Tory abuse of public funds: Cheshire PCC

Tory John Dwyer was elected as Cheshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) in May this year (2021).  A month later he appointed a deputy PPC.  Deputy PCC is a salaried role paid by Warrington council tax payers.

Dwyer appointed his election campaign manager David McNeilage as deputy. 

John Dwyer (left) and David McNeilage

Conservative libertarian McNeilage has been a professional Tory lackey all his adult life starting as campaign manager for a council ward in Warrington in 2011 when he was a member of (discontinued) Warrington Conservative Future.  His gofering for MPs included working for Vicky Ford in 2018.

All the jobs he had were party jobs.  He was employed by the Tory party to work for the Tory party and he was paid by the Tory party.

His appointment as deputy PCC is different. 

  1. When deputising for PCC he is supposed to represent all residents of Cheshire regardless of their respective political views or affiliations
  2. The salary of deputy PCC is not paid by Tory party; it is paid by residents

Dwyer’s decision to appoint his campaign manager to a publicly-paid and (supposedly) impartial position was a typical example of Tory contempt for the electorate and of Tory abuse of public funding.

In an additional dump on the people of Cheshire Dwyer said of McNeilage that “his knowledge of the process of government is highlighted by his time working in Parliament for a local MP.”  What the hell has the role of PCC or deputy PCC got to do with “knowledge of the process of government?”

Snapshots of who (or what) McNeilage is
In 2013, McNeilage defended a Daily Mail article that attacked Ralph Miliband: “To be honest, it’s really no different from the Guardian claiming that David Cameron hates the disabled.”  As prime minister Cameron destroyed livelihoods and lives of tens of thousands of people with disabilities via Tories’ Social Murder policy.

Later in the same year McNeilage paraded his libertarianism: “Generation Y [people born in 1980s and 1990s] may be the most Libertarian yet.  We should remove all anti-discrimination legislation, all speech restrictions.  Dislike for Section 5 of the Public Order Act is universal among Libertarians.  Personal choice routinely gets shafted when Governments intervene with quasi-fairness legislation.  My personal bug bear is the Minimum Wage Act.”

McNeilage has, so far, been a relative failure as a Tory careerist libertarian but he is one of thousands of Tories around the UK who receive payment for alleged public roles but have no skills or experience to do the job.  

Corruption is routine for Tories.  They cannot exist without it.  They have a psychological objection to avoiding it.


Tory abuse of public funds: Cheshire PCC

Libertarian protagonists: Matthew Elliott

Matthew Elliott is a key sprocket in the economic libertarian machine that seeks hegemony of corporate exploitation and control.  To achieve its aim the machine needs destruction of democratic obstruction.

With determined obfuscation and dishonesty Elliott refuses to reveal sources of funding and income for himself and for lobby groups and think-tanks he founded or for whom he works or worked.

He understands the aim of his unnamed benefactors and he knows he needs to focus his time on lobbying and directing governments to develop policies and enact law changes that ensure continuous and growing concentration of wealth.

Elliott assesses what a democratically elected government is able to do depending on whatever checks and balances exist and on binding international agreements or treaties.  All aspects of society and all state roles therein are targets.  

His direction of government policy and law changes is always accompanied by presentation that manipulates public perception of the policies and the changes to the law.  It is vital that every decision made by a government to enhance concentration of wealth is perceived as something different (often the opposite) by the public. 

There exists a constant feed of soundbites, fraudulent arguments, distraction rebuttals and circular inconclusive rhetoric from libertarian lobby groups and think-tanks to government ministers to be used as tools to misrepresent aims of policy and/or as fog, and the feed tubes have offshoots to newspapers, broadcasters and libertarian PR organisations who all, in a timely way, back-up government presentation.  None of the participants at any end of the tubes are distinct: Current and former MPs are members of (or created) think-tanks and lobby groups; members of the latter pose as journalists and are appointed as government advisers; ex-MPs are employed by newspapers and broadcasters.  

