Friday, October 22, 2010

Stay at home, says Ken

According to Iain Dale, Ken Livingstone has called for a tax on people who take more than one holiday a year.

Apart from the difficulty of policing that (I've not had a holiday since we drove to France in March but I have flown abroad at least four times since then on business - does that count?), has Livingstone not heard of air passenger duty, which is due to rise up to £60 depending on travel-class and destination from November 1? Or seen the euro exchange rate? Or heard of how Ryanair rip you off for everything?

And when Livingstone says that travelling abroad is a class issue, has he never visited Marbella or Paphos?

There is a separate argument to be made about whether airline taxes should increase to mitigate for the environmental impact of flying, but pegging that to whether it is your second holiday of the year seems barmy.

And presumably, assuming his philosophy is that what is right for Britain is right for other countries (class envy has no boundaries), then would Livingstone like tourists who come to London for the Olympics in 2012 to pay extra if they have had a holiday earlier that year?

He has a point, though, in saying that we need to spruce up Britain's seaside resorts and make them more attractive holiday destinations and he has a personal reason for saying so.

As I learnt from this interview with the Indy, in which he reveals how classless he is by taking frequent trips to San Francisco, Corfu and Italy's Bay of Poets, Livingstone's parents worked for Butlin's at Skegness.

Redcoats, naturally.

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