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Christopher Snowdon
22 October 2012
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Are the British developing a taste for smuggled booze and moonshine? There was a five-fold increase in the number of seizures of counterfeit alcohol by Trading Standards between 2008/09 and 2010/11...
Philip Booth
17 October 2012
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  At a meeting in the House of Commons yesterday, I was asked to describe the characteristics which should be possessed by the next Governor of the Bank of England. These were my thoughts...
Philip Booth
26 September 2012
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It is difficult to think of a policy that is as ill-conceived on so many levels as the coalition's announcement on Sunday to encourage parents to guarantee their children's mortgages....
Philip Booth
21 September 2012
26 comments

I was surprised to see The Times run a front page, a three page feature and a leader on tax avoidance yesterday. The arguments used by The Times, and the specific examples highlighted were...
Duncan Stoddard
4 September 2012
79 comments

  ‘Buy land, they're not making it anymore.’ - Mark Twain The UK economy is beset by three compounding problems: no growth, a high deficit and a constricting...
Philip Booth
31 August 2012
2 comments

Once again, we hear calls for a wealth tax not just from Nick Clegg and Simon Hughes, but also from Tim Montgomerie. These calls cannot go unchallenged. A wealth tax is a pernicious tax because...
Prerna Aswani
29 August 2012
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Under the Reagan Presidency (1980-1988), income tax was cut across the board and the top rate of income tax reduced from 70% to 28%. The dramatic nature of the change in tax policy makes this a...
Richard Wellings
22 August 2012
4 comments

Relying on growth was always going to be a risky strategy. Yet a healthy recovery, with robust GDP increases of 2%-plus, formed the core of the government’s deficit reduction plan. In this...
Philip Booth
26 July 2012
2 comments

The statisticians will be arguing about the last quarter’s growth figures for years. Was it really a 0.7 per cent fall in national income, a 0.9 per cent fall or a 0.5 per cent fall? If it...
Vuk Vukovic
23 July 2012
2 comments

Europe is once again on the edge of the cliff. Spain is out of money to finance itself and its banks; Greece, even though the pro-bailout coalition was formed, remains Europe’s...
Philip Booth
10 July 2012
7 comments

It is perhaps surprising that senior people in the Catholic Church have been relatively quiet in the recent debate about tax avoidance. But, keeping quiet is probably a good strategy. After all,...
Tom Papworth
25 June 2012
2 comments

The Orange Book's authors made the book what it is. Had it not been for David Laws MP and Paul Marshall, it might have been nothing more than an obscure collection of policy articles...
Len Shackleton
21 June 2012
5 comments

I admit that I’ve never been a fan of Jimmy Carr and am surprised to learn just how much he has apparently been earning for his rather predictable anti-establishment comedy. But if...
Kwasi Kwarteng
31 May 2012
4 comments

Britain currently has two emergency fiscal rules. There is a commitment, roughly speaking, to eliminate the structural deficit and to start shrinking net debt by 2015-6. These short term measures...
Philip Booth
29 May 2012
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In my last blog post I looked at the complexities of the UK tax system. Unfortunately, in order to make it remotely comprehensible, it was greatly simplified. The example taken was a relatively...
Philip Booth
28 May 2012
2 comments

If one were to set out to design a malfunctional tax and benefits system from scratch you would probably end up with what we have in the UK. As such, the Taxpayers’ Alliance new...
Terry Arthur
21 May 2012
1 comment

It is heartening to know that the huge outcry concerning George Osborne’s proposal to reduce tax-relief on charitable giving has been followed by a few brave (and valid) counter-arguments....
Philip Booth
16 May 2012
3 comments

  It might be thought that a succession of ‘tax cutting’ governments from 1979 and a government pledged to reduce inequality from 1997 would have led to a huge increase in the...
Richard Wellings
26 April 2012
4 comments

  Mancur Olson is best known for his 1965 book, The Logic of Collective Action, in which he explained why small, concentrated interest groups are more likely to influence policy than large,...
Ángel Martín Oro
18 April 2012
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  After just four months in office, the new Spanish government faces a very difficult situation. The measures implemented by Mariano Rajoy’s administration have not been as effective...