LETTER: Don’t run the pensioners down

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IN response to Colin Eastwood’s letter, “Mischief Making” (Express, November 11th), I have to say it has to go down as the most eloquent attempt at whitewash it has ever been my pleasure to read.

I hope everyone understands exactly what this letter is attempting to do. It is trying to distort fact. How? You might well ask.

Try reading it not once, but again and again as I did, and you, like me, might just come to a different conclusion. Bear with me while I try to explain.

These Lib/Dem Tories are getting better at pure spin, but they will never get away from facts – as, eventually, they will out.

Mr Eastwood is quoting the increase in the PAYE threshold from 5.5% to 7.5%, a Lib/Dem manifesto promise which was brought in as part of the Coalition agreement. They did want it raising to 10%. Nick Clegg went around the country telling everyone it would help the low paid, and it will, but Mr Eastwood is attempting to say this will more than cover the loss of £50 for the over 60s and £100 for the over 80s. Sheer unadulterated rubbish.

It only helps people paying tax. The largest percentage of our elderly and old folk receive no help from this threshold rise at all.

Why is that? Because they are in receipt of means-tested benefits, so they are taken out of the equation. In fact, even people who will benefit will lose out because Mr Eastwood fails to take into account the increase in VAT, food, petrol and numerous other price rises, not to mention job losses, all of which were enthusiastically endorsed by Nick Clegg and his cohorts.

Actually, Mr Eastwood, there are millions of pensioners not in the tax system, so they get no benefit at all from the tax allowance.

All in this together? I think not. Pensioners have been hit badly by this and they are the group least able to look after themselves. Therein lies the difference between the Lib/Dems and Labour. Julie Cooper fights for everyone, not just certain groups. She does care about the plight your Government has placed them in. In contrast, your letter dismisses pensioners as if they don’t exist. It makes me so mad when I hear people like you running decent people down, particularly in this manner.

I think it is you who needs a long period of silence, not Julie Cooper.