Tag Archives: Lewis

Martin Lewis explains Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-budget. Let’s hope Kwarteng watches

For information, from the Money Saving Expert, who’s probably a lot more reliable on it than our muttering, giggling Chancellor of the Exchequer:

Oh! Here’s a clip by someone who thinks Kwarteng has scored a very bad ‘own goal’:

And here’s another perspective:

What do you think?

 

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Political suicide? Kwarteng’s plan to cut taxes and increase borrowing

Kwasi Kwarteng.

Kwasi Kwarteng says he wants to boost economic growth with a seismic series of policies – but will he simply tip the nation into enormous, unmanageable debt instead?

And, if Liz Truss is expecting to lose a future election, are the Tories planning to use this against a possible future Labour government, as they have with any number of false accusations in the past?

Here’s what Kwarteng has announced, according to the BBC:

– The basic rate of income tax will be cut by 1p to 19p from April 2023

– The 45p tax rate for top earners over £150,000 will be abolished, also from April next year

– The level at which house-buyers begin to pay stamp duty is doubled from £125,000 to £250,000

– First-time buyers will pay no stamp duty on homes worth £450,000, up from £300,000

– Planned rise on corporation tax from 19% to 25% is scrapped

– A 1.25% rise in National Insurance to be reversed from 6 Novemnber

 Cap on bankers’ bonuses, which limited rewards to twice the salary level, is axed

– Cost of subsidising both domestic and business energy bills will cost £60bn for the next six months

-Strike action: unions will be required to put offers to members during pay talks

– UK to introduce sales tax-free shopping for overseas visitors

“Money Saving Expert” Martin Lewis was among the first to raise concerns, describing the Chancellor’s statement as “staggering”.

He tweeted: “That really was quite a staggering statement from a Conservative party government

“Huge new borrowing at the same time as cutting taxes.

“It’s all aimed at growing the economy. I really hope it works. I really worry what happens if it doesn’t.”

If it doesn’t, the UK will be plunged into a huge amount of debt because it will not be able to support the amount of borrowing Kwarteng is proposing.

Campaigners and charities have described the mini-budget measures as a ‘hammer blow’ to the poor.

Becca Lyon, head of child poverty at Save the Children, said:

The prime minister said she would deliver on the cost-of-living crisis. Instead, the UK government has delivered tax cuts to help the richest and a hammer-blow to low-income families.

The chancellor has prioritised bankers’ bonuses over helping vulnerable children through the cost-of-living crisis, whose hard-working parents face impossible choices.

Today’s announcements overwhelmingly benefit the country’s wealthiest households, meanwhile almost four million children risk going cold and hungry this winter.

Alison Garnham, chief executive at the Child Poverty Action Group, said:

Today was a vital opportunity to provide reassurance and support to those who need it the most – but instead the Government risks a collision with reality, and the four million kids currently living in poverty in the UK will be forced to pay the price.

Imran Hussain, director of policy and campaigner at Action for Children, said:

If the new chancellor has money to spend on tax cuts for those who are relatively better off, then he has the money to spend throwing a lifeline to low-income families who are desperately struggling with the cost-of-living crisis. Many now face a bleak Christmas.

Whilst the energy price guarantee will help offset the near apocalyptic rises that had been predicted, it doesn’t address the mounting pressures families face with food, fuel, housing and other costs that continue to climb.

And Mark Russell, chief executive at the Children’s Society, said:

Changes to the tax system right now are barking up the wrong tree … We need to see far more direct support for families bearing the brunt of the cost-of-living crisis.

Still, what can you expect from a Chancellor who was seen muttering to himself and grinning like a drug-addled fool at the Queen’s funeral on Monday?

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Autumn energy price raises may leave you DESTITUTE, says Martin Lewis. Who cares?

Martin Lewis: he is predicting a debt catastrophe for millions of people in October – and you’re probably one of those affected.

Coming energy price increases will swallow all the help the UK’s Tory government has provided to bill-payers so far, leaving us all severely out-of-pocket while energy shareholders pocket huge bonuses.

“Money Saving Expert” Martin Lewis has called for immediate action from our politicians – all of whom seem determined to pretend they don’t know anything about the danger facing millions of people because of their stupid political decisions over the last few years.

Bear it in mind: there is no real shortage of gas or electricity – or any other power source. You are simply being deprived of it in order to make someone rich.

Here’s Mr Lewis:

He has previously appealed for Tory politicians to get a grip on the issue in a video message last month, when he made it very clear that the price rises don’t just affect your ability to pay bills but may also affect your ability – for example – to get a mortgage.

Mr Lewis has also warned against the pitfalls of joining a campaign calling for people simply not to pay their bills, starting in October. He said energy suppliers could enforce a pre-payment meter, cut off energy supply or impact consumers’ credit scores negatively.

