Err, how?

It’s not all hardship, though. The prime minister’s own party supports him where necessary, the returns reveal. Expenses met by the Conservative party have varied between £5,105 and £13,149, which have been declared as taxable benefits. They cover travel, clothes and other associated expenses for Cameron and his wife.

When the PM next berates Jeremy Corbyn over a shabby suit, the Labour leader will be able to reply that, unlike Cameron, he isn’t receiving a taxpayer subsidy for it.

What taxpayer subsidy? It’s declared as a taxable benefit….it’s taxed.

48 thoughts on “Err, how?”

  1. Why am I not surprised that the Grauniad can’t tell the difference between Party funds and taxpayer’s money?

    I’m sure Unite could likewise stump up for an M&S suit for Corbyn…

  2. It’s worse than that. He used to be a tax inspector. He’s also the reason that so much of Private Eye’s tax stuff is wrong. Including their allegations about £6 billion at Vodafone and all that.

  3. Richard Brooks writes much of the Eye’s tax stuff, yes (a lot of the rest is written by that bloke who thinks that Osborne and Little did something wrong by carrying forward losses).

    But given that Fleet Street doesn’t like doing its own research on these issues and gets most of its stories from Private Eye, this idiot is the origin of most of the crap one sees in the papers on tax.

  4. @BiE,

    No,but he’s added lots of “ifs” to Cameron’s statement.

    Funniest is “Fourth, I am very surprised that it is said that the disclosure is complete because the special form required of MPs is not detailed”. Again, shows he’s a cunt as he didn’t say the same when John McDonnell published his return, missing those same pages.

  5. @TW
    You’re onto a hiding if you carry on rushing to the defence of any scam by the rich to make the little people pay all the country’s tax. If in a hole, stop digging. I used to troll this site because you published tax reform pieces in favour of LVT ,in line with your guru, Adam Smith’s proposals.

  6. @DBC, the stats show that the rich pay most of the country’s tax.

    And you’re onto a hiding if you carry on claiming tax evoidance or avasion (sic) when none has been shown to have occured. At a certain moment someone will let loose the hounds of law (not on you, but on some people publically pushing libellous statements of the PM and his dad).

  7. Charlie Suet,

    This is the sort of reason I view most of the press as the “funny pages”. The Guardian’s Culture section is pretty good, Jane McQuitty in the Times is very good on wine, and there’s the likes of Janan Ganesh who has a clue, but most of it is just crap. Ironically, I think that the tabloids generally provide a better news service than the broadsheets today like

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/politics/7063388/Muslim-Labour-councillor-suspended-amid-claims-she-called-Adolf-Hitler-the-greatest-man-in-history.html

    That story is only in the Sun and Mail.

    The problem is that the whole thing has been infested with useless upper middle class types who cannot grasp the complexity of what they’re dealing with and figure it out. You just have to look at how often bloggers (like Timmy, but also others) tear the likes of Piketty and Mason a new arsehole.

    I can’t cope any more when I meet someone who tells me they heard something by Richard Murphy. I have to take a deep breathe and desperately try to change the subject. Because I could argue, but I know that I’d be there for hours just dismantling the layers of crap that had built up, and they’d probably just get pissed at me as I produce “yeah but…” after “yeah… but”. I’ve learnt just not to bother. Find the people who seem to have spotted that there’s something wrong and want to take the red pill instead.

  8. Charlie Suet,

    just to add… this is all clearly such a non-story. Cameron seems to be basically clean. A bit of tax avoidance, but nothing too far outside of what most people do. As someone pointed out, if you want to attack Cameron, you also have to attack the Benns and Millibands for this sort of thing.

  9. @Stigler,

    I wonder if Foot and all the others that took money and benefits in kind from the Sovs declared it for tax?

  10. People are not going to believe that the rich go to the trouble of using or setting up offshore funds if there is no intent to avoid tax. Not only does it appear that the rich are leaving the little people to pay the country’s tax, the ruling class then decides that there is not enough tax being paid (hence the Deficit) so start cutting the little people’s services, and, in some cases, jobs and incomes.This is not a good outlook for those who defend tax avoidance, I would suggest.

  11. It is a non-story, really, though I think Cameron deserves a bit of a kicking for commenting on people like Jimmy Carr in the past (I’m aware that the circumstances are different).

    I think the rally yesterday was like manna from heaven for Cameron though. He was very unlikely to resign on this issue alone, but the left was making headway politically by portraying it as an issue of morality and fairness.

    Then you get a poorly attended rally, organised by an ex-Mirror journalist on a day the Prime Minister is not at 10 Downing Street. Oh, and the usual idiot ‘anarchists’ and hard-leftists the moderate left doesn’t have the wit to dissociate from turn up to make things look even worse.

  12. “People are not going to believe that the rich go to the trouble of using or setting up offshore funds if there is no intent to avoid tax.”

