We’re not “deficit deniers” Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending


5:06 pm - August 17th 2010

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contribution by Tamsin Omond

“We are engaged as a Government in a collective effort […] to create a simpler, fairer welfare system that, above all, gets people into work,” said George Osborne.

And if you don’t agree that cuts are the way to deliver a simpler, fairer welfare system then Osborne knows what to call you: “deficit-denier“. A deficit denier (despite the wording) isn’t someone who actually denies the deficit – that would be ignoring the facts in front of us.

Rather it is someone who disagrees that Osborne’s methods will give us fair and progressive cuts in public spending, or (even worse!) it is someone who’s found that cutting public spending is not the only way to save or make public money.

It is true that my liberal ideology balks at the ferocity of Tory cuts and fears for those who the cuts will hurt. But my reaction is not (just) ideological, in fact I find I share it with conservative reports and Conservative ministers. The IFS, the FT and Theresa May ask the same question: can we fix the defecit without increasing the gap between rich and poor, South and North, men and women. Will Osborne include them in his hit-list of ‘deficit-deniers’?

But I go further than these unfamiliar allies because I’m also also denying that sweeping cuts are the only way out of the deficit. I am impressed by the Green Party’s work on alternatives to cuts: the need for sustainable investment that can generate jobs and business opportunities.

Afterall it was Keynes who said ‘look after unemployment and the budget will look after itself.’ I am also shocked by this government’s reliance on people like Sir Philip Green, and donors like Lord Ashcroft, who find ways to avoid paying taxes.

Each year the public purse loses over £30 billion to tax evasion (deliberate or otherwise). The funds from Osborne’s cuts and Cameron’s cut-down on benefit-fraud could be refunded if this government would only work out how to collect all taxes owed.

So yes I am guilty of being a cuts-are-progressive-and-necessary denier but I’m not sure that means that I’m rubbing my hands in glee at the thought of England’s economic ruin. Like many under-30s

I’m worried about what this deficit means for my future. I’m freaking out about growing old in a country stuck in debt. But these threats over our future should not allow our Chancellor to be tyrannical with language.

Osborne’s term ‘deficit-denier’ leaves no room for argument, disagreement or different solutions to our need to cut the defecit. Instead he forces language to fit his political arguments rather than using arguments to persuade us of his policies.


Tamsin Omond tweets @TamsinOmond

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Reader comments


Well, from the link you provided, the £30 billion is actually the _total_ cost of fraud. Tax evasion costs ~£15 billion.

Aside from that, good post!

I probably wouldn’t agree with you about the cuts themselves but I certainly agree that the use of the term “denier”, in this as with other areas, is unhelpful and designed to stifle debate. It’s worth fighting to prevent “concepual capture” by either side in any debate or nothing sensible can be said.

Spot on Tamsin.

Interesting also that Tories who would have normally jumped on the word “denier” (wtf is he talking about and who is he referring to?) are saying nothing. In fact they’re just repeating Osborne.

Another Richard Murphy publication 🙁

I mean, the Green Party’s Finance for the Future.

“Denier” can be a warranted label when there is no real debate, hence “climate denier” for those who refuse to face the undeniable facts. In the sense used by Osbourne it is meant as you say.

Deficit Deniers this week, terrorists next week. Perhaps Bertie Wooster’s evil twin shouldn’t have let Vodafone off most of that gigantic settlement they were prepared to pay at last

Labour were also promoting the same type of investment that the Green Party’s alternatives to cuts report talks about – the need to invest in sustainable technologies for the future, building up that research and industry in Britain to stand us in good stead for years to come, investing in science and manufacturing etc. http://blog.sciencecampaign.org.uk/?p=614 It’s a good idea, I’m glad more than one Party are supporting it.

@6 “climate denier” is a ridiculous term. You could make an argument for using “anthropogenic climate change denier” but I wouldn’t even go that far.

“Deficit Deniers this week, terrorists next week.”

We’re already there:
http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/08/14/council-chief-calls-staff-who-resist-cuts-terrorists/

Interesting that those on the left object to the term ‘denier’ being thrown around against them, when that’s what they’ve spent the past decade doing to anyone who dares question idea that massive green taxes are the way to combat climate change.

