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How Britain could pay for its public services

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Black Baron

As is often the case, what may be economically prudent is politically poisonous. My understanding of the increase in income tax from 40% to 50% by the Labour Party in 2010 raised little if any revenue (probably a negative given economic growth and inflation) but the cut from 50% to 45% raised about £9 billion p.a, so it's not raising the tax rate that is the answer but matching the tax rate to get the maximum tax take (OECD would suggest this is a 44% rate).
But never mind the facts when you can have ideology instead (not unique to anyone of course).
CGT is levied on sales of shares once a certain level of capital gains has been reached, should be the same for property (including first property).
But we can't have that because it's for others to pay the bills and for us to reap the benefits.
So why does these situation occur? Like most of these it's because that's what the people ultimately want. Lord only know what would happen if we ever had direct democracy (Californian politics probably).
And the adults in the room as always are nowhere to be seen.

California Man

Wait, wait, wait. Are we reading "The Socialist" or "The Economist?
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Basic gist of the article - let's find new ways to tax the rich and offer more benefits to people who haven't earned them.
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I really miss Maggie Thatcher!

DeeGee51

Does the idea of wealth tax explain the enthusiasm for shifting services like policing, education and integrated care to Local Authorities whose income is derived from property valuations? So the wealth tax creeps in as a stealth tax - shift under-resourced and cut-back services to LAs and let them divide and conquer the electorate who might nationally manage to evict any party that imposed this sort of tax directly.

Kremilek2

I guess that since the time of Labor is approaching the wealthy can look forward to more progressive income taxes and additional taxed on wealth. So even though TE gives reasonable arguments the reality will be probably different.

Wamboin

The problem about a wealth tax on houses, is that if they are retired, people may not have the income to pay it. It is not clear that it is good policy to force people to sell up their homes and move, in order to meet such taxation. Better to institute a comprehensive but progressive estate tax, which runs from, say, 10% to 30%, and to which, other than between spouses or partners, there are no exemptions.

ashbird

Re taxing homeowners, poisonous (in last paragraph of article) or nutritious politically, it does pull closer the wide disparity between folks who live in veritable castles and folks who sleep rough on the streets. NHS is subsisting on so little to serve so many. It makes no sense that doctors and nurses are working 12+ hour shifts. Eventually, chronic exhaustion will become humanly unsustainable. When that happens, errors happen. There is an outer limit beyond which the human machine breaks down. That breakdown is more "poisonous" than anything else. So call it whatever nasty name (such as "socialism", "communism", "Pope Francis-ism") , what is real is what is real. You can't change what is real by re-labeling it.