    Never let facts or reality get in the way of some good old-fashioned class prejudice, eh?

  13. And further to last – I do hope that all of DBC’s “people” will be writing letters to their pension funds tomorrow insisting that all investments be in UK-based and listed companies….

  14. Charlie Suet,

    Yeah. If you’re going to attack tax avoiders for not paying a “moral” amount of tax, don’t be surprised if it bites you in the bum.

    Personally, this shit enrages me. Government writes down the rules, and people follow them, and a number of parliamentarians get mad about this. Don’t like that people exploit the rules in certain ways? Change the rules. You can’t blame people who pay as little as possible. No-one gives Tesco an extra tenner for their shopping.

  15. So far the greatest revelation is that all the stuff written in the past few years about Cameron being rich would seem to be bollocks. He inherited £300k and received a gift from his mother of £200k. He owns half a London house worth a couple of million, but I don’t know what fraction of the aforementioned £500k went into buying the house or clearing off mortgage (if indeed they had a mortgage).

    That’s a pretty comfortable degree of wealth he’s got there, but if that’s all he’s got he’s not remotely “rich”. I’d bet that there are scores of people living within a couple of miles of us who are better off than that.

    When I said as much to someone yesterday the best he could muster was “but his wife is a millionaire”. I suspect the source for that might be the same source as the belief that Cameron is rich, i.e. assumption.

    So if one can just assume facts, here are mine: I suspect that Cameron and his wife enjoy financial security because they are beneficiaries of family trusts which could give or lend them money in case of need. That would be a wonderful boon in life, but it doesn’t of itself make one rich.

  16. “People are not going to believe that the rich go to the trouble of using or setting up offshore funds if there is no intent to avoid tax”

    They might do it because they get a better rate of return than from a UK fund regardless of tax paid. 9% interest in a ForeignLand savings account or 0.5% interest in a UK savings account? Which do you go for?

    When I livied in Hong Kong I had an offshore (to HK) bank account in a UK bank in order to pay my UK mortgage.

  17. @abacab
    The point is I did not have any class prejudice before this business but the upper-class arrogance involved has me thinking for the first time of the abolition of public schools etc where, before I thought the suffering at such places and of being that class was punishment enough.

  18. DBC Reed, you really are an envious little got-nowt. Go outside, stamp your little feet and scream “It’s not fair!” for 10 minutes. I’m sure you’ll feel better afterwards.

  19. “the stats show that the rich pay most of the country’s tax.”

    And yet my effective federal tax rate was double that of Romney(Obama’s effective rate was also lower but not to the same extent) in 2011. I don’t blame the rich for legally paying less, I blame them for writing laws that allow themselves to do so.

    “He owns half a London house worth a couple of million…if that’s all he’s got he’s not remotely “rich”. I’d bet that there are scores of people living within a couple of miles of us who are better off than that.”

    How many have far less than that in the same area? From what you’ve listed I would consider myself rich with similar assets.

    As to the original point since the money didn’t come directly from the government and taxes were paid then, yes, it is not a subsidy.

  20. The “upper-class arrogance” of paying the correct amount of tax? Has DBCR been hitting the Night Nurse again?

  21. “Last night the councillor claimed she was not the author of the tweets instead suggesting that her sister may have written them.”

    Lovely taqiyya there.

  22. “How many have far less than that in the same area?” That doesn’t matter. The question isn’t whether Cameron is better off than the average of my neighbours, the question is whether he’s so much better off that he qualifies as “rich” My answer is “not even close”.

    Hell there’s a house near us for sale for 3 million. Whoever buys it will, in all likelihood, be better off than Cameron. But we do not live in an enclave of mountains of wealth. Desirable houses in the south east quadrant of England cost a lot.

  23. I must say, when I heard of 300k inheritance and 200k pre-inheritance gift, my first thought was “is that all? He’s supposed to be rolling in it”.

    That’s a detached house in the south east with no mortgage kind of inheritance. Not a mansion in London…

  24. If I had a large sum of money I’d store a part of it abroad too. Switzerland probably, being a sensible sort of place. Far too many cunts in the UK inciting a mob for my liking.

    Ironically you can own a fucking huge house and that’s different though. Every spittle-flecked rant from Lefty twats in politics pushes house prices up even further, as people put their money into the only politically acceptable form of Investment.

    This country is becoming a bit unpleasant.

  25. Do political contributions in the UK attract favourable tax treatment? If so, is that the basis for the claim that Cameron is getting ‘a subsidy for his suit?’ Not that he is getting an untaxed benefit, but that the party funds that pay for it are themselves subsidized?

  26. Clearly somebody is not telling The Truth.
    Guardian headline “Fund run by David Cameron’s father avoided paying tax in Britain…The Guardian has confirmed that in 30years Blairemore has never paid a penny of tax in the UK on its profits” Whoever is lying is reducing British politics to a new low , which takes some doing. In a Banana Republic at least you get some good weather and bananas .

