Shamik Das

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Taxpayers’ All-Lie-Ance unmasked

TellPorkies-Alliance-logo.jpgSurprise, bloody surprise! The Taxpayers’ Alliance have been at it again, peddling lies about the European Union - this time in a cinema ad.

We’ve torn it to shreds over on Left Foot Forward, everything from their 13,333 per cent mark-up on the cost of membership and their blatant fabrications about the costs of the Common Agricultural and Fisheries Policies, to their implausible assertions on the cost of each MEP, which is the point I’d like to delve a little deeper into here.

Their figure of £1.8 million, which they get from some highly dubious Open Europe research, is about £1.5 million more than the actual annual cost, albeit having failed to include travel expenses and attendance allowances - which could never in a million years amount to £1,476,000; unless...

Each MEP was compensated for a combination of the following:

5,507 days’ attendance (in one year!) at official meetings of the Parliament bodies on which the Member serves that are held within the European Community at €298 (£268) a day;

3,354,545 km of car journeys claimed back on expenses at 49 cents (44p) a km;

11,015 days’ at meetings held outside the European Community at €149 (£134) a day;

3,332 return flights from London to Brussels at £443 a trip;

3,432 return Eurostar journeys from London to Brussels at £430 a trip.
Plausible? Only if your name’s Kilroy, Hannan or Iain Duncan-Smith; Eurosceptics: the gifts that keep on giving!

T’Other Taxpayers’ Alliance: Holding the fantasists to account
* Journeys are business class, fully flexible, 25th-29th January 2009
† Conversions carried out at the rate €1 = 90p


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