June 20, 2012

Tax Avoision

I thought I'd wade into this one.

Jimmy Carr has defended himself against various accusations from an idiotic Danny Alexander and an even more idiotic public.

Full story here

It shouldn't surprise any of my readers to learn that I am a huge supporter of both tax avoidance and tax evasion. I am compelled to do both, but it isn't easy. My status as a Lawful Rebel demands that I offer no assistance to the monarch or her government. Furthermore, it demands that I do all in my power to make life difficult for them. It makes life very difficult for me too, but I am prepared to take one for the team.

I know that it is hard for some of you see the nobility (or the sense) in what I am doing, but I genuinely believe that my actions are noble, lawful, and right. We can argue the semantics forever but I have made my bed and, for good or ill, I will lie in it. And just before my heart beats its last, I will know that I tried. As the saying has it, "For evil to prevail, all it takes is for good men to do nothing". (I may have misquoted that, if so, I apologise to the author).

Back to Jimmy.

We are an odd lot, we British. We see someone doing well and we feel that they must be punished for that. Why is it okay to take this mans money away simply because he has a lot of it? Jealousy? Envy? I don't understand that. In the same way I don't understand why entrepreneurs should be robbed blind. These people have taken a chance: they have put everything on the line*, and usually, worked themselves into the ground to get where they are. Instead of celebrating this, we want to penalise them. They are already being penalised for being successful. The large bulk of income tax is paid by the wealthy. Millions of citizens on benefits should just say "Thank you" instead of biting the hand that actually feeds them. They won't, because they are entitled, innit? (For clarity, I mean the spongers and the workshy, not the vulnerable and not those in real need).

* Been there, done that. I made and lost a million before I turned 30. The sacrifices were humongous.

For entertainers, life is especially grim in the early days. I know this because my son is trying to make it (and fame and fortune) as a stand-up comedian. He has so far performed around 200 gigs and he has been paid for less than ten of them. He has spent weeks of his life on buses from Aberdeen to Edinburgh and Glasgow. If he is very lucky, that lifestyle will only continue for another couple of years before he makes the big time. And when he does finally start to see the big bucks, I want him to enjoy as much of that as he can.

Look, the tax system in the UK is FUBAR. Anyone who disagrees with that is an idiot. Incompetent government after incompetent government have ensured that we take home as little as possible. Colonel Gadaffi, that great enemy of the West, never took a single dinar in income tax off his people. There was a (very low) corporation tax scheme in existence, and that was enough (with the oil money) to run his country on. He may not have been a shining example of leadership, and he was harsh with his enemies. The quality of our "leadership" isn't exactly award-winning either, and our governments are not entirely against bumping off our more "difficult" citizens. Dr Kelly, anyone?

Getting a better government cannot be had by voting in the clones every five years. Protests, campaigns and marches are all good fun, but pretty useless. No government was ever ousted by angry citizens running up and down with placards. Over one million people marched in protest against Gulf War 1. Over four million signed a petition to save our post offices. Guess what? Slimy Blair took us to war and still shut down thousands of post offices. Revolution, on the other hand, is almost always successful. Look again at Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and the ongoing struggle in Syria. I know, I know, of the three that got rid of their despots, only Tunisia seems to be thriving, but change takes time and effort.

We will not see change in this country until people realise that financial penalties work both ways.

Starve the government of our cash, in whatever way you can, and they will wake up. Watch the change happen then.

Starve the beast and it will stop picking on you.

Starve the beast and we will get the government we need.


PS-the funeral is not until next week, which is why I am still blogging.


anonemo said...

Re Carr, it's not what he does with his money that galls. It's the fact he has been slagging other people off for doing exactly the same thing, ie he's a hypocrite.

He's also a crap comic, but that's off topic.

Captain Ranty said...


Fair enough, but hypocrisy is not (yet) a crime.

If it were, most politicians, most Christians and most Arabs would have been charged with it.

His £3.3m annual income suggests that someone likes his style of humour.

I am one of them.

But, to each his own.


Sue said...

Tax is legal theft whichever way you want to look at it. I won't pay it if I can evade/avoid it either.

I would be perfectly willing to go along with a reasonable tax system if

a) We are taxed on what we buy not on what we earn.

b) If the government we are paying taxes to was totally transparent and was willing to seek our consent for each and every important decision made for us.

c} We were given a detailed statement of what the government would like to spend the money on and THEN GET OUR CONSENT.

In short, we want our power back.

I think that's fair.

Captain Ranty said...


I think the main problem is that govt interferes in too many aspects of our lives: eating, drinking, smoking, working, healthcare, transport, etc etc etc. Once they start interfering they need a department to oversee their meddling. So as well as sticking their noses in, we have to pay for that meddling.

