion. 
In 2007, the percentage of cigarettes coming from untaxed trade was 6.7%, according to market research company Euromonitor International. 
Over the next two years, successive tax hikes increased the price of a pack by 50 cents, 30 cents, and 75 cents. 
And the untaxed share of the market rocketed to 19.8% by 2009. In 2014, it was just over 23%.

Who cares though, eh? It's not really about health is it, just about how much ASH can screw out of government - and now, smokers - to stuff their fat pockets with.


Simon Clark had some excellent points to make on BBC Breakfast about Bob Blackman's pathetic simpering on behalf of ASH. Definitely worth a watch.

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