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Wings Over Scotland

Another rise in inflation

Posted on November 25, 2014 by

It’s still Jim Murphy Day here at Wings (did you all get nice presents?), but we’re as sick as you are of hearing him avoid questions about devolution, so instead we’re going to take a look at something else he said this afternoon.

“Mr Murphy said that, under his leadership, ‘Scottish Labour would introduce a 50% tax rate for people in Scotland earning more than £150,000 per year’.

‘We believe that those who can afford it should pay a little more. There are 16,000 people in Scotland earning more than £150,000 and increasing the highest rate of tax from 45% to 50% would raise around £250m.'”

£250 million? We’re sure it used to be rather less than that.

Here’s Johann Lamont in March this year (skip forward to 58 seconds in):

JOHN MACKAY: You propose increasing taxes on high earners from 45p to 50p. What will that raise?

JOHANN LAMONT: We think it’s something like £100m. […]

MACKAY: The Institute for Fiscal Studies predicted it’d be something like £100m across the UK, not Scotland.

LAMONT: Well, those are the figures we have.

The IFS study Mackay referred to was this one. Here’s what it said:

“Perhaps the best evidence we have at present is that produced by HMRC, and signed off by the Office for Budget Responsibility, in 2012. This suggested that cutting the 50p rate to 45p could reduce revenues by about £3.5 billion in 2015–16 if there was no change in behaviour by affected individuals.

However, once one allows for behavioural response, their central estimate was a cost of just £100 million – a very small amount of money. The best available estimate of what reversing the cut would raise is therefore about £100 million too.”

As Mackay had noted, that was indeed a figure for the entire UK, which would mean the revenue generated by an increase would be just £8.4 million. (And in reality less, as Scotland has a lower proportion of top-rate payers than the UK as a whole.)

So in March Labour inflated a figure of £8.4m by 1,100%, and today Jim Murphy has inflated it again by a further 150%. (And we’re sure, having cited the IFS and OBR as infallible sources of truth all the way through the independence campaign, Labour wouldn’t suddenly decide they were unreliable lunatics now.)

We haven’t the faintest idea where the extra £150 million is supposed to have come from, and experience suggests that Murphy won’t be explaining it any time soon.

It seems that Labour not only think the Scottish electorate’s heads button up the back, but that voters will also pay £500 for each button required to do the job.

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  1. 25 11 14 19:02

    Another rise in inflation | FreeScotland

  2. 25 11 14 19:40

    Another rise in inflation - Speymouth

  3. 27 11 14 12:27

    Another rise in inflation | Politics Scotland |...

101 to “Another rise in inflation”

  1. Brotyboy says:

    You’re 3 minutes late.

  2. Brotyboy says:

    On a serious note, you’re allowed to carry back income to a previous tax year. This, I believe, is what many individuals did and were advised to do by their accountants, in the first year of its introduction.

    This is why the 50p tax band did not raise as much as it was intended to do but the point is that, if memory serves, it had been in place for just over a year and the carry back provision couldn’t provide for income in the second year to be carried back to a different tax environment, so the Tory Gov in WM could claim it wasn’t raising that much and so scrapping it didn’t cost that much.

    If it had been maintained for longer, we would have seen exactly how much it could have raised.

    That’s not to say it wouldn’t have led to avoidance, but the timings are such that its value or cost was covered up.

  3. muttley79 says:

    It really is a national joke that the MSM will not hold this chancer to account.

  4. Tridentitycrisis says:

    Back-of the-envelope calculation based on Murphy’s figures. Average income of top earners, £200,000. £50,000 of that yielding extra 5% equals £2500 per person. Times 16,000 equals £40 million.

  5. Doug Daniel says:

    Come on Stu, he says £250 million, but he doesn’t specify the timescale. Maybe he means “by 2035”?

  6. Croompenstein says:

    Rev you are a torturer, on Jim Murphy day you make us watch JoLa. I would bring her back she makes as much sense as Skeletor

  7. Grouse Beater says:

    Jim Murphy: Scottish Labour would introduce a 50% tax rate for people in Scotland [as opposed to the Galapagos Islands – GB] earning more than £150,000 a year.”

    How da’ya like them apples, Rowling!!!

  8. Lesley-Anne says:

    It’s still Jim Murphy Day here at Wings (did you all get nice presents?)

    Oh I did, I did. I got a lovely pair of noise cancelling ear defenders. When you put them on you can’t hear a thing … what? … WHAT? … sorry I have to take them off … did you say something? 😛

    Hmm, I wonder what the IFS and OBR think about Murph the Smurph’s recalculation of their recalculation of the Treasury’s recalculation of the initial recalculation of what it would actually cost? 😉

  9. Les Wilson says:

    Murphy needs taken to task whatever he says, Rev is simply bringing another deceit to light, and duly debunked. Well done, again.

  10. Lesley-Anne says:

    Brotyboy says:

    You’re 3 minutes late.

