Tax

Jimmy Carr, another figure to face public wrath over his tax affairs, at a launch in a Starbucks in 2012. Picture: Getty

On tax policy, to govern is to maintain the status quo

19 February 2013 8:58

To govern is to choose, wise people like to say when talking about policies which annoy voters but which might make good sense. Today we have another example of what… Continue reading

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British Finance Minister George Osborne

Mr Micawber Goes to the Treasury

18 February 2013 12:52

John Rentoul draws attention to a new ComRes poll that goes some way towards explaining George Osborne’s predicament when it comes to managing government finances. Put simply, the public is… Continue reading

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mansion tax

The taxing question Labour can’t answer

17 February 2013 13:13

The details of Labour’s mansion tax proposal remain, to put it politely, sketchy. Here’s the exchange between Andrew Neil and Sadiq Khan on the Sunday Politics on how Labour would… Continue reading

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Ed Miliband has announced he's going to force a Commons vote on the mansion tax. Picture: Getty

Labour’s mansion tax debate won’t be a crunch vote (or very interesting)

16 February 2013 10:59

So Labour is going to force a vote in the House of Commons on the mansion tax. It’s the key announcement trailed as part of Ed Miliband’s visit to Eastleigh… Continue reading

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The Number 10 press machine doesn't normally make official pronouncements on speeches by Ed Miliband. Picture: Getty

No 10 attacks Miliband’s ‘admission of economic incompetence’

14 February 2013 13:18

Here’s an interesting thing: Number 10 has released a statement on Ed Miliband’s 10p tax rate pledge. The Downing Street press machine hasn’t been in the habit of doing this… Continue reading

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Ed Miliband pledged to restore the 10p tax band. Picture: Carla Millar

Labour’s Valentine’s policy gimmick

14 February 2013 13:07

At long last, Ed Miliband delivered us a Valentine’s Day present that everyone in the political world has been waiting for: a new policy! And a tax policy at that!… Continue reading

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Ed Miliband today pledged to restore the 10p tax band scrapped by Gordon Brown. Picture: Getty

Ed Miliband’s bold redistributive rebuke to Brown

14 February 2013 12:26

Those close to Ed Miliband stress that if elected, Labour will introduce a mansion tax to pay for the return of a 10p tax rate. I’m told that ‘short of… Continue reading

25 Comments
Ed Miliband

Miliband steals a march on Tory tax campaign

14 February 2013 11:12

Ed Miliband has just started his economy speech in Bedford, so as he gets underway, here’s a quick thought on his plan to reintroduce the 10p tax band. Doing this… Continue reading

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Protesters take part in a demonstration

Tax avoidance needs to stop – and companies themselves must lead the way

11 February 2013 17:48

Tax avoidance on an industrial scale in a country where almost half of children are malnourished and their families live on less than $2 a day? When I read the… Continue reading

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Nick Clegg and his wife Miriam might not be bothered by a tax break for married couples, but there are plenty of people who would benefit from it. Picture: Getty

Nick Clegg forgets that many married couples struggle to pay their way

1 February 2013 16:15

The disadvantage of live phone-in radio programmes is precisely that you don’t get to weigh your words. No doubt Nick Clegg would have expressed himself a bit differently on the… Continue reading

33 Comments
Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt sits on the government's Business Advisory Group. Picture: Getty

George Osborne urged to drop Google boss as business adviser

29 January 2013 22:29

Starbucks had a go at David Cameron on Sunday for his ‘cheap shots’ at the coffee chain’s tax arrangements in the UK. The company felt it was being unfairly singled… Continue reading

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Gordon Brown scrapped the 10p band in 2008: Robert Halfon wants to restore it. Picture: Getty

Restoring the 10p tax rate would be fair and simple

22 January 2013 11:30

MPs will today debate taxes and the living wage – in particular, my campaign to restore the 10p rate of income tax. For Conservatives, a ‘starter’ rate of 10p would help… Continue reading

19 Comments
An Amazon warehouse. MP Jim Sheridan is asking the government to reveal how many contracts have been awarded to the company, and others, by government departments. Picture: Getty

101 questions about tax

17 January 2013 14:25

As well as confusing Hansard with talk of ‘big fairies’, Labour’s Jim Sheridan has no fewer than 101 written questions for answer today on how many contracts a number of… Continue reading

