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Sean Murricane
Social Media Manager :: Dad :: Blogger :: Lapsed LeedsIndieRadio presenter :: Musician :: Own views, obviously.
Social Media Manager :: Dad :: Blogger :: Lapsed LeedsIndieRadio presenter :: Musician :: Own views, obviously.

Sean's posts

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A difficult but fairly important read.

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I wrote something else, this time about Social Media. 

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I wrote a thing about the controversy around Live and Unsigned :)

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One thing I hear on FB fairly often is the complaint that paying tax is just putting money into benefit cheats' pockets (and hence avoiding tax is OK, because it's just paying for freeloaders anyway). My gut feeling was that this is an unfair complaint, and that dodging tax is actually worse for the country. So I ran some numbers.

For 2011, that's the most recent year with full figures available [1].

Total public spending: £691bn
Of which Welfare: £110bn (15% of total) [2]
Of Welfare:
Unemployment: £6bn (0.8% of total)
Social Exclusion[3]: £25bn (3% of total)

Individual tax avoidance is estimated to have cost the country £13bn in 2010 [4] (I couldn't easily find any more up to date figures than that, but it's likely to be higher for 2011 anyway)

So, lets assume that 1/4 of benefit claimants are fraudulent [5]. That means £7.5bn of Welfare money was spent on freeloaders.

If you're a taxpayer, that means less than 1% of your tax money went to benefit cheats.

But, 2% of your tax was making up for the tax money not being paid by other individuals.

So dodging tax is twice as bad for the honest man's pocket as scamming benefits.



[2] Bear in mind the remaining non-Welfare portion of tax goes on health, education, pensions, defence, transport, agriculture and so on. If someone disagrees with state funding for those kind of things, I think they should probably find another country to live in.

[3] This includes things like incapacity benefit, disability benefits, help for recoving addicts, victims of crime, homeless, refugees (note that refugees are not the same as illegal immigrants or working migrants, neither of whom are eligible for state assistance) etc. A lot of those things are pretty hard to fake, or more trouble than they're worth..

[4] (figures from HMRC originally)

[5] Solid figures on benefit fraud are (obviously) very hard to find - in the last few minutes I've seen between 0.3% and 30%. No two sites even vaguely agree, so I picked 25%, which is still very much towards the high end of estimates. I think my point is still made.

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OK Go keep up their excellent tradition of making much better videos than their music.

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My new year's resolution is to listen to a whole lot more music!

Hello there - bloody G+ has made me start again so I can sign up properly with my real email address. So. Hello square one, it's nice to see you again.
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