CAMPAIGN DIARY: I’M ONLY A PUNTER BUT ..

Being white and middle class, I’ve often thought about what it would be like to be part of an oppressed minority. Now I know - I’m a car driver.

Being white and middle class, I’ve often thought about what it

would be like to be part of an oppressed minority. Now I know - I’m a

car driver.



I pay 600 per cent tax on my petrol, which goes up by 6 per cent every

year. Then I get harassed by parking inspectors who, with the backing of

the local council, impose arbitrary fines on me, very often on poorly

marked roads. And then there’s the fact that as a young man driving an

old car, I get constantly stopped by the police.



Of course, drivers are easy targets. Our vehicles are lethal and they

produce polluting fumes. But I resent the fact that we are treated like

Russian peasants in that the Chancellor draws taxes out of us just

because he can.



In the US, the fuel tax is just 33 per cent of the price, which

Americans probably think is an attack on their constitutional right to

free movement. Yet in Blighty, we don’t have such a right and there is

no sense among citizens that taxes can be unfair and should, at times,

be resisted.



Of course, I am being selfish, but I don’t see Gordon Brown being

particularly giving with his multi-billion budget. I just see another

Chancellor using drivers, like smokers, as an easy source of tax income,

and cynically dressing it up as environmental concern.



But unlike smoking, millions have no choice but to drive.



The Minister for Energy and Industry, John Battle, said the UK has the

highest fuel taxes on the planet. What isn’t recognised is how this

feeds through to the rest of the economy, since so much of what we do

and what we consume is transport-dependent. American goods are cheap,

and so is their gas. Our goods are expensive, and so is our petrol. That

is no coincidence.



I think redistribution of wealth is good, but I call redistribution of

income from all car drivers to the Exchequer legalised theft.



So I’m going to blow up Lambeth Parking Services’ office and then park

my car on Brown’s lawn since I can’t afford to run it or park it

anywhere.



Read my lips, Gordy: stop oppressing this silent minority and raise your

money from the rich like a real Labour Chancellor.



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