Ritchie doesn’t get that markets are about competition

The first of these is whether tax competition is legitimate in a common market.

The second is whether governments have a duty to provide a level playing field on tax to domestic and international companies.

….
The last is what most people are focusing on but the first two are more important: they could shape the whole direction of EU tax policy. If , as economic theory of markets demands, a level playing field for tax must be offered then the EU tax landscape would be transformed, for the better.

The whole system was deliberately set up by Fritz Bolkestein to produce corporate tax competition.

87 thoughts on “Ritchie doesn’t get that markets are about competition”

  1. Does anyone know of a common market without tax competition?

    Allowing for the constituent parts of the UK being a common market of kinds?

  2. What theory of markets demands a level playing field for tax? Can anyone enlighten me? What would be the purpose of this level playing field? What does it even mean?

  3. “The whole system was deliberately set up by Fritz Bolkestein to produce corporate tax competition”

    Doesn’t mean it needs to stay that way. Tax competition is artificial and irresponsible. Far better to compete with actual things that you do.

  4. Tax competition is artificial and irresponsible. Far better to compete with actual things that you do.

    Getting all metaphysical on us there, eh Arnald?

    Please define what you mean by “artificial” and provide evidence that it is “irresponsible”. I could use a good laugh this morning.

    And while you’re at it, why don’t you explain why allowing sovereign nations the freedom to set their own tax rates to be a Bad Thing. And just for the fun of it, see if you can do it without ending up sounding like a National Socialist.

  5. @Dennis the PEasant
    > And while you’re at it, why don’t you explain why allowing sovereign nations

    Sovereign nations are so 20th century the whole project is dedicated to replacing them with a single Government. Useful idiots like Ritchie are just helping the process along.

  6. @Arnald

    So EU country A has a democratically elected government which believes in taxing the minimum it thinks it needs for providing the basic services it thinks it needs to provide and sets its CT rate at 10%.

    Meanwhile EU country B has a democratically elected government which believes in taxing the maximum it can squeeze out of its citizens in order to engage in grand projects and redistribute wealth. It sets its CT rate at 50%.

    Along you come, the Lord High Moral Conscience of the EU and have to declare which CT rate is right and which country’s electorate is to have its wishes ignored and trampled on. So which rate is right?

  7. Is an EU-wide CT rate of 10% artificial and irresponsible?

    Is an EU-wide CT rate of 80% artificial and irresponsible?

  8. Hey, all I said was using tax competition as a basis for making profit is artificial. It doesn’t make your company any better than the next one. It’s fake.

    I find it a bit odd that you’re arguing the toss on this one. Aren’t you all in favour of zero percent across the board? Because if one country does in the EU they’ll all have too, according to your tax competition red in too… etc etc.

    Since we all believe globalisation is a Good Thing, why shouldn’t corp tax be part of being global?

    It would make things simpler, wouldn’t it? We all like simplifying tax codes, don’t we?

    Rob

    Tax competition is artificial and irresponsible. So your questions are bollocks.

    However, I’m not sure how a common rate could be set. As someone says, nations states have a democratic mandate to be able to set whatever rates they like.

    I think it’s a good idea in theory.

    The TJN and Murphy got a big win with CbC reporting.

    Worstall must be gutted. I think it’s funny.

  9. Rob

    What do you think the Corps do now, idiot?

    Regulatory capture. BigCorp pays what it wants, where it wants, otherwise it threatens financial apocalypse.

  10. Again, tax itself is artificial. ‘Tax competition’ is artificial. Lots of things are artificial. People’s QE is artificial. SO WHAT?

    Again, how is countries setting lower corporation tax rates irresponsible?

  11. “Regulatory capture. BigCorp pays what it wants, where it wants, otherwise it threatens financial apocalypse.”

    What the fuck does this mean? Fuckface. As we are throwing ad homs about.

  12. Hey, all I said was using tax competition as a basis for making profit is artificial.

    This sentence perfectly encapsulates your profound ignorance of the subject matter, Arnald.

    Companies do not use tax competition in the area of corporate income tax to make profit. Profit is made – or not made – pre-tax. Given your station in life you’d have no way of knowing this, but pre-tax profit or loss is the first number you enter on a corporate tax return. You then adjust to the taxable profit figure, and then calculate the income tax due. See how it works now?