  27. Blairmore presumably paid no British tax because it was foreign; it had no British profits to pay tax on, presumably. Nowadays it pays Irish tax I expect. Why on earth do you think it should have paid British tax?

  28. The point is I did not have any class prejudice before this business…

    Pull the other one, DBCR, it’s got bells on!

  29. I don’t have any class prejudice because I don’t have no class but DBC Reed is correct when he says
    ‘People are not going to believe that the rich go to the trouble of using or setting up offshore funds if there is no intent to avoid tax.’
    It matters not what the facts of the matter are only the perceptions.
    It is a common perception that Cameron and the top cabinet will be well richer than Blair when they leave (and that twat made out like a bandit when he left).
    We know they aren’t running the country for our benefit but it would be nice if they tried to cover their avarice, that they can’t be arsed even to offer us that fig leaf shows just how much contempt they have.

    It is possible that the vote will be for Brexit in order to get rid of Cameron safe in the knowledge that the EU will not accept that decision and on the second referendum (after C/Osexit) we will vote to stay in.

  30. I’m not sure you’d get into politics for getting rich – in fact it’s a pretty bad career choice for those interested in wealth. Make it to the top 650 odd positions in the UK (MPs) and you’ll be comfortably middle class for your efforts. OK, becoming PM will get you a lot of after dinner gigs in the future – but that’s the top position in the entire country. The top position for almost every other industry in the country is likely to pay a lot more…

    I was once ‘sorta’ interested in politics, but then my career started doing ok, and I wasn’t about to take a pay cut to get involved. Plus, if anyone wanted to question my likely inheritance (fuck all, now you ask) I’d tell them to fuck off and mind their own business. Imagine being scrutinised by the general public non stop for your shitty MPs wage…?

  31. @DBC, you read this blog and still you haven’t picked up the facts about this case. Have you read every article and all the comments. Yet you believe the Guardian? Which one is more likely to contain lies and twist facts?

    The Guardian is correct when it states that Blairmore hasn’t paid tax for 30 years. But it states the facts in a way that whips up the brainless lefty mob (which includes you DBC) into a frenzy of thoughtlessness. What the Guardian didn’t say is that Blairmore is not UK based in any way so cannot pay UK tax.

  32. @BobRocket, the public are being fed lies by a MSM more keen on clickbait than real stories.

    The rich are using offshore companies not because it’s the most tax efficient method but because it generates the most profit. Yes, there are some criminals, but the majority are rich people using the best method to maximise their income in a way that is also legal. As Tim has said in another post, this case and that of the one from Switzerland have chosen that the numbers of real tax evaders is actually very low.

  33. “I don’t have any class prejudice because I don’t have no class”

    I know I’ve seen it before but it’s always good for a laugh.

    SadButMadLad,

    The people who make it to this blog generally understand the facts. The problem is that a very small percentage of the overall population are liberal enough to explore other ideas. For some reason those people get votes and will make poor choices based on the information from the MSM. I took the comments to be focused on those and not the average reader here.

  34. @DBC

    You really are a bit thick aren’t you.

    Blairmore has paid no UK tax because it isn’t in the UK. There are millions of companies world-wide who pay no UK tax because they are not in the UK. There are billions of people world-wide who have paid no UK tax because they are not in the UK. That isn’t tax avoidance. Is that really that difficult for you to get your head around?

    What does happen is that when a UK resident such as Cameron receives dividends from or sells units in Blairmore then this falls in the UK tax net.

    The same as if I buy shares in a US company. No UK tax on their profits. UK tax on dividends I receive or gains I make when I sell the shares.

  35. @AC The Guardian 4th April
    “In reality according to the documents ,big investment decisions were taken in the UK .Stategy was seemingly discussed in London where the investment management firm Smith & Williamson and five of the directors, including Cameron, were based”.

  36. @P & SBML
    What the Guardian did say was that Blairmore is based in the UK : quite clearly all its economic activity goes on in London (you cannot, with this class of person, call it ” work” being a matter of picking investment winners like an afternoon down Betfred’s). What used to go on in Panama and points East was all just pretend much like Osborne and Cameron playing at economic policy.

  37. So how does something like Blairmore differ from my pension, except that I get the extra 25% when I put money into my pension, and I can take up to 25% of the capital out untaxed when I’m old enough?

    Being able to accumulate dividends and capital gains in a jurisdiction which doesn’t tax them as they accumulate, and only pay tax on bits you bring back into the UK, isn’t a bad idea – particularly if you can buy flights from Emirates, safaris from Tanzanian Fancy Safari Corporation or boats from Panamanian Luxury Fibreglass Ltd using the money without having to pay UAE or Tanzanian tax on it.

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