For what it’s worth, I’m of that camp that says it’s an unhelpful term to use in any debate, mostly because of connotations with holocaust denial. It’s the kind of term thrown about by a person who would rather not have a debate.

But if I may point out, the £15bn of lost taxes that you link to would have a similar ‘taking money out of the economy’ effect that it’s argued the £6bn of cuts will have. It would be, in effect, a £15bn tax rise. That’s not good for the economy and whether you think we should chase these up or simply make the tax system less complicated and therefore less open to avoidance measures, now is not the time for a £15bn tax hike.

12. Flowerpower

Well, who cares if there are a few diehard deficit deniers around? The good news from IPSOS MORI’s report on the coalition’s first hundred days is that the public DO accept the need for cutting public spending and that George Osborne is the most popular Conservative chancellor in MORI’s polling history.

Hmmm, I have a badge from the 80s that says “The Enemy Within” which was produced by some left groups after Thatcher used that phrase to describe anyone who opposed her, and I wore it with pride.

The problem is that “deficit denier” does not have the same cachet.

11 “Interesting that those on the left object to ……….”

No point reading the rest of the trolls drivel

15. Thomas Hobbes

hmm, calling people who disagree with your point of view deniers, that tactic sounds very familiar.

Oh yes, it’s the tactics lefties used against people who point out that ‘climate change’ is a ridiculous scam and has no proof whatsoever.

Well I hope you’re enjoying having your own tactics used against you, I know I am.

But if I may point out, the £15bn of lost taxes that you link to would have a similar ‘taking money out of the economy’ effect that it’s argued the £6bn of cuts will have.

Really!?

So you take that and invest it in refurbishing schools, building new hospitals/doctors clinics, jobs in construction, new doctors, nurses, support staff – all the while they are being paid so pay tax themselves is taking money from the economy?

Reducing the meagre spending power of those who, as yet to be proven, are benefit scroungers is the same thing?

Golly-gosh, tally-ho! We have a winner!

#12. Flowerpower

George Osborne is the most popular Conservative chancellor in MORI’s polling history.

Hahahaha if you believe that you either have not read the report or you are incapable of analysing graphs.

Note that you are correct that Osborne is the most popular Conservative chancellor at 18%, but in 1997 Brown was at 30% and 1977 Healey was at 45%.

“Oh yes, it’s the tactics lefties used against people who point out that ‘climate change’ is a ridiculous scam and has no proof whatsoever. ”

Open your eyes and you will see. But people like you don’t want to see.

” George Osborne is the most popular Conservative chancellor in MORI’s polling history.”

Well that is because he has not said where the cuts will fall. It is all smoke and mirrors at the moment.

@14 Sally – The rest of my point wasn’t about attacking the left, but then your only post on here are ‘oh look a troll’ and ‘oh look a troll’ so I don’t expect a whole lot else

@16 Will – but the author doesn’t propose using the extra tax to pay for schools/hospitals/other investment. The author suggests claiming that tax as an alternative to the cuts. In other words, as a different deficit reduction method. But if you listen to any Labour spokesperson, anything being done to reduce the deficit, be it spending cuts or tax rises, is ‘taking money out of the economy’. From that point of view, clamping down on tax evasion is still ‘taking money out of the economy’.

To recover from the recession we need private sector growth. In my mind, the best way to achieve that is for government to continue to fund capital investment for now. Give the country the infrastructure and public goods it needs to grow (fast broadband, better motorways etc). The deficit still needs reducing though, and that means that (unfortunately) public sector jobs will need to go. I would much rather government paid a load of builders to make stuff than employ an army of regulators, administrators and assorted other bureaucrats. Unfortunately, both Labour and the Coalition cut capital spending in order to keep ‘public sector jobs to go’ headlines away.

21. Flowerpower

Richard Blogger

Hahahaha if you believe that you either have not read the report or you are incapable of analysing graphs.