    What tax competition allows if for a corporation to retain more of those profits after tax.

    Moron.

  13. And you still haven’t provided any justification for – or even an explanation of – the proposition that taxation is an ‘artificial’ cost.

    Again, given your station in life, you have no way of knowing this, but it is none the less the truth: Taxation is no more or less artificial than the cost of materials, services or wages. It is a cost of doing business, nothing more, nothing less.

  14. Don’t forget that if we look at the main example of a state run along The lines Murphy suggests – North Korea – I am pretty sure there’s no competition in terms of differential tax rate or indeed of any kind so it can be done – whether he’d balk at the methods used by those guys is debatable – But if ‘Civil Society’ deems it necessary then who knows?

  15. Regulatory capture. BigCorp pays what it wants, where it wants, otherwise it threatens financial apocalypse.

    Ah, the hallmark of a Loser…

    The Grand Conspiracy Explanation of Everything.

  16. Given your station in life you’d have no way of knowing this, but pre-tax profit or loss is the first number you enter on a corporate tax return.

    Let me restate this so Arnald and similarly inclined morons can’t nit-pick it: The first profit or loss figure you have on a corporate return is the pre-tax figure. The first figures to enter on a corporate tax return are the corporation’s pre-tax revenue and expenses… which gets you to pre-tax profit or loss.

  17. The whole of Swiss tax Policy on both corporate and individual taxation is based on tax competition, from canton to canton and from municipality to municipality.

    And no, there has not been a “race to the bottom”. Zug and Schwyz have low rates, Bern, Vaud, Neuchâtel, Jura don’t.

    In what way has this been irresponsable?

  18. Peasant

    It was clear what I meant. I wasn’t accurate how I wrote it. It’s easy to garble when you’re multitasking.

    A company using states offering lower tax rates, regardless of what and where the company actually does, is not using its reason for existence to compete in a market. It’s relying on states screwing their populations as a means to retain more of its profits, making it a more attractive investment.

    It’s an inevitable race to the bottom and is a clear symptom of how corps are able to dictate policy direction.

    Guernsey can’t pass any laws without consulting the finance industry first.

    HSBC and others threaten to leave the City if the government starts saying and doing what they want it too.

    Sweetheart deals are all about corporate influence in state affairs.

    etc

    Peasant will know how much of a hold over the health care system in the US the insurance companies have.

    If it carries on in that direction we’ll be living in a corporatist state.

    Patten

    You are insane if you think anyone wants to be like N Korea. It’s so far from the truth it makes me wonder if you’re on glue or something.

  19. Arnald –

    It was very clear what you meant… That you know fuck all about taxation.

    It’s interesting to note just how provincial you are: You’re view is that all the world operates in the manner that a little shithole like Guernsey does. Not sure that’s reality, but then again, what do you and reality actually have in common?

  20. http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/news/article-3412541/Apple-boss-Tim-Cook-private-talks-EU-chiefs-weeks-ruling-needs-pay-billions-Irish-taxes.html

    Why would Tim Cook be doing this in person? And meeting UK treasury.

    You must know how powerful corp lobbying is to any government. It’s all manipulation for legislation change, or not change, for vested interests.

    Promises of lucrative positions in finance houses for ex MPs.

    Keeping a blind eye on corporate governance.

    It’s not conspiracy, it’s what happens.

  21. It’s relying on states screwing their populations as a means to retain more of its profits, making it a more attractive investment.

    Yep. I hear the oppressed masses wailing at this very moment…

    “Arnald, Arnald, please save us from the depredations of our democratically elected representatives… We can’t do it ourselves, Arnald, we need you… Oh, wise and strong one… Please don’t forsake us, Arnald.”

    Moron.

  22. “And trying to type while waiting on ‘hold’ for your payday lender doesn’t really qualify as multitasking…”

    That’s quite funny, if only Mr Shark had given me his number, it could have been true, too.

  23. “It’s an inevitable race to the bottom”

    Not really, look at the US. Individual States have their own taxes of various kinds (sales tax, individual income tax, corporate tax, etc,)

    California is not cheap in this regard, but does seem to do okay. You’ll have heard of it.

  24. Why would Tim Cook be doing this in person? And meeting UK treasury.

    You must know how powerful corp lobbying is to any government. It’s all manipulation for legislation change, or not change, for vested interests.

