The TPA brand detoxified
Other TaxPayers’ Alliance Update: 2 April 2009
This is getting confusing. When we launched the Other TaxPayers' Alliance we thought we were up against just one TaxPayers' Alliance. Now we realise there were two.
- One TPA stands up for the little guy, protesting that public sector chiefs get bigger pay rises than hard-pressed frontline staff; the other stands up for top-rate tax avoiders and slams moves to boost the wages of the very poorest public sector staff.
- One TPA demands free prescriptions in England to match those in Wales and Scotland; the other wants to deny treatment to overweight patients and condemns plans to involve fathers in their children's births.
- One TPA calls for more worker participation in planning and running public services (really); the other wants to privatise everything that moves.
- One TPA is led by the intelligent and urbane Matthew Elliot, familiar for his appearances on Radio 4 and Question Time Extra; the other is led by the publicity-ravenous Matthew Elliot, familiar for his willingness to provide tabloids hacks with sensationalist quotes on demand.
- And one TPA gets upset at being called Conservative, while the other is the proud recipient of a "One of Us" award from the Thatcherite pressure group, Conservative Way Forward.
How have these two alliances ended up working as one? Perhaps the TPA resembles a prudent savings institution fused with a crazed investment bank - and in order to detoxify its brand it must dump its toxic assets. Always keen to help, we've identified six of those assets for free (we couldn't in any case accept payment from an organisation that is so opaque about its finances):
- Come clean about who funds you (or at least stop preaching to others about transparency until you do).
- Stop condoning corporate tax avoidance.
- Scrap your ridiculous commitment to "oppose all tax rises" (surely you can't object to tax rises for some when balanced by cuts for others if it makes the system fairer? Can you?)
- Get rid of Tim Aker's "Non Job Reports" (or at least bother to find out about the jobs before you trash them).
- In fact, get rid of Tim Aker.
- Sack your Academic Advisory Council and replace it with advisors whose only interest in the public sector isn't to make it disappear.
We're not sure that it gets us any nearer to a Real TaxPayers' Alliance, but it's got to be worth a try.
TPA Stupid Quote of the Month
From the Daily Star, 20 March 2009:
"Mark Wallace of the Taxpayers’ Alliance called for a freeze on public recruitment and pay till the Government sorts out unemployment woes in the rest of the country.
"He said: 'It is crazy to have more and more public sector workers while huge numbers of private sector taxpayers are losing their jobs. For ordinary people facing pay freezes and redundancies it is an insult for the public sector to carry on creating jobs.'"
Posted by Other TPA at 01:08pm on 2 April 2009
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