British Labour Party Supporters Want To Tax the Rich More, Even if Doing So Won't Raise Revenue

Recent polling from the U.K. highlights a worrying and widespread moral conviction among supporters of the Labour Party.

YouGov asked supporters of the Conservative, Labour, and Liberal Democrat parties as well as supporters of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) what they thought about raising the top rate of income tax from 45 percent to 50 percent.

The results below:

YouGovYouGov

With the exception of those who support the Conservatives, most supporters of all the parties back raising the rate of income tax for the wealthy.

YouGov also asked supporters of the same four parties if they would support raising taxes on the wealthy if doing so would not raise money for the government.

The results below:

YouGovYouGov

As can be seen, just over over half of UKIP and Liberal Democrat supporters and a little over 70 percent of Conservative supporters believe that the top rate of income tax should not be raised to 50 percent if doing so would not increase government revenue.

Shockingly, almost 70 percent of Labour Party supporters believe that it is worth raising the tax rate for the wealthy, even if doing so would not raise more money for the government.

The graph above is among the best illustrations of how the “tax the rich” mentality of many Labour Party supporters has little to do with a desire to grow government revenue and a lot to do with taking money from the wealthy just for the sake of doing so.

Member of the Labour Party and Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer Ed Balls has said that raising the rate of income tax for the wealthy to 50 percent would be implemented under a Labour government. Balls has denied that pledging to do so is a sign of an “anti-business agenda.”

In 2010, when a Labour government was in power, an income tax of 50 percent for those earning more than £150,000 (about $245,150) was introduced. The current coalition government cut the rate to 45 percent last April.

According to research from Oriel Securities, the richest 1 percent of Britons pay almost a third of income taxes.

Watch Labour Party members cast their votes for socialism over capitalism at their most recent conference below:

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  • Aloysious||

    I want UKIP to win more seats, just so Nigel Farage can verbally nut-punch Labour/Tory court jesters.

  • GILMORE||

    Its how the question is worded that guarantees the answer.

    "Moral"

    The suggestion implicit in the question is that there is NO 'moral' basis for NOT imposing further impositions on 'the rich'. And it suggests that doing so DOES have 'moral reasons', albeit unstated ones.

    Its not clear what 'moral' at all would justify punishing a group of people with the knowledge it does *no one else any good*. Yet the question presupposes *one exists*. The fact that labour members responded so overwhelmingly to the poll the way they did is less a sign of how they see 'policy', per se, and more on how they view *themselves*. MORAL trumps PRAGMATISM.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    Shockingly, almost 70 percent of Labour Party supporters believe that it is worth raising the tax rate for the wealthy, even if doing so would not raise more money for the government.

    Why is that shocking? It's the farthest thing from shocking when you understand the motivations of "labor," aka class warriors. Economic envy and amoral schadenfreude is the raison d'etre for this folk, who don't have any clue what Smith meant when he referred to the invisible hand of wealth that enriches us all. Better to destroy capital investment altogether rather than allow those nasty people on the other side of town to benefit from it while providing us with the resources needed to develop our economy and livelihoods.

  • andarm16||

    Didn't the UK try soak the rich taxation in the seventies? Wasn't the only effect a bunch of famous people leaving the country?

  • Brandon||

    It's why the Rolling Stones are just an American band with funny accents.

  • Doctor Whom||

    But remember: The politics of envy is just a right-wing myth.

  • Herpes Trismegistus||

    "Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer Ed Balls" has a more sinister sounding title ended with such a silly sounding name?

    Anyway, rich Brits: it's not worth sticking around for the OBE, just move already.

  • BiMonSciFiCon||

    With the exception of those who support the Conservatives, most supporters of all the parties back raising the rate of income tax for the wealthy.

    I know Matt knows this, but this is a big pet peeve of mine. Income is not wealth.

  • Certified Public Asskicker||

    You know who else wants to tax the rich more, even if doing so won't raise revenue?

  • Pro Libertate||

    No, no, let's keep going with this concept of taxes as punishment. I've got some people I'd like to punish. I bet the Republicans do, too, when they likely have control of Congress and the executive in 2017. I've got it, a 150% tax on all ex-presidents named Clinton or Obama.