Foreign affairs and defence. That's all they need to manage.

We can handle the rest ourselves.


William said...

I have no opinion about the Carr chaps comedic talents or lack of, nor any alleged hypocrisy but if he has given HMRC the finger then he is on the right team.
I too am on that team and anyone who wants to take personal action to bring about change should be as well.

In other news Iceland is showing us the way not that the United Kingdom Crony Corporation will ever let it become 'national knowledge'.


Captain Ranty said...

And THAT, William, is exactly the point I was trying to make in yesterdays post: put aside the differences and concentrate on what unites.

Thanks for the link. That same story is appearing all over the place.

To all those naysayers that said Iceland was finished, it's time for some humble pie.


Anonymous said...

Tax avoidance is a moral necessity, imo, for all the reasons you highlight here and others that have been spoken of elsewhere.

This entire issue is being flung into public consciousness deliberately. After all, it creates more divisions, plays upon jealously, ego, infantilism, the sense of entitlement, and serves yet again as another massive distraction.

It is somewhat depressing to see hordes upon hordes come out and condemn those using whatever means necessary to reduce the amount they give to the ferryman, but not entirely unexpected considering the indoctrination and inertia that exists within the wider populace.

I actually agree with "anonemo" on the hypocrisy; I would have much more respect for the likes of Carr if they did not condemn such measures (and those who employ them) in public - and make their own living off doing so - whilst utilising those same methods in private. The same is true of Livingstone, as per the article that Gaius wrote some time ago but then every utterance Kenny comes out with comprises either lies or hypocrisy or both. And of course the many others like the arch uber-twat Bono, floating about the world on a pontificating miasma of his own smug self-importance.

You are right Captain that it is not a crime, but this world is drowning in hypocrisy at all levels which, along with arrogance and ego, continues to drive the sorry mess forward.

Oh, but the MPs are all shocked, SHOCKED I tells ye, by this state of affairs with taxation and are going to DO SOMETHING.

Apparently, telling us precisely how the money is wasted - with no means of redress, as through our own ignorance we surrendered such things long ago - is part of this big improvement. Which is just like the robber giving you a receipt detailing what he bought with the money he stole from your wallet, and then laughing at you afterwards. Utter stupidity.

This is always worth a read.

This and this too, for a different historical outlook.



Jim Fryar said...

I think you would like the late Kerry Packer who gave this performance at a parliamentary inquiry. The really amusing thing about it was that the Australian Democrats were waxing lyrical as to how they were going to put the blowtorch to his belly when they got him there.

He essentially gave them a dressing down. A great Aussie.

anonemo said...

"but hypocrisy is not (yet) a crime"

Maybe it should be, look at the harm only 650 hypocrites can cause when they get together. In-fact maybe tbsp become emboldened when they get away with hypocrisy, plus it has the added benefit of increasing the apathy of the general public.

P.S. You don't want your son to become like carr, he had his father arrested (allegedly). see wiki

Captain Ranty said...


Great comment and great links. I haz checked them all out and bookmarked them. They will come in very handy.

I agree that hypocrisy is not a good trait, and I rail against it often enough. But Carr is a comedian. Not much is sacrosanct in humour....


Captain Ranty said...


I was blown away by that!

So much so that I am about to post it.

Thanks for the clip!


Captain Ranty said...


Actually, I wouldn't mind. As long as all the circumstances are the same.

Carr's dad did very well out of it all!


Dailyhammer said...

Even at 1% tax he pays a shed load more than majority.

He is totally correct to deny them.

Politicians create the framework for tax collection and then get upset when they are proved to be f**king incompetent.

They do not even understand the system they have created, they then try and turn the general population against you to divert attention away from their failings.

All that happens is the more tax they collect - the more they leverage it.

HMRC are a pack of bullying pricks, they actually think it is their money.

Next time they turn up at our offices to inspect our books I am honestly going to shit all over the files and then take a massive dump in the middle of the office.

Captain Ranty said...


I tried to make that point yesterday.

Every time he fills a stadium he ensures or creates 150 jobs.

They have now created so much legislation that it contradicts itself all over the place. Bunch of gibbons.

HMRC back down when you show them you have teeth as well.

Happy shitting, BTW!


Anonymous said...

I agree that most governments are corrupt, but that I believe is a trait of human nature - put someone in a position of power and greed will eventually take over.

However, society needs organisation, structure and leadership. We need infrastructure (hospitals, schools, power, water etc) and we need order (police/courts). These things need to be funded. A contribution has to be made by those who are able (ie excluding the sick/elderly etc) to that system.

Our current system is poor. It is badly managed, badly organised and is corrupt to the core. This does not excuse each member from their obligations. Tax is a necessary evil and Carr is avoiding his obligations. In our system, the more you earn the more you pay. That's the rules, we all know that. If he didn't want to pay tax then he could stop working.

