Fuel Tax Protests imminent?

! This post hasn't been updated in over a year. A lot can change in a year including my opinion and the amount of naughty words I use. There's a good chance that there's something in what's written below that someone will find objectionable. That's fine, if I tried to please everybody all of the time then I'd be a Lib Dem (remember them?) and I'm certainly not one of those. The point is, I'm not the kind of person to try and alter history in case I said something in the past that someone can use against me in the future but just remember that the person I was then isn't the person I am now nor the person I'll be in a year's time.

The Road Haulage Association have agreed to back Transaction 2007 in “legal protest action”.

The price of fuel in the UK is now higher than ever and mostly thanks to the crippling amount of tax put onto it by the British government.  The average price of a liter of petrol is now over £1.00 thanks to a deferred increase in fuel duty imposed by Gordon Brown in his final budget before he was installed as Prime Minister.

Hauliers now pay 25% more than their competitors on the continent who can save so much money by filling up on cheap fuel in France that they can serve the South East of England and still undercut hauliers based in this country.  The British government is losing huge amounts of tax as these foreign companies take business away from our own hauliers.

Something must be done.  Asking nicely for a decrease in fuel duty has done nothing to help hauliers or ordinary motorists.  Last time No Mandate Brown was asked to cut fuel duty he said that we needed to concentrate on a cheap and secure oil supply to bring down prices.  Only a couple of pence from the price of fuel is down to the cost of the oil – most of it comes from refining, transport and (highest of all) tax.  The cost of fuel doesn’t just affect motorists – it affects the cost of everything you buy, whether it’s a pint of milk or a ton of bricks and that cost is passed on to the consumer.

I will support any protest action that aims to bring down the amount of tax paid on fuel and road tax but the RHA and Transport 2007 will have to be a lot cleverer than they were last time.  They lost the support of the public because they allowed the British government to spread lies and propaganda about the protests and to buy the patronage of Rupert Murdoch.  Cutting off their members and supporters, whilst undoubtedly intended to prevent the British government’s moles from getting information to help the state interefere with their protest, leaves them without the widespread support they going to need, particularly from bloggers.

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  1. Allie (93 comments) says:

    Yeah, because bloggers make all the difference … (chortle!)

  2. Allie (93 comments) says:

    A couple of questions: why didn’t you itemise the profits of the oil companies and the retailers separately? And how would you replace the revenue lost to the Treasury by a reduction in fuel duty?

  3. wonkotsane (1133 comments) says:

    Allie, when the media is being controlled by the press, the internet is the only place to turn.

    The profits of oil companies are irrelevant, petrol prices don’t make any difference. Like I said, the price of the oil is largely irrelevant to the price of the fuel because it’s mostly tax.

    And how would I replace the revenue? Without knowing how much the economy would benefit from a reduction in tax it’s impossible to know how much would need to be recouped, if anything.

  4. Allie (93 comments) says:

    The press is part of the media, so the first part of your reply makes no sense, and as the proprietors of newspapers don’t control the media as a whole, just the parts they own, the presumption doesn’t hold water. It’s rather sweet that you think bloggers can make that much difference, though.

    How can the profits of the oil companies be irrelevant to a discussion of the price of fuel at the pump? Good point about how the economy might benefit from a reduction in tax, though; I’d not thought of that. Of course, it might not benefit, and more people using more fuel might have other negative effects, but nevertheless it’s still a cracking point that had never occurred to me.

  5. wonkotsane (1133 comments) says:

    I meant controlled by the state. Doh!

    What would you have the oil companies do? They charge a couple of pence for a litre of oil and the rest of it is refining costs, transport costs and mostly tax. They make a profit because of the volume they sell with wafer thin margins. And why shouldn’t they make a profit? They exist only to make money for their shareholders.

  6. Allie (93 comments) says:

    Oh, right. But how is the press controlled by the state?

    I’m not saying the oil companies should do anything, I was just saying that it seemed odd that you didn’t delineate their profits in the original graphic, from which it seems their profit is about 15%, which seems pretty tidy to me.

  7. wonkotsane (1133 comments) says:

    How is the press controlled by the media? They were last time the hauliers had protests. Bliar called Rupert Murdoch into Downing Street and the next day the Sun turned on them. They certainly control the BBC, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.

    The graphic’s not mine, it’s Transport 2007’s. Don’t forget, those individual costs are costs, not profits.

  8. Charlie Marks (365 comments) says:

    Check out Chomsky and Herman’s propaganda model: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_model for understanding how media output is reflective of media ownership.

    Personally, I wouldn’t phrase it as “the state controls the media” – because in the UK it isn’t so direct. If it were the case, there would be widespread disbelief in what was reported.

