Thursday, September 15, 2011

They don’t like it up ’em

Property rich? Watch out! The mansion tax is coming

A veritable feast of Homey special pleading, they don't just play the "Poor Widow Bogey", they play the "Poor High Earner Who Bought Last Year Bogey". This is how contorted their logic is. The high earner will be delighted if they get rid of the 50p top rate, he'll save far more from that tax being scrapped (and rightly so IHMBO) than he'll ever pay extra in Mansion Tax. And they insist on describing land values as "wealth", it's not "wealth" any more than the entitlement of poor people to welfare is "wealth". Neither land rental values nor a welfare entitlement is "wealth", they are "entitlements", which can only exist if others are paying in or being made poorer somehow (via tax system or via land market or both).

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 12:19 PM (1318 views)
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8 thoughts on “They don’t like it up ’em

  • sibley's b'stard child says:

    I really don’t see what the problem is with the proposed ‘mansion tax’. I must say, if I were living in a semi-detached at Band H paying the same as the fella in the Mcmansion down the road i’d be mightily peeved.

    What I don’t ‘get’ (and perhaps you know this MW) is why when the council tax bands were devised they stopped at H anyway? A sop to the swinging d*cks?

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  • “A sop to the swinging d*cks?”

    Correct. Council Tax is a poll tax dressed up as a tax on housing values, and becomes more so every year. The poor overpay and the people in big houses are barely affected.

    The stupid thing is that SDLT and IHT are exactly the opposite. The rich people overpay and people in small houses are unaffected.

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  • “People hate been taxed on property. It feels intrusive, nosey, nasty.” As one of the other posts argued this week, a visible and hated tax is a good tax because it forces politicians to spend it more carefully. If a tax is invisible and not noticed much like VAT embedded in the price or employers removed at source taxes on the money an employer would otherwise pay you, then politicians only care about how much they spend because free goodies are certainly noticed!

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  • OTOH, i did a fun online poll on my right wing libertarian blog on the very topic, and it was broadly agreed that in-your-face taxes were preferable to stealth taxes for that very reason. While people agree in principle, it’s funny how they chicken out when people tell them what that means in real life.

    Frankly, people are so dense it is not true.

    If you suggested increasing council tax by a tenth and cutting VAT by half, people would jump down your throat with rage, despite the fact that a one tenth council tax hike = £2 bn extra tax and cutting VAT in half is a £50 bn tax cut. That’s how misinformed people are.

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  • MW, I love the whole madness of what has VAT charged on it and what doesn’t. Our ignorance of this just proves it is a stealth tax. VAT on?
    Gingerbread man with chocolate eyes? Nuts in their shell? Electricty vs. water to the home? Children’s car seats vs. puschairs?

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  • OTOH, at a wild guess, gingerbread man yes, nuts in shells yes, water no, electricity yes, car seats no, push chairs yes.

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  • sibley's b'stard child says:

    It’s funny MW, gauging by the general antipathy in the comments section you’d think they all own mansions themselves. I do wonder, instead, if it’s more a general railing against ‘theft by the state’.

    It reminds me of a QT election special in Washington last year where the topic on discussion was Obama’s plan to tax the top 5% of earners to fund (I think) his healthcare reforms. The antipathy of the US audience – nay rage – was palpable.

    A British historian boffin on the panel (I forget his name) was eternally bemused and quite logically tried to argue that very few – if any – in the audience would be effected by this. It’s funny really when you think about it.

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  • SBC, the whole thing puzzles me as well, I suppose it is because we have had it drummed deep into us that people in nice houses are our elders and betters and are above the laws as apply to the rest of us.

    That’s why landlords of old had a policy of executing trespassers, to simply remove any sort of proto-Georgist instinct from the population at large, our Home-Owner-Ist minds are actually wired differently than in Anglo-Saxon times and pre-Enclosures when it was accepted that there is common land and everybody from the village does his farming there, when you reach adulthood you get allocated a strip and when you die it gets allocated to somebody else. Nobody could sell or rent his strip to anybody else because the common land belonged to the ‘community’ and if you decided to move elsewhere you just forfeit it. So in a modern sense, no individual ‘owned’ land, but actually, everybody was a landowner from birth and there was no way you could lose your entitlement (short of being a wanted criminal).

    It was like the right to vote nowadays, it’s worth something to you but you can’t buy or sell it and when you die it lapses.

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