You don’t need to be good at analysing graphs. Slide 26 says in bold italic type: George Osborne is the most popular Conservative Chancellor in Ipsos MORI polling

Interestingly, the two Labour chancellors who have been even more popular were Denis Healey and Gordon Brown. Presumably their polls were taken before they led the country to economic ruin.

The key graph though is 31, which shows rising support for the proposition:

There is a real need to cut spending on public services in order to pay off the very high national debt we now have

Odd that this is framed in terms of DEBT rather than DEFICIT. Probably because that was how it was framed back in June 2009 and is kept like that to make the historical comparison valid. There must be others like me though, who are pretty relaxed about the debt but see an urgent need to reduce the deficit, so even at 58% and rising, they could still be under-reporting public support for stringent cuts.

but the author doesn’t propose using the extra tax to pay for schools/hospitals/other investment.

Not explicitly, no. Yet – if you have people working, which is what we want is it not, then those people working will pay into the treasury pot. If you cut jobs as is said, then you are cutting off disposable income that can be used for both private and public sectors.

Taking that tax from those who “legally” don’t pay it means that cuts do not need to happen so people are still employed so they can still buy stuff and pay PAYE! Not difficult, really. There are other ways to reduce the deficit – AMAZINGLY it wasn’t as bad as was said before the election when Osbourne took the reigns, and why was that? Do take I am no supporter of New Labour – but the ConDems are out and out lying to people.

The deficit is high – well so what? That is what I can’t seem to understand. Over time as the economy grows the deficit WILL reduce – to do that you need, as you say, private sector jobs, fully, 100% agree with you. But …

I would much rather government paid a load of builders to make stuff than employ an army of regulators, administrators and assorted other bureaucrats.

… most people would agree with you. On the other hand, what about those ‘non-jobs’ like looking into things such as you getting the full litre of fuel you just bought – or that that fuel is really un-leaded? That the additives in that fuel will not kill you as you take the gran to Blackpool? Those jobs, I suppose, could be all taken up by the private sector, too? They won’t, in anyway shape or form, be browbeaten to say that everything is OK because of some jocked-up boss who needs the next contract …

To me, and me alone, the problem with the left, today, is they are fighting like a poodle in a pitbull dog-fight.

The middle-earners (so-called middle-class) are even worse, *belly up and stroke*.

Pish ffs!

23. Charlieman

OP, Tamsin Omond: “After all it was Keynes who said ‘look after unemployment and the budget will look after itself.'”

That appears to be one of the lessons learned by the coalition from the disastrous 1980s. Under Thatcher, government spending increased (by all measures) owing to the massive cost of unemployment. The biggest economic upset for any UK government is unemployment, bigger than the banking crisis. When banks return to profit, the UK government will get back the money that was provided to support them; government does not receive a refund for unemployment benefit.

However, Keynes was writing about a different era, one in which the previous government had not borrowed money for short term projects in the expectation of a bubbling economy. Any current government (Labour, Conservative or a coalition) has to pay off debt whilst maintaining employment in a magical way.

I grew up in the 1970s when news reports regularly reported the balance of payments but in the 1980s that switched to reports about unemployment numbers. For other social reasons, besides the economic ones, we should keep an eye on the unemployment count.

24. Flowerpower

Will Rhodes

if you have people working, which is what we want is it not, then those people working will pay into the treasury pot.

But if they work as state bureaucrats, then they have to be paid out of the Treasury pot too. And what the Treasury pays out in salaries, expenses and pension contributions is a heck of a lot larger than the tax it gets back.

Better, surely, to shrink the wealth-consuming public sector and enlarge the wealth-creating private sector. Which, I gather, is the plan.

Deficit-denier is a pretty lame and meaningless term. The fiscal deficit is a fact that no one denies. Where they disagree is the best and least harmful way to close the deficit. As Mark M says cutting capital investment is a bad but easy way to cut. This type of spending improves infrastructure and provides the highest multiplier. It is fair enough to call people who deny the climate is getting warmer or even claim it is cooling climate change deniers. The ones who accept it is warming but doubt our involvement are sceptics. I can’t see how it is wrong to call the former, deniers.