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If your energy bill direct debit has doubled or tripled, here’s Martin Lewis’s advice

Martin Lewis: the ‘Money Saving Expert’ has advice that could save you hundreds of pounds if your energy supplier is overcharging you.

It seems some energy firms are playing fast and loose with customers on direct debit, with price hikes of up to 250 per cent.

So take a hard look at what your energy firm is charging you.

It seems some of them are trying to boost their own bank balances in advance of another expected price hike in October – in effect, relieving their own cash flow problems by inflicting them on you.

But it could lead to a fine of up to one-tenth of a company’s turnover if it is caught.

‘Money Saving Expert’ Martin Lewis has given advice on this, warning that there are some circumstances in which higher bill increases may be allowed.

But if you are in credit and “on the price cap”, and seeing a bill increase of more than 54 per cent, then you should call up the companies – politely – and dispute the new bill by asking them to justify the hike.

This would not be a “negotiation” as there is a legal requirement for your direct debit to be fair.

If the firm refuses to reduce the bill, then you should announce that you will take the matter to the Ombudsman. This will cost the energy company money.

Source: Martin Lewis’ urgent advice to anyone who uses direct debit to pay for their energy bills

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Check your direct debits to energy companies, warns Martin Lewis

Martin Lewis: last time I used this image, a reader said he never attaches his image to advertising so the story must be fake news. Let’s not have any of that silliness this time, please!

Energy firms are increasing customers’ direct debits by more than the 54 per cent cap imposed by Ofgem, according to ‘Money Saving Expert’ Martin Lewis.

He’s saying – well, see for yourself (this version of the clip by the Mirror):

There is no point having a price cap imposed by a regulator if the regulator won’t enforce it.

So, come on – check your direct debits and, if you’re being charged more than 54 per cent extra, contact Ofgem.

And come on, Ofgem.

Let’s see some hefty prosecutions.

Source: Martin Lewis urges MPs to crack down on worrying trick used by energy companies

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Money Saving Expert says: don’t let the Tories blame cost of living crisis on Ukraine war

Martin Lewis: “It is a worsening of the situation – it is not the cause of the situation.”

The UK’s cost of living crisis started in the UK before the Russia-Ukraine war and should not be blamed on that conflict, ‘Money Saving Expert’ Martin Lewis has said.

And he said direct political action to ease the pressure is required – in Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s spring Budget on March 23 – because cutting household expenditure won’t be enough to save people from poverty.

He was speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on March 10:

 

“Kwasi Kwarteng has said that many people are willing to make sacrifices because of Ukraine. I think he’s probably right but I am slightly worried that we are seeing what may be potentially a deliberate narrative shift that effectively says the entire cost of living crisis is due to Ukraine, and therefore we all need to make sacrifices/

“That is not correct. What has happened in Ukraine has exacerbated the situation.

“But the rises in energy, heating oil, water, council tax, broadband and mobiles, food, National Insurance, were all in place before Ukraine.

“When we have a Budget – or a Spring Statement – coming in a couple of weeks, we need to be careful not to allow that narrative to happen and to be used as an excuse that we all need to make sacrifices because of Ukraine, and that’s why we have to suck in the cost of living crisis.

“That is not a correct analysis. It is a worsening of the situation – it is not the cause of the situation.”

Mr Lewis added: “We are going to see a real increase in genuine poverty in this country; millions of people being thrown into poverty.

“The only way we can stop that is not by being money saving and tightening our belts; it is by genuine political intervention.

“We have a Spring Statement coming and I would urge the Chancellor: let’s nip this in the bud. Let’s not have people starving or freezing.”

What if the Tories don’t nip it in the bud? What if they want to push this fake narrative? What if they’re trying to use it to avoid providing any meaningful help?

You see, the mass media tries to avoid suggesting it, but this is what we need to ask ourselves:

What if the Tories are actually steering most of us directly into poverty because that’s what they want for us? Are we really going to lie back and let it happen?

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#Tory policies to attack the #NHS have crippled UK healthcare far more than #Covid19 [tweets]

Tory political policies are causing huge harm to the health of people in the UK – in many ways.

In fact, the number of different ways in which the government headed by Boris Johnson is attacking you is hard to quantify – because there are so many and they come at you from so many angles.

So we should be grateful to Labour’s Clive Lewis for the Twitter thread below:

Some people have responded by pointing out that Labour under Keir Starmer is unlikely to do anything about the problems that Mr Lewis raises.

While this is probably accurate, This Writer would say it is misguided.

The aim isn’t to score party political points.

It is to demonstrate that the Conservative government is trying to harm you – and if you support it with your votes, then you are actually self-harming.