    There’s always someone around to nit pick, just glad it wasn’t my turn today. 😛

  11. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “On a serious note, you’re allowed to carry back income to a previous tax year. This, I believe, is what many individuals did and were advised to do by their accountants, in the first year of its introduction.”

    I’m going to assume that in calculating the likely ramifications of restoration, the IFS took account of that.

  12. scottish_skier says:

    Well that’s any tactical Tory vote for Labour against the SNP in May 2015 down the pan.

  13. heedtracker says:

    Eggs Murphy getting massive boost for his massive backing full income tax devo to Scotland on BBC R4 news right now, so its all working out rather well for Jim. BBC Radio in Scotland man clearly doesn’t read WoS but then he’s a propagandist not journo.

  14. Fourth time lucky says:

    If the average income of top earners in Scotland is £200,000, then 5% of £50,000 is the extra which is raised per person = £2500. Multiply by 16,000 people = £40 million.

  15. Flower of Scotland says:

    I really wish that you had a TV slot Rev! I’m sick to death of the BBBC, STV, Radio Scotland churning out this rubbish today! Also the NHS story about the Vale of Leven Hospital, with J Baillie,s contribution! I’ve been channel hopping all day to RT because I can’t stand their lies!

    We need you to tell Scotland how it really is! Thank you!

  16. Murray McCallum says:

    I remember hearing Simon Pia on Newsnicht say that Johann Lamont wasn’t good with numbers. She seems to be a lot better than Jim Murphy though.

    All those years at Uni as well.

  17. One_Scot says:

    I think it will be hard to judge how successful The National five day run will have been, given most of the large outlets are going out of their way to prevent sales.

    I hope The National takes this into account when deciding on the papers future.

  18. sinky says:

    Wont hold my breath that STV scotland tonight will hound murphy over his income tax inconsistency or quiz him over his flawed revenue calculations.

    Lowest crime rates for 40 years not good news for BBC tv news

  19. fred blogger says:

    Fourth time lucky
    but its not about the sums but about the judgments (perceptions).

  20. Lochside says:

    STV and BBC allowed wall to wall unquestioning of Mofo’s assertions. No analysis, no questioning of how Murphy had been tipped off about Smith’s conclusions, and no response requested or provided from the Government of Scotland.

    Meanwhile the biggest allegate-or in Parliament was crying a river of crododile tears over the Cdiff tragedy. Why? I’m not sure really, after all, had not the 2007 terrible state of affairs at the Vale of Leven Hospital been an accumulation of Labour’s years of ineptitude that landed on the new SNP Gov’s lap months into a minority government?

    Watching Jackie Bailley’s performance posed the dilemna, was this genuine empathy for the stricken families?; or for her own shocking duplicitous behaviour in regard to the Hospital’s near closure under Labour?; or was it the realisation that she might be punted within the next two years from her cosy sinecure in Dumbarton?

    Let’s be fair, maybe she had just eaten a bad pie in the Hollyrood canteen and it fair disagreed with her. A bit like most of her constituents really.

  21. Capella says:

    As Johann says at 11 secs:
    “It’s not a matter of arithmetic it’s a matter of judgement.”
    Got it now?

  22. iain taylor (not that one) says:

    The media won’t call him out on the bo**ocks he spouts, so they give it tacit approval. Job done.

  23. john macdonald says:

    Even if those earning £150,000 paid an extra 5% of their entire income, that would be £7,500 X 16,000 = £120 million, still well short of the putative figure. Presumably the proposed new maximum would only apply to the top band of income – not the full whack – so the total take would be even less. Maybe many of the 16,000 are earning millions and their bigger slice would compensate. Been away too long to be intimately with the niceties of the UK tax system, but unless I’m missing something, the figures can’t be made to tally with Boney M’s claim.

  24. fred blogger says:

    judgements; ie making fools of the people.

  25. davidb says:

    We are being divided and ruled here. ALL taxes raised in Scotland should be our responsibility. ALL expenditure in Scotland should be our responsibility. They should give us a bill for the defence and foreign office services they are not devolving – and when a taxpayer gets his P60 the figures should be on it – and then we can work out for ourselves what the tax rates should be here – and how we spend OUR money.

    This 40/45/50 p tax rate is a Labour trick. The two eejits who saved the world introduced the higher tax bands in the last year of a 13 year term when at all times one or other of them was able to set the rates. It was done for pure political spite.

    Seriously rich people don’t pay income tax. Their income comes from dividends, capital gains, and a whole range of things which don’t attract income tax. Indeed some of them trade used cars of operate as charities – allegedly.

    Income tax accounts for around a third of tax revenues. There are a whole range of taxes which we need to have control over. Corporate taxes. VAT. National Insurance. Excise Duties. Petroleum revenue. Indeed, the revenue of Scotland because of the structure of the economy, is likely to have a smaller than UK average take from IT, than say the average from Excise, and certainly more from Petroleum.