With rising unemployment and falling revenues Ireland are discovering that slashing budgets too quickly is not always the best policy. Moreover, the more they cut the worse they are being punished by the bond market. The bond market does not give a shit how much the British government wants to borrow. They only care about growth, inflation and interest rate prospects across the yield curve. The coalition argument after the election that they had to appease the bond market was to put it bluntly complete lies.

26. Charlieman

@21 Flowerpower: “Odd that this is framed in terms of DEBT rather than DEFICIT. Probably because that was how it was framed back in June 2009 and is kept like that to make the historical comparison valid.”

Your second statement is probably true. But why choose the word “debt” in the first place?

An economist or an accountant will identify a difference. But the opinion pollster has to ask a question in 30 words without a qualifying description four times longer. The question has to be asked in popular language.

The average person on the street knows what debt means. If you explained the meaning of “deficit”, the average person will understand that it means “more debt”. So the word “debt” suffices.

27. Roger Mexico

Can everyone please stop wetting their undergarments at the IPSOS-Mori report? A rudimentary scrutiny will show that the last polling information that is used in it comes from 23-25 July. So instead of being:

The Coalition’s First 100 Days
The public’s verdict

it should be:

The Coalition’s First 73 Days
Some random statistics from a total of two polls we’re putting out and pretending that makes a trend because we couldn’t find anyone to pay for 100 days survey

Similarly, if you look at the latest YouGov, Osborne’s ratings have slipped down to +7 at nearly 100 days, so maybe Howe regains his crown. If course he’s still best in IPSOS-Mori- records; but as these consist of 19 data points over 34 years, it’s not the most impressive in the world.

While we’re on the subject of unconvincing things, the latest attempts to argue that stopping tax dodging is “taking money out of the economy” (#20 above, but I’ve seen others) deserve the Tom Lehrer award for Things That Make Satire Redundant.

Mind you people apart from the mega-rich should be able to use it (“I wasn’t robbing a bank, m’lud, I was putting money into the economy”). And I was impressed how quickly people can become avid Keynesians when it suits them.
However there’s one enormous hole in this theory. There is no guarantee that the mobile money of the mega-rich will end up in the UK economy. It could just as easily be gold in a Swiss bank account; luxury goods in LA; blown away in a blizzard of cocaine; or invested in a Brazilian start-up.

28. Mike Thomas

Labour tabled £50bn of cuts at the last election and a 67:33 cuts:taxes strategy. The Tories have tabled £75bn of cuts at the last election and an 80:20 cuts:taxes strategy.

Now, since the election, exactly where have Labour presented any alternative cuts to the cuts proposed?

It has not. I suspect they never, ever existed, it was a mirage, a fake policy. It was another cynical ploy to capture votes from the centre.

Now Labour has veered to its left-wing to reactionary type, opportunistic and unprincipled.

Deficit Deniers is absolutely spot-on, a petard worthy of hoisting the left on for the connotations it affords.

Now why don’t you list where you would “fairly and progressively” cut spending? Prove you are not.

Incidentally, in money terms, the coalition will be spending almost exactly what Labour said they will be spending. In money terms, spending will increase every year.

Oh, they really are using the term “deficit denier”!!

I wondered where the lobotomised Tory parrots on Politicalbetting had got the term!

No surprise that they didn’t coin the term!

Here George, I proudly wear my denier tag!

Your policies are wrong, they’re simplistic, they’re tax base wrecking, they will achieve the exact opposite of all your stated intentions, and they’re blindly ideological.

@ Mike Thomas

It is not possible to ever cut pubic spending ‘ progressively ‘. If spending was distributed by quota them it would be possible to progressively cut. However, public spending follows need so those in most need will always lose out the most.

31. Charlieman

@25 Richard W: “Deficit-denier is a pretty lame and meaningless term. The fiscal deficit is a fact that no one denies. Where they disagree is the best and least harmful way to close the deficit.”

I agree with the first statement. But you are wrong to suggest that deficit is the problem. The real problem is debt.

A government, individual or a business can function for a couple of years paying out more than it takes in revenue. A short term imbalance is deficit, but when it increases annually without a realistic payback solution, it becomes debt.

