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Dedicated to the taxpayers of Britain, and the employees of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC), who have to endure the monumental shambles that is HMRC.
Friday, 5 February 2010
Hartnett Places HMRC Above The Law
Fresh from his junket to Washington, Dave Hartnett continues to believe that he bestrides the world like a colossus and that all should tremble before him.
His latest "battle against evil" will, seemingly, be waged against lawyers.
Hartnett is, as we know, fixated on the "evil" people who try to avoid tax (despite the fact that avoidance is not only legal, but logical).
Hartnett is extremely angry that lawyers are offering tax avoidance advice to clients. This advice is protected by legal privilege (ie HMRC can't get their hands on the lawyers' files, as they now can do with accountants).
Hartnett wants legal privilege to be overturned when it comes to HMRC. In other words, he wants to place HMRC above the law!
Quite an ambitious little civil servant isn't he?
Beware little men with big ambitions.
Why such evangelical zeal from a man who has, until the last few years, been absolutely invisible?
The answer is simple, some moons ago Hartnett butt kissed Brown and promised him that all his financial needs could be met if only HMRC were given more power. He gave Gordon a glimpse of a future overflowing with honey, derived from unlimited revenues harvested by HMRC's new powers.
The trouble is Hartnett's promises have not come to fruition. People are not prepared to kowtow and roll over to play dead to the government's desire to milk them dry, and are either leaving the country or ensuring that they pay as little tax as legally possible. Thus Hartnett is left looking rather foolish.
It the last act of a desperate man to try to place himself/his organisation above the law.
Hartnett should remember that legal professional privilege is a fundamental human and democratic right, and a cornerstone in the administration of justice. Tamper with that, and we move one step further forward towards dictatorship.
Hartnett though is more interested in saving his own skin, rather than preserving the rule of law or the rights of the British people.
Tax does have to be taxing.
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