  • Mint Berry Crunch||

    Republicans will control the executive in 2017? Which one of them is going to beat Hillary?

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    The ones that are breathing.

  • Mint Berry Crunch||

    So all Rand Paul needs to do is continue the whole inhale / exhale routine, and he beats Hillary?

    Even with virtually the entire media rooting for Hillary? Even with Paul's plagiarism controversy constantly being mentioned, while Senator Hillary's vote for the Iraq War is forgotten? Even with Paul needing to distance himself from his father's more extreme libertarian views?

    Unless Hillary does something REALLY stupid, like running over to Rand's podium and trying to punch him during a televised debate, I don't see how she loses.

  • kbolino||

    running over to Rand's podium and trying to punch him during a televised debate

    Are you sure that would hurt her chances of winning?

  • Pro Libertate||

    The Democrats are going to take a bath the next two elections, because that's how this works. She, in particular, has too much dirt and is further tainted by her association with the ECONOMY KILLER. Not even the nominee. I have spoken.

    Not impossible that a Democrat could win the White House in 2016, but it'll take someone a lot more dynamic and generally popular than her.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    Even with virtually the entire media rooting for Hillary? Even with Paul's plagiarism controversy constantly being mentioned, while Senator Hillary's vote for the Iraq War is forgotten? Even with Paul needing to distance himself from his father's more extreme libertarian views?

    Unless Hillary does something REALLY stupid, like running over to Rand's podium and trying to punch him during a televised debate, I don't see how she loses.

    While I appreciate educated pessimism as much as anyone, Hillary Clinton is the least charismatic politician to work in elected gov in the past generation. Peter King is an elective lothario compared to this shrill, sullen, ineloquent, sociopathic harpy who is married to one of the most polarizing political personalities in the world. As the cherry on top, she's a failed sec of state who presided over the murder of an American diplomat and a former senator who voted for the war in Iraq. She has literally no redeeming legislative or executive accomplishments other than tenure.

    If you need further convincing, you need only acknowledge that Americans vote for personalities, not platforms. Hillary Clinton has the worst public persona of any presidential candidate in recent memory: Gore, Bush, Dole, even Mondale had their redeeming qualities. Hillary's redeeming quality is that she was married to Bill Clinton and has the backing of Soros and co.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    After eight years of Obama, a bad economy, and absent the enthusiasm and exoticism that a charismatic minority provides an electoral campaign, even Romney would beat Hillary in a straight-up election.

    Christie, Walker, Paul, and Cruz are all massively better candidates than Romney, and they're all massively more electable personalities than a deeply unlikable candidate with massive political baggage like Hillary Clinton.

  • Sudden||

    She has literally no redeeming legislative or executive accomplishments other than tenure

    And that may be why she's always reminded me of a teacher

  • Redmanfms||

    Unless Hillary does something REALLY stupid, like running over to Rand's podium and trying to punch him during a televised debate, I don't see how she loses.

    Everyone in punditocracy and even the Clintons expected the 2008 primaries to be a coronation. That didn't happen. Why? Because Hillary is fucking hated, even by Democrats. Sure there are a few of the true believers and feminist warrior old guard that want to see her in the White House, but plenty of Dem rank-and-filers absolutely loathe the woman. The press doesn't much like her either.

    How do you think an unknown empty suit like Obama was able to win the nomination?

    I would be shocked if she won the nomination. A batshit leftist nutjob like Fauxcahontas, sure, but Hitlary? I just don't think so.

  • Mint Berry Crunch||

    I think you guys are allowing your personal dislike of Hillary to influence your analysis of her electability.

    The press doesn't like her? OK, I'll admit the average journalist probably doesn't love Hillary quite as much as he loves Obama. Nevertheless, if she gets the Dem nomination, the media will be in the tank for her, I'd think.

    She lacks charisma? Maybe. But she's not nearly as awful in that department as Al Gore or John Kerry, and both of them fought Dubya to almost a tie.

    Bad economy? By 2016, the narrative on the economy will be what shrike is always saying here ("Man, this Obama economy is AWESOME!") or it will be "Well the economy kind of sucks, but it's still Bush's fault."

  • Redmanfms||

    I don't give one wit about the woman. I assumed like many that she would win the nomination and thus the presidency in 2008.

