Eh?

The reality is that PWC and the other big firms of accountants are not just a threat to the public finances ( although no one could deny that this is true). They are also a fundamental threat to democracy in this country by deliberately putting in places structures that undermine the rule of law in the UK with the intention of denying tax revenues to properly elected governments so that those governments are unable to fulfil their mandate given to them by the UK’s electorate with the intention of ensuring that wealth is redistributed from the majority of people in this country to a minority on whose behalf these firms are acting.

Rule of law? Is anyone at all alleging that the law has been broken?

No? Then the rule of law isn’t being affected then, is it?

Second, only licensed firms should be able to sell tax advice in the UK. Those with links, whether legal or through mutual marketing arrangements, in places that are recognised as tax havens or secrecy jurisdictions should be denied such licences. Only firms that demonstrate a commitment to effective tax compliance, which is always incompatible with tax haven usage, should be allowed to practice tax in this country. Regulatory visits should be maintained to make sure that this is not abused.

Blimey. Telling someone that the tax laws are different in Jersey to become illegal. Slightly fascist isn’t it?

41 thoughts on “Eh?”

  1. “intention of ensuring that wealth is redistributed from the majority of people in this country to a minority on whose behalf these firms are acting.”
    There’s something wrong about this construction too. It reads as if these firms are appropriating wealth from the majority and distributing it their clients. Suspect Mr Murphy just got a little inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity.

  2. That first paragraph is pure langue de bois. Beware of people who talk or write in long, unintelligible sentences. Their only aim is to dominate you and ensure you don’t get a word in edge ways, ever. A very good sign of other psychological flaws such as a fondness for totalitarianism, Puritanism, etc.

  3. “intention of ensuring that wealth is redistributed from the majority of people in this country to a minority on whose behalf these firms are acting.”

    All wealth inherently belongs to the state and is fungible. Money is but one form of wealth. All people belong to the state and indeed are the state. Thus if someone rich pays less tax, he has deprived the state of money and thus redistributed wealth from the state, i.e. everyone else (the majority) to himself (the minority).

    Anyone for a pretzel?

  4. You can almost imagine Murphy wetting himself with excitement this morning as his dream of a fat salary as Margaret Hodge’s pet poodle at the Office for Pompous Pronoucements on Tax comes a step closer.

    What a cunt (c) GlenDorran

  5. The poor chap can’t really be being serious!

    More than ever we live in an inter-connected world, we have the internet and we can communicate instantly with people all over the planet.

    And he wants the UK to put in place a licence system. Hmmm, my mate over in Luxembourg is full square behind you on this one Richard! Clot.

    It reminds me of Cameron’s earlier idiocy, suggesting that encryption should (in effect) be banned in the UK. They really are all the same, utterly clueless.

  6. PF – he is utterly opposed to both the free movement of capital *and* people.

    And it colours his writing – he’s working within the precepts of his terrifying ideal world rather than the world as it is. Hence he doesn’t see the obvious problem here.

  7. Also Tim, you need to grasp that for Ritchie, “the rule of law” means “achieving Ritchie’s preferred outcomes, whether that is in accordance with the law or not”.

    You know Judge Dredd, “I am the law”? That’s his self image.

  8. @Interested

    Might I postulate rather that he writes like a man high on the fumes of religious fervour and self-righteousness?

  9. Does he use some sort of dictation software? It would explain the terrible grammar and spelling of many of his posts.

  10. “only licensed firms should be able to sell tax advice in the UK. Those with links, whether legal or through mutual marketing arrangements, in places that are recognised as tax havens or secrecy jurisdictions should be denied such licences”

    So lets see. The actual laws of the country don’t change, just who is allowed to operate within the UK giving accounting and tax advice. Ergo all you need is an accountant/tax adviser who is located outside the UK. All info/meetings/advice dealt with via phone/internet/video link or trips abroad to meet them. All dealings with HMRC done by a kosher UK licenced adviser who just gets told what to do by the taxpayer, who is acting on his foreign advice.

    Or is RM going to close down all electronic communication with the outside world, and prevent everyone leaving the country in case they meet with foreign tax advisers?

    I think I know the answer to that one sadly……………….

  11. Andrew M

    I have just seen Richard’s response to you re licensing / the international aspect!

    You were pretty comprehensive, and to which his glorious response is “Such things can all be changed”..!!

    And as he quite obviously can’t actually be THAT stupid (he’s a CA for Christ’s sake), it sort of proves that he’s quite happy wilfully misleading / spreading misinformation to the more gullible readers on his site.

  12. Jim

    “Or is RM going to close down all electronic communication with the outside world, and prevent everyone leaving the country in case they meet with foreign tax advisers?”

    In response to Andrew M’s question to him, he appears to suggest yes!

    Obviously, he can’t actually be that stupid, hence, something else is in play…

  13. “We really need to investigate the business models of these professional firms. They thrive on complexity and profit hugely from it. As to public interest I doubt if they even understand what this means. ”

    Parody or idiocy from Atul Shah?

