Yup, still looking for a job

Isn’t it time David Gauke faced facts?

Several questions I’d ask in parliament follow on. They are:

1) When will HMRC’s tax gap estimates be subject to independent economic audit to check their economic credibility?

2) When will HMRC’s claim of tax recovered be subject to independent scrutiny to ensure that they are credible for the benefit of Parliament and the public at large?

3) Will the Minister concede that a review of HMRC as now demanded by a number of leading figures in the tax profession and cicil society is now overdue and when will he agree to undertake it with a panel of independent experts including from unions and civil society being included in the task?

4) Isn’t it time that we had an Office for Tax Responsibility, reporting to the Public Accounts Committee, to ensure that independent review of HMRC is undertaken on behalf of parliament so that this most critical department of government is held to account by this House in the way that would be appropriate?


22 thoughts on “Yup, still looking for a job”

  1. When will HMRC’s tax gap estimates be subject to independent economic audit to check their economic credibility?

    Didn’t the IMF take a look and said it was a sound exercise?

    Whereas of course Ritchie’s estimates have been independently audited by….. ???

  2. FT says “Growth in the number of wealthy people in Britain slowed sharply in 2014, rising by 4.2 per cent versus a 13.4 per cent increase in 2013”.

    Ritchie says “Unearned wealth did not grow as fast as the rich would want it to in 2014”

    No Richard, you see MORE wealthy people means that wealth isn’t concentrating in the hands of fewer people like that French bloke says. It says more people are getting into the top wealth bracket. Surely that’s a good thing isn’t it?

  3. @Noel Soper.

    I thought the same thing. Murphy’s back of a fag packet “if we assume that this estimate is extprapolated on a worse case scenario” numbers should be believed in preference to the people actually doing the job?

  4. @”When will HMRC’s claim of tax recovered be subject to independent scrutiny to ensure that they are credible for the benefit of Parliament and the public at large?”
    That should happen to the claim that 3% of benefit is fraudulent. Some studies show close to 100% (see the welfare of nations for details).

  5. An independent panel of experts from trade unions and ‘civil society’ (my quotes).

    Lol. Like “justice”, “civil society” for the Left means something quite different to what the ordinary, non-insane person on the street would think.

  6. When will the Mediterranean beaches of France and Italy be subject to independant scrutiny?

    When will the vinyards of the Tuscany and Lombardy be adequately inspected?

    When will the casinos of Monaco be tested for good value for money?

    Isn’t it time that an independant body, (led by me and paid for by you), was set up to evaluate top holiday destinations?

  7. bilbaoboy, this is going to be a government financed NGO. We’re going to need a whole lot more than a suitcase carrier.

  8. I mean taxpayer funded. I get all uptight when people talk about the government funding things and then I go and type it myself.

    [slinks into corner balancing dunce cap on head]

  9. @Kevin B

    Relax. There is in reality no such thing as taxpayer funding. Murphy has explained. The government owns everything. There is ‘tax’ which is the government reclaiming what is its by right and there is ‘non tax’ which is the amount government graciously allow you to temporarily look after.

  10. The only answer he would get to his questions is:
    “And how the bloody hell did you get in here. Security!!”

    That man should be no closer to power than I should be to an unlimited donut buffet.

  11. I do find it hard to keep up with his philosophy.

    I thought the State was best at doing everything? Y’know, private enterprise is shit?

    I suppose the rationale is that since the taxpayer is funding The Dick he’s an NGO.

  12. Bloke in North Dorset

    So when we criticise a State monolith like the NHS we are neoliberal sophists who want to destroy it and replace it with a US style sytstem, at best, but really we want to see the poor dying in the streets.

    When he critcises a State monolith it is justifiable because State monoliths can be captured by producers and inefficient to boot. And we all know that by “independent” he means that an answer that matches his fag packet calculations matches his, otherwise it wasn’t independent enough.

    The cognitive dissonance was huge in this one.

  13. Today’s special guest poster at TRUK is Dan Santorum. A slippery one ‘n’ all! (Google required).

  14. Apropos this subject, can anyone explain “HMTC Yield” here:


    “arbara Keeley (Worsley and Eccles South) (Lab): Well, it seems that the hon. Member for Monmouth (David T. C. Davies) does not have a lot of confidence in the measures being laid out by Ministers. Never mind percentages: the tax gap has increased to £34 billion. The US-Swiss tax deal raised £800 million in 2013, not the forecast £3.2 billion. Despite these failings, the Minister has just mentioned the manifesto promise to raise a further £5 billion. Will he start to tell us how he will do that? He has not even brought in tougher penalties on the general anti-avoidance rule.

    16 Jun 2015 : Column 172

    Mr Gauke: The hon. Lady mentions the general anti-avoidance rule. As we have made clear, we are introducing specific penalties for tax avoidance.

    In the last Parliament, HMRC’s yield rose from £17 billion to £26 billion a year, and, as I have said, the tax gap as a percentage has been lower in every year under us than it was in any year under the Labour Government. In the Budget, we will set out further details of how we will raise more revenue by dealing with tax evasion, tax avoidance, and aggressive tax planning.”

    It is referenced by Murphaloon, but the meaning is not clear even in context.

  15. Matt W,

    HMRC’s tax yield has previously been described by Mr Gauke as being “the money that is brought in by HMRC as a consequence of its activity”. See the top of this page from Hansard from 27th January 2015.

    Which I guess is a way of saying HMRC used to get £17 billion a year when they asked people to pay up and they now get £26 billion a year.

    I wonder if there is scope for sleight of hand and double counting here. If someone is subject to a tax inspection and HMRC decide that the right amount has already been paid, would this count in the yield figure?

  16. So what expertise do unions and civil society bring to an audit?
    Just give a contract to an audit firm and let them produce an annual report – its a waste of money as such a report would not generate any extra cash.

  17. Q1. The IMF agreed method and results.
    Q2. The NAO agreed method and results.
    Q3. Lots of other groups don’t want a review.
    Q4. The NAO, PAC and TSC already exercise scrutiny.

  18. Secretary of the Calder Vale Claimants’ Union 1976-1979. Feminist Anarchist Marxist activist and interlectual, for your information Mr C.

    And who is Jack C, apart from being a sexist dinosaur?

  19. Sue,
    We all saw you trying to cuddle up to Murphy by having a pop at Deidre D-P.

    Feminist indeed. Brazen groupie more like.

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