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A Tax rose is but a rose by any other name - Carers UK Forum

A Tax rose is but a rose by any other name

Socialise and chat about other areas of your life
687 posts
I got into a bit of a debate/argument with an old friend of mine recently. I called it a debate; he called it an argument because I had the temerity to disagree with him.
He’s a dyed in the wool Tory with a Capital T. He acts, talks and dresses as though he hails from the 1930’s and, as such, he thinks I’m a raving leftie, even though I'm not.

But, despite our differences, we enjoy one another’s company… perhaps because of our differences? And not every one of our meetings end up in verbal fisticuffs; just most of them!

And what prompted our latest argie-bargie? He virulently slagged off Gordon Brown for inventing tax credits.
I politely, but firmly, pointed out that he was talking through his arse as GB, whatever his faults, didn’t actually invent TC’s as they’d been around for donkey’s years in one guise or another to bump up low pay. All GB had done was change their name and tweaked them, just like all previous governments had done, both Tory and Labour.

He refused to believe me and, after several minutes of “Yes he did/No he didn’t”, he threw down a challenge to me:
Prove to him, via email with citations, that I was right and he’d treat me to a slap-up steak & lobster meal at his ‘preferred eatery’ (his words, not mine.)
If I lost then I was to accompany him to some do at his local Conservative Club. I looked suitably shocked at my forfeit if I lost, which pleased him no end.

However, I agreed to my forfeit because I knew I wasn’t going to lose. But no ways was I accepting his forfeit because a) he’d too get to enjoy a meal at his fave eatery as well as me, and b) as he was loaded, then paying for me was no skin off his nose… what kind of forfeit was that!
Instead, I demanded that, as he had loads of spare time, his forfeit was to be that he had to volunteer 1 day a week, for a month at a food bank. He looked even more shocked than I had, which pleased me no end even more than he had previously looked pleased no end.
He agreed, provided I agreed to accompany him to 4 Conservative Party Club do’s to match his 4 days at a food bank within a month. He also added that my 4 do’s was to be over a year, not a month, in recognition that I had caring commitments.

That seemed fair to me, so we shook hands on it.

I knew I was right, but wasn’t at all sure how. So I researched it like mad on the internet (I needed those citations; another word for references) whilst mum was sleeping/napping. I did this in the Living Room (next to mum’s bedroom in case she called out or remembered to ring the push bell thing.)
In many ways my odd bod friend did me a favour with his challenge as there is only so much morning/afternoon TV you can watch before you begin to die of boredom/madness.
As it turned out, I thoroughly enjoyed doing all this cross referencing thing, often going off at fascinating tangents, which didn’t really have anything to do with my ‘email report’, but they did really, in a kind of roundabout way. I loved it!

I entitled my email report to him, “A Tax credit is a Tax Credit by any other name.”

To his credit (not Tax) he agreed with me. So he now has to work in a Food bank.
He’s already signed up to some Methodist Church that’s recently set up in his area.

But, but, but… I like this guy, but I don’t fancy him. But he STILL wants to take me out for a steak & lobster meal regardless.

I’m tempted, but I think he fancy’s me more than I fancy him. That is my gut instinct, but I could be wrong. I do not want to lead him on, but I’m tempted. I’d love a steak & lobster meal. Am I this superficial?

I have myself in a quandary, but I STILL insisted he works in the Food Bank. That was our hand-shaken agreement, after all. He’s into honour, and all that, let him prove it.

I stuck to our agreement. I am not Miss Popularity with him, but that’s his problem, not mine.

And that’s the biggest lesson I’ve learnt over the past few months/years: I put up something/ you prove otherwise.

But you have to put up the figures in the first place. How many people can do that?

Even when you do, they are ignored. But you carry on, even though you don’t why.

That’s what I do it. You are ignored/ castigated/ put down. But every now and then, someone listens/somehow/somewhere… and that’s enough to carry on.
It’s the triumph of hope over expectation; it occasionally works.

With the emphasis on occasionally.

Am I turning into a cynic…. I hope not!

I'd hate to end up like my mate; bored with all the money and time in the world. Or like me, no money or time.

Does it really have to be a case of one or the other?

If only his money & time could combine with my WHATEVER what a team we'd make. It will never happen.

Any road up I annihilated him on the TC argument/debate. A bit of me is pleased about this, but another bit is a bit sick.
The sick bit wanted him to understand, but I don't think he can.

I wanted to understand MORE than I could win. Is that so naive/sick?

I think not; and that's while I'll go on fighting against bodies I can't possibly win against.

It's worth a try... and what have I got to lose? My sanity/normality?

Stuff that!

What is normality worth when you are expected to be a robot?
Oh well done and well won. I hope your friend comes out a wiser and more sympathetic person. Hope he sticks to it.
As to the meal. Well if you make it clear that it is for friendship's sake and is NOT a 'date' before you accept and he still wants to take you, then why not? Enjoy. Don't get carried away and do anything you will regret later though.
Hi Sajhar ,i am so disappointed in you ,i thought you were a raving leftie. ;)
Sajahar - food banks are controversial politically in themselves alas! I've heard in the media that sometimes they are used by drug addicts, who collect the food freely offered, then resell it to buy drugs for themselves. So donors are supporting druggies in their addiction.....not quite what I'm sure the donor and volunteers have in mind.

Also, and I'm sure I'm not the only Daily Mail reader who thinks this (!!!!!!), are food banks really necessary all the time? Are they used by those who don't (can't??) make cheap meals themselves - how cheap does flour, porridge, rice, pasta, eggs, carrots, swedes, potatoes etc have to be before you can't afford them?

That said, of course (!!!!!), I've never had to live off those alone.......

As for Tax Credits - I genuinely don't know what they are! Is it like a 'reverse tax' of some kind, so that it's not just that you don't pay tax up to your personal allowance, but if you earn only a very small proportion (how much?) of your personal allowance, you actually get money from the state to 'top you up'? Is that it?
I thought all daily mail thought like that .

I was paraphrasing Shakespere (bet I spelt that wrong... Yup! I did) regarding the roses. However, I've taken BB's advice (PM) and my dad's, and am going for Lobster & Steak meal next Weds with 1930's Tory friend (he was middle-aged when a teenager. But he has a very dry wit. Think Noel Coward meets Oscar Wild, including the way he dresses. In that respect, he's a bit of an eccentric, and I have a soft spot for eccentrics.)
Regarding your own PM, I shall reply shortly as I'm in the middle of sorting some stuff out for myself.

Dave C :blink: Look up Allports thingy (or something.)

Elaine, Bloody good advice.

Jenny, I also have a soft spot for you, but I think you need to do a bit more research into food banks rather than relying on the Daily Mail for your info.
I too read the Daily Mail (it's my parent's newspaper) but I look elsewhere too.

BB, as ever, you give really good advice. I thoroughly intend to enjoy my lobster & steak meal, medium rare (the steak that is not the lobster; probably get food poisoning otherwise!)

Will report on meal: Good, bad or ugly :unsure:
Hi Sajehar ,what is allsports thingy ,i tried looking on Google .
687 posts