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Paradise Papers

(267 Posts)
grannyactivist Mon 06-Nov-17 00:18:37

Thanks to a leak of financial documents I think we shall see many chickens coming home to roost in the near future. One of the first to be held to account is Lord Ashcroft. His spokesman, Alan Kilkenny, said the peer had never engaged in tax evasion, abusive tax avoidance or tax avoidance using artificial structures, and “any suggestion or implication that he has will be vigorously challenged”.
However, if you or I (assuming that you are not a multi millionaire politician) dealt with our tax affairs in the same way as he seems to have done I suspect we might be investigated by HMRI.

grannyactivist Mon 06-Nov-17 01:04:00

These papers expose the difference between what is legal and what is moral. The tax avoidance revealed is apparently (mostly) legal, but highly dubious and immoral in my opinion. However, when the super-rich are also the drivers behind the laws that allow these loopholes then governments need to be challenged. angry

Riverwalk Mon 06-Nov-17 06:35:35

It seems that HM is at it herself hmm

NfkDumpling Mon 06-Nov-17 07:20:35

I do wish interviewers/investigators wouldn’t chase after their targets with a microphone when they know full well they’re not going to get an answer. Other then that, it was an interesting programme. I’m not at all surprised at the convoluted dealings in football club management but somehow expected better from Lord Whatshisname and Her Madge. Legal it may be but not a good example.

kittylester Mon 06-Nov-17 07:43:07

It might not be illegal but there is a big question around morality. It is plain greed from people who have enough as it is.

gillybob Mon 06-Nov-17 07:53:20

Exactly kittylester .

morethan2 Mon 06-Nov-17 08:02:13

Snouts and troughs come to mind. What ever their excuses it’s immoral. I’m just listening to the queen being defending because it’s not her fault it’s her advisors. Don’t make me laugh or insult my intelligence (what bit I’ve got) She strikes me as a very astute women. There’s no way she wouldn’t know were her money was invested. Much better to stand up and admit it. Lies and excuses will just compound the situation. Honestly who can we trust and respect. The list is getting smaller. Power and wealth corrupts.

ginny Mon 06-Nov-17 08:14:42

I agree with morethan2. Of course they all know where their money is invested, including the queen.

whitewave Mon 06-Nov-17 08:36:30

The irony about this for me, apart from the morality is, that those with most can ensure they have more, whereas those with least are having even more taken away from them, to support those with most.

Therein lies the foundation for civil unrest.

Newquay Mon 06-Nov-17 08:41:23

I agree it's absolutely shameful-that unpaid tax would make such a difference to our nation's income and, presumably, "austerity" wouldn't be needed.
DH all his life loves sport, played when he could for years. Has supported a local football club since a lad. It makes me so cross to think, these days, football has little to do with the sport but these greedy types just making money out of fans. Stanley Mathews was paid a pittance. IMHO all footballers should return to a "normal" wage (personally I've pay them minimum wage!) and return ticket prices to what ordinary fans can pay.

maryeliza54 Mon 06-Nov-17 09:08:36

‘Lord’ Ashcroft has been known about for years - his title is a disgraceful joke. As for the queen, she should be investing in the UK and be wise enough to have laid down rules years ago about ethical investment strategies to her financial advisers. Investing in Bright House? You should be ashamed of yourself ER. Your position is justified in terms of your wisdom and leadership - show some and tell us you are going to have all your investment decisions reviewed by an ethical investment company.

annsixty Mon 06-Nov-17 09:18:03

Brighthouse charges up to 90% interest to its customers who never actually own it's products but seem to rent them.
Anyone even remotely involved should be brought to account, but that is small beer compared to some of the off shore companies and their methods.
I was brought up with a saying "much wants more" never truer than than the companies and individuals in this report.

maryeliza54 Mon 06-Nov-17 10:19:03

Bright house is owned by one of the offshore companies ER invests in. Without the leaks no one ever knows who invests in what and which companies are owned by which companies which are owned by which companies ad infinitum. Apart from the various shady tax deals such arrangements hide, money laundering on a vast scale is facilitated by these arrangements and the money of dictators, terroists, gun runners, drug dealers etc hidden from view. IMO I think all that is much worse than the tax cheating. Anyone who plays ‘little innocent’ with their participation in off shore funds should know damn well what these funds are also if not primarily about.

radicalnan Mon 06-Nov-17 10:27:49

The rich are rich, not because they work harder or know more but because their ancestors were more violent and they don't care how they get money.

