50p taxes, deficit nonsense and political messaging

This week’s roundup starts with the hysterical reaction to Labour’s announcement of their intention to reinstate the 50p rate of income tax for high earners. Chris Dillow ridicules talk of economic disaster:

The idea that a tax tweak will cause disaster is ignorant of history

Next, also from Chris Dillow, a nice post about some of the nonsense we hear about the public finances:

A lot of talk of the public finances is simply fallacious

Moving on, and Paul Bernal blogs about the worrying news that David Cameron’s views on spying and use of big data stem from the information he’s gleaned from watching TV dramas:

No, Prime Minister

A bit closer to home (to me) now, and a story in my local rag about Bradford Council’s “Employment Opportunities Fund“. This is a successful, but very limited program aimed at creating job opportunities to young, older and people with disabilities who’ve been out of work for a long period of time:

Jobs scheme is to get funding boost

Political messaging now, and an article by Zoe Williams on George Lakoff and why the conservatives (small c) are winning. Among other things, Lakoff explains why rebutting moral arguments with evidence often doesn’t work:

George Lakoff: ‘Conservatives don’t follow the polls, they want to change them … Liberals do everything wrong’

Another thing that happened this week was that some people got offended. A couple of those who were offended said they were all for free speech but people shouldn’t say or do some things. In other words, they don’t believe in free speech. And these were Lib Dem activists! People general don’t have a right not to be offended as comedian Steve Hughes explains well :

Steve Hughes – What’s wrong with being offended?

Last up, and following news that whistleblower Edward Snowden has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, here’s a nice interview with Snowden which aired recently on German TV:

German Television does first Edward Snowden Interview