Thursday, 21 June 2012

Jimmy Carr vs David Cameron in the Tax Hypocrisy stakes

In June 2012 it was revealed that the comedian Jimmy Carr had been using an elaborate tax avoidance scheme called K2 to avoid paying tax on income of at least £3.3 million. His critics were keen to point out the hypocrisy of having attacked the dodgy tax practicesat Barclays bank on the 10 O'clock Live show whilst simultaneously filtering his own income through an elaborate tax dodging scheme.

WARNING - Video is far from funny, simply embedded as an example of Jimmy's hypocrisy.

Jimmy Carr may be an absolute hypocrite for attacking the Barclays tax dodging scam whilst simultaneously engaging in his own tax dodging activity, but the UK Prime Minister David Cameron is already outdoing him in the hypocrisy stakes by describing Jimmy Carr's tax arrangements as "very dodgy" and "morally wrong". 

It is funny how the Prime Minister is prepared to speak out against the tax dodging activities of one of his celebrity critics, but always hides behind the "can't comment on individual cases" clause when it comes to the tax affairs of huge corporations such as Vodafone, Goldman Sachs, Boots, Tesco, Barclays.... or the tax avoidance schemes used by high profile Tory supporters Michael Ashcroft, Philip Green or Gary Barlow. Another aspect to Cameron's hypocrisy is that he quite happily inherited £300,000 from his father, who made millions through the establishment of a tax dodging empire in the wake of Margaret Thatcher's abolition of capital controls in 1979. Yet another aspect of his craven hypocrisy is that the Tory party actually invited some of Britain's biggest tax dodging companies to form working groups to design UK tax policies. Companies invited to participate in these Tory tax policy working groups include serial tax avoiders (such as Vodafone, Shell, Tesco) and tax avoidance facilitators (such as Barclays, AIG, Lloyds).

After the publicity storm and Cameron's critical comments Jimmy Carr was quick to quit the K2 tax dodging scheme and make a public apology which read "I’m no longer involved in it and will in future conduct my financial affairs much more responsibly. Apologies to everyone. Jimmy Carr". Given David Cameron's new found opposition to tax dodging, I'm sure everyone will expect David Cameron to tear up any proposed legislation which included input from tax dodging companies, to publicly apologise for receiving a large inheritance from his father's "dodgy" tax avoidance empire and to publicly explain to big Tory donors and celebrity supporters like Michael Ashcroft and Gary Barlow that he and the Tory party want nothing more to do with them since they are morally repugnant tax avoiding bastards.