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

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

Vince Cable appears to be lobbying his colleague the Chancellor in public for a mansion tax which George Osborne has already ruled out. Picture: Getty

Vince Cable continues public campaign for a mansion tax

15 October 2012 21:02

Perhaps Vince Cable wasn’t listening to the bit in George Osborne’s speech at the Tory conference last week where the Chancellor ruled out a mansion tax. The Business Secretary has… Continue reading

George Osborne said there would be new taxes on rich people to balance welfare cuts. Picture: Getty

George Osborne: ‘New taxes on rich people’ to accompany welfare cuts

8 October 2012 8:46

Ahead of his conference speech this morning, George Osborne was on the Today Programme. Much of the interview revolved around whether or not the Chancellor would have to abandon his… Continue reading

mansion tax

Why George Osborne had to kill the mansion tax

7 October 2012 19:02

This morning the Mail on Sunday reported that George Osborne has promised there will be no mansion tax, no wealth tax and the council tax freeze will be extended. Homeowners… Continue reading

George Osborne speaks to Sky News as the Conservative party conference gets under way in Birmingham. Picture: Getty

Will the Lib Dems veto welfare cuts?

7 October 2012 13:27

If the Lib Dem conference was all about proalition, the Conservatives seem determined to at least start their conference in a less coalicious frame of mind. This morning Chancellor George… Continue reading

A woman campaigns for the taxing of rich people at an Occupy protest. Picture: Getty.

The dangerous attraction of wealth taxes

28 September 2012 8:58

I’ve written about the deceptive attraction of wealth tax in my Telegraph column today, and I wish I was wasting my time. Once, you could say it was an idea… Continue reading


Mitt Romney's Lose-Lose Tax Problem - Spectator Blogs

22 September 2012 11:04

How rich is Mitt Romney? Wealthy enough to voluntarily pay $250,000 more tax than he needed to last year. That’s the most notable thing about the Romneys’ 2011 tax return… Continue reading

The Scottish Government Publishes Its Draft Budget

John Swinney misses a trick - Spectator Blogs

21 September 2012 2:20

There are days when Scottish independence seems a more than decent idea. Budget day at Holyrood is always one of them. I say budget day but it’s really faux-budget day… Continue reading

Eric Pickles has previously opposed introducing higher council tax bands. Picture: Getty.

The coalition’s tax trade-off

19 September 2012 10:45

James Kirkup has an intriguing story today about how the Liberal Democrats are prepared to see inheritance tax scrapped, or the threshold raised, in exchange for the introduction of higher… Continue reading

Danny Alexander calls for the income tax threshold to rise to £10,000. Picture: Getty.

Danny Alexander fires shot in fairer taxes battle

18 September 2012 18:40

Danny Alexander is clearly super-keen to remind everyone of what the Lib Dem slogan is for their party conference, which begins on Saturday. ‘We need fairer taxes in these tough… Continue reading

A new survey shows a drop in support for spending cuts. Picture: Getty Images

Increased support for more spending, but also for benefit cuts

17 September 2012 16:28

‘Support for an increase in public spending rises.’ That’s the headline generated by the latest British Social Attitudes survey results, out today. They show that the proportion of the population… Continue reading


Independent Scotland: socialist paradise or neo-liberal nirvana? - Spectator Blogs

11 September 2012 11:36

Well, probably neither actually. But there’s every reason to suppose that just as some Unionists are fooling themselves when they discount the possibility of dear old Scotia thriving as an… Continue reading

Fridge magnets on display at last year's Liberal Democrat autumn conference. Picture: Getty.

Lib Dems prepare for fight on welfare and taxes

7 September 2012 12:34

Nothing is certain at a Liberal Democrat conference other than plenty of discussion of benefits and taxes. The left-leaning wing of the party – the Social Liberal Forum – has released… Continue reading


The trouble with tax

3 September 2012 8:55

MPs are clip-clopping their way through the corridors of power once again this morning after the summer recess. Not unlike the first day back at secondary school, those returning to… Continue reading

George Osborne

Treasury: We did not leak the Budget

31 August 2012 17:26

It’s easy to forget that the Budget took place five long months ago when it is still being unpicked and argued over now. The Treasury Select Committee published the  responses… Continue reading

Nick Clegg announced a proposal for a 'wealth tax' today in an interview with the Guardian. Picture: Getty.

Would a wealth tax work?

29 August 2012 11:03

Roll up, roll up! The biannual Lib Dem half-baked tax policy circus is in town! Last time, the so-called ‘mansion tax’ show never lived up to its billing, as ringleader… Continue reading

Nick Clegg's interview with the Guardian tells us more about what the Lib Dem conference will be like than the direction of coalition fiscal policy. Picture: Getty.

Nick Clegg’s pre-conference salvo

29 August 2012 9:23

This year more than ever, Nick Clegg is looking around for a policy to ensure he does not, to quote Nye Bevan, go naked into the conference hall when his… Continue reading

Olympics Day 9 - Athletics

Usain Bolt, tax campaigner

14 August 2012 17:26

Living legend Usain Bolt is an unlikely mascot for those who campaign for reform of our tax system, but by confirming that he will continue to avoid competitions in the… Continue reading

David Gauk

Back to tax basics

24 July 2012 17:15

David Gauke was only elected in 2005, but it’s impossible that he can’t remember the Back to Basics campaign, and how well that moral campaign worked out for the Conservative… Continue reading

Diamond Jubilee - Buckingham Palace Concert

Jimmy’s “Scam”

19 June 2012 12:00

Satirists are like pop stars in two respects. They earn extraordinary amounts of money, and the public assumes that they are left wing. You do not need to be a… Continue reading


How did it all get so complicated?

30 May 2012 12:03

Further to Pete’s blog on the new rules about pasties and VAT, the below graphic from today’s City AM sums it up perfectly. It does, of course, make the case… Continue reading


So let’s get this straight…

29 May 2012 13:45

After today’s VAT changes: a) If you walked into a pasty shop and bought a pasty that has been kept hot in a cabinet (or in foil, or on a… Continue reading


The coalition rows back on the Budget’s VAT changes

28 May 2012 21:20

No government likes to u-turn, and particularly not on a Budget measure. So, tonight’s changes to the VAT regime proposed by the Budget for Cornish pasties and static caravans are… Continue reading


There are economic reasons to cut the state, irrespective of the deficit

25 May 2012 13:24

Treasury Select Committee Chairman Andrew Tyrie recently explained he would support cutting back the size of the state even if our public finances were in balance. I doubt whether the… Continue reading