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This CiF comment may well get deleted

So you get it here as well:

\”I\’ve got nothing to hide and nothing to be embarrassed about on this issues referred to,\”

That\’s interesting Richard. From an email which looked into Companies House records.

\” Fulcrum Publishing Ltd:

“Publishes original written materials”, seems to have been his old vehicle for paid writing.

Jointly owned 50:50 by Ritchie and Jacqueline Murphy (same address, born 1963, presumably his wife).

Hasn’t traded since 2003, but when it was trading it paid out all of its profits as dividends. Incorporation and taking dividends from the company instead of a salary is a classic tax/NI avoidance strategy – as he set out in his Observer article.

I wonder how much of the company’s work his wife did, or whether giving her shares was just a device to save tax by transferring half of the income to her? Did “the rewards paid [to her] match the underlying economic substance” (Ritchie’s own test of whether incorporation is “abusive”)? It seems unlikely that she was generating 50% of the profits from his writing.

It’s difficult to see what legitimate non-tax reason he would have for incorporation, and (as he said in his reply to you) he regularly argues against incorporation – for other people.\”


The Tax Gap Ltd (formerly Tax Research Ltd):

Carries out “social science research”. Shares owned 90% Ritchie, 10% Jacqueline.

Paid out small (£3-4k) directors’ salaries in 2005, 2006 & 2007 (another classic tax/NI avoidance strategy, keeping the salary under the personal allowance).

Paid out a £12,000 dividend in 2006 (classic NI avoidance strategy, to take money out as NI-exempt dividend rather than salary).

Profits of nearly £13,000 retained in the company (another classic tax avoidance strategy, to delay paying dividends until a year when your income is below the higher rate threshold).

So, err, you wrote the article to close down a strategy that you yourself were using?

That\’s, umm, an interesting defence if I may say so.

34 thoughts on “This CiF comment may well get deleted”

  1. Bravo. Unfortunately for Murphy, while the CiF moderators can be a little zealous at times, they won’t play his normal game of deleting anything that doesn’t tell him what a genius/righteious hero he is.

    Tiresome little man deserves to be exposed

  2. So, it seems Richtie knows the difference between tax avoidance and tax evasion after all…

    Avoidance is when he does it, evasion is when someone else does it.

  3. It is very important to make sure people pay the right amount of tax.

    Say, for example, you knew someone whose home had an annexe which should have been separately rated for council tax, but it wasn’t.

    Perhaps that person had insisted they had checked it out, and the tax definitely wasn’t due. It is important to keep campaigning at them until such time that the annexe appears on the VOA website with a council tax band of its own.

    I hope that person now pays back the tax that should have been due from the date of purchase of the property.

    The council tax payers of Downham Market have slightly less of a funding gap now.

  4. You’re a dick, Worstall. How about responding to the fucking article.

    I suppose you condone it all. Any shafting, be it Congolese rapists or Big Business bollocks.

    You’re a cunt.

  5. Woah Arnald,

    You’re going to give yourself a heart attack there. Between the d**k and the c**t, I think you were trying to call him a hermaphrodite.

    Tim is simply pointing out that Richard is being a hypocrite. He has used that article and another one on his blog today to say that using a limited company to avoid tax or hide the true situation is immoral and wrong. He himself does this though with the proceeds of his publishing. Doesn’t look very good does it?

  6. A snail. We’re talking about senior civil servants, not legitimate trading companies.

    We’re talking about abuse of the system and the fact that it’s at the heart of governance.

    All you pricks can do is get your voodoo dolls out (again). Demented.

  7. @Arnald

    What was the purpose then of Richard setting up a company to receive the proceeds of book sales. There was NO advantage apart from tax. He is an individual being paid for royalties, why the company? is that a legitimate trading company. Looks like a way to protect against NI and Income tax to me.

