Ritchie responds!

At CiF:

FastRobert – thanks for your comments

What you have to realise though is that the likes of Worstall have only one argument, and that is that all human life is consistent solely in its willingness to abuse

So the fact that I acknowledge I have changed my mind is in itself an affront to their assumption that all of human life and economics is based on a consistency that is never actually present in human behaviour, but which they cling to as a maxim none the less

Secondly my opposition to the abuse that they propose means nothing I do and nothing I say will ever be right in their opinion

Thankfully the world sees them for the charlatans they are

I have offered honest explanation – even pointed out rhat long ago I really did promote something I now think should be stopped (albeit by much ore sophisticated reform than they could possibly embrace) – and all they can say is I am a hypocrite

Any wise person realises that in the face of evidence a person can and should change their, except that is neoliberals who are so lacking in understanding of the human condition that it is widely realised tat they offer no useful recommendations for action – except of course by the discredited economics profession

Which is, of course, why almost no one reads the comments here precisely because it is populated by the likes of Worstall

A comments thread that is 226 comments long has no one reading it? A comments thread where one comment by me gets 92 recommendations has no one reading it?

As to the changing the mind part, yes, OK, well done. But the changing of the mind seems to have changed a bit.

There\’s that Observer article stating how to use a limited company as a services company, make the NI savings on dividends and take advantage of the at that time tax free allowance on the first £10k of profits. Since the revelation of that article, the way that it clashes with various reports written which state that such is abuse, we\’ve been told that that article was written in order to reveal and thus campaign against such abuse.

Murph actually says this in the CiF thread.

Then comes the revelation that Murph actually used this structure himself, after the article was published. For several years after it was published in fact. So the campaigning against it explanation is, umm, dificult to support.

And Lo! it is not supported! Rather, we get a \”yes I used to do that, thought better of it and now don\’t do it\”.

If that had been the first explanation then my own reaction would have been \”Jolly well done!\”. I might not agree with the position but can see its logic and applaud the matching of moral convictions with pocketbook issues.

However, given the previous excuse, the continued behaviour even as supposedly working against the practice, I\’m afraid that I find that reaction very hard indeed to support.

As to the rest of it, it\’s basically \”Worstall is a meanie so pay no attention\”. Which is really not an argument containing the sophistication we might expect of one of the country\’s leading tax experts and forensic accountants, is it?

\”except that is neoliberals who are so lacking in understanding of the human condition that it is widely realised tat they offer no useful recommendations for action\”

And that\’s very strange indeed. I\’ve recommended in these pages a number of things. Land value tax, a citizen\’s basic income, a rise in the tax allowance to the level of the full year, full time, minimum wage (that is assuming that we continue to have a minimum wage with a CBI), the legalisation of drugs, a carbon tax, road pricing…..rather a lot of things actually.

You don\’t have to agree with all of them, certainly. But some of them are certainly useful suggestions. One is in the Green Party manifesto (no, not as a result of my suggestion, of course not, but Ritchie does like Caroline Lucas so I am advocating something from \”his side\”), another is a long standing ASI policy which the Lib Dems sorta put into the coalition agreement, a third is actually a cornerstone of the Stern Review……

\”Nothing useful\” eh?

13 comments on “Ritchie responds!

  1. Well, he funneled the income from The Courageous State through the LLP in which he and his wife are partners, thereby splitting the income with her. While he claims she made a major contribution to the book, it’s precisely the sort of abuse he would decry if anybody else did it.

    It also rather rebuts the idea that his use of structures he considers to be tax avoidance are only in his dim and distant past. Changed his mind? It’s clear that he hasn’t at all.

  2. “Nothing useful” eh?

    I think you’re confusing the difference between putting up ideas for comment and discussion and what Ritchie does. Which seems to be analogous to preaching from the pulpit in a “the congregation shall be seen but not heard” type church.

    Therefore, pretty much by definition, you contribute nothing useful. Because useful is newspeak for “agreeing with Ritchie’s premises”. Which you don’t. And then you compound it by not agreeing with his conclusions either which is just neo-liberal wing-nuttery.

    If I ask you what shade of red you think a flower is and you insist it is yellow, we’re unlikely to have (discussions of colour blindness aside) a sensible conversation. Pace the classic “4 candles” sketch.

  3. You ended the italics too early, makes it look like you’re saying nobody reads this blog.

    I still can’t get over him claiming the Guardian is full of little Worstall and other “neo-liberals”.

  4. Oh, and you are a big meanie. This was his seat on Olympus, his chance to pontificate to a wider audience, his contribution to the journal of all that is good and proper in the world (and a chance to flog his book with the shamelessness of a late night Ginsu spokesmodel, but I digress). You, along with a surprisingly large number of others, took that sublime moment and dumped a large lorry load of steaming reality on it. I don’t know how you sleep at night.

  5. I suppose that we could be charitable and say that he’s a repenting sinner, but the fact remains he did it, and continued to do it until relatively recently.

    I’d be more impressed if he was in the process of negotiating with HMRC to pay the tax he would have paid had he not used these schemes.

  6. I’d be more impressed if he wasn’t back to doing it with the revenue from “The Courageous State”.

  7. To be fair to him, I doubt he saves anything by allocating income to his wife.

    He has made an absolute bell end of himself on that piece though, but Tim has spotted the latest mantra – that noone reads the below the line comments. Richard is doubtless making that point as often as possible to convince both himself and his paymasters that it is actually true.

    It isn’t, of course. With most CiF articles I go straight to the comments!

  8. The tone of that piece is quite extraordinary. It reads like one of those Saudi princes who are replying to an impertinent subject, or a priest, irritatingly trying to explain the intricacies of dogma to an atheist.

    He really is quite impossibly up himself, isn’t it?

  9. …because Anglo-socialism has religious origins. Ritchie is the type species. Methodism not Marx, and all that. Ritchie, Toynbee et all don’t write politics or economics. They write tracts and sermons. Hence the stylee.

  10. Jamie, aye, I did. Old account. I note also the CiF took down my response to Worstall’s ridiculous affirmation of his socialist credentials. (jeebus)

    And the troll that commented later that he is a latter day Mother Theresa.

    You’re all nuts.

  11. Arnald

    If the language you used in that response was anything like the language you generally use on this site, I can quite understand why CiF removed it.

    Why do you have to be so bloody rude?

  12. Frances.
    I’ve said it before, I only copy Worstall.

    Why don’t you ask him why he’s so bloody rude?

    Now go wash your mouth out, heathen blasphemer.

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