THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
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It's not us. It's you

The Melting Pot Project: Worst. Reporter. Ever.

In a proper democracy, the people will be heard. Perhaps the worst political mistake Britain ever made was to break the connection between people and their taxes by inventing "Pay as you Earn." This is a system under which employers become unpaid tax collectors and employees never see the money they work for, to give to government. In America, you fill out your forms and you file them - everyone on the same day. Then you get a bill and pay it. Just like any other bill you pay, that makes you think about what value you got for your money.

It's the same deal in Russia, by the way. My form is being readied for signature right now, and I shall soon have to make a bank transfer to the Russian government for 2008's taxes. Although I am a (heavily) paying guest, I am a guest, so I will not comment on the Russian government's performance, save to say they give me better value for money than Gordon Brown.

The liberal media in the States have been rubbishing the American people as they took to the streets in their thousands to protest the way in which two Presidents, in just 6 months, have indebted America's grandchildren yet unborn to bail out big business. Just watch the clip in the linked post of a CNN "reporter" sneering at an interviewee. it makes the Bolshevik Broadcasting Corporation seem subtle by comparison.

But then watch this clip of Glenn Beck, doing what I love best about Americans; telling it like it is.

Who will speak for Brown-indebted unborn Britons, as Mr Beck spoke - plainly, yet eloquently in the tradition if not the style of Thomas Paine - for their American cousins-to-be?

[This, by the way, was my 1,000th post since The Last Ditch moved to Typepad in September of 2006. Those posts were preceded by more than 500 others at the original Blogspot site, which ran for 18 months and still stands as an archive. My thanks, at this small personal milestone, to the small band of readers who have read and, particularly, those who have commented on all those spilled pixels. Thank you for the free therapy. Oh, and Mrs P. thanks you for being an alternative audience for my ranting!]


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Your RSS seems to be way behind so I just got to this.

Congratulations on your 1000th post (here), long may it continue.


Congratulations TP, that is a lot of words and effort spent in trying to keep "them" honest. Too bad it hasn't worked.

EA Blair

A slight correction: We Americans actually invented the "Pay as you Earn" scheme - it was the doing of Milton Friedman during WWII. Our taxes are withheld from our paychecks, and we settle up the difference by the deadline on tax day, April 15. Most Americans over-withhold so they can file for a "refund" on tax day, essentially making a no-interest loan to Uncle Sam. Those who under-withhold may face penalties, even if they pay the due amount by April 15th. As you are no doubt aware, the vast majority of the populace couldn't tell you precisely how much they pay in taxes, since they never see the money anyway.


Perhaps the worst political mistake Britain ever made was to break the connection between people and their taxes by inventing "Pay as you Earn."

You're firing on all cylinders just now.


Another milestone. Congratulations

Rob F

'Raaaay, congratulations!

I've been to the US three times now, and I still have to get used to the way they do things over there...I'd be in a store with the exact change for my purchases, totally forgetting that they add the tax afterwards, rather than including it in the price stated on the price tag.

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