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Johnson spat

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Johnson spat

Postby dls » Mon Sep 18, 2017 11:49 am

There is a spat going on between Boris and the head of stats: "Sir David Norgrove said he was "disappointed" the foreign secretary had, in an article, revived Leave campaigners' disputed referendum pledge of £350m a week extra for the NHS"

I am sorry, but this must leave us questioning Sir Norgrove's ability to see beyond his own political

This is about the difference between having control over the money you spend and having the money to spend.
Norgrove says: "I am surprised and disappointed that you have chosen to repeat the figure of £350 million per week, in connection with the amount that might be available for extra public spending when we leave the European Union."

Boris actually said: "Once we have settled our accounts, we will take back control of roughly £350 million per week." and "It would be a fine thing, as many of us have pointed out, if a lot of that money went on the NHS."

He does not say what Norgrove accuses him of.

It is time for someone in as politically sensitive job, which is so dependent upon respect for the position, that he consider that position.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby Hairyloon » Mon Sep 18, 2017 2:01 pm

dls wrote:Norgrove says: "I am surprised and disappointed that you have chosen to repeat the figure of £350 million per week, in connection with the amount that might be available for extra public spending when we leave the European Union."

Boris actually said: "Once we have settled our accounts, we will take back control of roughly £350 million per week." and "It would be a fine thing, as many of us have pointed out, if a lot of that money went on the NHS."

He does not say what Norgrove accuses him of.

What do you consider as the significant element of Norgrove's accusation?
I suggest that it is the figure, which is one that we do not pay: there is a rebate taken off before we pay it.
And his latter sentence makes a clear link between that figure and public spending. The statement appears to fit within the accusation.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby atticus » Mon Sep 18, 2017 2:05 pm

Other point of view, David.

There is no £350m. Johnson trotting out that old canard again to appeal to his hard-core Brexit fan base.

His explanation was far better worded than the deliberately vague original text in his torygraph article, but the figure is still wrong.

Of course we do not pay £350 m per week. Margaret Thatcher negotiated a rebate which is deducted at source. So we already "have control" over that part of it. You then get into discussions about EU payments that fund things in the UK such as research, regional funding, farming subsidies, and the actual accounting treatments used.

The upshot is that the sum over which the UK will be "taking back control" (don't you love the deliberately chosen phrase) may be about £250 m per week, at the higher end of the range, or it could be nearer £160m, or something in between.

Johnson knew he was being inaccurate. His problem is that he is an oaf who only knows how to break things. It seems to be an Etonian trait.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby dls » Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:02 pm

Full Fact, the fact-checking website . . It produced research in 2014 saying ‘it’s reasonable to describe £55 million (a ay) as our ‘membership fee’, but it ignores the fact that we get money back as well”.


So the 350 million a week is accurate but not as a figure suggesting that it is the net figure. The twit as the statistical office accuses Johnson of suggesting it is, but Johnson's clear words do not suggest that,
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby atticus » Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:40 pm

The twit at the Foreign Office was definitely pressing the 350 mill button knowing full well that he was being economical with the facts. Nothing that twit said justifies the use of that figure.

Have you read the FO twit's reply, and considered what he was actually saying?
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby Hairyloon » Tue Sep 19, 2017 8:22 am

dls wrote:So the 350 million a week is accurate but not as a figure suggesting that it is the net figure. The twit as the statistical office accuses Johnson of suggesting it is, but Johnson's clear words do not suggest that,

No, they don't suggest it, they explicitly state it. Sorry Atti' if that is "nit-picking" of the type you complained of.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby atticus » Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:10 am

And there is this, from the paper that published the FO twit's nonsense, effectively disowning his figures.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby dls » Tue Sep 19, 2017 3:54 pm

The fundamental is that saying that you take control of spending whatever sum it si is not saying that you will spend it differently, or can afford to send it differently. It is a point about where the decision lies, and not a point about how much, save to the extent that we will have control over a much bigger share of our funds than we do know.

Perhaps Boris is guilty of not respecting the complexity of the budges, and he chap from the stats office of being unable to read English.

.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby Hairyloon » Tue Sep 19, 2017 5:20 pm

dls wrote:The fundamental is that saying that you take control of spending whatever sum it si is not saying that you will spend it differently, or can afford to send it differently. It is a point about where the decision lies, and not a point about how much, save to the extent that we will have control over a much bigger share of our funds than we do know.


Really?!
Public spending is about £800billion/a, £350 million/week is £18.2billion/a: a little over 2%. To call 2% "a much bigger share" is a bit of a stretch IMO.
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Re: Johnson spat

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Tue Sep 19, 2017 5:26 pm

According to the IFS, Brexit will have a negative fiscal effect: a conclusion which has been accepted by the OBR. So we will have control over less money than we did before.
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