Thursday, 1 April 2010


A recent press release sent out in response to a bizarre invitation from local Conservatives to support them. I had difficulty writing this as I was shaking with laughter so much.


South East Oxfordshire Liberal Democrats have ridiculed overtures from local Conservatives to support them. Conservative claims to stand for Liberal Democrat principles are as empty as Tory policy pledges.

Responding for South East Oxfordshire Liberal Democrats, spokesman Andy Crick said: “I am gratified that local Conservatives are worried about the election – they should be. I am confident that Lib Dem voters know better than to trust Tory promises. David Cameron tried this ploy when he became Tory leader in 2005, it fell flat then and it has now.

“Why would Lib Dem supporters support a party which centralised most of our local services in the 1980s and which hobbled Councils with the hated Council Tax in the 1990s – a tax the Conservatives still support but which penalises pensioners and people on lower incomes disproportionately?

“Why would Lib Dem supporters vote for a party which has opposed measures such as the Human Rights Act and which voted enthusiastically for the war in Iraq, a war which has set millions of people around the world against our country, threatening our safety?

“Why would Lib Dem supporters who care about the environment vote for a Tory Party in which 9 out of 10 candidates don't even believe climate change is man made?

“I am confident that Liberal Democrats in Thame, Oxfordshire and across Britain will resoundingly reject the Tories who have failed to convince voters that they have changed at all and instead seem to be relying on 'not being Labour' to try to win the election. As the countdown to polling day continues, the Tories are increasingly exposed. They have nothing to offer people worried about our country, our economy and our environment. If residents want real change for Henley, Thame and South East Oxfordshire, I hope they will give their vote to the Liberal Democrats.”

*The Conservatives abolished metropolitan authorities and the Greater London Council in the 1980s. They reduced powers for local authorities, cut the amount of money Councils raised locally and introduced a range of new QUANGOs to run local services, taking decision-making away from local residents.

*The Conservatives introduced the Council Tax in England and Wales in 1992 (1991 in Scotland) to replace the disastrous Poll Tax. Council Tax was designed by Michael Heseltine as a stop-gap measure until a better system could be introduced. Neither the Conservatives nor Labour have any plans to abolish Council Tax, which takes up a far higher proportion of the incomes of those on lower incomes. Liberal Democrats have called for a fair local tax based on the ability to pay.

*A Populus poll of Conservative MPs and PPCs in February 2010 found that 91% do not believe in man made climate change.


  1. Liberal Democrats have called for a fair local tax based on the ability to pay.
    Does this mean local income tax? I understand that if a local income tax was introduced, it would not collect enough to cover services - and that LVT would also be required.

  2. Not at all, it will depend on the level at which the tax is set. They key is that taxation should not be decided in Westminster but by each authority, giving back control to communities and local voters. A property tax like Land Value Taxation might be a good idea to supplement a local income tax.