32. Charlieman

@30 Richard W: “It is not possible to ever cut pubic spending ‘ progressively ‘.”

Not ever? So if a private provider of public services is overcharging government, it would be unprogressive to challenge the bill?

@30

Trident?

@ 32 & 33

I was thinking more in terms of public spending on services. Cutting pubic spending on any service will obviously affect the people who use that service more than someone who has no need for the service. Therefore, it might be desirable, necessary but it can’t be claimed to be progressive because it does not affect all. If we all get some benefit from defence spending then cutting defence spending affects all.

35. Roger Mexico

@31 Charlieman actually, paradoxically, the deficit is more of a problem that the debt – as @21 Flowerpower pointed out.

Existing debt is at low rates and with a long time to maturity (an average of 14 years keeps on being quoted). The real problem is a large deficit which keeps on racking the debt up and may not be financed on such favourable terms.

Because the deficit is the problem not the debt it means action must be taken, but it needs to be determined rather than drastic.

But even if you’re looking to move quickly, the speediest action isn’t cuts but tax increases. The VAT rise has already been announced and was probably inevitable whoever got in. If taxes on the better-off and wealth were increased, you can raise quite a bit without taking much money out of the economy. Even Mrs Thatcher balanced her cuts with tax rises 50-50.

Cuts on the other hand (especially since an awful lot is getting passed on to local government) need to be done carefully. Otherwise services get cut disproportionately while overheads remain the same. And all the newly-redundant low-paid workers not only add to the general misery, they also cost a lot in benefits. Mrs Thatcher had North Sea oil coming on line to pay for hers. Cameron and co had better start digging.

Better, surely, to shrink the wealth-consuming public sector and enlarge the wealth-creating private sector. Which, I gather, is the plan.

Well, you may be right. But if we were to be all in this together, which we are not, to cut the local council bills, why not make sure landlords cannot charge more than the local council re: rents. There could be a massive saving there. We could set CGT at 56%, top rate tax at 50%. A Tobin tax, pay living wages. There is a plethora of things that could be done, yet are not, why? Basically because this conservative government will not do what is needed to be done but will take from those who are in public service jobs and the working poor, and poor, to keep the status quo as is.

That is what ignorant conservatives do. Add to this they still want idiotic things such as Trident. Even someone like you can see that this is not needed.

Now, you could get rid of the deficit quite quickly if you did all those things. But that’s an alternative. You and your ilk would prefer to see 2.5 million unemployed – that way you have a virtual dog to kick.

@ 31. Charlieman

I disagree completely with what you say. The total stock of national debt is quite different to the deficit although it is the deficit that adds to the national debt. The national debt domestically owned is just the flip side of part of the accumulated national savings of the private sector. Savings and debt are just two sides of the same coin. Individuals and businesses analogies with the national accounts are completely meaningless. A sovereign government has an indefinite lifespan to raise taxes and issue currency in the denomination of their debt.

It is growth that matters and any deficit reduction should be growth enhancing. Growth and the compounding of inflation deal with the national debt over time. Consider the US where the federal budget has been in deficit for 190 years of the last 230 odd years.

@35 Roger Mexico: “Existing debt is at low rates and with a long time to maturity (an average of 14 years keeps on being quoted). The real problem is a large deficit which keeps on racking the debt up and may not be financed on such favourable terms.

Because the deficit is the problem not the debt it means action must be taken, but it needs to be determined rather than drastic.”

In paragraph one, you are spot on. As Alvin Hall would write, you must pay off the high interest, short term stuff before you pay off the mortgage. But when you pay off the evil debt you have to cut yourself a bit so that you never need another short term loan.

In paragraph two, I reckon that your spending equation is incorrect; I suggest that the UK cannot afford more deficit. “Determined action” means that we must cut debt and deficit.

anyone who dares question idea that massive green taxes are the way to combat climate change.

Don’t try that crap please. Climate change deniers are people who actually deny human activity is making the planet hotter, not those who disagree about how to deal with the problem.

There is at least 90% scientific consensus on global warming. It can be measured and tracked. Measuring the impact of the deficit on the economy is not an exact science, and any numpty who pretends it is needs to read up on economics 101.

