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Thursday, 17 April 2014

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A white paper on who to upset next

I’m not sure who this coalition government wants to upset next.

Most people have already been well and truly teed off by the number and depth of cuts to jobs and services.

There was the catastrophe of the last Budget when George Osborne managed to get everything wrong with his bungles over the pasty tax, the caravan tax, the granny tax...

Now the Government says that those of us who pay a worker in cash so we get a reduced bill are as bad as multi-millionaire tax avoiders.

So, that £30 handed over to a plumber or electrician is just as bad as someone using a company or offshore address to avoid paying hundreds of thousands in tax.

At least it is according to exchequer secretary David Gauke (now forever known as Gaukeward).

Gaukeward Dave’s foot in mouth moment followed furious headlines over tax avoidance schemes by TV and sports celebrities and came just a day after a report that claims a global super-rich elite had at least £13 trillion hidden in secret tax havens by the end of 2010.

It has been pointed out that the Government continue to allow rich individuals and massive conglomerates to abuse tax loopholes.

It is estimated that these cost the UK treasury a cool £25 billion a year.

It is estimated that cash payments to tradesmen could cost around £2 billion a year.

It has also been pointed out that, just like millionaire tax loopholes, it is not illegal to pay people in cash.

And it has been reported that in 2006/7, Mr Gaukeward used his parliamentary expenses to claim £10,248.32 in ‘mortgage payments’ on his second home that year. (He was later cleared of any wrongdoing and has not had to pay any of the money back).

You could accuse the Government of continually putting its foot in it, if only both feet hadn’t already been shot off.

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