Friday, 20 March 2015

Tax Poetry

In response to the Budget, there was an interesting article from Philip Booth at City A.M on the fraught nature of inheritance tax. One paragraph though seems so obviously misjudged that I have to wonder if I'm misreading it, as Philip Booth is not someone who would normally do this. He says:

"Many countries that have retained an inheritance tax instead tax recipients on their lifetime gifts received rather than taxing people on their assets when they die. Indeed, it is more logical to tax the beneficiary of a gift rather than the donor."

Unless I'm not reading him aright here, this makes no sense to me. He says "It is more logical to tax the beneficiary of a gift rather than the donor", but in the case of inheritance tax it is the beneficiary who picks up the cost, as the donor has already died. So in both of the cases he mentioned, it is the beneficiary who is ultimately being taxed, either on his gift or on his inheritance - there is no distinction as Philip Booth claims.

Never mind, I just wrote my own version of the Tax The Land poem - a sort of remake for the modern age:

Tax his work, tax his pay
Tax him on his holiday.
Tax his shares, tax his stocks,
Tax his pants and tax his socks.
Tax his savings, tax his debt,
Tax him on every cigarette.
Tax his car, tax his home,
Tax his lawn and his garden gnome.
Tax his exercise, tax his rests,
Tax his pay rise and all he invests.
Tax his food, tax his drink,
Tax everything but the kitchen sink.
Tax his mother, tax his wife,
Tax him all throughout his life.
Tax him until he's ninety five,
Tax him until he's no longer alive.
Now he's buried, though, don't yet relax,
You can tax his kids through inheritance tax.

Teach it to your kids - they might be future libertarianism's best hope! :-)