    She didn't because Dems don't like her and the media refused to cover for her as soon as it became apparent Obama was a contender.

    I'm sure that if she won the nomination 2016 the press would run interference for her in the general election, but I seriously doubt she'll win the nomination for exactly the same reasons that she lost the 2008 nomination.

  • Sinclair||

    The only way Hillary has a chance is if the Republicans win big this fall, then spend the next two years squandering their newfound power and reminding voters why they hated the Republicans in the first place.

    In other words, I think she has a chance.

  • ||

    Shockingly, almost 70 percent of Labour Party supporters believe that it is worth raising the tax rate for the wealthy, even if doing so would not raise more money for the government.

    In fairness I would think a good portion of Labor Party (I speak American bitches!!) supporters simply can not get their head around the idea that raising taxes does not bring in more money.

    I base this on how much the Laffer curve can sometimes bewilder many of the dim progressives i have met.

    "You get less revenue because people produce less"

    "But you raised taxes therefore you get more"

    "But there is less to tax"

    "But the taxes are more"

    *repeat forever*

  • GILMORE||

  • ||

    How the hell did you get your reply all the way to the right like that?

    Were posts deleted?

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    Another purge. Our heroic webmaster is good about that, though you'd think even a white savage dedicated to class struggle and needless violence against peaceful people would eventually figure out how to hide her IP.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    I'd think that charting the minimum wage relative to the earnings of the top 1% is 1) an idiotic way of assessing the function and meaning of the minimum wage and 2) par for the course for people who don't understand how wealth grows and how rent-seeking works.

  • GILMORE||

    Hi Mary.

    Does Mary read? See France, Mary.

    http://globaleconomicanalysis......lower.html

    Whoops!

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    Libertarians have jack shit as far as evidence that increasing taxes would not increase revenue.

    Then just jack them up to 100% and see how much cash you get. We anxiously await the results of your study, and we'll even provide you with a few New Soviet Men with which to try them, should you wish to raid the Bloomberg compound(s).

  • GILMORE||

  • SIV||

    Those Lib Dems luv dem some taxes too so long as the government gets more money. Only 26% oppose? Sound like left-wingers.

  • Loki||

    British Labour Party Supporters Want To Tax the Rich More, Even if Doing So Won't Raise Revenue

    IOW, they went full retard

  • angus||

    You do know the situation in the UK, right?

    A Tory/LibDem coalition have spent the past 4 years printing money (to give to bankers), providing bailouts (to bankers), setting up bad banks at taxpayer expense (for the support of bankers) and generally bending forward/clutching ankles for bankers. All of which has resulted in the UK having a stagnant economic situation whilst the cost of living increases faster than anywhere in Europe.

    If the Brits could reduce the size of the exposure to the banking sector they could save on welfare expenditure to this sector. Obviously they could just stop giving the banks money, but that might cause the banks to collapse catastrophically. Raising taxes on the wealthy to get them to leave might just be the best bet as this would shift the problem to NY, Zurich, Singapore - any other bunch of suckers.

    Raising taxes on the wealthy to reduce revenue might be the best solution possible.

  • concerned cynic||

    People forget that high wages are always negotiable. If my income were 600K/year, and the marginal rate on income in excess of 300K were 80%, I would clear only 60K on my salary over over 300K. I would probably be willing to reduce my salary to 300K. If I do so, the IRS won't get any the 80% of the 300K = 240K that Labour types think they it will get.

    Another scenario. Let's imagine that I have a 500M stock portfolio with a dividend yield of 2%. Hence my taxable income is 10M/year. Again, income in excess of 300K/year is taxed at 80%. 20% of 9.7M = 1.94M, my after tax dividend income. If I donate 10M a year to my alma mater and take a deduction for charitable contributions, I shield my dividends from all income tax, and strengthen my alma mater. My point is that very high tax rates drive financial assets into the open arms of untaxed entities, such as charities and foundations. This is why the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations were created.

    Tony Blair's Labour understood this. Milliband's does not.
    I do not know where the revenue maximising top marginal rate is, which is an empirical matter. But it is unlikely to be 60% or higher, and it could be as low as 35-40%.

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