It’s about low tax, low regulation — an economy fit for hedge fund owners.
“It’s about low tax, low regulation — an economy fit for hedge fund owners”. That’s how Peter Jukes, an investigative journalist with Byline Media, describes the aims of a network of shadowy thinktanks and campaign groups operating out of offices on Tufton Street, just around the corner from the Houses of Parliament.
DeSmog UK has previously mapped all the key connection between the organisations, many of which are leading voices in for Brexit and climate science denial.
One of the Tufton Street groups, the Institute of Economic Affairs, recently hit headlines after undercover reporters filmed its Director appearing to suggest funders could get access to government ministers through the think tank.
Launder the money
Another Tufton group, the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), is the UK’s premier climate science denial campaign group. DeSmog UK has previously revealed the organisations ties to government, the media, and US think tanks with ties to President Trump.
Jukes made the comments as part of a new exposé from Real Media. He was joined by myself and OpenDemocracy UK co-editor, Adam Ramsay, who pointed out that the end game for all these organisations was pushing for a hard Brexit, cutting environmental regulation, and protecting the assets of the rich.
Ramsay said, “rather than having a close association with the EU and regulations around the food we eat, and protecting the environment and the climate and so on, [the network] wants us instead to do a trade deal with America, which means much less regulation”.
“Tax havens are very keen to ensure Brexit is postive for them, and they can essentially continue to be a hub for money laundering — so they’re paying probably for reports from these groups to make that case for them through the Brexit process.”
“For the very rich people in the world, they want to push Britain further offshore and move it away from the regulations in the EU and make sure we can continue to launder the money for the very rich.”
And this goal is supported by an alt-right press in which “there is definitely an anti-deomcratic tendency”, Jukes said. The alt-right messages are then parroted by a mainstream press that is largely owned by the people the Tufton St network’s agenda is designed to favour, Jukes said.
“Because of their money, they are having a big influence on contemporary discourse in this country”.
Mat Hope is editor of DeSmog UK, where this article first appeared.