    I just assumed you were there and could document all the manipulation and whatnot. It’s not like you to just be talking out your ass about how you imagine things happen.

  25. “You must know how powerful corp lobbying is to any government.”

    Well, unions can be pretty powerful too. And good luck to them, as it’s a free country.

    I’m not sure how much power the big corps really have though.

    If Political Leader 1 agrees to screw over nearly the entire population in favour of Evil Baron A, then Political Leader 2 will sweep to power having sided with the other 99.999999% of the electorate.

    UK political parties do have to appeal to many millions of people, not just Mr Jerry Hall.

  26. It’s interesting to note just how provincial you are: You’re view is that all the world operates in the manner that a little shithole like Guernsey does.

    I’ll save theoldgreenfascist the trouble and point out I should have used “your” and not “you’re”.

  27. Hang on a second. Has anyone seen Arnald and our host in the same room?

    Arnald is clearly just a vehicle for bumping up comments.

    Hence all this “manipulation” stuff …. clever little in-joke.

  28. Unions are democratically elected spokespeople for employees that otherwise would have no say on their treatment by employers.

    Corporations demanding favourable conditions and using threatening behaviour if they don’t get what they want is corporatism.

    You want the world that way, that says a lot about you.

  29. Arnald

    You write this: “Sweetheart deals are all about corporate influence in state affairs.”

    This storm has all blown up out of the Google settlement. Are you saying that this Google settlement is a sweetheart deal? Are you saying it was anything other than a genuine settlement based upon the law as it is?

  30. @Arnauld

    “Unions are democratically elected spokespeople for employees that otherwise would have no say on their treatment by employers.

    Corporations demanding favourable conditions and using threatening behaviour if they don’t get what they want is corporatism.”

    Good point- one takes their power from the multitude of people who pay to use their services and the other are companies.

  31. “Arnald is clearly just a vehicle for bumping up comments”

    Do you get notifications? What a bore for you!

  32. No, I don’t.

    “Corporations demanding favourable conditions and using threatening behaviour if they don’t get what they want is corporatism.”

    Corporatism sucks, not so much due to the power that corporations might wield (which isn’t huge; governments have armies, and anyway, corporations have competitors).

    Big corporations suck because they’re generally ossified versions of formerly innovative and efficient businesses. Many can still provide good stuff through sheer size and reach, but there’ll be a layer of paper-clip shufflers who nobody would miss.

  33. For example, HSBC may indeed leave. They can tell the government that they will leave, unless … etc.

    The government then weighs up the pros and cons, and says yes or no.

    It’s just business, Baby.

  34. “Ritchie doesn’t get that markets are about competition”

    Oh, I think he gets it just fine; it’s just that he thinks competition is a bad thing.

    Under the brave new World Government, all taxes will be the same everywhere (and very high everywhere!), so there will be no escape; THAT is Ritchie’s dream.

  35. “Under the brave new World Government, all taxes will be the same everywhere (and very high everywhere!), so there will be no escape; THAT is Ritchie’s dream”

    Except he doesn’t realise it will be run by people like Lin Horner, Dave Hartnett. You know, the actual people who hold such positions. He assumes that by placating the devil, it will grant him a favourable position.

  36. In the early days of the European project ( a long time before Frits [real spelling] Bolkestein hove into view circa 50 years later) they were very keen on tax harmonisation as they thought tax undercutting would fuck everything up.What did they know?Bolkestein’s influence has since worked wonders.
    Please explain how British tax policy by abolishing taxes like Schedule A on property is better than a Europe with, say, a standardised property Tax replacing taxes on incomes and profits.

  37. DBC

    Because it’s ours! Because we get to decide what taxes we raise, on what and how much. The ‘standardised European model’ is one we just don’t want. You remember that democracy thing people who don’t share your love of the Soviet empire keep going on about? Yeah that.

  38. No, Ironman, not intimidated, just that my life doesn’t ervolve around your facile questions.

    It looks and smells like a sweetheart deal. If it wasn’t then why all the meeting with HMRC? Surely the auditor would have flagged up if there were any adjustments to be made.

    Or am I being naive that the auditors actually conduct a true external evaluation?

    Comparing anything that you don’t agree with with the Soviet Union is childish. How can wanting a LVT be compared to that?