(l-r) Spectator’s Andrew Neil (now GB News), David Cameron (then prime minister) and Fraser Nelson (Centre For Policy Studies)

Structure and mendacious descriptions of pro-wealth concentration government policy are developed meticulously.  The interconnected libertarian think-tanks and lobby groups invest time and resources over many years touching on all areas of government control – taxation, public services, housing, employment law, company law, human rights, access to justice, education, etc. – in order to devise how to channel wealth to the wealthiest and how to disguise that process so it appears to be leading to different outcomes that are to the public’s advantage

Elliott’s interest in extreme economics and how to create support for it began at London School of Economics (LSE) where he was president of the Hayek Society.  Friedrich Hayek is a popular reference point for pseudo-educated libertarian sociopaths who feel too superior to worship Ayn Rand. 

His first political job after his degree was press officer at European Foundation, a lobby group created to campaign for UK to leave the EU decades before the 2016 referendum, whose director at that time, Andrew Rosindell (now a Tory MP), said of Augusto Pinochet that when he was its dictator “Chile turned into a free society where people were able to prosper.  I have huge admiration for General Pinochet.”

A rapid step from education to in situ at an extremist think-tank is typical of libertarian protagonists.  LSE is among several universities and private indoctrination institutions that inculcate free-racketeer political philosophy and associated con tricks.  For the disciples a career preaching and teaching libertarianism can be lucrative.

Tax-Payers’ Alliance
Elliott co-founded Tax-Payers’ Alliance (TPA) in 2004.  Aping similar think-tanks in USA TPA seeks obliteration of tax for the wealthiest.  With acute insincerity, it claims to want to reduce tax bills for everyone.  Its literature and rhetoric is dominated by attacks on government financial support for any necessary part of people’s lives including education, healthcare, housing and welfare.  It is vehemently opposed to the existence of public services.  Not a single word written or spoken by TPA members and contributors is honest or compatible with humanity.

In 2010, when employed as a columnist for Guardian, Elliott used the excuse of alleged ongoing consequences of the 2008 financial “crash” as an opportunity to attack trades’ unions and to demand even lower wages for public sector workers.  

In public sector pay he claimed there existed a “fiscal crisis facing Britain.”  His free-racketeer explanation of the “crisis” was dependent on extreme capitalism’s false presentation of the world of money, costs and “debt.” 

He referred to Greece being “bailed out.”  The reality was Greece was robbed by stateless “creditors” demanding money not owed and the “bail out” was imposition of further “debt.”

Elliott used “default” to describe when a government is unwilling or unable to repay “borrowed” money.  “Government borrowing,” “default” and “government debt” are phrases invented by exploiters whose philosophy is exactly the same as mobsters demanding “protection” payments. 

He imagined the following three decades (from 2010 on) as a lucrative source of billions of unearned income for “creditors” (possibly including major donors to TPA.)

The Bank for International Settlements project that, without serious changes, public sector debt will be more than 200% of our GDP by 2020, and over 500% by 2040. They project we will then be spending 27% of our GDP on government debt interest.”

According to Elliott’s world, where “lenders” are magically outside of nations and outside of society, “no one is going to lend the government any money if our debts are anywhere near that unaffordable.”

Having established his warped and acutely deceitful premise, Elliott used that invention as motivation to demand wage cuts for workers.  “Cuts will need to include some action on public sector pay and benefits.”  Although he begrudging accepted that the “crash” was not “the fault of ordinary public sector workers” he said “they should definitely get a pay cut.”

Elliott was keen to absolve culprits of blame and declared that they should be protected. 

Tax avoidance is one of those things every government would like to reduce, but attempts to do so can cause greater losses if they are too draconian. The ludicrous estimates of total avoidance thrown around by the unions are often based on treating legitimate use of reliefs as avoidance.”
The unions pin the blame on bankers but the reality is that our structural deficits are simply the result of politicians spending too much of our money.”

Campaigns by major trades unions to address government income were, predictably, attacked by tax-dodgers’ friend Elliott.  “They [unions] construct a fantasy world in which tax hikes on the rich, or crackdowns on avoidance, constitute an adequate response to the fiscal crisis.”

His comments in the Guardian in 2010, published fourteen days after the general election that led to a Tory/Lib Dem “coalition” government and the first non-Labour government for thirteen years, encapsulated Elliott and TPA’s constructed vision of the world and demonstrated in which direction they think flow of wealth should travel.

