Just to remind everyone about Ritchie

So, that’s back to the nonsense of CSR again. Thankfully, some companies realise that is not the way to go:

But one in four companies said EU proposals requiring extractive industries to disclose details of tax payments should be broadened to other businesses.

This is, of course, country-by-country reporting, the accounting concept I created ten years ago.

No, it\’s not country by country reporting as created by Ritchie. The extractive industries idea was floated, indeed had a whole taskforce devoted to it, before Ritchie even thought about it.

What actually happened is that Ritchie say that extractive industries idea and thought that he would adopt it as his pet cause: then extend it.

And as usual he\’s managed to get it wrong. The extractive industries thing is about checking royalties: for oil or minerals. This is the taxation of Ricardian rents and yes, it\’s a damn good idea.

Ritchie has hared off to talk about profits: which is a very different idea indeed. The taxation of Ricardian rents is, like land tax itself, almost entirely non-distorting. The taxation of profits is hugely distorting.

As ever, it\’s Ritchie\’s ignorance of economics on display.

14 thoughts on “Just to remind everyone about Ritchie”

  1. I’m not that interested in the details or even in who thought of it first, but it does appear that Richie has something of a God complex. Conversations between him and Broon would be interesting to hear.

    No I saved the world!
    No I can save the world!

  2. I presume France don’t have much of a leg to stand on here but if this did go to court and Amazon lost

    Given the nature of ‘la belle France’, I strongly suspect that, if it does get to court, Amazon will lose. And the case will end up, eventually, with the EU Court of Justice, who will tell the French to go back and read all of the bloody ECSC, EC and EU treaties they’ve signed up to and not bother the court, or Amazon, again until they understand the term “Single Market”.

  3. I skimmed the report and I’m not seeing your point Arnald. Yes, it summarises current approaches to extractive industries and mentions that some people would like to see that extended outside that field. It doesn’t draw any conclusions or make any recommendations.

    Since when is reporting that there are organisations campaigning for more detailed reporting to be extended an endorsement? All they’re saying is that some people want it. That’s it.

  4. The French have a new government. It must be seen to be doing something. Perception.
    Not actually succeeding, not even perhaps a chance of succeeding – but seen to be doing something against those bad people who are not giving us money.

    I’ll give them 8 out of 10 for effort, 0 out of 10 for picking the target. Then the headling somewhere down the line will be about evil capitalists buying the court…

    I can however see France with its high corporation tax and issues about closure of plant along with tax demands becoming a less likely place for overseas companies to set up their European headquarters…. though do we come across as much better?

  5. “Ricardian Rents”? What century is this?

    Ricardo and his cranky Labour Theory Of Value nonsense really needs laying to rest.

    The taxation of Ricardian rents is, like land tax itself, almost entirely non-distorting. The taxation of profits is hugely distorting.

    The Holy Grail of the “non distorting tax”. Taxing rents doesn’t distort. Great. In that case, we’d better tax bankers- who make a living renting money. And workers, who make a living renting labour. And my ISP, who rent me an internet connection. And Adobe, for renting out Photoshop.

    Which is an interesting example. You can buy PS shrinkwrapped, or rent it by the month. Is taxing one of these transactions “distorting” and the other one “non-distorting”? How so?

  6. Bystander (#12) limked to a Murphy post where Murphy said, of an expat Brit, “he’ll slink back in when he needs the NHS”

    But “The National Health Service only provides free hospital treatment for people who lawfully live on a settled basis in the United Kingdom.”

    “If you have lived outside the UK for more than 3 months (6 months for some pensioners) in the last year you can be charged”


    So you have to move back permanently, and wait a couple of years, before you can get NHS treatment (which is longer even than the normal NHS waiting list).

    So, we can add the NHS to the list of things that Murphy writes about without understanding.

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