  39. @arnald
    “Unions are democratically elected spokespeople for employees that otherwise would have no say on their treatment by employers.”
    You clearly don’t have much experience of large unions and the way they operate, funnily when try employ staff at their HQ they suddenly become employers and act no differently to the people they are complaining about.

    “The TJN and Murphy got a big win with CbC reporting.”
    Couple of points, first let’s see what the system produces and how effective the reporting is, Murphy believing it will make companies restructure and change is at the far end of the spectrum and unlikely to happen.
    Secondly, he can say it as much as he likes but Murphy didn’t invent CbC reporting, the concept has been around for a long time.

  40. Arnald

    So

    1. You are actually accusing public officials of corruption. It so happens that I personally have negotiated with HMRC on a couple of transfer pricing issues and know a couple of HMRC transfer pricing specialists personally. My challenge to you is not to be snivelling little shit but to use your own real name to make the accusation so that I can take it to them.

    2. “It looks and smells like a sweetheart deal. If it wasn’t then why all the meeting with HMRC? Surely the auditor would have flagged up if there were any adjustments to be made.
    Or am I being naive that the auditors actually conduct a true external evaluation?”

    You really haven’t got the first fucking clue how tax professionals negotiate complex issues with HMRC have you. You really have no concept of how to interpret complex legislation have you. No concept of how wide a band inside which the acceptable transfer price can be. You use a word like ‘auditor’; when and in what context is that word ever used?

    I knew you were a complete cretin, just didn’t realise how little that hinders your loose gob.

  41. Arnald

    “Hey, all I said was using tax competition as a basis for making profit is artificial. It doesn’t make your company any better than the next one.”

    Cool, lets get rid of company tax entirely and let companies compete just on their actual businesses then.

  42. Arny dream will do

    I would hope he doesn’t want to be like North Korea – I’d credit him with that modicum of intelligence although There are times…

    If you actually read what I said – the state that currently exists closest to Murphy’s paradigm is North Korea – You can be assured that their citizens aren’t engaging in tax evasion I think. He, and a numepber of his most prominent commentators are quite open that there are no countries out there that so far correspond to the Courageous State – hence having powered my way through it ( a particularly mischievous relative has given me ‘The Joy of Tax’ as an Xmas present) The closest state applying Murphy’s principles at least in part is North Korea – you may not like that but that is the way it is. And given the imbecile’s frequent references to governments acting in arbitrary fashion with respect to individual and collective freedom, I think the only way you could make his theory work is by indulging in the level of repression you see in North Korea. Otherwise his policies tend to flounder on the problem that many real people don’t want the state to dictate to them.

  43. Ironman –

    Don’t take Arnald so seriously. He’s one of life’s losers, and as such he can do little more than displace his own personal envy by accusing others of the sort of conduct he imagines is what it takes to succeed at anything.

    Remember, the man attempted to curry favor with Richard Murphy – the ultimate Obvious Ass – by informing on Murphy’s critics. How much more of a loser can you be?

    Rather than argue with him, it’s best to simply remind him (over and over) that for all his efforts, he still comes across as what he is… a loser who would rather wallow in his own envy that expend energy to improve himself.

  44. Arnie – Are you having a lovely holiday? You’ve possibly missed my interventions today and my indefatigable courtesy in treating you as something never to be taken even remotely seriously.

    Tell me more about the evils of tax competition or whatever else is troubling your febrile mind.

  45. I don’t think you understand. In order to have a free market, there must be an infinite number of agents in the market, all of whom are absolutely identical. Any diversity of conditions, capabilities, resource access etc are deviations which must be expunged by government intervention.

    The purpose of the true, courageous free market is to generate taxes. Any economy in which the taxation is being frittered on production rather than paid to the exchequer is underperforming and needs forcible correction.

    Lord Murphy of Much Wittering has explained this many times.

  46. It looks and smells like a sweetheart deal. If it wasn’t then why all the meeting with HMRC? Surely the auditor would have flagged up if there were any adjustments to be made.

    Or am I being naive that the auditors actually conduct a true external evaluation?

    Of course it looks like a sweetheart deal. You are completely ignorant of how the process works, and rather than attempt to discover the facts, you simply reach into your envious, misanthropic soul and put out whatever base slander will do.

    You’re aren’t looking for the truth, Arnald, you’re look for a scapegoat, and it would seem any old scapegoat will do.

  47. Is there a philosopher in the house?

    If Arnald is right, and there really is no such thing as US culture, what is in its place?