In an article for TPA in 2011 Elliott saidThe Government needs to cut spending, get rid of burdensome regulations and cut taxes to get the economy going and leave more taxpayers’ money in their own pockets.”  His assertion, in intent and in language (“get the economy going“), was standard libertarian rhetoric.  In a single sentence, he asked for an assault on public services, removal of rights – workers’ rights, human rights, health and safety regulations – and even more tax cuts and dodges for the wealthiest but he presented his argument as if concerned about tax cuts for the majority of people. 

TPA, including Elliot, described its desire for tax cuts via the concoction of a ‘2020 Tax Commission’ (2020TC) that published a report in 2012.  Further cuts to the highest rate of tax and abolition of corporation tax alongside huge reductions in “public spending” were the report’s (pre-ordained) conclusions.  Couched in pretense of caring about individuals’ tax bills, it was a template for destruction of society. 

Earlier in 2012 Elliott stated that “bold, pro-growth measures are what’s needed, and that means reducing spending to cut taxes” in order to “kickstart the economy.”  “Pro-growth” and “kickstart the economy” are a conman’s patter and have no meaning.  The only growth he wants is greater wealth concentration.

Elliott at the door of Tax-Payers’ Alliance at 55 Tufton Street, London

Over the following decade (2010-2020) successive Tory governments destroyed public services, used them as a means of channelling money to made-up businesses masquerading as running public services, annihilated workers’ rights, eroded human rights and created more tricks for the wealthiest to dodge tax but tax bills for the majority of people were not reduced. 

Elliott’s status as “one of the foremost political campaigners working in Westminster” (Biz Club), “one of the most formidable political strategists in Westminster” (Financial Times),one of the most successful and feared campaigners in British politics” (New Statesman), one of the most effective lobbyists at Westminster” (BBC) and “one of the most talented policy entrepreneurs in the country” (Legatum Insitute) is deserved criticism.  The people quoted meant their comments as praise but they are damnations of Elliott and of the customers of his verbose expositions of and guide to presentation of the conservative scam.

The development of his skillset began before his attitudes were cultivated at the LSE factory.  At (£14,000 per annum) Leeds Grammar School a teacher suggested Elliott read Milton and Rose Friedman’s book ‘Free to Choose.’  That book advocated extreme libertarian fiscal policy including removal of most taxation and the replacement of welfare provision with indebtedness imposed on the people least able to repay a debt.  It argued that the American public falsely perceived the depression (of the 1930s) to be a result of a failure of capitalism rather than, as the Friedmans claimed, the result of ineptitude of particular capitalists.  Blaming constant failures of capitalism on “errors” by governments and not on the intrinsic faults of the system is a relentlessly repeated con-trick by conservatives.

On a visit to his old school in 2015 Elliott spouted contentless pseudo-motivational drivel to current pupils: “Be the producer and director of your own movie” and “in life people should be agents of change; when you come to assess your life think about what difference you’ve made.”  His remarks resonated private school unearned superiority.  He never has and never will “think about the difference he’s made” to the destruction of livelihoods and lives via governments’ impositions of policies he recommended.

Climate change
Fuel industries, agribusiness, associated industries and financial backers, “investors” and creditors are notoriously fearful of change and will, without any consideration of consequences, do all they can to protect their immediate source of profit including pumping money into networks of nested think-tanks and lobby groups to pay for campaigning against developments in environmental-friendly industries.  

Elliott is sharp enough to know that blatant climate change denial is an unworkable political position.  His semi-public persona, public within the boundaries of political, media, think-tank and proto-academia bubbles, requires him to be promoted as separate from and above lumpen blinkered conservative deniers of man-made climate change. 

His strategy is to protect the free-racketeer industry from paying for necessary adjustments to help fight climate change while also finding extra income sources for the same industry for spuriously supporting the fight.

He complained about government spending on the switch to “green” energy supply.  “In just three months at the start of this year [2012], the Department of Energy and Climate Change increased staff numbers by four per cent, with 113 extra staff.”

He complained about costs to the “energy sector” of regulations related to climate change.  2020TC said “domestic fuel and power prices are substantially inflated by climate regulations.  Citigroup expects that electricity prices would have to rise by over fifty per cent by 2020 to pay for the over two hundred billion of investment needed in the energy sector to meet current environmental targets.” (p.355)  Of course, it was inconceivable for TPA to suggest such extra costs should be met by “owners” of the “energy sector” businesses, or that there would be no such difficulties if the businesses were unprivatised.

