Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance

Following a successful weekend of demonstrations, the Daily Mail has joined the UK Uncut tax avoidance campaign. Alex Brummer writes today about the "exploitation of rules" by corporations.

Following a successful weekend of demonstrations against tax dodging, an unlikely source has joined the campaign against tax avoidance. The Daily Mail’s City Editor, Alex Brummer, writes today about the “exploitation of rules” by companies that lower their tax liabilities. It shows that the insurgent tax avoidance campaign can unite both right and left.

A weekend of action in 23 different towns and cities by UK Uncut resulted in the closure of several shops including Top Shop’s flagship Oxford Street store. The UK Uncut website reports:

“On Oxford Street, London, a sit-in forced the five-storey flagship Topshop store to close, before protesters moved onto close BHS, Vodafone, Boots, and Dorothy Perkins. In Brighton, 18 activists were arrested following the shut down of a Topshop, where protests super-glued themselves to the window.

“Vodafone and Topshops stores were closed in a further 6 cities – Nottingham, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, Oxford Newcastle – with protests occuring in an additional 13 locations – Southampton,  Stroud, Portsmouth, Lewisham, Reading, Wood Green, York, Liecester, Liverpool, Bristol, Glasgow, Cambridge and  Edinburgh.”

City AM outlines this morning that Cadbury may be the next target for the protesters. UK Uncut find an unlikely ally in the form of the Daily Mail who cover Saturday’s protest in graphic detail. City Editor Alex Brummer draws attention to the group and highlights question marks over the tax residency plans of Kraft (which owns Cadbury) and the tax affairs of Sir Philip Green who owns Topshop. In an article titled ‘This plunder of our heritage‘, Brummer writes:

“Tax avoidance (organised by expensive teams of accountants) is perfectly legal. Yet it comes at the expense of millions of hard-working people who are not in a position to exploit such loopholes and have to bear the brunt of subsequent cuts in public services and increases in their own taxes…

“it is outrageous that the Government has failed to ensure big business shares the load, and has not demanded assurances from foreign buyers of major British firms (such as Kraft) about their future tax residency plans.

I”n the absence of proper official scrutiny of such important issues, a new pressure group called UK Uncut is campaigning against those companies it claims are escaping their tax liability to the Government. In its sights are conglomerates such as Kraft and Arcadia Group (which includes Topshop and BhS), owned by retail tycoon Sir Philip Green. What these protesters find particularly offensive is the fact that Green was chosen by David Cameron to help advise how the government machine could reduce expenditure.

You can follow the UK Uncut campaign on facebook and twitter.

31 Responses to “Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance”

  1. John Turner

    RT @leftfootfwd: Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  2. vi__sa

    Hmm..perhaps the next target of these protesters (and Polly Toynbee) should be the offices of the Guardian? Pray, do tell us how much the owners of the Guardian are paying in tax? People and organisations of the Left prefer to preach but not practise..

  3. Accountkeeper®

    Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance – Left Foot Forward //bit.ly/e39sXc

  4. Will Straw

    The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  5. Bryan

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  6. Don Paskini

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  7. Matthew Taylor (MTPT)

    Let’s not forget that DMGT was one of the first companies to try to go off-shore, and to this day it’s a case on the undergraduate European Law course (Freedom of Establishment). His employer’s affairs aside, Brunner’s playing a dangerous game – there are few (if any) major companies which don’t engage in “tax planning”, and he’s not going to be particularly popular if he starts feeding the opposition to this.

    (Let’s be charitable and assume that anyone takes the Daily Mail’s business coverage seriously)

  8. Jonathan Tench

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  9. Andy S

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  10. Tax The Fat Cats

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  11. Gordon S Wilson

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  12. Keyboard Warrior

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  13. Cheryl Baker

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  14. Bill Hicks

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  15. John Hayes

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  16. Deborah Segalini

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  17. Anon E Mouse

    Will – I have to say I agree with Tom Watson on this pathetic campaign. These people need to grow up and start targeting the government who allow these tax wheezes to continue.

    The boss of Topshop pays millions in taxes and employs numerous people who do not need to have their working day disrupted by these stupid middle class prats – especially when he is doing nothing wrong.

    Out of interest why didn’t you mention The Guardian Will?

    Anyway I thought you were off somewhere else fella and handing the baton on…

  18. William Cass

    never did i think the #dailymail would become progressive. Nor is it but show non doms unites the left //tinyurl.com/28z35x7

  19. Hash

    RT @wdjstraw: The #UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance could really heat up since it unites left and right together //bit.ly/gf5KQ4

  20. Phil Taylor

    Will,

    Tom Harris totally skewered Neal Lawson of Compass this morning on the Today programme.

    Maybe Neal Lawson wants to put some detailed financial reporting up on the Compass website so that people can scrutinise him a bit too?

    Most of the reporting of Arcadia fails to mention that the £1.2 billion transaction in question happened in October 2005. Arcadia has not paid a dividend since. Apparently it has taken 5 years for the left to wake up and protest. Could it be that they could only stir themselves to protest when Labour is out of power?

    As your previous commenter notes both you and Lawson were quiet on Scott Trust/GMG’s epic tax avoidance. Tom Watson seemed able to mention it.

    It is always the ends justify the means with the left, don’t expect us to be even handed or reasonable. Congratulations to Watson, too much of an exception in left circles I am afraid.

  21. Tweetminster

    "Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance" //bit.ly/gJL77x – Left Foot Forward

  22. Cheryl Baker

    RT @tweetminster: "Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance" //bit.ly/gJL77x – Left Foot Forward

  23. Jacob Richardson

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  24. noel doyle

    RT @leftfootfwd: @UKUncut Daily Mail echoes @UKUncut campaign against tax avoidance //bit.ly/gf5KQ4 Can you RT?

  25. Bernie Russell

    RT @tweetminster: Mail echoes UK Uncut #moremoneytothestate campaign //bit.ly/gJL77x <#taxrats to right of us, #taxrats to left of us..

  26. Francis Chin

    Ignorunts unite! RT @tweetminster "Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance" //bit.ly/gJL77x – Left Foot Forward

  27. Mr. Sensible

    Well there you go…

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  29. Temden

    If individuals or organisations are able to avoid paying so much tax whilst not breaking the law they are doing nothing wrong. I think it’s disgraceful behaviour that some Ukuncut protesters have show by carrying out acts of criminal damage. They are the unlawful ones.

  30. Frank Terry

    Everyday people pay the the tax due to them irrespective of how much they earn and the same principle must apply to the super elite corporate rich. It is grossly mistaken of those commenters quoted here to bleat about how PG is undeserving of criticism. He has avoided such a monumental amount of tax. Those of us who do pay our dues are justified in our pursuit of equity with PG and the many others who dodge their responsibilities. Go to Arcadia and buy and buy and buy AND then return to store and return and return and return and return again in your thousands over the christmas hols. No law is being broken rather than the breaching of good citizenship. But no law is being broken as PG and his apologists also claim. We pay he pay too, no?

  31. The new politics of protest | Left Foot Forward

    […] Daily Mail echoes UK Uncut campaign against tax avoidance – Will Straw, December 6th […]

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