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George Osborne: He knows how to find prostitutes and drugs but his Treasury has yet to receive any tax from them.

George Osborne: He knows how to find prostitutes and drugs but his Treasury has yet to receive any tax from them.

Reuters reckons the Coalition government could be heading for happy days after the ONS said the economy grew faster in 2011 and 2012 than previously estimated.

“The Office for National Statistics is revamping how it calculates the size of Britain’s economy, and… the revisions… show the economy grew more strongly than thought in the years after Britain’s coalition government came to power in 2010,” the news agency enthusiastically transmitted.

Unfortunately you have to look further down to find out how everybody was spending their money. Under a paragraph admitting that one revision meant corporate investment in research was now a benefit rather than a cost (how does that work?) we came down to the nitty-gritty.

“They also include more eye-catching changes, such as estimates of the activity of prostitutes and drug dealers.”

In other words, not only is this revision an example of figure-diddling on a grand scale, it’s an example of an altogether more tangible kind of diddling as well!

Has this boosted the UK’s tax take for 2011 or 2012? No.

Has this helped reduce the UK’s national deficit for 2011 or 2012? No.

Pimps and pushers tend not to submit tax returns, you see (at least, not for that).

Should you pay any attention to the claim that we’re all better off than we thought we were? No.

The new figures merely show that – along with the biggest businesses – the only people making any money back in 2011 and 2012 were the worst criminals – those who exploited others in the sex industry and those who squeezed money out of drug addicts.

Some might say there is little difference between them. Don’t forget George Osborne changed the rules to make the UK a nice, comfy tax haven for his fatcat friends.

Reuters – and the ONS – should be ashamed of themselves for trying to pull the wool over our eyes in such an offensive way. This retroactive sleight-of-hand means absolutely nothing for the economy of the United Kingdom and the people struggling to improve it for the benefit of the many, rather than the few.

Apparently the Tories are hoping the boosted figures will persuade gullible voters to give them another chance at government in May 2015. Fat chance!

All you have to do to debunk this ridiculous charade is ask George Osborne where the money went – because it didn’t go into the Treasury.

And no – we can be fairly certain that (most of) it didn’t go up his nose.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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