For all necessities of life exploiters see opportunities for huge income for themselves.  Healthcare, energy and water supply, education and transport attract parasites who know, for each necessity because it is necessary, there will be a steady and large supply of unearned income, either from government hand-outs or from customer purchases. 

Tackling climate change becomes a bigger challenge and a more acute necessity every year and so the wealthiest want to ensure that they get front and centre and use the challenge to their financial advantage.

To help wealthy people make money out of environmental improvements Elliott concocted a crafty ruse.  In October 2020 he announced he would hand “two cheques for £10,000” to people “under the age of thirty-five with an exciting idea or contribution to policy debate.”  He suggested recipients might, for example, be starting a think-tank or lobby group, or writing a book or extended think-tank report, or setting up a website.  He stated that “we are looking for submissions on any issue, policy or subject that you feel passionate about.”  (By “we” he meant the “owners” of Brexit Central website.)

All submissions will be sifted and judged by a panel comprising Jonathan [Isaby] [TPA, Brexit Central, Politeia, Conservative Home, Telegraph] and I, plus Kate Andrews [Institute of Economic Affairs, Adam Smith Institute, Spectator], Peter Cruddas [banker, Vote Leave], Georgiana Bristol [Brexit Central, TPA, Vote Leave], Helena Morrissey [finance industry], Jon Moynihan [Initiative for Free Trade, Vote Leave] and Mark Wallace [Conservative Home, TPA, The Freedom Association].”

On December 22nd 2020 the successful “applicants” were revealed.  One was British Conservation Alliance (BCA).  BCA is “dedicated to empowering the next generation to engage with the principles of pro-market environmentalism and conservation, and acts to champion market-based solutions to environmental problems.” 

In a paper for BCA, Amin Haque said fighting climate change should be left to billionaires like Jeff Bezos.  “If the wealthy compete in their philanthropy then there are better outcomes for all.  The end product, findings, and conclusions are what should motivate climate activists to support billionaire philanthropy.  Solutions scalable to the scope of climate change come from those with capital, and we should welcome it.”  Haque forgot to mention that if Bezos paid tax then no-one would need his “philanthropy.”

BCA was created to try to push aside climate action organisations that have a anti-capitalist perspective and to counteract the prevailing (and accurate) narrative that capitalism in its present form is incompatible with effective action against climate change.  BCA is a protector of free-market.  It follows a common theme of libertarian think-tanks and lobby groups who pretend the free market is supportive of something it opposes and then further claim the free market is the only way to achieve an objective, with the dual objective of 1) reducing anti-free-market political attitudes by absolving the market of blame and 2) promoting major corporations into place so they receive any available income to “tackle” a problem.

Elliott’s competition ruse succeeded in transferring cash (tax-free) from one mendacious libertarian lobby group (Brexit Central) to another (BCA).  Before “winning” his competition BCA already had close connections with the Tory government, it had arranged a presentation via the Tory party for COP24, its advisers included former Home secretary Amber Rudd and its “partners” included Initiative for Free Trade, a think-tank created by former Australian prime minister Tony Abbott and by Daniel Hannan.  BCA was the opposite of a grassroots start-up or an organisation with a “proposal” when Elliott and his friends awarded it a prize.

Brexit, Charter Cities and data mining
Brexit was designed as and is being pursued as a heist.  The heist plan was not a sudden decision after the referendum result in June 2016.  It existed long before. 

Elliott’s employment at European Foundation began in 2000.  As stated earlier, that was his first professional political role.  He was placed there because he had shown proficiency at university, and previously at his private school, in his understanding of the economic extremism of Hayek, in his willingness to pursue that extremism without pause, reflection or doubt, and in his aptitude to present the extremism in friendly usable chunks for politicians to con the public.

In 2009 he co-wrote Great European Rip-Off, a general attack on EU’s existence and practices.

Why was departure from EU of such keen interest to extreme practitioners of Hayek’s economic philosophy? 

They did not view Brexit from the same viewpoint as, say, Nigel Farage whose motivation was a rancid mix of prejudices and grifting. 

