Clause 1. — ;(Charge of Income Tax for 1955–56 and Surtax Rates for 1954–55.)

Part of Orders of the Day — Finance Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27th April 1955.

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Photo of Mr Samuel Silverman Mr Samuel Silverman , Nelson and Colne 12:00 am, 27th April 1955

I asked him to decide which of those two things was in the Government's own mind. Of course, he was too honest a man to reply that neither of them was. Another Government with a better intention would have been able to reply that they had neither of those things in their mind at all, but were merely doing their best, as honest trustees, to administer the country's finances to the national advantage. The hon. Gentleman did not give that answer, not because he did not think of it but because he knew that it was not true.

I suggest that the real answer is that it is possible—the Budget, and especially its Income Tax proposals, are the clearest possible instance of it—to give real benefits to a few and, at the same time, hope to deceive the many into thinking that they are getting benefit, too. That was the intention of the Chancellor—if he will allow me, without unkindness, to say it. The subsequent debates have removed a number of things out of controversy. The right hon. Gentleman admits that the great bulk of the advantage to be derived out of his Income Tax concessions will go to those who need it least.