Am I the only one here to see parallels here with the situation when Thatcher came to power?

Lot’s of people in the 70’s could see that things needed to change: the problem was that the Thatcherite medicine was worse than the disease. Many people like me who lived through those years profoundly disagreed with the policies and the way they were implemented… but it doesn’t mean we were “in denial” that things needed to change.

Similarly, you don’t have to be a nobel laureate in economics to see things now are in a mess, tho in truth most people are pretty clueless about exactly what needs to be done.

The issue for the left is that the Labour party isn’t putting forward a vision, still less a comprehensive plan, on how things should be done differently. Before the election their approach differed only in degree, not substance from much of what is now going on. Does anyone on here actually think that if Labour had won, or gone into a coalition, they would be acting THAT differently? Indeed, will the new leader once elected put forward a coherent radical alternative? No…. thought not.

@ 39 Sunny

Measuring temperature isn’t an exact science, and it becomes even more of a mess when you go back through the data. There is no such thing as a reliable temperature record.

At least you can chart the effects of deficits against various economic indicators and other economies with 100% certainty, even if those charts ar eopen to a lot of interpretation.

42. Roger Pearse

Now’s the time to JUXTAPOSE!

“Osborne’s term ‘deficit-denier’ leaves no room for argument, disagreement or different solutions to our need to cut the defecit. Instead he forces language to fit his political arguments rather than using arguments to persuade us of his policies.”

AND

“We have a tight comments policy aimed at fostering constructive debate.
We believe in free speech but not your right to abuse our space.
Abusive, sarcastic or silly comments may be deleted.
Misogynist, racist, homophobic and xenophobic comments will be deleted.”

“They don’t like it up ’em, sir!”

“deficit deniers” is way too mild a term. Don’t like it eh?

Whilst not perhaps possessing the snappy snideness of “deficit denier” I’d substitute innumerate deluded half baked dogma spouting idiot myself – but hey, that’s just me.

But the biter bit – yes, that’s excellent – ooh arr as we say down ere.

I basically am a deficit denier – will write a post explaining why, if I can find the time – though some of it is in here:

http://www.tmponline.org/2010/06/21/shock-doctrine-uk/

OK, obviously there is actually a deficit. But I do deny that a) it’s too big, and b) it’s a big problem at the moment.

Adam

So to be clear, this blog will refuse to publish any article or comment that contains the phrase “climate change denier”/”climate change denial” in future?


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. samcoatesuk

    RT @libcon: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV

  2. palmer1984

    RT @libcon: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV

  3. tamsin omond

    RT @libcon: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you… http://bit.ly/asQ9JV >> I tell Osborne to watch his language.

  4. Nick Winstone Cooper

    RT @libcon We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV superb blog

  5. Liberal Conspiracy

    We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV (link fixed)

  6. sunny hundal

    We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV says @tamsinomond

  7. Alan J Slater

    RT @libcon: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV (link fixed)

  8. Richard Bradley

    RT @sunny_hundal: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV says @tamsinomond

  9. Chris Paul

    RT @sunny_hundal: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV says @tamsinomond

  10. SEAN

    We’re not “deficit deniers” Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/E0Tt9Gl via @libcon

  11. Melissa Nicole Harry

    RT @libcon: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV (link fixed)

  12. Bella

    RT @sunny_hundal: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV says @tamsinomond

  13. fljf

    RT @sunny_hundal: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV says @tamsinomond

  14. Dave Howard

    RT @libcon: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV (link fixed)

  15. Col_Irrelevant

    RT @sunny_hundal: We're not "deficit deniers" Mr Osborne – we worry about how you cut spending http://bit.ly/asQ9JV says @tamsinomond

  16. Greenies: They can dish it out, but they can’t take it | Crash Bang Wallace

    […] Over at Liberal Conspiracy she has taken deep offence at the idea of being called a “denier” for her opposition to spending cuts. But where was the burning light of her moral outrage at such an unjust term when her colleagues and fellow protesters in the green movement were using it to deride their enemies? […]





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