Without wars, there would be little reason for taxation. Tax has historically been levied on the people of a country by the rulers to fund war chests but thanks to Karl Marx, tax has become something governments can use to spend on "shared services" to stop the people rioting because they demand silicon implants and liver transplants and these are of course the new opium of the masses.
A friend of mine who used to be high up at the BBC is quite excited this state owned organisation is facing some reality medicine. The cost cutting is quite nasty but then it should be for these people have lived the life of riley for a long time. Institutions that have too much revenue become havens of red tape where budgets have to be spent at all costs. My friend now has his own award winning production company and tells me working with BSkyB is a delight - they are decisive and supportive whereas the BBC is obstructive and indecisive.
Western governments face the same problem, especially the EU where corruption and waste are second only to very low productivity. Socialism looks good on paper but in reality it doesn't work. Unregulated capitalism doesn't work either (thinking of slavery here) but we all agree something in the middle is acceptable.
Now taxation arbitrage is as old as the hills. Silly laws deserve to be treated as silly and tax laws are some of the silliest.
So when UK Uncut started out with the intention of exposing tax avoiders, I liked the idea. However, like google it has moved away from its one cause approach and is turning into a left wing socialist mouth piece where anyone who has created wealth for others should be dragged naked by a horse through the streets of Manchester. This is a shame for exposing tax dodgers is fare game. Seeing these people in Fortnums at the weekend showed them up as not being that clever.
Blaming these companies for tax evasion (or avoidance, its all the same isn't it?) is stupid. Tax laws are created by governments so why not attack them? The tax law in the UK is the most complex in the world. It is no wonder the courts are chocker full of HMRC versus BigCorp cases because complexity breeds loop holes breeds contempt.
I like Ireland's model and hope the UK gets something similar but what I would really like is UK Uncut to be more like Private Eye in its exposure of tax abuse instead of reporting like it's the Daily Mail.
UK Uncut expands its remit (uk uncut)
Proof regulation is potty (bloomberg)
Police Punished for Policing Practice (guardian)
Mayfair to ensure only professional investors are allowed to visit.