    Is having no culture a culture in itself?

    Would an LVT help?

  48. Tim

    You are of course right – in Murphy’s vision there won’t be competition – the tax rate will be 90% base and 99% top globally – no escape – ‘The beneficent state’ and ‘Civil Society’ demand no less

  49. DtP

    “Arnald could not be imagined…”

    I beg to differ. Anal is a recognisable type – the attention-hungry child who persistently interrupts adult conversation by shouting loudly and waving his little wooden sword.

  50. “Hey, all I said was using tax competition as a basis for making profit is artificial. It doesn’t make your company any better than the next one.”

    Even that’s not true. A company moving country for tax advantage has just traded a production cost for a distribution cost. Does that make it less ‘real’ if they manage to turn extra profit from that?

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2016/01/12/amazon-shipping-france-colis-priv/78686016/

    Like everyone else, govt has to earn it’s paycheck. They have to show they generate value for that money, infrastructure, dependable contract law, an educated and healthy workforce, whatever. No point crying about how difficult it all is when corporations can shop around for countries the way we do for car insurance.

  51. Bloke in North Dorset

    Arnald,

    “Why would Tim Cook be doing this in person? And meeting UK treasury.”

    I’ve no idea why Tim Cook was there as I wasn’t in the room but I have been in the room in similar meetings, albeit not in UK.

    My client was looking to build a mobile phone network in another county, peak capital US$100m 15 years ago. We had concerns about some of the tax rules around how software and hardware were treated and some other tax issues. We arranged a meeting with the relevant authorities to seek guidance and assurances about the way we were interpreting the rules.

    The meeting was so important that the Chairman flew in to make it clear that we were serious and also to look them in the eye to make sure they were serious.

    On a similar note, Government here was falling over itself a few years ago to get Google to invest in the UK. I’ll bet similar meetings were held around that investment as well. Its all quite legitimate as companies need to assess political risk as well as other risks.

  52. Ronny

    So tell me, how was that £130 million decided on?

    Do you think Google had to pay that tax in the first place?

    With your extensive knowledge concerning Google’s meetings with the Treasury, was it a TP based discussion?

    I don’t know who the fuck you think you are with your stupid threats. You don’t know as much as you think you do. Just because you’ve had TP talks with HMRC – twice, and are now best pals with an HMRC office junior, doesn’t mean bollocks to anyone. I figure you were there to take the minutes.

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/191d7f30-c38d-11e5-b3b1-7b2481276e45.html#axzz3yZr6XMEc

    David Gauke says it wasn’t a sweetheart deal. What else can he say?

    Go figure, you all think politicians tell the truth and act in the best interests of the electorate, isn’t it?

  53. @ Arnald
    As I have pointed out more than once on previous occasions, Murphy is years behind the time on country-by-country reporting. UK GAAP required separate reporting of profit and tax for every significant geographical location (most accountants interpret “significant” as 10% of the total). It was, of course, his former hero Gordon Brown who stopped this practice for UK plcs.
    Forty years ago I was scoring brownie points by deducing stuff from the tax paid by country.
    But Murphy is nuts asking Shell to report profit and tax for over 100 different countries when the figures would round down to £0m in several cases.

  54. Peasant

    “Of course it looks like a sweetheart deal. You are completely ignorant of how the process works, and rather than attempt to discover the facts, you simply reach into your envious, misanthropic soul and put out whatever base slander will do.”

    Slander? Are you sure? Another one who thinks they’re fucking god.

    You don’t know what’s happened. Nobody does. There is no audit of that £130 million. Suddenly making sweetheart deals is some new thing? You’re all so taken aback by the harsh verdict (by practically everyone) you’ve started phoning round your lawyers.

    “Sir, someone on the internet said Google had a sweetheart deal. Can you call HMRC and tell on him? Tell them he’s a right loser because I’m rich and he’s not.”

    And I’m loving this one:

    “You’re aren’t looking for the truth, Arnald, you’re look for a scapegoat, and it would seem any old scapegoat will do”

    Google, a scapegoat!?!

    Jesus’ brothel in heaven.

  55. Hi-de-hi Arnster: “Sir, someone on the internet said Google had a sweetheart deal. Can you call HMRC and tell on him?”

    There’s someone posting here who has form when it comes to tattle-tale telling.

