I have always held the opinion that most, if not all, taxation is a form of theft. This is a perfectly reasonable stance, given that Karl Marx’s slogan gained so much credibility in the 20th century. It is merely the opposite view.
My mind has turned to tax because I am presently and unfortunately in England. Also theft. It was announced in the UK earlier this week that the government wasted 15 billion pounds, about 17 billion euros, on unusable PPE supplies over the coronavirus period, most of which has now been burned. The kit, not the money, although it amounts to very much the same thing.
Some of this money went into the hands of various characters closely associated with the Conservative Party.
This calamitous misuse of money is going unpunished, as far as I can tell.
Of course, taxpayers are not given a menu to help them decide which expenditures they agree with and which they don’t. And this leaves me to another point, indirect tax is preferable to direct tax if we must have any tax at all. Someone who buys a Bentley, for example, can be taxed to the hilt, but workers who put in a bit of overtime should not be punished in their pockets.
This directs me conveniently to my next point. Very few people in Britain want to work. This has led to an appeal from the UK finance minister for early retirees and other layabouts to go back to their jobs, otherwise the economy will collapse.
On Friday, Jeremy Hunt, the Chancellor said: “If companies can’t employ the staff they need, they can’t grow… So to those who retired early after the pandemic, or haven’t found the right role after furlough, I say Britain needs you. And we will look at the conditions necessary to make work worth your while.”
Meanwhile, the bastion of truth the Daily Mail reported: “Disability claims are up 70 per cent since the pandemic, with estimates that the annual cost will rise to £8.2billion by 2027.”
Some of the claimants profess mental afflictions. Back to the Chancellor, who said that it was time for ‘a fundamental programme of reforms to support people with long-term conditions or mental illness to overcome the barriers and prejudices that prevent them from working.
In other words you would have to be crazy to work in the UK right now.
Of course, this should all be taken with a shovel of salt. The British labour crisis is not about growth, it’s about survival. But very few people want to work. Much of this must be attributed to the fact that many ‘native’ Britons are lazy couch potatoes. During the lockdowns many people grew accustomed to doing nothing at all, and in many cases getting paid for it.
But another factor at play here is that many ‘working people’ don’t see the sense in working if the taxes they pay go up in smoke because Conservative politicos and their hangers-on suck billions out of the Treasury in a clear illustration that taxation is theft.
In the meantime, I am missing Monaco. There are so many amazing events taking place. I never go to them when I’m in or around the Principality. Much of it is tainted with knee-jerk economic and social liberalism, but there are some gems not to be missed, many of them sponsored by wealthy individuals choosing to spend their own money in their own way.
For readers with a cultural bent, may I recommend This Week in Monaco, the standalone weekly newsletter produced and distributed, at no charge and free of tax, to the thousands of subscribers to Good Morning Monaco and readers of NEWS.MC?
PHOTO: ‘Crazy’ Jeremy Hunt MP