Unavoidable Cuts Which Will Affect “Our Whole Way of Life”

David Cameron has said the country must prepare itself for painful and unavoidable cuts which will affect “our whole way of life” and the Treasury is to ask for the public’s views on which functions the government should perform and which could be done by other bodies to save money (a “once-in-a-generation” re-examination of the way the government works or, perhaps, an attempt to help deflect criticism once people realise the depths of the cuts).

George Osbourne

George Osborne has said spending cuts will not hit front-line services

The coalition government continues with the propaganda that cuts are unavoidable – the same propaganda started by the  Conservatives, Labour and Liberal Democrats before the election – but are they?

The short answer is “No”!

As alluded to in our post £100 Billion Lost to Tax ‘Flaws and Holes’ there is another way but the coalition government is unwilling, or perhaps does not understand, that cuts are avoidable.

The Great Tax Parachute: How to save the public finances and keep the economy afloat by the Green New Deal Group should be read by every member of the coalition government (not to mention the Labour MPs etc.) and by as much of the public as possible.

The Great Tax Parachute alternative:

“If cuts are not an option, more public funds could be raised by increasing tax revenues, and this must be made the priority for action when the time comes to rebalance the equation, which is, we stress, only when unemployment is falling significantly.  There are four ways to do this.

  • First, the tax that is avoided through loopholes in tax law, could be collected.  This, quite extraordinarily, is the easiest solution to the problem we face.  Tax avoidance – getting round tax law in a way that the Government thinks contravenes the spirit of the law – might cost £25 billion a year at present[iii].
  • Secondly, unpaid tax (or tax bills that have been agreed, but not settled), incredibly, is even more.  In November 2009 the Treasury Select Committee of the UK’s parliament reported that HM Revenue & Customs was sitting on £28 billion of unpaid tax debt[iv].
  • Thirdly, tax evasion is worse still.  A report by Green New Deal member Richard Murphy on behalf of PCS, which represents about 80 per cent of the staff of H M Revenue & Customs, has shown that tax evasion in the UK – that is illegal non-declaration of income on which tax might be due or fraudulent claims for tax relief for which relief is not justified – might cost HMRC £70 billion a year.  The total loss is at least 15 per cent of all tax that should be paid[v].
  • New taxes are also available to address the unfairness in our tax system – whilst taking the lowest out of tax altogether [my emphasis].”

Part of the The Great Tax Parachute report’s conclusion is:

“…it is readily apparent that all the means needed to fund the fiscal deficit without any cuts in public spending in the UK can be found.  In that case we make the simple point now, no politician can say there isn’t a tax raising alternative to cuts.”

Caroline Lucas, the Green Party leader and MP for Brighton Pavilion, has been making the case for this alternative to cuts but surely it is the duty of the other MPs to also make such a case?

David M. Davison


One Comment to “Unavoidable Cuts Which Will Affect “Our Whole Way of Life””

  1. Campaign group WWF will today advise the government that it could slash carbon emissions and save up to £100m by cutting the number of flights taken by civil servants over the next three years:

    David M. Davison

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