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Even if you don’t believe in #Covid #vaccines, you should support the #TRIPSWaiver

Covid-19 is really exposing the ethical vacuum at the heart of the pharmaceutical industry, isn’t it?

Vaccines have been around for more than 220 years. Our kids are routinely vaccinated against diseases like measles, mumps, rubella and tetanus; we have ourselves vaccinated against more exotic diseases if we plan to travel to foreign countries. The companies making the vaccines are paid for them, and that’s fine.

But Covid-19 has created a huge opportunity for those companies because their vaccines are desperately-needed to stop people dying in a rapidly-spreading pandemic. They are charging huge amounts of money for their jabs and this is restricting the distribution of these substances around the world; if a country’s government can’t afford it, the people don’t get it.

The knock-on effect is that the people of these countries catch Covid-19 and it mutates, creating new variants, some of which are immune to the current vaccines.

It is unreasonable to restrict life-saving treatments in this way; it creates further threat to us all.

But the pharmaceutical companies are hiding behind TRIPS – the Agreement of Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property that restricts the right to manufacture vaccines to those companies that have patented them.

Labour MP Clive Lewis is supporting calls that initially came from South Africa and India to waive these companies’ patent rights temporarily, in order to make all of us safer, rather than just making a small number of shareholders richer.

Here’s his explanation of the issues – which shouldn’t be discounted just because he’s mistaken about the name of the new variant:

Even if you don’t want vaccination for yourself – for whatever reasons of your own, this is something you should be able to support in order to allow other people to have the choice that you’ve taken.

But here’s one thing:

Isn’t it sad that Mr Lewis has also to appeal to his own party leader, Keir Starmer, to do the right thing?

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DWP is accused of misleading claimants – by TV’s Money Saving Expert

He should know: Martin Lewis has warned that messaging on DWP envelopes urging people to switch energy supplier is WRONG – and the government department couldn’t care less.

The Department for Work and Pensions has been misleading people who claim Winter Fuel Payments, according to ‘Money Saving Expert’ Martin Lewis.

It seems the government department has been putting a message on the back of envelopes, asking recipients “What would you do with an extra £290?”

The message, that went out to people in September this year, went on to say that this was the amount the average consumer saved in 2020 by switching to the cheapest tariff and told recipients to contact Citizens Advice.

But 2020 is now a long time ago.

Wholesale gas prices have risen by 250 per cent since the start of 2021, households cannot save money by switching and in fact, they would lose money because there are no tariffs cheaper than the energy regulator Ofgem’s price cap.

So their best choice is to stick to their supplier’s standard tariff as they would then be protected by Ofgem’s cap until April 2022.

The sticking-point is that the DWP is still sending correspondence with this false information on its envelopes.

It says a batch of 10 million envelopes was created before the rise in energy prices and it would be “impractical, costly and wasteful” to replace them, adding that such a change could jeopardise the department’s ability to make Winter Fuel Payments at all. Oh, and the message is “only a suggestion”.

Strange that the government has huge amounts of cash to waste on any number of commissions from friends of the Conservative Party – no matter how wasteful – but none to spend helping hard-up pensioners save cash (which is exactly the point of the letters inside the envelopes).

And Mr Lewis wasn’t having it at all.

He pointed out that there’s nothing on the envelopes that means they could not be used in the future, when the situation they describe is resumed.

More details are here:

And here: Martin Lewis just called-out the DWP’s ‘dangerous’ actions – The Canary

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Mother of murdered sisters calls on Cressida Dick to clear the rot from the Met. Fat chance!

Cressida Dick: as Metropolitan Police Commissioner, she seems to spend all her time apologising for the crimes committed by her staff and none clearing out the villains who cause the problems in the first place.

How sad that, even in such a grubby case as this, Cressida Dick thinks her first job as Metropolitan Police commissioner is to protect the brand.

It’s too late for that!

In the case of murdered sisters Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry, not only did the Met not bother to look for the missing pair, but they actually left finding these ladies’ bodies to their family.

Then Met officers compounded the injury. Charged with one job – to guard the bodies and protect the integrity of the murder scene, PC Deniz Jaffer, 47, and PC Jamie Lewis, 33, took photographs of the bodies.

Jaffer took four photographs and Lewis superimposed his own face onto a picture with the victims in the background.

And as if this act of desecration wasn’t bad enough, they then shared the images to their colleagues via a WhatsApp group.

The Independent Office of Police Conduct, investigating, found Lewis “used degrading and sexist language to describe the victims at the crime scene he was protecting”.

Both officers have admitted misconduct in public office and have been told to expect prison sentences for what they did.

Dick has apologised to the mother of the deceased women, Mina Smallman.

However:

It is too late for apologies.

But it is pointless to ask Cressida Dick to stop the rot.

Her job is to protect the rot and distract attention away from it.

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