Update Wednesday 18 Feb 2015 below as NPI admit they were wrong but won’t do anything about it!
Today, Tuesday 17 February 2015, sees the New Policy Institute release some ‘research’ into the bedroom tax (pdf) and it is the most misleading outdated factually incorrect load of b*llocks I have seen. Here I say why.
The NPI is an allegedly left leaning think tank yet it has put out this outrageous heap of nonsense which the allegedly left leaning Daily Mirror has picked up and both have failed to check just how inept this report is.
Hundreds of thousands of bedroom tax victims will see this report on social media and believe it to be factual, because they WANT to believe any story that says the bedroom tax will go or be reduced or anything similar. This disgraceful and scurrilous heap of nonsense gives false hope to so many and however much I prove here that it is a heap of bullshit – and I am being kind in that comment – many will still believe it.
NPI should withdraw this report and grovel in their apologies over this as their previously goof reputation is now hugely damaged with the release of this unbelievably woeful report
The NPI report says in overview:
- The Affordable Homes Bill will exempt people from the bedroom tax
- The numbers of bedroom tax affected households is 380,000
- The average bedroom tax deduction is £15.61 per week
And much more similar to the above and flowing from the above which is all pure unadulterated bollocks and the most outrageously bad piece of research I have seen.
1 The Affordable Homes Bill is dead and buried.
This was the Andrew George private members bill that is dead in the water. It is defunct, it is a Norwegian Blue Parrot pining for the fjords and just how a respected think tank believes it is not beggars belief. Even Andrew George has admitted this bill is dead and the BBC even ran a documentary on how the Bill was killed!!
In simple terms the Bill needed a “money resolution” to be agreed before it could progress as the House of Commons website itself states clearly here. This is an agreement on where the money is coming from to pay for the frankly unworkable amendments Andrew George proposed and needed to be in place by the end of January.
No such money resolution was forthcoming and the Bill is dead as a Dodo!
2. It reports as ‘fact’ that 380,000 families are affected by the bedroom tax citing April 2014 figures and then goes on to say this is x percentage in the North East, North West etc.
The actual figure for May 2014 (there was no DWP April data!) was 481,603 households affected as the data below taken from Table 3 of the official DWP figures shows clearly
So the NPI has understated the actual figures by almost 27 per cent and by over 100,000 households or by 230,000 men women and children as of course all in the household get affected by the bedroom tax.
Further when the NPI report then goes on to say the North west has 4.7% of working age families affected this is also 27% less than the actual figure and so on.
[As an aside the latest bedroom tax figures, the last before the May general election, were due to be published last Wednesday by DWP yet they were not released! Why is that? Linked to my analysis that the bedroom tax actually costs more and doesn’t save a penny perhaps IDS?
3. The above table also clearly says the average bedroom tax weekly reduction is £14.90 per week yet the NPI report says this is £15.61 per week and again woefully inaccurate. Just where did NPI get these plucked out of a hat figures from? Yes the report doesn’t even say!!
HOWEVER the real issue apart from the chronic incompetence is the assertion that some households will be exempt with the Affordable Homes Bill. This is total nonsense and that Bill is dead in the water yet because the equally inept Daily Mirror has picked this up and again without checking the huge factual errors in this ‘research’ so many of the bedroom tax affected households will want to believe this nonsense.
What is also disconcerting (aside from how such errant bullshit could be released in the first place) is that NPI does have a previously held good reputation and given today’s too fast paced world many respected commentators have retweeted this porcine faeces because it has been put out by NPI. In short those who should know better have promoted this nonsense.
The Daily Mirror piece is just as bad as this promotes this heap of junk to hundreds of thousands of bedroom tax affected households.
The damage this has caused to all campaigns to get rid of the bedroom tax is deeply regrettable and the false hope this has created will be overcome eventually but there is no excuse whatsoever for NPI to have released this heap of dangerous nonsense and they should withdraw this report and apologise unreservedly for the damage this has caused.
With alleged ‘friends’ on the (alleged) left of the political spectrum like this who the hell needs enemies?
Only this morning I retweeted an old picture of the liar IDS below. Look at it and ask in light of the above what is the difference between IDS and NPI? The best that can be said it that the NPI did not INTEND to mislead but they did and their woeful incompetence has the same effect!
The next thing you know is NPI will be telling you their research is valid…hmmmm!!
UPDATE – Wednesday 18 February 2015
NPI contacted me over the above and said, correctly, that their figures are right as they only relate to England and not England, Scotland & Wales. I stand corrected, though if NPI had stated this in the piece there could not have been any confusion but that is perhaps a minor point.
HOWEVER – NPI agreed with me statign I had better information that they had and that the Andrew George Bill is dead and stated there will be no chance of any new exemptions to bedroom tax victims.
I asked them to retract this and apologise and the NPI Director refused.
I asked them to amend and/or retract this report and NPI Director refused.
The same NPI Director admitted he co-authored this research yet surprisingly did not put his name to it! Make of that what you will!
NPI just does not see the damage it has done and the fact it has released a report which does spread lie about the bedroom tax and is factually inept is not an issue for them. That is a disgrace.
During our email exchanges I mentioned that in April 2014 I took the JRF to task here over a report they released about the bedroom tax. JRF proposed 6 solutions to the bedroom tax that I ripped apart as being impractical, unworkable and pure fantastical nonsense. I also remarked how unlike JRF this report was as their work is and always has been exemplary over many years.
Kathleen Kelly the then head at JRF agreed with me and publicly apologised. Classy. A very brave and very professional decision and the right thing to do. It made my respect for her and JRF actually increase from the high regard I had for them both previously.
Interestingly that poor JRF report was the exact same basis and issues which formed the Andrew George Affordable Homes Bill – the same impractical unworkable and fantastical nonsense – that NPI claimed yesterday was still live while it is as dead as a dodo. The same Bill that NPI got so wrong in their report which said that the bedroom tax would see new exemptions and gave hugely errant false hope.
Unlike JRF and Kathleen Kelly in particular, NPI has no class and has no professionalism as it refuses to amend or apologise for its dangerously inept report. The attitude of NPI here is that they are above criticism and I even received a reminder from them this morning asking was I going to retract my claims over figures which I have done. I have above yet they wont retract or apologise for what they now know is totally false.
Their attitude frankly stinks, but shit does even if you believe you are Teflon coated!