Feared by the bad, loved by the good
There was a programme on Channel 4 last night about tax avoidance by the rich, which highlighted the disgraceful continuing existence of tax havens – which do more harm to humanity than any terrorist network or training camp. The most telling fact was that for every £1 of aid received by developing countries, they are deprived of at least £10 in tax duties by companies that register themselves in tax havens rather than in the poor countries that they exploit to make their profits.
Other tax avoidance schemes were exposed too. As well as the multi-millionnaire cabinet members using these schemes, in between telling us that “we’re all in this together” and making ‘tough choices’ between pension cuts and education cuts (which ordinary people can we rob and get least adverse publicity?) to go alongside the less controversial cuts to those undeserving wretches at the very bottom of the pile, the programme also revealed that the likes of Ryan Giggs and David Beckham like to invest big chunks of their vast wealth into certain schemes because of the huge tax savings this brings.
When Giggs retires, he’ll no doubt be held up as representing a simpler, more pure age of the local boy made good. He may have left his financial dealings in the hands of advisors, and may not understand exactly what’s happening with his money, so that’s ok. You can’t help wondering if that’s the kind of advice that Ferguson was talking about when he said he’d offered to give Rooney financial advice – you don’t need to move to get more money, stay here like me and you can always find new ways to take more of the fans’ money, one way or another.