    They are playing politics and seeking to divide the “left” from the broader Independence movement.

    Once more. The rates are our problem, but we should demand ALL taxes raised here are under our control.

    This argument is fundamentally not about the tax rates for anyone, but about our Country taking full responsibility for what happens on our turf. Scots deciding, for Scots, in Scotland.

  26. Craig P says:

    One scot. It is already outselling the Herald, Scotsman (both c30k copies a day), Courier (48k) and P&J (60k). For a quality daily on its second day of existence I reckon they will be pretty pleased with that! Still a bit to go to match the record (200k) and Sun (233k) though.

  27. liz says:

    We are again in a situation where SLAB politicos are allowed to say whatever the hell they like and no-one in the Scottish media will hold them to account – it makes you feel like screaming.

    The only good that might come out from the Smurph talking crap will be that this will not please all those rich voters in East Ren.

  28. Jane Paterson says:

    We all know Jim spent 9 years at University and all he got was a degree in KIDOLOGY. The MSM accept every lie without challenge. Well done Rev.

  29. Alex Clark says:

    All of this number juggling gets me down. Scottish income tax as a proportion of revenue is around £11.5 billion approximately 25% of total tax revenue.

    Murphy’s figure of an additional £250 million from a 50p rate (personally I have nothing against a 50p rate) is an increase of 2% of revenues raised through income tax alone. Or just 0.5% of total revenues.

    The IFS figure of around £8.4 million is 0.07% of total income tax and basically meaningless when compared to total revenues.

    I believe the argument for the man in the street has to move away from income tax, we need to educate them that 75% of the taxes they pay do not come through the bottom line in their wage packet due to Income tax.

    This spin from Jim Murphy is just another way of keeping the ignorant, ignorant.

  30. Valerie says:

    Nice one @ Liz! East Ren is indeed a very rich constituency, lots of big houses with 4 nice cars on the drive. Then there’s the Friends of Israel local branch to consider, they might have to cut their support to Skeletor.

  31. Wee Jonny says:

    Ha. Another Main Stream Murphy (MSMurphy for shoart) story. The prick that keeps on pricking.

  32. Churm Rincewind says:

    I’m confused by this discussion. Davidb says that rich people don’t pay income tax. Yet, as per the Institute for Fiscal Studies, some 30% of income tax comes from 1% of taxpayers. So he can’t be right. If he is, the IFS is wrong.

    The question surely is the extent to which high rates of income tax encourage wealthy individuals to restrategise their affairs in such a way as to minimise their income tax liabilities. In short, the extent to which high tax rates are counterproductive – the Laffer Curve (q.v.).

  33. Effijy says:

    This easier than we are making out!
    If Dud Murphy’s lips are moving-he is lying.
    Why would Labour start using corroborated facts and figures after the success Broon Gravy, La La Lamont and the BBC have had with blatant corruption of the truth.
    Their stories auger well with the elderly who can’t access the reality of the situation via the internet.
    They read their Record and listen to Auntie Beeb who are as horrible as their words are wrong.

  34. Paula Rose says:

    @ Alex Clark – shows how much work there is to do, we know this but many don’t.

  35. scunnered says:

    its not happening again its always been happening and youre right it does make you feel like screaming…the difference is now we have somebody pointing it out and exposing the lies..and because of stu doing this there is nowhere to hide for them anymore

  36. Angela Higgins says:

    I agree with Alex all this obsession with income tax focuses the electorate on self. Frustrating. But still I do enjoy you delivering another shoeing to these politicians who are repeating facts by rote without even a proper thought..

  37. @chum says:

    @ chum

    look at this

    In fiscal 11/12 income tax total 153 billion. PAYE 132 Self Assessment 20. All Company Directors have to submit SA returns. I would be surprised if many of our suggested 16k over 150k earners were subject to straight PAYE. So I hae ma doubts about your figures, although I note pedantically your use of the word “taxpayer”. Does that include all members of Boy Bands, Comedians, and employees of the BBC?

    I have no intention of doing the research paper, but the broad point is valid. Income Tax and the rates set is small potatoes in the total tax take in Scotland. ALL taxes should be collected and disbursed here. What is your opinion on that?

  38. gillie says:

    Now here is a thing, if Scotland dropped the top rate of tax to 40p how many top earners would come north and how much additional revenue would it raise as a consequence?

  39. pro-loco says:

    The amount of revenue any ‘Scottish’ rate of income tax would raise is largely irrelevant is it not? Treasury rules would require that any ‘additional revenue’ would be deducted from the Barnett bloc. Scotland would thus have nil additional tax revenue.

    In fact given that any adjustment would be on a judgement basis (witness the various estimates of what the 50% rate of tax is postulated to have raised/did not raise) I would suggest that HMRC will estimate that the tax rate should have raised x millions but because (despite HMRCs best efforts) only x-y could be said to said to have been raised because of avoidance/evasion/relocation and therefore the deduction to the Barnett bloc will be x but the ‘revenue raised’ will be only x-y leaving Scotland out of pocket by the measure of its failure to collect the full amount of tax due. Not only that but Scottish tax payers will have to pay for the cost of this collection twice (once via central government costs deduction from the Barnett formula and secondly for the privilege of a ‘Scottish rate’).