    The lies over the Iraq war and the participatory alternative of the internet have dented the power of ruling class media, it has to be said…

  9. wonkotsane (1133 comments) says:

    The state does control the media, it just does so by proxy. Rupert Murdoch pretty much controls the majority of public opinion through the Sun and News of the World. Rupert Murdoch supported BLiar and he supports Brown. Of course, things might change eventually now the his son has taken over because he prefers Camoron. But ultimately, the media knows that they have freedom for as long as the British government lets them. I would love to have been a fly on the wall when Rupert Murdoch was called to Downing Street during the last fuel protests – was he threatened or bribed to withdraw support for the protesters and publich the British government’s propaganda?

  10. Charlie Marks (365 comments) says:

    “The state does control the media, it just does so by proxy.”

    Ah yes, the state is the executive committee of the ruling class, after all…

    Was Murdoch threatened? No, more likely bribed – Murdoch comes across as someone you don’t fuck with. Threats would’ve really pissed him off. I think there was probably a deal not to get involved with his taking a stake in ITV, etc.

    I’ve said it before, but this time – if the protests do get going – it might take a referendum on Europe to bribe him. Which is a good thing for us, perversely. At the moment, I’m unconvinced that they can be as big as 2000 – but with the government coming under pressure over party funding, public sector wage cuts, etc, who knows how far they can be pushed.

  11. axel (1214 comments) says:

    I’ll just shut up, my paranoid conspiracy theories have no place here in a normal wweb site

  12. Allie (93 comments) says:

    The state doesn’t control the BBC. In fact, the BBC’s independence from the state is enshrined in its charter. And frankly, claiming that the state controls any media, by proxy or otherwise, is paranoid raving. Sure, the government (which is not the same thing) can appear favourable towards certain proprietors, but to say that the state controls all media just isn’t true.

    If it were true, would we have had story after story about the Labour donations fiasco, for example?

  13. wonkotsane (1133 comments) says:

    Allie, give me a break! The BBC is about as biased as it could possibly be without carrying “Vote Liebour” banners. They rely on the complicity of the British government to continue taxing our televisions. The amount of sleaze coming out of the Liebour camp this last week or so would have been enough to bring down most governments. A combination of laziness and English peoples’ pre-disposition to not kicking up a fuss when they’re being screwed has meant that Liebour have got away with it. Could you imagine this happening in France? Not a chance – not only do they know how to stamp their feet but their media would have whipped up a frenzy. Can you imagine the BBC ever calling for the resignation of the British government?

    And I stand by my earlier comments. The media is only free for as long as the British government allows it to happen and the media knows this and that’s why they will never cross that line into openly opposing the British government. Even Conswervative papers like the Torygraph won’t dare call for Gordon Brown’s resignation or for Liebour to be prosecuted for fraud.

    Rupert Murdoch is a Liebour supporter and has said in the past that he likes Bliar.

  14. Tim (4 comments) says:

    Going back to the price of fuel – the simple answer about a loss of revenue by cutting the tax is this; Make the vat a non-percentage amount.

    Currently as fuel prices rise so does the vat element of the tax as it is % based. That only enhances the price increase. If it was fixed at an amount as the rest of fuel tax is there would be no loss of revenue even if the fuel price dropped. The added advantage would be that we’d all know exactly how much money the fuel companies pass on or take off when prices change. The government would be able to budget more accurately as they will not be subject to fuel cost changes either.

    As it is the government benefit when the prices continuosly go up in increased revenue but do stand to lose revenue if they go down. By fixing the vat element the only way the government would lose revenue would be if fuel consumption itself dropped. Of course the cynic would say that they’d be more concerned about not being able to grasp the benefit of the rises in price, so will never take this line of action.

  15. whorino (1 comments) says:

    Deutschland sucht den Superstar und das Supertalent:
    Wer steckt wohl hinter den ganzen Bohlen-Sprüchen aus den RTL-Shows, DSDS usw.?

    Es ist kein Geringerer als Gerd Graf Bernadotte af Wisborg, der Dieter Bohlen diese Sprüche in den Mund legt!

    Graf Bernadotte ist langjähriger Berater des Poptitan Dieter Bohlen und lancierte auch schon Nadja Abd el Farrag (Naddel) auf über 1000 Schlagzeilen.
    Seit Jahren ist Gerd Graf Bernadotte für die Sprüche des Pop-Titanen verantwortlich.

    Wir dürfen uns über weitere Sprüche des Grafen Bernadotte freuen und hoffen, dass Dieter Bohlen
    noch viele davon einsetzt.



    Bernadotte ist der Name des regierenden Geschlechtes des Königreichs Schweden. Gerd Graf Bernadottes Großvater
    wurde bekannt durch den Umbau der Insel Mainau im Bodensee in ein Blumenparadies, das jährlich von über einer Million Touristen besucht wird.
    Gerd Graf Bernadotte erwartet einen zufällig entdeckten Erbanspruch, welcher auch in die Formel Eins fließen soll. Laut Notar handelt es sich bei dem Erbe des
    Königs von Schweden, Gustav VI. (bis 1973) um 25 Millionen Schwedische Kronen. Hochgerechnet zzgl. Zinsen bei der Svenska Handelsbank in Stockholm handelt es sich
    dabei um ein Sümmchen von 55 Millionen Euro.

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