23 Comments
A picture taken 13 December 2007 shows t

No Country for Green Men - Spectator Blogs

16 January 2013 10:50

This week’s Think Scotland column takes a gander, just for once, at the Scottish Green party. Patrick Harvie’s party is in favour of Scottish independence for reasons that, frankly, seem… Continue reading

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Ed Miliband welcomed François Hollande with open arms when he visited London in February. Picture: Getty

François Hollande: Ed Miliband’s embarrassing friend

31 December 2012 16:34

Time was when Ed Miliband had plenty to say about François Hollande. When the new French President celebrated his victory in May, the Labour leader praised Hollande for his ‘determination… Continue reading

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Tim Loughton on a visit as Children's Minister. Picture: Getty

Tim Loughton attacks coalition’s failure to support married couples

10 December 2012 9:39

Tim Loughton was one of the surprise sackings in September’s reshuffle: he was an able minister who knew his portfolio very well indeed. He’s evidently reluctant to let that ability… Continue reading

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UK Uncut protesters outside a Starbucks in central London today. Picture: Getty

Starbucks protests: We need political power to reform the tax system

8 December 2012 16:56

UK Uncut is holding its day of action against Starbucks today, with more than 40 demonstrations across the country in the chain’s coffee shops. The group’s sit-ins aim to highlight… Continue reading

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Ed Miliband has been trying to convince voters that Labour has a better offer to solve their struggles with the cost of living. Picture: Getty

How George Osborne took on Ed Miliband on the cost of living

6 December 2012 18:34

In addition to his effective attack on Labour’s welfare policy, George Osborne used the Autumn Statement to take on Ed Miliband on another key electoral battleground. Over the past few… Continue reading

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The IFS says the policies in George Osborne's Autumn Statement will hit the rich and the poor, but make the upper middle better off. Picture: Getty Images

A budget for the squeezed middle

6 December 2012 16:55

Ed Miliband may have coined the term, but it seems George Osborne has the squeezed middle on his mind too. The overall effect of yesterday’s budget* was to take from… Continue reading

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Jimmy Carr, another figure to face public wrath over his tax affairs, at a launch in a Starbucks in 2012. Picture: Getty

MPs criticise ‘voluntary’ tax arrangements for Starbucks and other big companies

3 December 2012 9:01

Danny Alexander might be glad that a PR panic before the Public Accounts Committee published its report into HMRC and the ability of multinational companies to avoid paying their share… Continue reading

40 Comments
Picture: Getty

Miliband’s false ‘millionaires’ tax cut’ attack

27 November 2012 21:18

Messrs Miliband and Balls performed their pre-autumn statement double act today. If for some inexplicable reason you missed it, the Labour chiefs launched their Q&A with an attack on the government… Continue reading

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General Election - Week Two

UKIP is not a libertarian party - Spectator Blogs

27 November 2012 1:11

I’m sure, as James says, that the idea of some kind of Tory-UKIP non-aggression pact will not go away. But that’s because many Tory backbenchers are remarkably stupid. Proponents of… Continue reading

282 Comments
On the right in this picture - Yves Daudigny, the man who proposed the Nutella Tax in France. Image: Getty

Why do-gooding ‘sin taxes’ always stink of politics

24 November 2012 14:30

Nutella may have been created by Italians, but it is the French who really love it. The hazelnut spread is a fantastically popular accompaniment for everything from bread for breakfast… Continue reading

15 Comments
Frankfurt Book Fair - Day 5

Annals of Odd Complaint: Moaning that Google Does Exactly What You Say You Want It To Do - Spectator Blogs

20 November 2012 11:21

Via Tim Worstall, here’s Jeanette Winterson: A fiery Jeanette Winterson has called for the hundreds of millions of pounds of profit which Amazon, Starbucks and Google were last week accused… Continue reading

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Lin Homer insisted that HMRC was not giving big business an easy ride.

Headmistress Hodge grills HMRC on tax avoidance

5 November 2012 18:17

Ever since Margaret Hodge took over the chairmanship of the Public Accounts Committee, its evidence sessions have become rather lively: more like a fearsome grilling from the headmistress than a… Continue reading

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