    There are very good reasons that the ability to vary tax rates in Scotland has remained an ‘ornament’! The increase or even a decrease in a ‘Scottish’ tax rate will inevitably result in a reduction of money available to the Scottish government.

  40. The thing is Jim Murphy knows he’s lying. Johann Lamont probably doesn’t know she’s lying, she is just spouting what someone told her, and she is stupid.

  41. Kenny Smith says:

    Rev please do not let up. I wish I had a lottery win to plough into wings to let you loose with a war chest to really take on the msm. I am a trade unionist and a gmb member, I should be a Labour man through and through but I would rather die under extreme torture than hand that dirty rotten lot my vote. As a gmb member I got my labour leadership ballot paper through the post and felt sick that a proportion of my dues go towards these snakes. I am saddend because they are dismantling all the social gains they made when they at least resembled a working mans party. Indepence must happen and I hope your hard work speeds that process up unfortunately most of the no voters I know or work with just will never listen to good argument or look further than their own nose either through sheer ignorance and misplaced loyalty or fear for their own financial position( I’m alright so screw you ) The trade union line is we need to reform the whole UK not just Scotland but after working in the north of England for a spell on the run up to the referendum a lot of the socialist minded people there wanted us to go independent. This whole argument was not about hating the normal Joe in England its about the governance of our lives and land not personal gain that fuels the labour party. Keep at em Rev I wish there was more like you

  42. Alex Clark says:


    The amount of revenue any ‘Scottish’ rate of income tax would raise is largely irrelevant is it not?

    Totally agree, all or nothing. There is absolutely no point in “raising” revenue by taxing more whether on rich or poor only to see an equivalent amount deducted from the pocket-money that Westminster see fit to grant to the Scottish Government.

  43. a supporter says:

    Have just done a quick calc on a tax model of the effect of changing top rate from 45p to 50p and assuming:

    THERE ARE 16,000 PEOPLE IN sCOTLAND EARNING £150,000, and

    their behaviour remains the same before and after change,then

    50p would generate an additional £70,000,000 of revenue in Scotland.

  44. Onwards says:

    “It really is a national joke that the MSM will not hold this chancer to account.”

    Yep. That last clip was frustrating as hell.
    Slippery Jim just seems to get a free pass.

    If they go with 100% income tax only, then the main reason is to blame the SNP if overall tax receipts fall, as is likely to happen if we tax the rich too much.

    What is needed is an increased ability to compete.

    The Cuthbert’s submission for the Jimmy Reid foundation makes clear that powers are needed to grow the underlying tax base, and income tax is insufficient.

    Land taxes, crown estate, and national insurance are suggested as good candidates to be devolved, especially if Holyrood could vary NI rates in enterprise zones.

    Incidentally, there is a good article on Fortune recently, showing the extent to which US states compete with each other.. Falling over themselves with incentives to attract thousands of jobs:

    Incentives given include:
    Cheap Electricity from publicly owned power companies
    Enterprise fund payouts.
    Free land.
    Fast planning approval.
    Low business tax.
    Property tax breaks.
    Sales Tax and Payroll Tax breaks. (VAT and NI equivalent)

    Just shows that the more tax powers an area has, the more flexibility it has in attracting and growing business.

  45. Dr Ew says:

    @ a supporter

    Not getting anywhere near a figure of £70m from my calculations.

    Show your working, please.

  46. yesindyref2 says:

    On the BBC news all about Murphy in connection with Smith, and a few derisory seconds for Findlay and Boyack. They’re even highly biased within their Labour bias! Pathetic yesterday’s people.

    Anyway, Morrisons (and presumably Tescos) still no The National, but it’s all to do with the Menzies Distribution and I found this from August pre-referendum:

    A DIRECTOR of logistics group John Menzies says Scotland would fare better if it remained part of the United Kingdom.

    Finance Director Paula Bell said that the Edinburgh-based firm would have more opportunities following a No vote

    She said: “We don’t actually think Scotland should be independent,

    “We’ll be so glad to get back to normal when it’s all over and hopefully the voters will vote for no independence.”

    I suggest Morrisons and Tesco change their newspaper distribution contractor before they get tarred with the same biased politically obstructive brush as Menzies. Or perhaps Menzies should have an EGM regarding Directorships.

  47. SquareHaggis says:

    What about oil revenues?

    Exactly how much goes south to the treasury?

    Anyone know?

    We are continually told oil revenue sucks, oil stocks are dwindling, fracking required.
    As per the narrative running alongside el Morpho on the news today.

    BUT I’m quite sure if the true value of said revenues were presented to the Scottish voting public they’d be able to make thier minds up on which powers they want devolved PDQ.

  48. History of taxation in the United Kingdom

    The highest rate of income tax peaked in the Second World War at 99.25%. It was then slightly reduced and was around 90% through the 1950s and 60s.

  49. Macart says:

    The thought of Murphy representing Scotland and the Scottish public’s interests at Westminster just fills you with confidence doesn’t it? 🙁

  50. Grouse Beater says:

    Sinky: Lowest crime rates for 40 years not good news for BBC tv news

    TAGGART: There’s no bin a murrrdur!

  51. Lesley-Anne says:

    gillie says:

    Now here is a thing, if Scotland dropped the top rate of tax to 40p how many top earners would come north and how much additional revenue would it raise as a consequence?

    I think that is what you call thinking outside the box Gillie. You remember the box don’t you, it’s the big square thingy that Cameron and co. thought we were all going to meekly go back into on 19th Sept. Fat chance of that ever happening. 😛

  52. caz-m says:

    Why is the MSM giving so much credence to muppet Murphy’s story. We must not forget that this guy has as much power as that other Labour Party nonentity Gordon Brown.

    Definition of a “nonentity” –

    1.a person or thing with no special or interesting qualities; an unimportant person or thing:

  53. caledonia says:

    we really need broadcasting or press control to get anywhere with their lies

    The new national although a good idea is mainly going to be bought by people like us.

    I would have preferred it to be the same idea as the record,sun or daily star that would attract no voters and not independence supporters
    then have one story a day promoting our views or spelling out labour lies
    then when there is an election or independence vote go all out like the other papers but with our views

    I left mine in the canteen at my work and got remarks like that’s a SNP paper or its full of politics which most people are not interested in unless there is an election

    Yet the daily record lying on the same table never got described as a labour paper because its not full of politics and there are normal stories,sport ect in it..

    If i was not interested in politics i would not buy a heavy political paper

    will keep buying it though but will no voters

  54. a supporter says:

    Dr EW can’t show working it’s a math model. But roughly it’s £4300*16,000 where £4300 is extra revenue obtained calculated from a £150,000 tax payer paying 5p more on his net taxable income after allowances.

  55. nigel says:

    but we’re as sick as you are of hearing him avoid questions about devolution,”

    No-were sick of hearing about JIM MURPHY!!

    Please, could u desist from featuring the pillock any more? Everytime he’s mentioned I just wanna BOAK!!

  56. Paula Rose says:

    I’ve got a really good idea – let’s just be Scotland, a country.

  57. Police Scotland only Police Force in UK paying VAT. Unionist MSP says it’s because the SG amalgamated all the forces into one here in Scotland, says we are getting VAT because our Police are National.

  58. nigel says:

    Paula Rose says:
    25 November, 2014 at 8:48 pm
    I’ve got a really good idea – let’s just be Scotland, a country.”

    GREAT idea Paula!

    Only one wee fly in the ointment tho-55% of our countrymen apparently don’t wanna be a ” country”….

  59. caz-m says:

    Murphy: ‘Miliband can read about my tax proposals like everyone else’

    This is Murphy’s astonishing 2 min interview on STV tonight.

    He never said that to Gordon Brewer on Sunday.

  60. scunnered says:

    i used to work for menzies and if there was another distributer of newspapers trust me every shop in scotland would change there supplier because there is nobody else…anyway menzies cant decide who to deliver to its the shops who order the papers so people need to go in and ask for it and then ask why there not ordering it in

  61. Dave McEwan Hill says:

    I wonder if there is deliberate mis-distribution going on with the National

    With the the R S McColl on the main street in Dunoon getting 10 copies the garage at the head of the Holy Loch got 33 yesterday and 44 today

  62. Sinky says:

    James Caithness at 8.50

    Its just another anti Scottish measure.

    The Northern Ireland police force is a single “national” police force and they do not pay VAT to London.

    Unlike Income Tax, VAT is of course a useful tax to devolve.

  63. caz-m says:

    I think the three Scottish Labour Party leadership contenders are on the STV Scotland Tonight programme later on.

    Will it be tough probing questions from Mackay or will it be like the love-in we witnessed on the Sunday Politics show between Brewer and Murphy.

    If that show on Sunday had lasted another ten minutes, I am sure Murphy and Brewer would have attempted to make a baby.

  64. fred blogger says:

    imo slabs are scared of their own ldn leadership and the scottish people.

  65. Fire engines and ambulances need to be run on red diesel just like the trunk roads department are allowed to do.

  66. caledonia says:

    We can all now see what has happened here Murphy is saying what the Smith Commission is leaking to him

    You only need to look at the chair to see what side he is on

  67. Churm Rincewind says:

    Onwards: “Just shows that the more tax powers an area has, the more flexibility it has in attracting and growing business”. Correct. That’s why tax havens exist, and why the Cayman Islands, for example, can attract and grow so many multi-billion dollar businesses.

