They're not voting because...
- None of the Parties have ever addressed...
None of the Parties have ever addressed the real sources of income for this country - the small business. Businesses in this country are stifled by beaurocracy and taxes, and are regarded as the soft touch by national and local government. Companies are hit by corporation tax, directors (the risk-takers) pay income tax. Local business rates (taxes, really) are levied with nothing in return - no refuse collection unless paid for, no street lighting, no police patrols, etc. etc. The party who declares that the first 40% of net profits earned by small businesses (employing, say, less than 50)remain untaxed would get my vote. If SME's were to enjoy such tax-breaks (and SME's are the major sources of employment in this country), wages would improve: funds would stay in the business, the numbers of those on benefits would fall because employment opportunities would rise, reinvestment in businesses would grow, and government income would similarly increase due to the rise in employment figures and the numbers of taxable incomes. Greater earnings inevitably means greater spending, which would lead to more government income thanks to VAT etc. The "lost" taxes would be more than compensated for by the taxes gained from the increased earnings and spending of the individuals. Don't tax businesses out of business.written 13th Apr 2005
Jeffrey replies: Agree in principle. But in practise taxing SMEs less means taxing employees more or taxing larger businesses more - and both these groups have loud voices. If any party said they would do that, I think they would quickly find that they can't. And I don't trust parties that make promises they can't possibly meet.
I'd be more interested in simplifying the red tape associated with SMEs, without losing any of the tractability. Look at the whole process and simplifing it would be a great help.written 13th Apr 2005
David replies: Jeffrey - I certainly wouldn't advocate taxing employees any more - but greater earnings would offer a pro-rata increase in revenue. Similarly, so would an increase in employment figures. Larger businesses (unfortunately) can afford to employ or engage the services of large accountancy firms, who have the clout to manipulate (did I say that?) - sorry - "massage" (whoops, even worse !!) the end of year figures. Anyway, it's all pretty academic really - there have never been any moves to improve the lot of the small business. I suppose we must rely on the groups who supposedly have a voice - The Federation of Small Businesses, the CBI etc. Incidentally, I belong to neither.written 13th Apr 2005