Time and time again the media run stories of all those people at the lower end of income cheating the system by means of benefit fraud. It is always how they, the poor, are stealing from the other tax payers. Most of those who are caught are invariably trying to get their standard of living somewhere near tolerable. However we are seldom informed of those with unbelievable wealth who cheat other taxpayers by avoiding tax payments.
Recent figures released by the HM Revenue and Customs Office reveal that for the year 2003-04, only 65 people living in Britain declared a taxable income of £10 million or more. It is known that at least 400 individuals based in Britain have wealth or direct income that would put them in the £10 million or more category. This means that the vast majority of the wealthy who do not pay directly into the Treasury coffers by PAYE etc. are using complex and so called “legal” means to avoid paying any taxes, let alone their fair share. This is not so that they can achieve a reasonable standard of living, they are already obscenely rich and this tax avoidance is nothing more than a display of their naked greed, a hallmark of this system.
By how much are they cheating the other tax payers? Well the true figure will probably never be known, but estimates vary from £700 million to £1 billion a year,and growing, all of which the filthy rich will use to create more wealth for themselves by the exploitation of the ordinary tax payer.
Recently leading partners in private equity companies were asked by MPs to justify an effective tax rate of 10% on their earnings from multi-billion pound take-over deals saving them as much as £1 billion in personal tax since 1990. This of course means that chief executives can be paying less tax than their cleaners.
The Treasury is well aware that the present system means that people on relatively modest incomes will pay 40% tax, while the filthy rich pay next to nothing. It will of course do nothing about this, though it may make grumpy noises, as it is also aware that the system is all about siphoning wealth upwards and will always load the system in favour of the filthy rich, it will always protect the corporate world and those who run and benefit from that exploitation.. After all, that’s is where the politicians go for their perks when they leave the Westminster House of Corruption.
Only when we dismantle this idiotic, unjust and greed driven state/corporate system will there be any hope of a society that sees to peoples needs. Injustice is part and parcel of the corporate capitalist system as is greed and exploitation. There is an alternative, a society based on communities working in federation with each other, communities built on sustainability, co-operation and mutual aid, in a word, anarchism.