    I’m not sure, though, whether you’re recommending that approach for an independent Scotland. I agree that it could work, but I have to say that it’s not the Scotland I’m fighting for.

  68. caz-m says:

    Rev Stu

    I would like to congratulate you on another day of cracking, in-depth, investigative journalism today.

    10 out of 10, keep up the great work, followed by up by the brilliant comments from our band of dedicated Wingers.

    It doesn’t matter who they are, we will expose their lies to the rest of Scotland.

  69. @caz-m

    Any derogatory words can be ascribed to that odious person maybe those on twitter can point out to ‘scotland tonight’ his constant flipping on this issue as he and the other two are on together.

  70. K1 says:


    I take it from that little vox pop from Murphy, that the Smith commission will not be devolving 100% income tax on Thursday. He’s too smug for him to be so bolshy to his masters for it to be otherwise.

    I will now repeat that sentence so that it applies both ways.

    I take it from that little vox pop from Murphy, that the Smith commission will be devolving 100% income tax on Thursday. He’s too smug for him to be so bolshy to his masters for it to be otherwise.

    It’s all so predictable. It doesn’t matter whether it is or not, but all that is important is back to back Murphy drilled into people’s living rooms enhancing a phony sense of import on one single devolved power. Proving to the Labour faithful (are there any left?), that he’s the ‘big man’and what he says goes. Why can’t people see through this? Sigh…It’s a set up!

  71. Chitterinlicht says:

    What about a Wee Red Book of Labour blunders and untruths?

  72. JayR says:

    Smith Commission website’s section on guidelines for the talks state:

    “Lord Smith expects nominees to respect the integrity of the negotiating process. Public disclosure of sensitive information at a time that could undermine those negotiations will be viewed as an act of bad faith. For the avoidance of doubt, nominees should not disclose the substance of negotiations while they are ongoing.”

    So who the hell has been leaking the info about Income Tax? Is this just the Edinburgh Agreement, purdah, the Electoral Commission all over AGAIN?…unionists do what they want and it is never questioned by the media or those involved AGAIN?

  73. @JayR

    One has to live in a democracy for rules to apply to all sides as that’s what independence is about.

  74. davidb says:

    This link illustrates that total UK income tax generates about 26% of receipts. It shows too that of the IT paid only about 13% is from self assessment, which would be what the majority of our 150k plus earners will pay – all company directors have to fill out the form for instance.

    The real earners are VAT, NI, Corporate taxes and excise duties.

    So its academic whether Scotland get Income Tax. We require all those other taxes to be our responsibility too.

    I repeat. They are trying to muddle people up. The stealthy taxes are the real taxes.

  75. Ian Brotherhood says:

    I’ve posted this link thrice, and will continue to do so until Rev tells me to stop, or it’s no longer relevant.

    Genuine, decent Labour supporters have to know what’s about to happen to the twitching remnants of their party – Murphy is despised, and here’s the proof. He’s a liability, and anyone who wants to see a viable Labour opposition in the Scottish parliament has to make a stand – now – to ensure that he is given no place in public life here.

    (Currently has 323 views – when first posted here on WOS it had, if memory serves, 40-ish) Please spread by all means possible – the ‘coronation’ needn’t be automatic if enough grassroots Labourites kick up about it.

  76. TheWealthOfNations says:

    As someone else pointed out above, devolving most forms of taxation is pointless, any extra raised will simply come out of the Barnett money.

    Similarly raising income tax for the most well off simply increases their use of avoidance ‘schemes’.

    What you need to do is to not increase the tax receipts of Central Government and avoid taxing individuals more than they we do now. In fact if you can reduce Income Tax receipts across the board in Scotland you can stick it to Westminster at the same time.

    The raising of taxes to fund local authorities is a devolved matter.

    I imagine the creative sorts on here would have no trouble coming up with creative uses for that fact that could be used to create all manner of trouble.

    For example, a local authority tax on fracking set at £10 per mmBTU and index linked to a sensible index of real inflation, perhaps with a clause that also bundled a supplement that covered 120% of any subsidy that might be applied to offset that cost, would kill the fracking industry in Scotland stone dead overnight.

    I could write that Bill on the back of a napkin in about fifteen minutes and it could be passed as emergency legislation in a matter of days.

    To be fair Local Authorities would need whipped into shape but that is also a devolved matter…

    Such taxation would allow the Scottish Government to essentially ignore the Scotland Act.

    Almost anything you want to do can be achieved by creating an appropriate tax that people won’t want to pay.

    And you can raise funds at the local authority level without any impact on the Barnett formula whilst at the same time starving Westminster of the Oxygen of Scottish taxation revenues.

  77. Sinky says:

    So who leaked the Smith Commission findings to jim Murphy.