  8. The joke is that the State has made it so fucking expensive to hire people that they have to break the law to do so.

    That’s your State, Arnald. Yours, Richie’s and all the other left-wing loonies.

  9. I’m not sure that outing him (or, worse still, accusing some poor defenceless Housing Association accountant and musical wannabe of being Arnald) on this blog is particularly polite.

  10. Maybe not Ian, but lets face it, it couldn’t have happened to a more deserving cunt than Lawrence “Arnald” Aegerter.

  11. I don’t really approve of outings, myself.

    Oooh! I’m all for it myself, bona plenty to see the old omi-polone having a troll ajax the old briney.

    (to be said in the tones of Julian and Sandy)

  12. @1
    Of course but if you’re going to play the morality card against others it’s only fair you’re taken to task if your own morals are found to be lacking. Either it’s morally wrong and he’s a huge hypocrite or it’s not and it rather blows a hole in his previous arguments.

    Why on earth are you bothering? There’s so many other subjects that are worth defending and you pick this? A hypocrite gets his comeuppance and you need to resort to shooting the messenger, bravo.

    If there’s sandwiches provided they can be fairly pleasant.

  13. John Galt – splendid.

    I just wonder, if ‘Arnald’ isn’t Ritchie, how he manages to see the keyboard to type with the Murphmeister’s balls so far down his throat.

  14. I liked the Leftie who jumped to Richie’s defence with the “fallen sinner who repenteth” argument.

    No doubt the next time a Tory MP publicly backs “family values” despite an affair in his past, said Leftie will resist the urge to brand him a hypocrite.

    Or perhaps not.

  15. Well, whoever he is he’s definitely a Cardiacs fan, which I find more distressing than words can say, since being so has traditonally been worthy of laudation.

    If he starts calling himself “Stoneage Dinosaur” I’ll have to hunt him down and kill him for ruining my favourite song in the world, ever.

  16. Oh! He’s replied, and immediately been shot down by two others. The hilarity continues. The best bit? He reckons that nobody reads the comments at CiF because “they’re almost exclusively populated by the likes of Worstall”. You couldn’t make it up.

  17. That was a misquote, I’m afraid – he actually said “Which is, of course, why almost no one reads the comments here precisely because it is populated by the likes of Worstall.”

    Still, that he thinks Guardian comments are filled by a Worstallite hegemony says all you need to know about his grip on reality.

  18. God knows how Ritchie survives when he has to go out into the real world.

    Maybe he’s like the priests of Kafiristan (from the Rudyard Kipling short story “The Man Who Would Be King”) who wandered about the country with their eyes closed to led by a small boy ringing a bell and they would open their eyes again when they returned to the sacred city of Sikandergul.

    Can’t exactly see the retired accountant from Wandsworth having much luck wandering around the streets of Norfolk, but it’s an interesting picture.

  19. Oh, what about this:

    that it is widely realised tat they offer no useful recommendations for action

    I know it is just his usual inability to compose his thoughts properly that is exhibiting itself but we used to call that a “Freudian slip”. Before collapsing in barely-post-pubescent sniggers, of course.

  20. Speaking of that weighty tome, did Tim ever get a review copy?

    Tim adds: No. sadly, I didn’t. The publisher said I should beg for France C’s copy.

    Umm, OK

  21. Matthew L, Tim

    I was promised a review copy because I’m too broke to afford to buy one. But I think it must have got lost in the post.

  22. Pity. I’d send you one but I don’t want to inflate his sales figures.

    On the comment, I think it’s hilarious that Murphy’s rebuttal doesn’t have a single “Recommend” click, where even my throwaway little bit of sarcasm has three. Tim’s original comment is closing in on the hundred mark. Tough on his credibility, tough on the causes of his credibility.

  23. Liveliest and most amusing CiF debate I’ve seen for quite a while, I must admit. Same happens when Murphy posts on Liberal Conspiracy, too – comment stream is usually hysterically funny. His posts certainly give good entertainment value.

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