The Conservative’s “FOR HARDWORKING PEOPLE” website will, for the low low price of some personal details (salary, post code, if you have a mortgage, young children, “how often you fill up your car with petrol”, if you have state pension) and your email address, give you a list of things they claim to have done for you.
I could write a scathing article on the questions alone, but lets start on just the answers it gave me:
Here’s what we have done to help you and hardworking people in your area:
Saved you £700 a year by cutting income tax. We are cutting income tax for 25 million people, and have taken 2.4 million of the lowest paid workers out of income tax altogether – helping hardworking people be more financially secure.
The tax cuts left me with £480 more per year, so I don’t know how they got that figure, plus, as a public-sector worker, I’ve had no pay rises until my 1% (so, below inflation) raise last year – effectively, a pay cut every year. It’s overstating the benefits for the low paid as well, as those who benefit most from the tax changes are those paid just under the amount for the high rate income tax. They’ve also put VAT up, to take that “extra” money back.
Saved you £182 a year on petrol by freezing Fuel Duty and cancelling Labour’s planned rises – giving you more money to spend on the things that matter.
I’d like to see a retailer try this trick “save 10% *(saving based on what prices could have been)”. It’s another over-generous figure, based on the assumption that I buy about twice as much fuel as I actually do, and as the cost of public transport has gone up, I’ve used the car more.
Helped people provide for their families by getting 79,000 more people into work in the West Midlands since 2010. We’ve helped create jobs by backing businesses with better infrastructure and lower jobs taxes – and there are now a million more people in work across the UK than in 2010.
I was in work in 2010, so no direct help there. Looking at jobs available, I see a lot less worth applying for than I did last time I was job-hunting in 2008.
Reduced crime by 20% in Staffordshire – making your community safer.
Cut the cost of childcare for parents of 3 and 4 year olds by £400 a year
But I still can’t afford it, and other services my wife used to take the children to have been cut.
Protected children online by forcing internet providers to install automatic Family Friendly Filters blocking inappropriate material
I was already capable of setting up filters. And that “inappropriate material” net is cast much too wide.
Capped benefits so no out-of-work household can claim more than the average family earns by working – so we reward those who want to work hard and get on in life
This hasn’t helped me at all. It’s only affected a small number of households, with large numbers of children (leaving them vulnerable), and as far as I know, none in my area.
Reduced the national deficit by a third – so we deal with our debts and safeguard our economy for the long term
I haven’t seen any positive outcome of that. I’ve seen pain caused by the way they’ve done it.
Reduced immigration by nearly a third – so our economy delivers for hardworking people who play by the rules
Something that’s made life more difficult for my family, and it’s bad for the economy, as immigrants are net contributors to the economy.
Pledged an in-out referendum on Europe by the end of 2017
Hasn’t helped me at all. It may have reduced investment and job opportunities, as business who sell to Europe are setting an uncertain future.
We’re delivering the best schools and skills for young people – with 1.5 million new apprenticeships giving people the chance to get on in life
Like al-Madinah free school? The improvements in schools in my area is mostly due to Labour’s “Building Schools for the Future” programme. My brother is just finishing an apprenticeship, and missed out on some training previous apprentices had benefited from because this government cut it.
And we’re forcing energy companies to put customers on the lowest tariff
Is this why my energy company recently stopped their lowest tariff and moved me to a more expensive one?