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commentary

A look through the loophole

According to the National Audit Office of the largest 700 businesses, “fifty businesses (seven per cent) contributed 67 per cent of the total Corporation Tax raised in 2005-06…a reflection of the small number of very large businesses within the Large Business Service. Around 220 businesses paid no Corporation Tax in 2005-06 and a further 210 businesses each paid less than £10 million.” (p10)

However this will not be a spur to collect more tax by the Inland Revenue, because it is all perfectly legal (as I explain in Corporate Truth).

The root of the problem is the way the UK tax system avoids (or should that be evades) matching tax liability to the place where economic value is added.  So – did those 220 businesses really contribute nothing to the UK economy?

OK.  But does it matter?  Well, only if you like the idea of a free market system…

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commentary

Seeing justice done – a NICE decision

A court has decided to uphold NICE’s analysis of the non-cost-effectiveness of four drugs for the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.  There are issues about whether this is the correct judgment and whether the analysis takes a wide enough account of social and other non-commercial costs.

But there is also an issue about transparency.  Two in fact.  NICE will not reveal the detail of its calculations and methodology in reaching its decision.  And because of the lack of transparency of the legal process itself, it is not yet clear whether the court actually examined the details either!

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commentary

What on earth is right?

Stephan Harding’s article on the lack of rights of the other than human world makes a vital point. Our legal system is complicit in the destruction of the environment. Sadly, however he is wrong in one respect: it is not only humans that have ‘human rights’. Corportions also enjoy such protection – and often at the expense of the earth.