Skip to main content

Many have tried and failed in Dragons Den: George Osborne is one of them.


From April next year those earning more than £1 million per year  will on average benefit by £107,000.   So, how has this become possible in an age of austerity? How is it that the most wealthy should be considered free from the impact of austerity? Clearly we are not all in this together.

As I argued in a previous post, we reward certain types of success more than others.  We tend to equate the accumulation of individual wealth with success. How much we admire the wealthy entrepreneur; they create jobs and growth in the economy and thus we all benefit from their success. Thus, the argument runs, taxing them puts this at risk. They may take their investments and entrepreneurial skill elsewhere. This provides them with a wedge against taxation; a kind of ransom.  Tax us and face the consequences.

And so we have ended up with a kind of 'opt in' strategy dependent on their beneficence. But need this be so? Certainly not all successful, wealthy entrepreneurs feel this way about tax. 

I wondered how Osborne would fare in the Dragon's Den. Would they invest in him or would they say 'I'm out!'   Here is the verdict. 

Deborah Meaden:  

When asked about tax in an interview for the New Statesman last year, Dragons' Den's Deborah Meaden replied:  "I have no problem paying taxes. It doesn't bother me, because I want to live in a society that's happy. My worry is [governments] don't spend the money correctly."

How refreshing this is. I can imagine her 'drilling down the figures' with the Chancellor!  (I'm out).  But what of other Dragons?

Duncan Bannatyne:

No doubt most of us recall the mega bust up between Duncan Bannatyne and James Kahn over the latter's non domicile residence and tax avoidance. Duncan Bannatyne reinforced his position on paying taxes telling Business Matters

"As I pay UK tax on all of the earnings that fund my lifestyle, and corporation tax on all of the profits made by my businesses which employ 3421 people, I am clearly at an unfair disadvantage if someone enters my business sector with a non-dom management structure as they will be operating from a far lower cost base."

Sorting out tax avoidance should be a priority for the government in supporting those like Duncan Bannatyne  investing in growth in the UK. (I'm out!)

Peter Jones:

And what of Dragon Peter Jones?  Speaking last year about the cut in top rate tax from 50p to 45p he said:

"As a high-rate tax payer, I'm disappointed. I would have like to have seen that 5p go to support young people in this country." Furthermore he said other high earners feel the same.   (I'm out!)

So what about Theo Paphitis?  Any joy for Osborne here? 

He told the Daily Mirror: "It's easy to cut costs, any halfwit can do that. But they've not stimulated the economy, or jobs, or growth." (I'm out!)

Of course I can't speak for the Dragons. But would Osborne succeed in the Den? I'll leave the verdict to Theo Paphitis:

"If George did a pitch to me, I think he'd probably fail."

Many have tried and failed in the Den: George Osborne is one of them. 




  

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Ian Duncan-Smith says he wants to make those on benefits 'better people'!

By any account, the government's austerity strategy is utilitarian. It justifies its approach by the presumed potential ends. It's objective is to cut the deficit, but it has also adopted another objective which is specifically targeted. It seeks to drive people off benefits and 'back to work'.  The two together are toxic to the poorest in society. Those least able to cope are the most affected by the cuts in benefits and the loss of services. It is the coupling of these two strategic aims that make their policies ethically questionable. For, by combining the two, slashing the value of benefits to make budget savings while also changing the benefits system, the highest burden falls on a specific group, those dependent on benefits. For the greater good of the majority, a minority group, those on benefits, are being sacrificed; sacrificed on the altar of austerity. And they are being sacrificed in part so that others may be spared. Utilitarian ethics considers the ba

The lion and the wildebeest

Birds flock, fish school, bees swarm, but social being is more than simply sticking together.  Social groups enable specialisation and a sharing of abilities, and enhances ability, learning and creating new tricks. The more a group works together, the more effective they become as a team.  Chimpanzees learn from each other how to use stones to crack nuts, or sticks to get termites.  All around us we see cooperation and learning in nature.  Nature is inherently creative.  Pulling together becomes a rallying cry during a crisis.  We have heard it throughout the coronavirus pandemic.  "We are all in this together", a mantra that encourages people to adopt a common strategy. In an era of 'self-interest' and 'survival of the fittest,'  and 'selfish gene', we lose sight of the obvious conclusion from the evidence all around us.   Sticking together is more often the better approach.  This is valid for the lion as it is also for the wildebeest.   We don't

No evidence for vaccine link with autism

Public health bodies are worried that an alarming drop in childhood vaccinations is leading to a resurgence of diseases in childhood that we had all but eradicated.  Misinformation and scare stories about the harmful effects of vaccines abound on the internet and in social media.  Where they are based on 'science', it is highly selective, and often reliance is placed on falsehoods.  Conspiracy theories also abound - cover-ups, deception, lies. As a result, too many parents are shunning vaccinations for their children.  So, what does the published, peer-reviewed literature tell us about vaccincations? Are they safe and effective, or are there long term harmful effects?  A new report now provides some of the answers. New evidence published in the Cochrane Library today finds MMR, MMRV, and MMR+V vaccines are effective and that they are not associated with increased risk of autism. Measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella (also known as chickenpox) are infectious diseases cau