Sunday, 10 February 2019

Tories failing on tax avoidance

A Business Leader is not the most appropriate place in which to describe how the world`s leading digital companies do everything they can to "drive down the effective rate of tax they pay", and then ask its readers why wouldn`t "everyone else play the same game" (Facebook and the tech giants won`t like it, but a digital tax must become reality, 03.02.19). Quite frankly, the world`s businesses are a disgrace, seeing profit as the only objective worth pursuing, and caring not a jot about the welfare of their workforce, the environment, or the debt they owe society. Individuals, by and large, are different - we wouldn`t have doctors, nurses, teachers or carers if it were not the case. Unfortunately we do have governments, like ours, which plead poverty, but do next to nothing to ensure wealthy companies and individuals pay their fair share. The Leader suggests other countries "should follow" Hammond`s lead because he supports a "modest digital tax", but he is Chancellor in a government which has reduced corporation and the top level of income tax, believes in the nonsense that is the Laffer curve, a device created to justify tax reductions for the wealthy, and has recently delayed plans to require British tax havens like the British Virgin Islands to reveal the owners of companies hiding assets (MPs attack ministers over delay to tax havens` public registers, 11/01/19). Hardly an example for others to follow!
      Nick Cohen recognises not only that the super-rich should be paying far more in taxation, but that even a country like cash-strapped Britain will not "compel them" (Forget philanthropy. The super-rich should just pay all their taxes,03.01.19). What he omitted to mention is that nothing on the tax-evasion front is likely to change until a left-wing Labour government is elected in this country, something of which he isn`t the greatest fan!

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