Socialist Worker

The Troublemaker - Baron George Osborne’s job creation scheme for himself

Issue No. 2546

George Osborne

George Osborne (Pic: Gareth Milner)


JOB 1: Editing a London newspaper

PAY: £250,000

TIME: Four mornings a week

JOB DESCRIPTION: Editor of the Evening Standard

JOB 2: Advising a City investment giant

PAY: £650,000 a year plus equity in the firm

TIME: Four days a month

JOB DESCRIPTION: Advisor on the global economy to BlackRock, the asset management empire, a few years after he made a £150 million tax cut that helped asset managers

JOB 3: Addressing wealth managers for £374.50 a minute

PAY: £786,450 so far

TIME: 35 hours so far

JOB DESCRIPTION: Washington Speakers’ Bureau speaker.

JOB 4: Working at a university in Arizona

PAY: £120,000

TIME: Not yet known

JOB DESCRIPTION: He is the first Kissinger Fellow at the McCain Institute for International Leadership at the University of Arizona

JOB 5: Powerhouse thing

PAY: Unpaid

TIME: Not known

JOB DESCRIPTION: Chair of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership

JOB 6: Being the MP for Tatton

PAY: £74,962

TIME: Whatever

JOB DESCRIPTION: Member of Parliament for Tatton in Cheshire


George Osborne has a nose for news

George Osborne has a nose for news (Pic: Tim Sanders)


Osborne put himself forward for the job at the Evening Standard.

He said that a bunch of people had been calling him up and asking for advice on whether they should apply.

He thought after a few of these calls, “Hang on a minute, this is something I really want to do”’, so he contacted the Standard.

It could have been worse.

Michael Gove was also going for the job.


Osborne once claimed £47 in expenses for two copies of a DVD of his own speech on “value for taxpayers’ money”.

He pronounced that we all had to tighten our belts for austerity. But he was also happy to “flip” his expense claims. He did this in order to avoid capital gains tax on a London house.


Helping the really rich with their tax avoidance

One hundred “very wealthy” tycoons avoided £1 million each in tax thanks to a bungled shake-up that cost the revenue nearly £1 billion.

Osborne announced in July 2015 that he would hike tax on dividend income by 7.5 percent, but the change only took effect in April 2016.

That gave people time to withdraw extra dividends before the 2016/17 tax year—and so pay £800 million less in tax.

The government predicted that £7.6 billion of dividend income would be brought forward from 2016/17 into 2015/16. But this was “underestimated by a significant amount”—and was in fact £10.7 billion.

And according to the HM Revnue and Customs the tax saved on this was £100 million by 100 people.


Secret stash hidden in old money bank

George Gideon Oliver Osborne is filthy rich, but we don’t really know how filthy. He is one of only a handful of upper crust millionaires invited to join C Hoare & Co, the oldest secret bank in Britain—and the most elite.

Osborne, heir to the baronetcy of Ballintaylor and Ballylemon, County Waterford, has a mortgage on his £2 million London home with the 338 year old bank.

Osborne’s personal wealth is discreetly hidden from view at Hoare & Co.

Most of Hoare & Co’s customers’ families have banked there for generations.

Clients are expected to have a minimum personal income of £250,000 a year.

They also usually need to bring at least £500,000 in cash for the bank to invest in government bonds.


Keeping down the council tax—for some

George Osborne’s posh family firm will enjoy a business rate cut of more than £3,400 a year.

New figures reveal the Osborne & Little wallpaper showroom in Chelsea will get a 3.8 percent cut over the next five years.

The firm will escape business rates hikes hitting other shops in the area according to business rent and rates specialists CVS.

Osborne has a 15 percent stake in the decorating firm.


Oik squeals for Bullingdon

George Osborne’s chums in the Bullingdon Club at Oxford University used to call him “Oik” because he had gone to St Paul’s public school instead of Eton or Harrow.

A popular jape among his fellow poshos was to hold him upside down by the ankles and scream, “Who are you?”

After several “wrong” answers, each followed by Osborne being dropped on his head, he was finally released after squealing, “I am a despicable ****.”


Fat cat of the week

Oligarch Evgeny Lebedev

Oligarch Evgeny Lebedev (Pic: Allan warren)


Evgeny Lebedev: Oligarch
  • With his father Alexander—the KGB-man turned banking oligarch—he owns the Independent newspapers, the London Evening Standard and the television channel London Live.
  • He has a weakness for jets.
  • “The perception is of Russians as dodgy, shady businessmen or ruthless, bare-chested politicians, and we’re not all like that.” No, not all.
  • At a party at his flat guests guzzled down 14.5 kilos of caviar.
  • Boris Johnson says that Lebedev is “a major force for good”.

The Things they say

‘Opportunity to cause some mischief’

Andy Coulson, former editor of the News of the World and former Tory spin doctor, sees the up side of Osborne’s jobs


‘A great thing’

Tony Blair on Osborne’s job


‘The shitocracy of jealous journalists and jealous colleagues will be out to get you’

Unnamed friend of Osborne


‘Greed is good’

Iain Duncan Smith on his former colleague


‘A man of his immense ability can surely speak for Cheshire and London before lunch, advise BlackRock over lunch and tender his invaluable advice to the House after lunch before holding a dinner party for the bien pensants remainians of Notting Hill in the evening’

Sir Gerald Howarth MP


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Article information

The Troublemaker
Tue 21 Mar 2017, 17:38 GMT
Issue No. 2546
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