Writing in the Daily Telegraph, Boris Johnson told readers that his Brexit deal was “oven-ready”, urging the nation to vote for the Conservatives and take the “country forward”. He used the space to launch a damning attack on Jeremy Corbyn’s recent rhetoric surrounding the wealthy, of which the Labour leader claimed billionaires shouldn’t exist during a party speech ahead of the December 12 election.
In this vein, Mr Johnson compared Mr Corbyn’s treatment of the wealthy to that of Joseph Stalin’s persecution of the Kulaks, a category of affluent peasants.
Mr Johnson said about wealthy business and the rich: “We cheer for them: because their success is our success.
“And, the tragedy of the modern Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn is that they detest the profit motive so viscerally – and would raise taxes so wantonly – that they would destroy the very basis of this country’s prosperity.
“They pretend that their hatred is directed only at certain billionaires.
“And, they point their fingers at individuals with a relish and a vindictiveness not seen since Stalin persecuted the Kulaks.
“In reality they would end up putting up taxes on everyone: on pensions, on businesses, on inheritance, on homes, on gardens.”
Labour has not said they plan to put taxes on everyone, but has drawn up plans to reduce the tax threshold of many high earners in order to free up money for the public sector.
They announced that they would reduce the inheritance tax threshold – a tax paid by someone who inherits money or property of a person who has died – from £325,000 to a “lifetime gifts” levy that would see the tax scrapped.
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Mr Johnson’s comments follow a speech given by Mr Corbyn ahead of the December 12 general election.
Speaking at Battersea Arts Centre in south London, he said: “You know what really scares the elite? What they’re actually afraid of is paying their taxes.
“We’re going after the tax dodgers.
“We’re going after the dodgy landlords.
“We’re going after the bad bosses.
“We’re going after the big polluters – because we know whose side we’re on.”
Business leaders around the UK reacted angrily to the comments, being targeted for having a lack of business knowledge and having led “a narrow life”.
Mike Ashley, Sports Direct owner, whose net worth is thought to be just over £3billion, branded Mr Corbyn as “clueless”, admitting that he fears the current state of big business.
He said: “The real problem is politicians such as Corbyn being unwilling to do anything about it.”
Financier Crispin Odey, a Tory donor who backed Brexit and runs one of the country’s biggest hedge funds, said he did not take the comments seriously.
However, Mr Odey added: “He just doesn’t know many people. He has lived a narrow life. Luckily they Labour can’t even run a campaign, let alone the country.”