    Who do you think that might be?

    Are you having any luck getting off with the Redcoats?

  56. Guys, you’re wasting your time.

    Arnald is a tin-foil hat conspiracist. He has no facts to support his case, no understanding of the laws or mechanisms of process, no experience. But he doesn’t need any of that.

    He comes to the party with pre-conceived ideas and laps up the nonsense Murphy peddles because it’s what he wants to hear. No amount of fact, logic or reasoning is going to change his mind. You might as well expect a creationist to take a look at a world full of demonstrable scientific fact and evidence and suddenly declare themselves converted.

    Did Google and HMRC reach a compromise? Almost certainly. I did 10 years in HMRC and I’ve done 17 years on the other side so I’ve negotiated for both sides so of course negotiating and compromise occurs. But the idea the £130 million should be 10 times that or whatever the nonsense some are claiming is ridiculous. Maybe 5 more years of negotiating and a court case might have squeezed at extra £20m out of them. Or maybe lost £20m for HMRC.

    Leave Arnald to his paranoid fantasies. He’s harmless

  57. BiND

    The Google agreement was for back tax. Having a meeting every three weeks sounds a little too much like bringing offers to the table rather than nailing down the future rules.

    Only Ronny knows the answers. I expect a scoop in the Telegraph tomorrow.

    David Moore

    “Cool, lets get rid of company tax entirely and let companies compete just on their actual businesses then”

    You see, if that’s acceptable to you all, why isn’t, say, 10%, 20%, any percent across the board not acceptable? It only proves that tax competition between nation states is completely ideological. Because you hate the State and the nation.

    Patten

    “You are of course right – in Murphy’s vision there won’t be competition – the tax rate will be 90% base and 99% top globally – no escape – ‘The beneficent state’ and ‘Civil Society’ demand no less”

    I don’t know anybody or have read anything by anyone that has suggested high taxation for the sake of political ideology.

    Some people would like to raise VAT. Don’t you think 20% is quite steep?

    77

    I can’t see any reference to the GAAP “reporting of profit and tax for every significant geographical location” in these documents. I’m not doubting you, I’m just not finding a document i can compare them with.

    http://www.pwc.com/gx/en/tax/publications/assets/pwc_tax_transparency_and-country_by_country_reporting.pdf

    https://www.pwc.co.uk/tax/assets/a-practical-guide-to-the-uk-regulations-cbcr-under-crd-iv.pdf

  58. Another one who thinks they’re fucking god.

    Yet another entry from the Loser’s Litany…

    When confronted with the evidence he does not possess the facts of the matter, The Loser then claims those who do possess the facts of the matter are imperious and arrogant.

  59. Andrew

    “But the idea the £130 million should be 10 times that or whatever the nonsense some are claiming is ridiculous. Maybe 5 more years of negotiating and a court case might have squeezed at extra £20m out of them. Or maybe lost £20m for HMRC.”

    When have I said what I think the amount should be?!?

    All i said is that it’s a sweetheart deal. You agree.

    Ronny, do you hear, Peasant, can you read?

    “Did Google and HMRC reach a compromise? Almost certainly.”

    I’m glad your cosy nights in with the HMRC tea boy were productive. You know everything about TP negotiations now!

    Spaz.

  60. “I’m glad your cosy nights in with the HMRC tea boy were productive. You know everything about TP negotiations now!

    Spaz.”

    That was, of course, aimed at Mr Iron, if it wasn’t clear enough..

  61. “When confronted with the evidence he does not possess the facts of the matter, The Loser then claims those who do possess the facts of the matter are imperious and arrogant.”

    Well duh, Peasant. You don’t know the facts and you’re pretending you do.

  62. So your not prepared to repeat the accusation under your own name. Of course you’re not..so you fill the blog with words words words. Anything to avoid admitting you deal in cowardice as much as slander.

    “With your extensive knowledge concerning Google’s meetings with the Treasury, was it a TP based discussion”

    The Treasury wouldn’t discuss transfer pricing you arsehole, that’s HMRC’s job. And I have never claimed any specific knowledge of Google’s negotiation with HMRC; you can’t fucking read.

  63. This is real Richard Murphy stuff: ” just look at it. It’s obvious. Don’t need facts. Just go around shouting ‘corruption’ and hope the mud sticks.

    Murphy is a vile creature, a chancer with no morals. Arnald is a joke.

