When the Conservative Party recently changed its campaign Twitter profile to make it look like a fact-checking outfit, all it faced was a slap on the wrist from the Electoral Commission and the social-media platform. And its latest move suggests the party was buoyed by that free pass. Because the Tories bought the domain name “labourmanifesto.co.uk” and filled it with claims about Labour’s future plans. Essentially, the site rubbished the opposition party just as Jeremy Corbyn released its highly well-received manifesto.
The plan failed, though, for the same reason as the Tories’ fact-checking site: it was debunked by the public. Clearly, the Conservatives didn’t learn a lesson in humility from their initial attempt to game the internet, just arrogance.
Cost of Corbyn?
Hardworking taxpayers would have to pay an extra £2,400 each year in tax on average to cover Jeremy Corbyn’s reckless spending.
A video the party put out claimed the same, telling taxpayers this is the “Cost of Corbyn”:
🔴 *Buzzzzz* Jeremy Corbyn's got a new tax bill for you and your family.
Read on...Support us and go ad-free
— Conservatives (@Conservatives) November 21, 2019
But even a cursory glance at Labour’s plans reveals what spin this is. Because the manifesto clearly says:
We’ll ask those who earn more than £80,000 a year to pay a little more income tax, while freezing National Insurance and income tax rates for everyone else.
The party says it can generate £6.4bn from the top 5% through higher income tax. Meanwhile, it has costed that its higher rate of corporation tax will raise an extra £19.4bn. In fact, there are a number of changes to taxes proposed in its manifesto, such as an anti-tax-avoidance programme raising £6.5bn. But these tax changes don’t focus on the UK’s “hardworking taxpayers”; they focus only on those who can afford to pay more tax – high earners, corporations and the like. As the manifesto says:
Labour will rewrite the rules of the economy, so that it works for everyone. We will rebuild our public services, by taxing those at the top to properly fund the services we all rely on.
The UK “can’t afford NOT to have Corbyn”
People were quick to call the Tories out:
So the Tories have created a "Labour Manifesto" website where they claim that under Labour, you'll pay £2,400 a year in tax.
This is a barefaced lie.
— Chris #CorbynSavesChristmas (@Socialist_Chris) November 21, 2019
For .@Conservatives claim of people having to pay an extra £2,400 a year in tax to be true, you would have to be earning £118,700/year or £9,890/month or £2,282/week
Do you earn that much? Do you know anyone who earns that much?
— Kazzia (@KazzJenkins) November 21, 2019
Peaceful foreign policy
Green industrial revolution…
Bring it on!
— Williamos (@Williamos6) November 21, 2019
Well the threat of a redistributive, genuinely radical Labour government for the many is certainly costing someone a few bob.
The Tories have had £5.7m in in political donations in the last week. (Compared with Labour on £218,500 and Libdems on a £275,000)#CostofCorbyn
— Real Britain (@realbritainros) November 21, 2019
What is the #CostOfCorbyn? A Fairer Society!
🧒🏾Where Child Poverty is Eradicated
🏡 People have Decent & Affordable homes
👩🏾🎓 Everybody can Access Free Education
🌍 We Tackle the Climate Emergency
The truth is the Country can't afford NOT to have Corbyn#WantChangeVoteLabour 🌹
— Labour's Black PLP #RegisterToVote (@LaboursBlackPLP) November 21, 2019
Cost of the Tories
Before the Conservatives even had a chance to pat their own backs over the domain-name skullduggery, meanwhile, the ‘Cost of Corbyn’ had morphed into the ‘Cost of Tories’ and ‘Cost of Tory Rule’ too:
#CostOfCorbyn is a major boost to our economy as people have more money to spend on goods and services, pushing growth and employment.#CostofTories is just missing out on a recession last quarter and dropping from 5th to 7th richest country.#CostofTories is how many dead?
— lynda williams #InMemoryOfTheWhiteRose (@ysbryd1) November 21, 2019
— Jen Wood #Register to Vote 😀 (@unojen_wood) November 21, 2019
— Dr Wendy Podd #RealChange (@wendyampodd) November 21, 2019
The catastrophic #costofTories Universal Credit, thousands of deaths due to PIP fit for work, food banks, child poverty, cuts to CAMHS, declining NHS, cuts in social care, closures of Sure Start Centres, increasing homelessness. Tax cuts for Rich Mates
— Lady Debs 👑👒🍸🍾 (@DebsL64) November 21, 2019
Underhand Tory tactics fail again
In short, the Conservatives are continuing to use the internet in underhand ways to try and pull the wool over the public’s eyes. But bullshit doesn’t hang around on social media for too long before people call it out, exposing its disseminators as the untrustworthy goons they are. For now, it appears that’s an understanding beyond the Tories’ grasp.
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?