Thursday, 13 June 2013


Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. In the long bitter war between haves and have-nots which has slashed real Wages by at least 25% and equivalently up-valued Capital; today is a day to mark. The news from the UK today is perhaps a watershed, a line in the sand, a turning point, a battle won, perhaps even a victory; and it revolves around two remarkable women.

Yasmin Prest, risking legal costs of $4 million in fighting a UK divorce case, has won a Supreme Court ruling that several houses and other assets that her oil trader husband "transferred" to Petrodel Resources Ltd. a sham Isle of Man tax-haven company, to diminish his apparent wealth, are in fact owned by him - not by the sham company. The stakes are high - this ruling brings her an extra $22 million in the settlement. So we can assume that the "transfers" of ownership via London, made by her Nigerian born husband (so complex Residency and Tax-Status rules may be involved - giving top lawyers and tax-planners plenty of wiggle room) were carefully planned to "comply with all the laws of the UK". But the Supreme Court has judged the transactions to be sham and has set them aside. You and I, and the "ordinary man on the Clapham omnibus" might have seen through the ruse in 5 minutes of leaning on the bar at the Admiral Nelson pub in Wapping, and wondered why it has taken lawyers years to see the light and apply "common sense". It could be that we peasants are too simple, too lowly, too dumb to understand The Majesty of the Law and the lofty machinations of High Finance.

Lady Margaret Hodge MP, Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, on our behalf, has today announced that Google, as an example of a major multinational earning billions of dollars a year  from UK customers, must be "comprehensively investigated" - as contrasted with yet another gentle and caring "sweetheart" deal - by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs, HMRC, which is the UK equivalent to America's IRS. They must be investigated because Google's tax-planners have failed to convince Lady Hodge's committee that all Google's UK sales contracts are made in non-UK tax-haven Ireland. BBC radio news programmes this morning "grilled" or politely and lightly toasted a senior HMRC investigator about the non-investigation of major company tax-cheating, subsequent refutation and denial of their imaginative "transfers" to tax-haven companies over the past 35 years, and thus the non-charging and non-collection of billions and billions of tax.

14 JUNE 2013 Report from Lady Hodge's investigation into Google's UK tax.

The HMRC's cheerfully untrammeled spokesman, stepping into the public shoes of the disgraced ex-head of HMRC, Dave Sweetheart Deals Hartnett, who has just joined his old pals at Deloittes, who audited Vodafone, who Dave let off about $6 billion in tax in a handshake deal; defended Hartnett and HMRC's investigations and back-tax collection record, throwing around figures like $30 billion (one hundred thousand jobs) collected in the past 3 years. The BBC pointed out that the official non-collected tax-gap remains at about $40 billion  a year - $400 billion (one million jobs) since 2002. 

Both the BBC and HMRC (and HM Treasury) persistently understate the amount collectible via possible back-duty cases, by a factor of up to 1,000 times. It seems to me that these offices and department are infested with committed tax-planners, lawyers and accountants - who potentially face severe commercial and maybe criminal penalties if their schemes for clients retrospectively unravel. The amount gouged from the UK High Street to tax-havens since 1980 is about $3 to $4 trillion (seven million jobs). The USA has lost about $16 trillion (twenty-eight million jobs). Proper collection of these back taxes will refuel the entire global economy - and start the next, hugely wealthy, economic era. The new era should start with global laws to pay people a living-wage; non-living wages are insane economics and an intolerable burden on our tax-dollars and business markets. 

What the divorcee Mrs Prest has proved, to the satisfaction of the Supreme Court, is what we all know. The transactions that gouge vast amounts of tax-evasion-capital-flight from our nations to tax-havens are sham. They are false accounting, many are fraudulent conspiracies - all can be retrospectively denied the tax relief previously granted - since 1980 - we can repatriate up to $32 trillion and The World can be replenished to get on with its business. Now that we know that thanks to PRISM the NSA and GCHQ and China and Russia and the EU all know where the tax-cheat's tax-haven assets are - back-tax cases should be quick and easy to prosecute. PRISM - "THEY" DO KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE What are we waiting for?

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