They did not perceive Brexit to be a woolly undefined re-grasping of illusory “sovereignty.”

They sought departure from the EU because over four decades UK’s laws and regulations on many vital issues – human rights, legal rights, workers’ rights, democratic rights – were bound to EU’s legal systems and, once out, not only would commitments to EU “checks and balances” evaporate overnight but also there would be no equivalent in British law or constitution because all such protections were designed as part of EU. 

Why would they want that scenario?

Baker Street Herald (BSH) explained why in Case 1 – The Tabula Rasa – A Clean Slate.  A “clean slate” means no legal or constitutional obstacles to fascistic control and to accompanying annihilation of effective government.  As BSH explained, Hayek’s Road To Serfdom and William Rees Mogg’s The Sovereign Individual are templates for what the gang of pro-Brexit libertarians want to see in UK.  (William Rees-Mogg is the father of performative Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg.)

This blind faith in disrupting democracy and demolishing regulations is shared by many people of influence across the world, including libertarian former Australian Prime Minister now working for Daniel Hannan’s IFT, Tony Abbott, who are helping make this book’s [The Sovereign Individual] highly disturbing themes become reality.” – Baker Street Herald

The aim is the creation of Charter Cities, or Enterprise Cities, or even to reduce all of the UK to a Charter Territory, and to make UK part of an international network of such places.  In these territories law is the responsibility, and the whim, of corporate owners; every single aspect of society is not guaranteed.

The ‘Clean Slate’ case study by BSH detailed the history of the development of the concept of Charter territories, how they will operate and who are the protagonists directing governments to enact policies that allow their creation.  Alongside chancellor Rishi Sunak, Elliott and Hannan a key participant is Shanker Singham whose think-tank involvement extends to Legatum Institute for whom Elliott worked.

Shanker Singham

Sovereignty” was the absolute opposite of what libertarians desired from Brexit.  They sought the destruction of the state, the destruction of democracy in UK.  For economic fascists Brexit was as if all their Christmasses arrived at once.

Elliott co-invented (with Dominic Cummings) Vote Leave (VL) as soon as then prime minister David Cameron announced a referendum on membership of the EU would take place. 

VL never sought to submit a coherent analysis of why people should vote for Brexit or what would be Brexit’s consequences.  In an interview with Serbian training facility Libertarijankski Klub (Libertarian Club), or Libek, on 7th June 2016 (a couple of weeks before the EU referendum) Elliott elucidated with absolute clarity his contempt for democracy and elections.

The trick for the Vote Leave campaign, then, is to take all of those concerns [of voters] and turn them into short, consistent messages that we can use to convince swing voters.  In order to do that, we have undertaken extensive analysis, market research and polling to find out how we can best phrase all of these issues in a language that people can understand and that will persuade undecided voters.”

He viewed a vital referendum as a competition in which his role was to use a honed set of manipulative skills to con voters.  His perspective was unsurprising since the niceties of whether or not UK should remain in EU (if any exist) were of no interest to him.  He supported Brexit purely to facilitate the clean slate. 

After Brexit Elliott said “Brexit provides us with an opportunity to promote global prosperity by strengthening free trade.”  By “free trade” he meant the freedom of international businesses to exploit across borders free from regulations and rights.

VL’s strategy was a combination of lies (£350,000 per week extra for NHS after Brexit – written on the side of a bus), presentation of bad policy as good policy (extrication from EU courts’ laws), anti-arithmetic explanations of financial gains versus losses from leaving EU (alleged savings due to contributions to EU budget ending were not balanced by VL by much greater losses due to border closures and flight of international businesses from UK), performative tactics (disrupting meetings of pro-EU organisations) and manipulation of the law on campaign funding.

Vote Leave propaganda

Laws limited campaign spending for EU referendum.  To circumvent them VL “donated” £675,315.18 to pro-Brexit campaign group BeLeave that was passed on to Canadian data firm AggregateIQ (AIQ) to help with data mining for the Brexit campaign via the use of AIQ’s Ripon software platform.  BeLeave shared an office with VL who described it as an outreach group.  As a consequence Electoral Commission fined VL a paltry £60,000.

VL made its own “donations” to AIQ; the latter received £3,500,000 from various pro-Brexit campaign groups for data mining services.  Cummings stated that “without a doubt, the Vote Leave campaign owes a great deal of its success to the work of AIQ.  We couldn’t have done it without them.”

AIQ, originally called SCL Canada, part of SCL Elections Limited, was set-up by the same people who created Cambridge Analytica, another subsidiary of SCL Elections. 

In September 2018 AIQ was issued with a General Data Protection Regulation notice by the (UK) Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) that said “the controller [AIQ] has processed personal data in a way that the data subjects were not aware of, for purposes which they would not have expected, and without a lawful basis for that processing.  Furthermore, the processing was incompatible with the purposes for which the data was originally collected.” 

According to ICO, the data in question was held by AIQ on behalf of “Vote Leave, BeLeave, Veterans For Britain and DUP Vote To Leave.”

As part of AIQ’s contact with these political organisations, AIQ have been provided with personal information including names and e-mail addresses of UK individuals.  This personal information was then used to target individuals with political advertising messages on social media.” – ICO

In November 2019 the Federal Privacy Commissioner in Canada made similar observations about AIQ.  “When the company [AIQ] used and disclosed the personal information of Vote Leave supporters to Facebook it went beyond the purposes for which Vote Leave had consent to use that information.  This contravened British Columbia and Canadian privacy laws.”

AIQ’s disconnect from the law did not bother VL.

USA connections and influences
From 2017 to early 2018 Elliott was a partner at USA data mining business Awareness Analytics Partners (A2P) who claim to be “experts in understanding and utilizing influence, enhancing online messaging and delivering groundbreaking social media advertising results.  We map the networks of your most engaged audience members and then micro-target your ads to the people most likely to take your desired action.  Our market testing protocol uses ‘micro-buys’ to identify the correct target audience.

A2P supported the development of the Vote Spotter application developed at libertarian Koch-funded Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Missouri.  On May 5th 2017 Elliott was guest speaker at a Mackinac event.  In his speech he admitted that his skills as a conman were influenced and inspired by people he met when working with Grover Norquist’s Americans For Tax Reform.  “I have come to USA for over fourteen years to learn my campaign techniques and to learn how to set up a new taxpayer group from Grover Norquist and the Americans for Tax Reform.”

Grover Norquist

In 2010 USA libertarian organisations Tea Party and Americans for Prosperity attended a conference in London with similarly minded European think-tanks and lobby groups including TPA.  Costs for the conference were met by other USA think-tanks Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation, Cato Institute and Heritage Foundation.  In relation to the conference Elliott said “we [TPA] need to learn from our European colleagues and the Tea Party movement in the US.  It will be fascinating to see whether it will transfer to the UK.  Will there be the same sort of uprising?”  The “uprising” comment referred to organised marches by Tea Party activists in USA that pretended to be a consequence of “grassroots” reaction to USA (Democrat) government decisions.

Elliott’s keenness to continue to learn new tricks and expand his skillset is balanced by equal keenness to pass onto others what he developed.  Connections and exchanges of personnel between think-tanks across borders were and are the norm.  The practitioners know that all online information is international, that media is international and that corporations are international or post-national.  It would be absurd for the promotional, marketing and PR wings of such corporations and their financial backers to be restricted to individual countries. 

At a personal level Elliott married Sarah Smith, a USA citizen.  She worked for Americans For Tax Reform, Republican Party major donor programme and Americans For Prosperity and is chair of Republicans Overseas.  Her experience of acquiring money from wealthy donors is useful for Elliott as is her access to UK government ministers via being chair of Republicans Overseas.

Atlas Network is a worldwide community of libertarian think-tanks and lobby groups but based in USA.  It shares ideas, information, personnel, communication techniques and campaign skills, and expedites cross border flow of funding, most of which is tax exempt and/or deductible and hidden.

The bulk of Atlas funding comes from wealthy donors based in USA.  A donor conduit, Donors Trust, owned by Koch, hands more than a million dollars to Atlas every year.  The chain through which donations pass ensures anonymity for the original donors. 

American Friends Of IEA, part of Atlas and registered at the same address, exists to provide funds for Institute Of Economic Affairs (IEA) in UK.

Atlas claimed its partner Epicentre is a Brussels-based network of European think-tanks.  It is in fact a subsidiary of IEA.

