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National politics

IFS is undermining its own reputation for objectivity

The BBC and Institute of Fiscal Studies are this morning spinning a lie about the last budget. The major driver for the disbenefit to the poor that they point up is of course the curtailing of housing benefits. This is largely a disbenefit to landlords and not to tenants.

Of course whilst the BBC story is headline stuff, the IFS have not published their findings online as of 7:38 am this morning so, as ever, a lie has run around the world before the truth has got its boots on.

Does anyone not want to see cases such as the Acton Afghan case tackled? The Acton Afghan case and thousands like it were the product of Labour’s mad Local Housing Allowance scheme. High council rents are a product of Labour’s rent equalisation scheme which entailed them encouraging councils to raise council rents above inflation to equalise them with housing association rents. Both of these moves would have generated spurious increases in income for the poor. Of course they are in reality increases to the income of landlords with tenants on housing benefit. Clamping down on housing benefit curtails landlords’ income, not tenants’.

The IFS need to recast their figures to show the effect on tenants and landlords separately.