THE three Crown Dependencies are in danger of going bankrupt, tax avoidance campaigner Richard Murphy claimed yesterday.

And there I was thinking that Mr. Murphy had been telling us for years that countries can\’t go bankrupt, however much they borrow.

24 thoughts on “My word!”

  1. Surreptitious Evil

    Of course they are countries. They are even independent states.

    From the House of Commons Justice Committee Inquiry report from 2010:

    The Bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey and the Isle of Man are Dependencies of the
    Crown, with Her Majesty The Queen as Sovereign.2 The Sovereign is represented in each
    jurisdiction by a Lieutenant Governor. Although they are proud of their British
    associations, the Crown Dependencies are not part of the United Kingdom and are
    autonomous and self-governing, with their own, independent legal, administrative and
    fiscal systems. The Island parliaments legislate for themselves.

  2. Arnald
    We are self-governing Crown Dependencies. Status is very clear. Have been for nearly 1000 years. Confirmed in 1204 by King John (and no that’s not 4 minutes past 12).
    Murphy is a prick. Isle of Man may well be in severe trouble but Guernsey and Jersey aren’t although Jersey’s structural deficit is worse than Guernsey’s.
    How on earth is it possible to draw the conclusion that Guernsey is going bust from the published accounts of the States of Guernsey? No government debt, many hundreds of millions in the bank in reserves, a tiny and deliberately planned short-term annual structural budget deficit, without having to introduce consumption taxes, CGT or Inheritance Tax. Probably one of the best economic pictures in the world at the moment!
    Murphy claims to be a chartered accountant and an economist – I reckon he must have bought his certificates from some dodgy internet site as he doesn’t seem to have the basics that you might expect.

  3. Overlapped with SE’s post. They’re autonomous and self-governing, but they aren’t countries. Yes, I know that sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s also correct.

  4. “No. And they don’t have free-floating currencies, so Tim’s point is bollocks.”

    Eh? You think that Greece has a free-floating currency?

  5. Is Richie claiming Greece can’t go bust? If so, then he’s even more of an eejit than I though. I assumed he was making the standard point that countries which borrow in their own currencies never need to default.

  6. “Is Richie claiming Greece can’t go bust?”

    I find it difficult to ascertain exactly what Ritchie claims from day to day, particularly since any attempt at clarification in a comment is often classed as “right wing trolling” and deleted.

  7. They could have free-floating currencies; the tie to sterling is entirely voluntary.

    But it’s a bit odd of Murphy to complain about the Crown Dependencies, which I think still have government cash reserves, when he’s quite happy with the UK’s huge (and ever-growing) debt.

  8. Speaking as a resident of one of the afflicted islands (the Isle of Man), our position is pretty clear.

    We are forced to run a balanced budget and have no real debts to speak of unlike some countries that I could mention.

    The redrawing of the common purse rules in relation to the sharing of VAT between the UK and the Isle of Man is going to leave the island with about a 14% reduction on its income since 2008.

    This is a major blow to the island and although there are transitional arrangements being made we will have to both reduce our spending and also probably increase taxes.

    However, unlike the UK we are not ideologically closed to the idea of firing or even reducing the civil service or our NHS provision.

    Since our MHK (Members of the House of Keys) are pretty much all independent sitting members’ politics is not the same as in the UK where a pig with a red or blue rosette can get elected in the right constituency.

    We have a general election here at the end of September and dealing with the deficit will be a good doorstep challenge for all of the potential MHK’s.

    However, since we have no debt (although our reserves have been reduced since 2008), we have no option but to take the necessary action.

    One advantage of the island is that we can neither inflate our way out of the problem nor issue debt. The only tools we have for dealing with the problem are raising taxes, cutting spending and privatization.

    Personally, I think this is a good thing. We’ve had almost 20-years of growth running at about 5%, so a lot of fat has clogged the Manx public services.

    This is a good opportunity to review our finances and cut the necessary waste while we still have good growth.

    In this sense, the islands very limited options mean that we will probably end up doing the right thing, from a libertarian / economic perspective.

    May the light of Manannán mac Lir still shine down on his children.


  9. This is akin to a person in a large house, with a large mortgage, living beyond their means via credit cards, accusing their neighbour, who owns their house outright, has no debt, or even has savings, of being virtually bankrupt because they have spent a bit more than their income for a few years.

    Beams and eyes come to mind.

  10. “…a pig with a red or blue rosette can get elected in the right constituency.”

    Several have.

  11. SimonB

    I don’t have to try when the King John meme decides to out.

    It was stated quite clearly a few months ago what Guernsey’s status was with respect to the UK government. Obviously this Guern can’t handle it. He’s not the only one. I imagine he’s romantically clinging on to a notion that a fully independent Guernsey can operate full scale ahead with merely a curtsey of acknowledgment to the wider world.

    Murohy, I don’t think, is complaining about the CDs, merely repeatedly pointing out that their economies are based on smoke and mirrors. And complaining about the utter guff that comes out of these places attempting to justify it all.

  12. Arnald
    Yes Arnald – it was stated very clearly. You and Murphy appear to be the only two people who interpret it any differently to what was actually stated!
    Murphy thinks we are part of the UK. We aren’t. He thinks the UK can tell us what to do whenever it likes – it can’t. He thinks the UK is on the hook financially for us if it all goes wrong – it isn’t.
    You’re been blinded by his bullshit.
    How do you think Guernsey can be a party to Protocal 3 of the Treaty of Rome in relation to the EU if it has no status and is merely “part of the UK”?
    You’re an even bigger fool than him – at least he creates his own bullshit. You just stir it and swallow his lies hook, line and sinker.

  13. Don’t let the facts spoil Arnald’s little fantasy, if he wants to think the constitutional arrangements between the UK and the Turks and Caicos Islands and the UK and Guernsey is the same, let him. It’s like a child believing in the tooth fairy. Harmless.

    From a crapaud to a donkey: let him and Murphy stew in their bluster, innuendo and failure.

  14. Johnson
    Some good points there. There is a very big difference between British Dependent Territories and Crown Dependencies.
    You are right that it probably is harmless to let them make such basic mistakes. But it’s very hard to let such bollocks go unchallenged.

  15. In fairness the VAT arrangements with the Isle of Man have been a point of contention for some years.

    It’s probably best to resolve it the way that it is being done, however the timing could have been better.

    Still, we’ll survive as will the Channel Islands.

  16. “…a pig with a red or blue rosette can
    get elected in the right constituency.”

    In St Helens the Labour Party are so entrenched they put up a Tory MP as a candidate and still won. The public story was he defected, but my theory is a wager between them and the Hartlepool mob.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *