Mark Wadsworth

This is a spare 'blog in case my main 'blog at isn't working

Killer Arguments Against LVT, Not (145)

It appears that even the Home-Owner-Ists realise that can’t just keep playing the Poor Widow Bogey (or Subsistence Farmer Bogey), so it now appears to be tradition to play the double and contrast them directly with a Hate Figure Du Jour:

Exhibit One:

So a single millionaire in a one bedroom flat will pay less than a family of 5, on average income, in a four bedroom house. Size of property does not automatically indicate an ability to pay higher taxes. Good to see Unison still in the 19th century mindset of social envy.

Exhibit Two

Suppose there are four earners in that £100,000 house, all generating masses of rubbish, using the roads heavily and placing a generally high demand on local services? Then suppose there are two independent-minded retired people in the £1m house (which doesn’t have to be a palace these days) whose call on council services amounts to little more than emptying their kitchen bin once a fortnight.

Exhibit Three (via Mike R):

It would be rather odd if Rupert Murdock could own a 1/4 acre lot like my landlady and both would pay the same in taxes. Murdock’s income shows he in benefiting 100x as much from Society as she does, I would suppose, and should therefore owe Society more.

Exhibit Four:

Try explaining to the electorate that under your new scheme Lakshmi Mittal is tens of millions better off, and Granny is going to lose out. Not going to go down well I suspect.

Exhibit Five:

A couple on £500k living in an apartment would pay little tax as they occupy very little land. A couple on £50k in a house with a decent sized garden – where they could grow vegetables and let the kids kick a ball about – would be heavily taxed. What’s fair about that?
I look forward to seeing other wealthy Hate Figures Du Jour being used as an argument against LVT, I’d like to suggest: love rat Ashley Cole; tax evader Philip Green; bank ‘rupting Sir Fred Goodwin; pint sized Bernie Ecclestone; the conspiracy theorist Mohammed Al Fayed; polluter of children’s minds J K Rowling; telly bore Sir Alan Sugar; Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, Baby P neglecting Sharon Shoesmith etc etc.

You’ll notice of course that these people’s income is largely a result of successful rent-seeking, for example, if Boris Yeltsin had introduced LVT instead of privatising everything, Roman Abramovitch would still just be a senior manager in an ooil company somewhere; of course civil servants like Sharon Shoesmith are vastly overpaid – out of taxpayers’ money; Sir Fred Goodwin and other bankers could only make so much money because the government wanted them to etc etc.


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