  64. What is remarkable about Arnald is not his ignorance, but rather the bitterness in his heart.

    Not so long ago I started calling Arnald ‘Gypo Nolan’, but stopped when I realized that was being unfair to the moral character of Nolan. He, at least, realized his errors, repented and asked for forgiveness. His sin was one of weakness. He was not an bitter man.

    Now Arnald, he is no such man as Gypo. He has a bitter heart. And, as he is ruled by envy, in those he envies he sees nothing but evil. Not because they actually are evil, but because they, by their existence, demonstrate his own deficit in character, as well as achievement. In all probability he will continue to rage at them until the day he dies. Had he the gift of introspection, most likely he would not be were he presently is in life.

    Even sadder is the fact that he feels compelled to come here to get attention, and is so starved for it that the fact that it is wholly negative doesn’t bother him in the least.

  65. “The Treasury wouldn’t discuss transfer pricing you arsehole, that’s HMRC’s job. And I have never claimed any specific knowledge of Google’s negotiation with HMRC; you can’t fucking read.”

    Yes, Ironman, Google were meeting with the Treasury. So what was all that drivel about your ‘complex’ TP talks? This is what you said:

    “1. You are actually accusing public officials of corruption. It so happens that I personally have negotiated with HMRC on a couple of transfer pricing issues and know a couple of HMRC transfer pricing specialists personally. My challenge to you is not to be snivelling little shit but to use your own real name to make the accusation so that I can take it to them.”

    It’s got nothing to do with anything. You’re just being a peacock.

    Where’s the corruption? Andrew has already said it, the same as I have. Google were meeting Conservative ministers, even Osborne, to negotiate an agreement. It’s a fucking sweetheart deal.

    “”So your not prepared to repeat the accusation under your own name. Of course you’re not..so you fill the blog with words words words. Anything to avoid admitting you deal in cowardice as much as slander.””

    I think what I’ll do, shit-for-brains, is wait for every other person in the world to get done for slander before I repeat that accusation. You know, just so I know what sort of punishment I’ll receive.

  66. ” It only proves that tax competition between nation states is completely ideological.”

    Probably not. The clue’s in the word “competition”.

    As I mentioned earlier, take a look at the US. California is quite a high-tax state, as is New York. Both states have advantages to sell. Florida has no state income tax; look at its level of development a mere 30 years ago, and you’ll see why.

    It’s by no means always a race to the bottom, and we should all agree that individual jurisdictions should be able to set their own rates, especially democratic ones.

    You need this sort of dynamic to avoid stagnation.

    (Oh, and saying “You don’t know what’s happened. Nobody does.”, whilst also claiming to know exactly what has happened – AND IT STINKS – is just ridiculous).

  67. I’ve skipped through the thread again and I’m not quite clear what the argument is here. Arnald appears to be asserting that large corporations can use their welly to get better deals from the State than smaller entities. This does not seem to me to be a remarkably controversial assertion. It’s also an assertion that is difficult to prove of course, but can be justified by (a) appeal to reason and (b) quoting precedent.

    Indeed, I have to say that us libertarian true free-marketeers have been making this same point for a long time, and I’m pretty sure even Tim W has, at least in the form that regulation places burdens on companies unequally; large corps can absorb State costs that small ones can’t. Well also, large corporations can apply muscle in negotiations with the State that small companies can’t.

    If HMRC think you owe them £10,000, they will stamp all over you and get it. If you’re one of the world’s largest, most powerful corporations, your experience is likely to be somewhat milder.

  68. What is remarkable is the amount of time and man hours is needed for hmrc to agree a deal for some taxes that should have been, or not, paid years ago.

    As a matter of interest, what would be the net payment, stripped of all those costs (incurred by the taxman and by google) ? That’s pure, unadulterated waste of value creation, which we are all paying for.

    As for having tax competitions between states, it is not only desirable, it is necessary. Any fule know that the aim of a bureaucracy is to always expand and competition is the only way to keep them in check.

  69. Yes, Ian B, I agree with Arnald, too. Not a sentence I write very often.

    Fucking Ironman, with his threats to go telling tales to people so that they start legal proceedings. Too funny.

    Any idea – any fucking idea at all – how ruinously expensive libel law is? The top boy at HMRC couldn’t afford it, never mind the junior dicks you deal with.

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