    As the labour branch office in Scotland web site says:

    Iain Gray MSP and Gregg McClymont MP have been appointed as the Labour Party representatives on the Commission. Both have great integrity (Aye right) and a wealth of experience which will make an invaluable contribution to the Commission’s work –

  78. caledonia says:
    25 November, 2014 at 9:20 pm
    We can all now see what has happened here Murphy is saying what the Smith Commission is leaking to him


    McClymont would be my guess as the leak. He is another sleekit swine.

  79. Here is the link to Scotland Tonight as the scribes are just itching to do it?

  80. Dr Ew says:

    Cannot wait to tune in to STV tonight to see if battling leadership contenders Neil Findlay and Sarah Boyack or maybe even intrepid interrogator John MacKay will dare to question the Word of the Blessed St Jim on:
    a) Why he has done a complete volte-face on Scotland having control of its own income tax? and
    b) How he intends to ensure 16,000 of Scotland’s highest earners pay an extra £15,625 on average to generate his confidently asserted £250 million?

    Even if the average taxable income of those 16,000 people is a rather optimistic £250k and (even more optimistically) if they don’t make significant changes their behaviour or tax arrangements, an extra 5% on £100,000 will only yield £5,000 per person – less than 1/3 of the total Saint Jim would need to reach his casually conjured figure of £250m.

    On second thoughts, I think I’ll just go curl up with a book.

  81. @TheWealthOfNations

    I believe that the SNP are playing under Westminster rules and it is now that they need to try to circumvent those self same rules. The Treasury seems to have all claims to any revenues raised in Scotland from fines etc and the only way appears to me to be ‘The Black Economy’ or similar which operates under the Treasuries radar.

  82. Onwards says:

    “The new national although a good idea is mainly going to be bought by people like us.
    I left mine in the canteen at my work and got remarks like that’s a SNP paper or its full of politics which most people are not interested in unless there is an election

    Yet the daily record lying on the same table never got described as a labour paper because its not full of politics and there are normal stories,sport etc in it..”

    Yeah, my thoughts exactly.
    They should replace the pro-Indy header, with ‘Standing up for Scotland’ or something less obvious.

    And then the supermarkets wouldn’t have any excuse about it being too politically partisan.

    The Scottish Sun / Daily Record have big advantages in that they have far more resources behind them – and they can easily pull or adapt articles from their English versions.

    The average tabloid buying person can’t be arsed reading about politics constantly.
    They’re just skimming through an easy read on their break, looking at pictures of celebrities eating bugs in the jungle and the like.

    The second National today was a better read, but I’m still thinking it’s slightly too high brow and boring for mass appeal.

    This is where they could get some good original content with guest posts from bloggers / students who would work for cheap or for publicity for their sites.

    To quickly widen appeal, it should be full of local, interesting or light hearted articles, not just news and politics. eg Best burger in Glasgow, Best supermarket pizza, Christmas Gift ideas, Reviews, Recipes, Interviews, What’s On listings etc

    Really hoping it succeeds, but it needs to up its game to attract non-politically active readers for the long run.

    Could it survive purely on the goodwill of YES voters?

  83. JayR says:

    C’mon, we should all email the Smith Commission to point out all this press speculation on leaks and ask the Commission’s position on whether this undermines the integrity and spirit of the negotiations.

    The more of us that do that, the more chance we have to show up Labour…and that’s one of my main hobbies these days 😀

    Get emailing

  84. Onwards says:

    @Churm Rincewind says:

    Onwards: “Just shows that the more tax powers an area has, the more flexibility it has in attracting and growing business”.
    Correct. That’s why tax havens exist, and why the Cayman Islands, for example, can attract and grow so many multi-billion dollar businesses.

    I’m not sure, though, whether you’re recommending that approach for an independent Scotland. I agree that it could work, but I have to say that it’s not the Scotland I’m fighting for.

    The point is at least we would have more powers to be flexible if we wanted.

    Personally, I wouldn’t mind paying a higher rate of tax if helped improve schools and hospitals etc.
    But realistically, it could be counter productive and reduce tax receipts as many high earners and businesses move to England instead.

    Nicola Sturgeon often says how economic growth and social justice go hand in hand. We need one to pay for the other.

    The situation we have here in Scotland for business is that there often isn’t a level playing field compared to London and the South, so we need more incentives for start-ups and business growth here.

  85. Indigo says:

    Scotland 2014 in full Labour Party & Jim Murphy propaganda mode *shudder*

  86. Stoker says:

    @ JayR,

    Email address please.
    (for Smith Commission)
    Had a quick shufty but couldn’t find one.

  87. Carntyne says:

    The Scottish electorate’s head may not button up the back, but Jimmy2Crates’ head most certainly does.

    How can this clown be taken seriously?

  88. JayR says:

    @ Stoker

    or, if they’ve shut that off now, try

    C’mon, lets get as many Wingers as possible to contact them and complain about these leaks and ask for the Smith Commission’s position on it. I’m fking fed up already living in a Murphyocracy!!

