As the new movie blockbuster La La Land cleaned up at the Golden Globes awards ceremony this week, Corbyn 2.0 was launched as the latter attempted to reverse his fortunes in the polls and improve his out of touch image with the electorate.
The day started off in ambitious fashion as Corbyn 2.0 indicated a change in policy and principle towards immigration and the Single Market – but later u-turned. However, it was his quite balmy idea for a salary cap revealed during a radio interview that strongly suggested that he is indeed himself in La La Land.
Corbyn, as ever hazy with the details, didn't state a salary figure but the number £400,000 was doing the rounds later in the evening – of course higher than his own income. There are fundamental issues with such an idea which has been panned by economic experts as 'idiotic' and a 'non-starter'.
The top 1% of UK earners are estimated to contribute around 30% of income tax to the government's coffers; in comparison the bottom 50% contribute just short of 10%. So a salary cap is likely to shave off a huge chunk of lost tax revenue for the state if the top 1%'s earnings are capped. That lost income would be utilised to fund the NHS, pay out benefits, pay for community projects, provide security, fund the military, pensions etc – how dare Corbyn rob the nation of those funds!
Has Corbyn not considered what the actions of those top earners would be if their salaries were to be capped? We would undoubtedly see a surge in tax avoidance (and evasion) – an issue that Corbyn and the Labour party have flared up in recent times despite mixing the two up and not understanding the difference. High earners would be driven to use clever tax accountants, set up offshore bank accounts or worse leave the country altogether.
Which brings me to my next point…
One of the key factors in the growth of a country's economy is enterprise. This comprises the action of an individual or group's undertaking to create businesses that are the back bone to any economy – AKA the private sector. Those for you on the Left, this is the REAL economy. Those who contribute to enterprise in this country are the risk takers who put their reputations, finances etc on the line in order to become job and wealth creators for the nation.
In order to allow enterprise to thrive it requires minimal state intervention. Corbyn's salary cap would be the very essence of state intervention. It would curb the growth of enterprise in this country if we are to start dictating to business owners how much they should be paying themselves. Let's not forget it is the business owners that are putting everything on the line, undertaking risk, providing jobs and contributing to the economy. The UK is a proud capitalist economy which has been an attractive jurisdiction to for the world to set up their businesses. We should be doing everything possible to ensure that this remains the case and not penalising those that bring prosperity to this country.
There is no logic to Corbyn's salary cap idea, which is purely fuelled on emotion that is attached to a long rejected ideology. The Guardian has run an article where a panel of overtly left wing commentators fully endorse Corbyn's proposal. Funnily however, no thought is given to the impact on lost tax income, morality of an interventionist agenda or even previous examples of being used before that have failed. Rather though, the likes of Polly Toynbee focus on crushing the evil rich (who must be all bad folk) as they always 'take what they can'.
LBC radio host, Iain Dale rather humorously panned a maximum salary cap policy where he references how the likes of Cuba and Venezuela are in economic distress despite salary caps.
Corbyn 2.0 looks set to be more of the same – policies and views not fit for 21st century politics. Corbyn is a Marxist stuck in the wrong decade. I admire his principled stubbornness but the decades have rolled on by whilst he preaches an ideology that is irrelevant, illogical and ultimately has failed.
I would praise Corbyn in raising the valid issue of the wealth gap between the rich and poor but he has horribly miscalculated this idea and there are more logical ways to tackle the problem.
By: Jimmy Allen
By: Jimmy Allen
Corbyn in La-La Land over salary cap Reviewed by Student Voices on 16:05 Rating: