Tax Avoidance AGAIN

So Apple have been ordered to pay 13 billion Euro’s (£11 billion pounds) in Tax to Ireland as it has been found guilty of having a sweetheart deal with the Irish Government that amounted to illegal state aid under EU rules.

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The Irish Government are not happy as this decision might rob them of their low tax economy within the EU, the US Government are not happy and feel this will threaten the economic partnership between the EU and the USA. Of course Apple are not happy and says this ruling will threaten investment and jobs (surprise surprise).

The UK Government has said it would welcome any jobs in the UK with a Downing Street spokesman quoted as saying “The narrative of the Government has been well set out. Britain is open for business; we welcome any company wishing to invest in Britain and Britain’s workforce”. All is fair in love and war eh!

Basically Apple has paid no, or virtually no, tax on any profits made in the EU in the last 13 years or longer. However they have said they will appeal and are confident of winning any appeal. The Irish Government may appeal also but there are those who welcome the decision as they believe that the Irish Government have affectively been guilty of tax abuse over the years to attract multi national companies.

I have no sympathy for Apple or the Irish Government, even if they do pull out jobs. The simple fact is that multinational tax abuse, supported by any government, is a moral crime in my eyes and it hurts us. We end up paying for their tax avoidance through higher taxes, cuts to services and the drive to the bottom to attract low paid jobs with poor conditions.

The list of companies suspected of avoiding UK tax is huge, list, now many of those will do so under the full knowledge of the Government but that does not make it right.

How can it be right that shareholders are treated to the benefits of socialism and the people are treated to the full force of the market economy. While we continue to get poorer by the day, face unemployment and resorting to foodbanks, there are a small percentage of people getting richer, and richer and richer at our expense. I really hope any appeal loses but I will believe it when I see it. What it will do though is open the door to a lot of companies deciding where to locate, where to produce, it could lead to a trade war or it might just be the start of a clean up, but again I won’t hold my breath.

We can do our bit if we feel strongly enough by not buying the products of the companies that are ultimately stealing from us, but saying that, given that they are all at it you might find yourself naked and living in a cave. Basically it feels like we have no power, no say, are poorer and pawns to be played with by the brands and the few.

What a sad state of affairs.

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7 comments

  1. Helena Brown

    It all started so well did it not, first the good old Labour party brought in the minimum wage, supposedly to ensure that those being paid a pittance got a “ahem” decent amount of money and we all thought that was good. What it turned out to be was the minimum wage has become the norm for far too many people.
    No surprise to me that those already richer than Creosus want more and that this disgusting bunch of reprobate want to help them. Might get them out of a small hole they have dug themselves with Brexit.

    • grumpyscottishman

      Helena

      I am just starting to think that it doesn’t really matter what we do or say but that doesn’t mean we don’t continue to say it. The end game is still independence and at least that is something they can’t stop if we can convince and and wake up enough people to the truth.

      These people at the top, they don’t have countries anymore. Power and money is their passport and all they care about. It’s disgusting as there is just no decency anymore and the politicians appear to be at their beck and call . We just have to keep up the fight and try to convince enough but there are those we won’t so can’t waste our time on them. The GMB guy on radio fear this morning being the perfect example of a unionist and someone who does working people no favours.

      Thanks for commenting.

      Bruce

  2. tris

    I can never really blame companies or individuals for taking advantage of wholly legal tax avoidance schemes. In stead of paying tax on the now niggardly income I make from my savings, as much as can possibly be put in ISAs is put in ISAs…thus avoiding tax.

    I get angry when the likes of Cameron do it having criticised SOME other people (but not others) for doing it.

    Of course it is annoying when you hear Amazon and Apple, among others saving billions in tax. But actually, the law allows them to do it.

    Surely it’s not beyond the wit of people in governments across the world to deal with what is a far more intentional world; to devise a system of cross border taxation.

    They can invent a bomb that will kill a million or more people, but they can’t work out how to tax a Luxembourg country selling stuff in Britain?

    What the….

    • Anonymous

      Tris

      There are a lot of things in this for myself. I hate tax avoidance to get richer, that doesn’t sit with me at all and it’s a race to the bottom for the rest of us and an increase in our taxes. I tend to also think that we only have one life and how much money do you need, I agree with you on cross border taxation but again that would need politicians to work together, they won’t as they are in hock to the shareholders who own the corporations. I often think that if everyone just paid their fair share of tax then taxes would probably come down anyway as there would be enough money to go around, naive I know. However, companies like Apple abuse the law, whether legal or not and pay slave wages overseas then over charge ourselves for their phones etc. I have no given up my iphone and have no intention of ever getting an apple product again, it will make no difference to them but it will to me. I don’t have the answers but tax avoidance is wrong and it’s about time someone did something about it so good on the EU.

      Thanks for commenting.

      Bruce

  3. bringiton

    When the music stops in this game of musical chairs where tax liability us moved from one tax haven to another,someone is going to get a big windfall.
    The Americans are very unhappy that the EU appear to be getting their bid in first and there will be nothing left for them.
    Taxation should be based on business conducted within an economic zone and not attributed to a brass plate office in Belize, or wherever.
    I have no doubt in the case of Eire and Apple that EU rules were broken but a blind eye turned to that activity.
    However,those days are now over and it’s time to pay the piper.

    • Anonymous

      bringiton

      I totally agree, just pay the f tax on the profits in the country they are earned in. It’s not rocket science, it’s long before time that this was sorted out and I hope that the EU does take a stand but you can bet that the UK will start a race to the bottom given our record on avoidance. It just annoys me that this goes on, we put up with it even though it affects us with higher taxes and lower terms and conditions. We are slowly but surely being dragged back to the dark ages and even greater servitude, we better start to wake up before it’s too late and grow a pair.

      Thanks for commenting.

      Bruce

  4. Pingback: How Times Fly (but some things never change) | Grumpy Scottish Man

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