Stupid bloody Kraut

The German government believes Britain should be part of a Europe-wide tax on financial transactions, the proceeds of which could help prop up the single currency.

That\’s the first silliness: there will be no extra revenue.

The second is that the direct revenue, before the losses from other taxes as the economy shrinks, would be, as the EU itself says, perhaps €50 billion a year. That simply isn\’t enough to solve the €4 or €5 trillion sovereign debt problem being faced.

The third is that there\’s no way in which such a tax could be implemented in time to have any effect at all.

“I can understand that the British don’t want that [the financial transaction tax] when they generate almost 30 per cent of their gross domestic product from financial-market business in the City

of London,” said Volker Kauder, the parliamentary leader of the Christian Democratic Union, said in a speech to the party congress in Leipzig.

And that\’s just being a stupid bloody Kraut. It\’s more like 4%.

And if it were 30% then of course we\’d fight against the tax all the harder, wouldn\’t we? 30% of the economy is larger than the entirety of manufacturing as a share of Germany\’s economy.

5 thoughts on “Stupid bloody Kraut”

  1. ISTR that (in the past) the 30% number also represented the attendant support businesses that pop up around the financial sector and would not be there without it.

    And yes, it is stupid, but I think Cameron et al are probably already fighting it, as I’ll wager this sort of tax is probably the only power they would seek to repatriate from the EU – this is probably what prompted the formerly pro-EU Tories into at least looking like they will think about Britain’s relationship to Europe. Nothing else will.

  2. The Kraut is anything but stupid.

    The Germans have realised that Britain does indeed have a very strong hand to play. So rather than accepting that we might strong arm them, they are placing some very unpalatable bargaining chips on the table. This way the British Government will have more things to claim victory over without actually winning anything.

  3. I came across a self-proclaimed Marxist asserting that the UK was subconsciously opposed to a Tobin tax. I have no idea what he thinks is subconscious about it.

  4. The desire for an FTT has been around far longer than the Euro troubles – the idea it could help solve the currency strife is preposterous.

    The reason the EU have latched onto it is to get their own revenue source rather than having to rely on the charitable nature of member states.

    “senior conservatives” are minded to point out Germany doesn’t want to prop up the Euro by printing money. The bargaining imo will be the UK accepting the FTT in return for Germany accepting Euro printing.

  5. This is mainly local German political posturing above anything else. Merkel’s support is down, she is having to placate the lefties in the coalition (plus the electorate). She might be an ossie (from former East Germany), but she did join the center/right wing CDU. Their associate CSU are fairly right wing.

    If you believe the UK press narrative, you’d think they were all über statists.

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