Elliott is a mentor at Atlas.  Both TPA and Big Brother Watch (also co-founded by Elliott) are part of Atlas network.

In 2012 Elliott co-founded Conservative Friends Of Russia (CFR), now called Westminster Russia Forum (WRF), with the intent or encouraging UK government policy to act in favour of wealthy Russian oligarchs and the Russian government.

CFR members in 2012 at Russian parliament during a visit to Russia financed by the Russian government. (Elliott far right)

Other think-tanks, lobby groups and data businesses
Political think-tanks and lobby groups are registered as charities in order to dodge tax and to hide donors’ identities.  TPA is registered as a charity as is Politics and Economics Research Trust (PERT) created by Elliott in 2016. 

PERT “advances the education of the public and in particular to promote for the public benefit research into matters of public taxation, public policy, applied economics and political science and to disseminate the useful results thereof.” 

What PERT actually does is act as a conduit for tax-deductible “donations” – because PERT is a “charity” – to be passed via PERT to other think-tanks and lobby groups that are also “charities.”  Eight out of twelve of its “published research” papers are by other libertarian think-tanks including Big Brother Watch (3), Centre For Policy Studies (1), Centre For Progressive Capitalism (1), Centre For Social Justice (1) and IEA (2).

Charity Commission investigated PERT twice, first in 2011 following “grants” of £505,000 paid by PERT to TPA; at the time Elliott was secretary of PERT and chief executive of TPA. 

The second Charity Commission investigation was in 2015 following a payment of £50,000 from PERT to Business For Britain (BFB) to produce an anti-EU report ‘Change Or Go.’  The Commission said “charities with objects to further education cannot promote a political or predetermined point of view” and BFB had to repay the money.  Elliot had left PERT by 2015 but he founded BFB two years earlier.

From 2012 to 2014 Elliott was an active shareholder in another data mining business WESS Digital alongside Paul Staines, owner of far-right blogsite Guido Fawkes.  Using its database Metis WESS sought to collect information on people’s political views and pass the details to interested parties.  “Once there are two, three or more campaigns for each specific client, there’s lots more we can extrapolate about the user’s behaviour and that’s the bit that is really worth sharing,” said co-owner Jag Singh.

Elliott was on Advisory Committee of New Culture Forum (NCF), a hideous “culture war” concoction by former deputy leader of UKIP Peter Whittle.  Whittle founded NCF in 2006 before it was fashionable to be a warped colonial revivalist obsessed with flags, statues and the royal family.  NCF has a subsidiary called Save Our Statues.

Friendly good manners
In George Eaton’s interview with Elliott for New Statesman, in which the latter was described as “one of the most successful and feared campaigners in British politics,” Eaton called Elliott “polite” and “affable.”  That choice of words stemmed from Elliott’s PR box of con tricks and from Eaton’s erroneous respect for a fellow recipient of a expensive private education.  (The highest fees at Eaton’s Berkhamsted School are £35,000 per annum.)

Most conmen are “polite” and “affable.”  Those are necessary invented traits.

Eaton was easily and willingly put at ease by “politeness” and “affability” and, thus, the interview was smooth, undemanding and essentially a platform for Elliott.

Elliott can be “polite” as he accepts a huge wad of cash from an extreme exploiter and uses the money to spend time devising methods for governments to contrive policies that give exploiters what they crave and devising concomitant methods of communication of the policies so the public think something entirely different is happening.  And, lo, public services have disappeared, workers’ rights have disappeared, human rights have disappeared, access to justice has disappeared, welfare provision has disappeared, and the wealthiest suddenly “own” things they didn’t pay for and everyone else is in debt to invisible creditors.

Elliott can be “polite” as society and democracy are destroyed for the benefit of wealthy elite. 

Economic libertarians, the disciples of Ayn Rand and Friedrich Hayek, do not belong with the rest of us.

Recommended reading
Baker Street Herald
DeSmog on Elliott
Molly Scott Cato on Elliott
Andy Beckett on The Sovereign Individual

Related blogs
Lbertarian protagonists: Chloe Westley
Brexit: The most lucrative heist in the history of civilisation

Libertarian protagonists: Matthew Elliott