  89. Dair Allan says:

    The whole top rate tax bullshit has no economic credence. It is trivial for inflated top rate tax to be avoided. Legally. And without any way for any government to stop it.

    Imagine you run The Weir Group, paying yourself £10m a year and Scotland has a 50p top rate tax while England has a 45p rate. You form a management company in England, reside in England, pay 45p. The idea that “those with the broadest shoulders should pay the largest burden” is destroyed by “progressive” taxation. The more you force the rich to pay, the higher the chance you get 0% because they left the country.

    Just ask France.

  90. Tam Jardine says:

    It really is incredible when you think about it. All the papers are churning out new Murphy policies as if he were prime minister of an independent Scotland.

    For this fait accompli, the Smith Comission would need to recommend fully devolving income tax, Murphy would need to be elected in December, legislation would have to pass through the Commons, Lords and Holyrood, Murphy would need to survive the May 2015 election, gain a seat in 2016, remain as leader and win the Scottish General Election in 2016.

    It’s as good as done.

  91. kininvie says:

    The remarkable thing about The National is that it has happened at all. Everything about it is counter-intuitive. Three weeks from idea to launch; no softening of the MSM in advance; five day judgement call; massive (for Scotland) print run from word go; paper put together by 3 men + dog (ie Sunday Herald staff working all hours)

    They will have planned their 5 days – and they will know what they need to do to afterwards turn it into a proper newspaper. But how and when they can do that will depend firstly on the go-ahead from their masters, and secondly on the release of substantial funding from said masters.

    I’ve worked for Newsquest, and they never, never, release money to prop up a lost cause. So The National will run for five days purely on the back of Yes voters having faith. And if Richard Walker can then say – ‘we can, with confidence, sell 30,000 per day’, Newsquest might back his judgement. Or not.

    We shall see.

  92. Sarah Boyack “I need to make sure Scotland is not better off” The Labour party agenda.

  93. TheWealthOfNations says:


    I agree, the SNP have played by Westminster’s rules up until this point, the risk of having the rug yanked out from under their feet was too great.

    We need to take the bull by the horns and take control of our own country.

    The Smith Commission ought to be our opportunity. Regardless of what its conclusions are the political climate is not one where powers can be withdrawn.

    I was encouraged by Nicola’s recent comments about using the powers that we do have.

    I think that Westminster might be very surprised indeed by just how much power they have already devolved to us.

  94. Dr Jim says:

    Well, that’s it, i’ve just seen Curly Larry and Mo and i’m convinced, i’ll cancel my SNP membership first thing in the morning…Aye Right!!!

  95. Valerie says:

    @cynical highlander, I caught that one too, also from Boyack, the Tory press dont want him (Miliband) to become PM. Aww diddums, welcome to our world.

    Also, Murphy, we are never the Establishment.

    If possible, the 3 of them looked more uncomfortable together than ever.

  96. TheWealthOfNations says:

    @ Dair Allan

    You are completely correct. We cannot tax individuals, they are too mobile and have too many options for avoiding paying their fair share, options that only multiply the wealthier they become.

    We need to tax wealth at the point of its creation. All of these wealthy individuals are paid by companies.

    While they are free to shop around for their Corporation Tax liabilities they cannot avoid local taxation on their basic economic activity.

  97. Grouse Beater says:

    Wealth of Nations: We cannot tax individuals, they are too mobile

    ‘Rowling! Gie Us Yer Money!’ – grousebeater-wordpress

  98. Pin says:

    It looks like 8%ish of the original £3.5bn figure. He just hasn’t factored in the ‘behavioural response’

  99. arthur thomson says:

    It is truly exasperating to see the lack of democracy that operates in the UK. The misuse of the media to support the SLAB, the ludicrous appointment of an establishment figure to recommend on devolution, the resistance to reducing the imbalance of the MSM, etc etc. We need to be supremely patient in this battle. That doesn’t mean we have to just accept what is happening but we do have to recognise the scale of our task and never let our heads go down. Events since September have,compared to the past, been positive for us. It would be wonderful if SLAB could be dealt one fatal blow but in reality we have work to make it crumble at the edges until it is no longer a viable threat.

  100. bowanarrow says:

    Just a thought,I have a feeling that Jim Murphy is being built up to fail and to demonstrate to the Scottish Labour voter that the party has changed. I have feeling Neil Findlay, “a real left winger” (lol) is going to be the winner of this race.

  101. G H Graham says:

    The academic number is more like 40 million quid but did the Unionists not ring the alarm bells by claiming that any changes to taxation in an independent Scotland would cause millions of people to flee over the border?

    So whatever the real number that is achieved by raising income tax thresholds, it won’t amount to much when all those wealthy people have decided to move to England.

    And they can’t move to Spain cos Britain won’t be in Europe soon & again, according to Unionists, that country is full of foreigners, which is bad, even if the foreigners are ironically mostly English.

    Is there any subject that Unionists can explain that isn’t littered with hyperbole, contradictions & playground nonsense?

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