    They have a legal obligation to act in their client’s interest. If the “public” wants them to act in the public interest, then the “public” can hire them.

  14. PF,
    I’m staggered by his reply. The idea that you could just toss away lawyer-client confidentiality is mind-boggling; and he doesn’t even suggest how you could ban teleconferencing. Presumably he’d like to recreate the Great Firewall of China around the UK.

    Even his erstwhile friends on the Left are abandoning him. There was the undignified rant with Jolyon Maugham on Twitter earlier this week. Yesterday he took a pasting about the “failed market economy” from one Linda Kaucher, a researcher whose far-left views are almost right-wing, as per Horseshoe theory. Hopefully the likes of Polly will wake up and smell the coffee too.

    Hanlon’s razor applies here: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity. Murphy is an idiot with soundbites, the chattering classes’ equivalent of Russell Brand.

  15. Jeebus, his blog on the supposed absence of PwC financial statements is embarrassing. He really doesn’t understand how PwC is structured.

    I used to work for a large multinational finance firm. I’m not an accountant, but even I could find the accounts of the UK arm.

  16. Have we properly considered the possibility that he just isn’t very bright? That’s the impression I always get, from his bad arguments and terrible writing. He is just a bit thick.

  17. He’s getting near the end I hope.

    When you read this insane pig-swill, you can very easily picture the hammering fist, the small moustache, the foam flecked lips.

  18. Andrew M

    “Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.”

    I understand but I can’t. Yes, get it wrong because you’ve not properly thought it through first, no problem, we can all do that. But continue to get it wrong after it’s been explained in words of half a syllable? Nope, doesn’t work for me, that’s wilful (imho)!

    You use Russell Brand as an analogy. But Brand’s no imbecile, he knows exactly what he’s doing?

    abacab

    That’s brilliant! And of course par for the course…

  19. “And as he quite obviously can’t actually be THAT stupid (he’s a CA for Christ’s sake)”

    Well….I can’t speak for accountancy, but in my profession there is a sizeable minority of people who perfected the art of passing exams in order to get the qualification* (basically by memorising textbooks and studying past exam papers for patterns).

    Unfortunately they aren’t very good at jobs that involve creative thought or doing non-standard tasks. They tend to get stuck doing mechanical production and analysis of numbers. Anything that involves strategic or political thinking they get kept away from. I wonder if Murphy fits this description.

    *my profession also has a sizeable number of people who fit somewhere on the autistic spectrum.

  20. Setting up a little office to monitor tax avoidance and fairness eh? Here’s a suggestion:

    Taxation
    Watchdog:
    Accounting and
    Transactions
    Security

    Him and his ilk would all fit in marvellously and wouldn’t even raise an eyebrow handing out those business cards.

  21. Ian B

    Whether stupid, myopic or pathologically incapable of empathy the result is the same. A stream of consciousness. A nearer analogy than Brand would be a David Icke or Alex Jones….

  22. “Only licensed firms should be able to sell tax advice in the UK”.

    That sounds like a plan to me. In fact there was this gobshite in Wandsworth with no formal tax qualification telling people how to incorporate their domestic help. Now he should be thoroughly investigated.

  23. Van Patten: Whether stupid, myopic or pathologically incapable of empathy the result is the same.

    to a certain degree it seems utterly pathological. He is incapable of thinking an idea or a proposal one simple, logical step further. He is utterly incapable of reasoning as to how people would react. He is utterly incapable of recognising the good-faith of an alternate point of view.

    Just look at the Seamus O’Leary thing from the Boots thread – what was put forward was utterly gastly, unbelievably anti-immigrant, fascistically nationalistic and if implemented would result in penury for British citizens living abroad and for people with another citizenship living in the UK. Basically a financial Berlin wall that said “you cross it, and you pay”. People would be held hostage to the exchange rate with their “home” country, even if they have never lived there. But because it was couched in his language and his terminology, he just accepted it even if he did think he wouldn’t go quite so far.

  24. @ PF
    When I was at school, those sent to train as accountants were boys quite good at maths who weren’;t bright enough to go to university. Some years later when number of university places had mushroomed Murphy went to Southampton, a third class university, to study accvountancy and economics full-time for three years, giving him a massive advantage over old-fashioned traines who had to study in their evenings after doing a full day’s work.
    So Murphy’s CA does not prove that he isn’t that stupid.

  25. @ GlenDorran
    Equally a number of people on the autistic spectrum fit happily into our profession doing a lot of valuable work.
    Would you rather that they were employed in HR?
    On second thoughts, they would immensely improve most HR departments!!

  26. @john77:

    Yes. They do work that I never could, to a higher standard and greater attention to detail than I can imagine.

    You’re right, I’m being unfair. The ones who have mastered the exam passing technique aren’t necessarily the “autistic” ones so it’s wrong for me to try to link them together.

  27. @ GlenDorran
    Thank you. A gracious response to correct any misconstruction of what you said earlier.
    While there are people like you who care more about the truth that pretending to always be right, there remains hope for the profession.

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