Once you get your head around that, you can either live with yourself more easily or start making real money.

maryeliza54 Mon 06-Nov-17 10:41:35

And the rich are in positions of power (in a whole variety of nefarious ways) to make sure that laws protect their interests.

GrannyParker Mon 06-Nov-17 10:43:44

Oh for someone in Westminster who would promise to drain the swamp. The greed, self interest and abuse of public money is appalling, not to mention the sleazy behaviour.

These tax dodges are legal, and no party seems willing to close the loopholes because they and their friends take full advantage.

maryeliza54 Mon 06-Nov-17 10:48:25

Hummmm- promises to drain the swamp don’t have a good track record do they?

Could you imagine though if ER took a lead%? That would be a powerful message - a promise to only invest in the UK and only in ethical companies?

? you could say I’m a dreamer.....??

gillybob Mon 06-Nov-17 10:53:57

......and we are supposed to look up to the royal family? I don't think so. The queen is so bleedin' rich and yet she still needs to play dirty.

Many ordinary people of this country ,work damned hard and they have no choice but to pay their FULL tax, often with nothing left to "invest" anywhere.

Shame on her.

JaneD3 Mon 06-Nov-17 10:54:03

Although the Queen's fund managers invest off shore, she declares her income and pays the tax equivalent amount. I think that is fair,

gillybob Mon 06-Nov-17 10:54:53

She should be shamed into taking the lead maryeliza54 if she has any shame that is.

MaizieD Mon 06-Nov-17 11:02:07

radicalnan They are also rich because they use their wealth to continually lobby governments to influence policy to their benefit.

'Ordinary' voters who cast their votes in a General Election and then sit back and let politicians get on with 'running the country' have absolutely no idea of how hard rich people work to protect their wealth and accumulate more (well, not exactly, they pay other people to do it for them) and how they use their money to influence policy.

For example, many 'think tanks' are funded by wealthy donors looking to produce 'reports' which support their aims; nothing like an authoritative looking report to impress MPs and Ministers.

And wealthy people have access to decision makers. Look at Legatum, a so called 'think tank' which is pressing government hard for a 'hard Brexit'. Why? Because their stated position is 'disaster capitalism', they swoop in when a country is in economic crisis and buy up undervalued assets (including previously state provided services) and make a killing. They are rubbing their hands with glee at the potential opportunities for them if we go for a no deal or 'hard' Brexit and the economy goes belly up. The NHS, Education, etc, all there for the taking because the state won't be able to afford to run them any more. And we hear of them having lovely weekends with the chancellor at Chevenings! Jeez! What 'ordinary citizen' gets that sort of privileged access to a very top member of the government?

There is lots more of this sort of thing around. Very easy to find... and very scary...

MaizieD Mon 06-Nov-17 11:03:47

Oh, FGS; lay off the Queen. She's small beer and doesn't try to use her wealth to influence policy.

gillybob Mon 06-Nov-17 11:09:05

No I won't "lay off the queen" *MazieD !

We (as her loyal subjects) supposed to look up to her. She should know better.

Blinko Mon 06-Nov-17 11:10:08

Generally speaking, it seems to me that the super rich are not interested in morality. Remember Sir Philip Green, anyone? Some of them simply have no concept of it. They are so intent on preserving their assets that morality doesn't enter into it. The sooner we recognise that, the better.

As I recall several years ago, I think the same reporter did a similar programme re Lord Ashcroft and also D. Cameron's father and others. I wonder what came of those 'disclosures'?

I do agree re HM. She probably wouldn't have any personal knowledge of how her assets are invested, anyway.

sunseeker Mon 06-Nov-17 11:12:10

Why is everyone attacking the Queen, do you really think she sits pouring over the Financial Times and ringing her brokers telling them which companies to invest in. Instead how about saving some venom for the virtue signaller Bono and others of his ilk who like to tell us what we should be doing and thinking all the while salting money away off shore.