OBO 110X said...

I think it is "morally wrong" that the government spends money murdering innocent folks around the world in the name of "democracy".

I think it's "morally wrong" that the monetary system in this world ensures slavery and impoverishment of the masses.

I think it is "morally wrong" for the government to extract money by coercion on the fruits of your labour.

Jimmy Carr is doing the right thing

Captain Ranty said...


I see that he has done a u-turn this morning and apologised.



Kynon said...

In short: If you are a wealthy individual who exploits loopholes to minimise your tax burdens & increase your own take-home, you are "morally wrong".

If, on the other hand, you are a wealthy individual who exploits loopholes to minimise your tax burdens & increase your own take-home, then makes large "donations" to one of the main political parties, you are a prime candidate for an MBE/OBE/CBE/knighthood/peerage!

Once they have battered down all the seriously rich (Jimmy Carr, Take That, etc), then they will be (more) aggressively coming after the legitimate freelancers & contractors...because although freelancers are essential to the UK's economic recovery, they're also a largely untapped source of lovely tax revenues.

Guy Fawkes remains the only person to ever enter Parliament with honest intentions, a clear agenda, and the means to see it through.

Captain Ranty said...


Great comment.

I have a "fairness" issue: why does Carr come in for these attacks while they leave companies like Vodafone and Amazon alone?

They are like a wolf pack, picking out the smaller, weaker member of the herd.

Shameful. Just shameful.


anonemo said...

Captain, your reply to Kynon seems to me, to bring the thread nicely round in a circle, 'cause I don't think the answer is shameful I think it's hypocrisy. ;-)

Just to make it clear I don't disagree with any of the sentiments expressed in this thread.


Captain Ranty said...


I find it hard to understand (now) why the PM picks on Carr but then clams up when it comes to his mate Gary Barlow.

I find that shameful and hypocritical.


Anonymous said...

I can't do the linky thing but this, "General Election 2010: Gary Barlow unveiled as David Cameron backer" from The Telegraph, might have something to do with it.


It was the second hit on google when I used 'gary barlow politics' as the search term.

I can't find anything about Jimmy Carr's politics but he does appear on the beeb a lot so maybe he leans towards Labour, though he could just keep his politics to himself.

The whole thing is shamefully hypocritical.;-) (how's that)

Anonymous said...

I'd love to see Osbourne and Cameron's tax affairs brought into the public domain the same as Carr's have been. Somehow I doubt that will ever happen though.

Anonymous said...

Everyone on here should watch Neil Hanauer who did a TED talk that initially they refused to release


Most people in my opinion would not try to avoid or evade if they could see transparently where the money was going but they can't and i feel a moral obligation to not fund needless wars of aggression

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 23:44

"I'd love to see Osbourne and Cameron's tax affairs brought into the public domain the same as Carr's have been. Somehow I doubt that will ever happen though. "

They want to adopt more facets of the Nordic model, whereby everybody's tax returns are publicly available, and things like this, and the hysterical response, are the "problem-reaction" element that such a "solution" is designed to solve.

It may not happen for a while, but it has been floated in numerous places already:

- Make MPs' tax returns public, says Calamity
- Make company tax returns public, says Basher and a tax "expert"
- Make everybody's tax returns public, say the demented witterings of Tuscan Toynbee
- Make everybody's tax returns public, says some no-mark LimpDumb MEP

Of course, what will happen is that people like Cameroid, and the more senior members of the elite (who own nothing in themselves, but control everything), will be unaffected by such changes, ditto the megacorps. Whatever they state their tax returns to be, they will concern a tiny fraction of the wealth that these people are actually able to access through complex private means.

iDave descends from bankster nobility and his father worked in the City, such people are practised in matters of public vs. private. (If you want an MSM source also spelling these links out then here's one from the Daily Fail.)

It is the application of such measures that allows Dave to say "It's not true" that he has a multi-million pound fortune. He does not have millions, personally. As the Fail article says: "...the key phrase is 'family wealth'." For the elite it always has been.



PS: Thought you'd like the links, Captain. :-D

ellie12022 said...

So he behaves entirely legally yet is 'morally in the wrong' and the implication given in the article that somehow to be able to pay for a house in cash - without - shock horror - having to take out a mortgage is somehow reprehensible too. Why should he have had to apologise for doing nothing illegal? Bonkers!

Anonymous said...

Did I get spam-bucketed, Captain?

Too many links again... :-D



Anonymous said...

The problem is with the tax system in general and not the individual. We should be more concerned about the multi-nationals who have struck a cosy deal with HMRC to avoid their tax bill.