Putting aside for a moment the fact that it's beyond fucking ridiculous for the Labour party to claim "you'll be better off under us" when we've been 'under' them for last thirteen fucking years and still not arrived at anything like Utopia, what have they got to offer now?
One thing they never stop claiming is that they'll make 'hard-working families' - whatever the fuck they are - 'better off'. And sure enough, the Manifesto states:
"The direct tax and benefit measures introduced since 1997 mean that in 2010-11, households will be £1,450 a year better off on average."
Fourteen hundred and fifty quid? 120 quid a month? Nice.
Oh, but wait. Those clever people over at Channel 4's FactCheck have had a look at the Manifesto, including that little cash bonus promise. And guess what? Go on, guess.
Yup - it's bollocks.
Labour's claim cunningly mentions only one type of tax – 'direct' taxes - and not taxes levied directly on individuals. They've 'forgotton' the more obscure ones; you know, like income tax and national fucking insurance.
Analysts at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, who do perhaps know a little about these things, calculate the figures differently, by also looking at indirect taxes on services such as VAT, fuel duty or stamp duty, and business taxes such as capital gains tax and corporation tax.
As David Phillips, of the IFS, points out:
"Ultimately, all taxes are borne by individuals. The money paid in corporation tax is money that would otherwise have been paid in dividends or invested and then earned as income by other people.."
So, what happens if you actually do the fucking maths properly? You might want to sit down, this may shock you.
Aaaaaannnnnd .... what an e-fucking-normous surprise: as a result of Labour's tax and benefit measures, the average household is in fact 270 quid worse off than they were in 1997.
FactCheck are quite diplomatic, really:
"While Labour may have reduced direct taxation, it has shifted the burden on to other areas of the tax system. So by not taking the whole system into account, you come up with a potentially misleading picture"
'potentially misleading'? Oh for fuck's sake, guys, say what you mean.
Labour are lying. Again.