Timmy elswhere

How darn stupid do you have to be to both tax and subsidise the same thing?

Yup. We hand over tax money to make these renewables cheaper. But if anyone starts making them cheaply then we tax them in order to stop them being cheap.

Yes, yes, I do realise that this is government here. But how darn stupid do you have to be to both subsidise and tax the same thing?

11 thoughts on “Timmy elswhere”

  1. This is actually coherent Green policy. With one hand, you encourage windmill use; with the other, you prevent the use of foreign windmills, ensuring everything is nice and local.

    They’re not taxing all windmills. Just foreign ones made by foreign people in foreign lands. Greens are strongly autarkic, remember. Local shop for local people, nothing for you here, that kind of thing, you know.

  2. Runcie, Edward

    That’s one of those points that sounds smart until you spend about three seconds considering the implications of taking public sector workers out of the tax system, weighed up against the relatively small costs of putting their wages through the same system as everyone else.

    There are areas where this sort of ‘circular funding’ is absurd and/or should be reformed. Income tax for people paid by the state is not one of them.

  3. “weighed up against the relatively small costs of putting their wages through the same system as everyone else.”

    Ah yes, I’m sure administration costs for five and half million staff year on year goes unnoticed. I’m sure it might be a tad higher than MP’s expenses though, another “relatively small” cost not worth raising a fuss about.

  4. Not to mention massive duplication of back room functions such as IT, HR, procurement etc. Nothing wrong with a prescence on site or in an area of a small section for face to face contact but does each large office, part of department and department need the same duplication?

    Or come to think of it, does any department need the bulk of its staff and operations to be in London even?

  5. Runcie

    Administering workers is a lot of work. The bit of that administration that is particular to income tax is pretty immaterial. Though it’s not without issues, the PAYE system is pretty effective and efficient.

  6. TTG, let’s assume you’re right, just how debauched and crazed does our world have to be for that to be the case?

    Besides, “relatively small costs” is pretty much in the eye of the beholder. I am not strictly speaking a public employee, but most of my income regrettably derives from the taxpayer. I charge VAT on that income. Each quarter, then, I have to spend several hours working out how much of the money paid to me by one arm of the state is to be returned to another arm of the state. Every year I do the same thing for PAYE. It’s no small matter, as far as I am concerned.

  7. Edward

    I understand. I work for a company that mainly supplies to the public sector. VAT is especially thorny because some of our clients can’t even reclaim what we charge them… so as well as all the paperwork, you have us looking for ways to reduce the VAT we charge, clients looking for ways to reduce the VAT they pay, and HMRC crawling up all of our asses to check everything is legit. Insane.. yes?

    Well.. no. We’re supplying in one of the areas where the public and private sector clients don’t have to play by the same tax rules. Our private sector clients just get their input VAT back and carry on with life. The complications are all because the public sector works differently. The suggestion here is to make all of the public sector run to a completely different tax rulebook… which will make things far more complicated.

    Treat every customer the same. Treat every employee the same. That’s how it should be. Mess with that and all you do is make lots more paid work for lawyers and tax inspectors, and unpaid work for you and I.

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