Sunday, 17 February 2008

Certainly fair vs. possibly damaged

Alistair Darling almost did a sensible thing, then he lost his nerve. The UK's current treatment of non-dom taxation is embarrassingly regressive and can hardly assist the fight against money laundering. More than that, though, it is simply unjust. People living and working in England should pay for the facilities and services they enjoy. For them to be essentially exempt from tax is certainly unfair. The other side of the argument is that if they were taxed, some of them might leave. But so far all we have is threats and the usual partisan lobbying from the likes of the CBI. Neither Alistair Darling no anyone else knows who would leave or what the impact of their departure would be (although Willem Buiter has a guess). Yet in the face of nothing more than some predictable finger wagging, Darling has given in. Where can I vote for a politician with some guts please? Or at least one who gets some stronger evidence than hearsay before making a decision.

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