Monday, 15 September 2008

Norman Lamb - Unhealthy people will pay more tax.

Norman LambWhat a complete and utter idiot Norman Lamb is. I've always thought that a great deal of Lib Dem policies are just pie in the sky - wouldn't it be nice if the world was full of rainbows and fluttering fairies and prancing unicorns and smiley happy people and....... I think you get the picture. Their latest lunacy being put forward by their Health spokesman Norman Lamb is to give income tax breaks for living healthy lifestyle. Norman thinks this will be a fair system, nothing like (as he puts it) the current "Stalinist" system.

Is this idiot on this earth or fuller's? Does he not realise that if the healthy are paying less tax in his utopia, the unhealthy will be paying more. What if you can't play sport or exercise because of some ailment? do you have to get a note from your Mum? Norman says:
"You could, for instance, have a card which you swipe whenever you take part in regular screenings or when you take part in physical exercise. "I'm sure we won't be able to police the amount of wine you drink every evening. I don't seek to move the scheme beyond what is possible to measure."
Hello Norman, is anybody in there? You don't think that forcing people to make the choice between partaking physical exercise, or paying more tax than everyone else, is a little - now what's the word I'm looking for - ah yes that's it, "Stalinist"? And as for "what is possible to measure" I'm afraid, what you can't measure, is quickly diminishing.

Of course this is nothing to do with exercise and everything to do with smoking and drinking. What Norman is really saying is that if you smoke you will pay more tax than everybody else, even though you are already paying a massive amount of tax every time you buy your fags.

Jesus! Is this the best they can come up with? If it is, then the Lib Dems really are in deep trouble.

UPDATE: I've been pulled up by Nich Starling for calling Norman Lamb a complete and utter idiot. Nich is right, I'm willing to believe that Norman is not an idiot all of the time, but I'm afraid on this occasion, he most definitely is.


Norfolk Blogger said...

What ever you may think of Norman's plans, he is very far from being an idiot. He has turned a 15,000 Tory majority in to a Lib Dem majority of 10,606 (he beat Iain Dale despite a fortune of Ashcroft money being spent), has an enormous name recognition in the constituency (we gained a council seat in 2003 on the basis of no leaflets just because people ragarded him so highly) and is a personal friend of mine, so I have to defend him.

Argue about the policy, disagree with him, but call him and idiot and you do him and yourself a dis-service.

Cheers - Nich Starling

Daily Referendum said...

Bollocks Nich, You would call someone an idiot (if he wasn't a friend) for coming out with this rubbish.

Norfolk Blogger said...

I am interested in your logic though. having read what he said, he is suggesting tax cuts for people engaging in healthy activities like joining a gym. Surely this incentive based system is not what you are suggesting, which is to imply that fat people will be taxed more.

Unhealthy people will pay the same, not more. Surely the Tories proposal to incentivse marriage is similar, but if I suggested to you that tory policy was a tax on single people you would refute it immediately.

Daily Referendum said...

Nich, we are talking about a two tier tax system, one for fitties and one for fatties/faggies. And if all these people are going to pay less tax for not smoking and doing a bit of exercise, how are the government going to make up the shortfall in revenue?

Sure eventually (after several years) this policy could reduce the NHS bill, but in the mean time some people will pay more tax. And I'm sure you are aware which part of the population that will be. This will be the Lib Dems 10p tax.

Dave Cole said...

Never having met Norman Lamb, I can't really comment on his idiocy. However, I agree with Steve on the substantive issue. Obviously, some people will not be able to exercise; how ill or disabled would you have to be to be excused, or is it on a sliding scale? If I exercise but smoke like a chimney, what happens?

Ultimately, it's going against a founding idea behind the NHS; some people just happen to be unlucky. Now, there are arguments against that, but this wishy-washiness doesn't address the issues, seems to be largely pinched from the 'Nudge' philosophy and would probably cost more to implement than it would save. I became pretty adept of getting out of PE at school; I'm sure that I could pick up some of the old tricks again.

A better solution would be to scrap VAT on gyms or something.


Norfolk Blogger said...

Dave, a good solution but not totally different to the proposal from Norman.

Steve, what about the Tories two tier approach to single people ?

Some people cannot help being single and cannot get married. Why will the Tories treat them differently to married people ? ;-)

Daily Referendum said...

Sorry Nich, the Tory policy is to bring up income support for married couples to match that of a single parent. It is married couples who discriminated against under the current system, not single parents.

Daily Referendum said...


Iain Duncan Smith proposed an increase in benefits of £32 for married couples to bring them into line with single parents. A single parent with 2 children working 16 hours a week receives £487 per week thanks to tax credit payments.

Unbelievably a two-parent family, with one of them working, also with 2 children is required to work 116 hours to get the same income.

Anonymous said...

Once an individual suffers from obesity or overweight, it becomes highly important for him to trigger off weight loss and altogether weight loss is necessary to keep a whole lot of obesity induced disorders, namely, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure et al at bay. Dieting and regular physical exercises can help in achieving weight loss and altogether the “weight loss” section of the website informs you that weight loss medicines such as Phentermine, Xenical etc can also help you trigger off instant weight loss if taken in accordance with the instructions of the doctor.