Monday, 7 December 2015

Stamp duty move 'brought £4,500 saving' per BBC news. An example of bias by omission

This BBC report is a masterpiece of BBC bias.
All the good news is as the result of things happening, passive voice, with no explanation of the recent history of stamp duty, actually it's stamp duty land tax. 

'Buyers purchasing a property in the last 12 months are typically £4,500 better off owing to the stamp duty changes of a year ago, a lender says.

Stamp duty was reformed to a more progressive system in England and Wales last December.

The changes saved tax for most buyers but dampened demand at the top end of the market, the Halifax said.

The lender said that the total tax levied in the UK rose to a record £7.5bn in 2014-15."The changes made to stamp duty a year ago have been of significant benefit to many buyers," said Craig McKinlay, mortgages director at the Halifax.

"Only those purchasing the most expensive homes are worse off. There is some evidence that the top end of the market has been adversely affected by the changes with sales over £1.5m falling by twice 
as much as the market as a whole."'
These progressive improvements just happened it seems. No explanation that it was George Osborne that ended the unfairness of the previous stepped rate system and introduced a more progressive system that helped out house buyers at the bottom of the market whilst penalising purchasers at the top of the market. 

Nor is there any explanation of who it was who introduced the massive in stamp duty back in 1997, it being the then Labour Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown. It's almost as though the BBC want to give a reforming Conservative Chancellor of the Exchequer no credit whilst protecting the reputation of a Labour Chancellor of the Exchequer.

George Osborne does get a mention but only at the end of the article:
'In his Autumn Statement, Chancellor George Osborne announced a further reform of stamp duty. A 3% surcharge on stamp duty when some buy-to-let properties and second homes are bought will be levied from April.

This means it will add £5,520 of tax to be paid when buying the average £184,000 buy-to-let property.'
In BBC-land it's right to ascribe tax increases to a Conservative Chancellor of the Exchequer but not policies that might benefit others. Well unless the policies benefit millionaires of course, in which case the BBC amplifies the accusations from the Labour Party of the Conservative party only looking after its rich supporters. 

This sort of BBC bias is despicable but also endemic at the BBC. It sets the tone for debate and so should be stopped. A Conservative party with balls would do something about this BBC bias but they won't. The BBC is out of control and is too big to be stopped.

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