TREASURY TAX DODGE
Corporation tax under Labour has now reached an all time low.
When corporation tax falls, guess who the burden falls on
yep, the little people. Minutes of an Inland Revenue
meeting revealed the agency was going soft on multinational tax
returns for fear of driving investment away from the UK. They might
be a bit late - a 1997 report by accountant Deloitte and Touche
put the figure for legal avoidance alone at a staggering £85
billion a year. Thats more than is annually spent on the National
Health Service. A leading accountancy expert, Professor Prem Sikka
reckons that billions are lost by multinationals basing themselves
in tax havens. No one really knows the figures, because the Professor
says the Treasury refused to undertake detailed research to
get accurate estimates. It is dodging the issue.
So, what does Chancellor Gordon Brown do? In his last budget speech,
he promised to deal with tax cheats, and then announced 40,500 jobs
would go at the Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise! The Inland
Revenue has already faced massive redundancies in the nineties which
journalist Nick Davies said had meant governments efforts
to catch tax avoiders had collapsed in a heap of mismanagement
and staff cuts. It avoids rubbing the corporations and the
super-rich up the wrong way by refusing to release its figures on
So while we hear about how the government is trying to crack down
on benefit cheats such as people washing up one night a week
in a restaurant for a few extra quid to supplement their crap dole
money they refuse to go after fat cats like Murdoch.
When you hear about another fraud hotline or politicians bleating
that we cant afford decent pensions, wages, new hospitals,
schools, social housing etc., remember its the business tax
dodgers and corporate scroungers that are to blame. Britain is the
fourth richest country in the world the only belt tightening
should be round the corporate cowboys necks!
* Helmsley eventually went to prison for tax evasion!
MATHS WITH JARVIS
Jarvis, the cash strapped corporation that bit off more Private
Finance Initiatives than they could chew, cant be allowed
to go bankrupt despite debts of £240 million. Who says? The
banks that lent them the money in the first place!
The bankers, principally Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays, are
worried that if Jarvis go down the pan, they would be forced to
take over many of the firms projects, including schools, hospitals
and road programmes which Jarvis are running under the joke privatisation-by-the
The Whittington Hospital NHS Trust in north London is one Jarvis
PFI hospital project where work recently stopped. They say that
the banks are ultimately responsible for ensuring the multi-million-pound
facility is completed.
Next month, the Crown Prosecution Service will decide whether to
press charges against Network Rail and Jarvis for alleged health
and safety breaches following the Potters Bar rail crash** over
two years ago, in which seven people died and dozens more were injured.
Looks like they will get away with financial incompetence, will
they get away with murder as well?
** Senior executives at Jarvis were given £1 million pound
bonuses during the year of the crash
*** Polyps new book The Complete if Ordinary People
Behaved Like... is out now, you can order your copy from www.ethicalconsumer.org
In legal terms, a Corporation is considered a person.
But what sort of person, we wonder. The World Health Organisation
have a checklist they use to determine personality types,
called the ICD-10 index. Using this index to reveal the Corporate
person, a clear character-type emerges - that
of a psychopath.
Yes folks, the bogeyman your mum told you too worry about
when you were young is alive and kicking in company board
rooms across the globe. From a callous disregard for others
to an inability to feel guilt, the personality of the Corporate
Rulers of the World is identical to that of an axe-wielding
maniac. And they call us trouble makers! www.thecorporation.com
OF THE WEEK
Girl, 10, Cuffed for Scissors in School
Anyone can be a terrorist or murderer these days you know. Even
a ten year old school girl. At an elementary school in Philadelphia,
a girl was cuffed then taken to a police station. The reason? A
pair of scissors were discovered in her school bag, breaking the
schools strict no weapons policy. The cops decided as she
hadnt threatened anyone with the 8-inch blades she had not
committed a crime and let her go but shes still waiting to
hear whether shell be expelled to a special disciplinary school.
The girl, reported to have cried and cried with no
idea what she did wrong
More Christmas cheer for asylum seekers - the Home Office has chosen
Manchester, Leeds, Bradford and North London (where there are around
600 asylum seekers facing deportation) to turn unremovable asylum
seekers into legal slaves. An unremovable asylum seeker is someone
who cant be deported because of circumstances beyond their
control such as being stateless, ill or their country is too dangerous
to return to. The government thinks these bogus layabouts are having
an easy ride here, sponging two thirds of what has been calculated
as the minimum needed to live on, and decided that they must do
compulsory unpaid community work in return for the generous accommodation
and benefits they receive. If they do not obey they will face destitution.
Sound humane so far?
Late additions to the legislation allow the home secretary to decide
whether performance of community work merits hard case support
(which mainly consists of otherwise unletable accommodation). So
if youve fled war, rape, torture or just a bit of light starvation,
you might be left homeless if you cant clean our streets properly!
Local authorities, trade unions and the voluntary sector are being
strongly encouraged by the Home Office to express interest
in running these schemes. They will be paid for providing compulsory
work (usually a punishment reserved for convicted criminals) for
failed asylum seekers. The asylum seekers will not be paid for the
work they will be forced to do.
The ever benevolent great leader and his third reich, sorry, third
way warriors have also wisely decided to look after the children
of failed asylum seekers, presumably because theyll be either
at work or homeless. Since December 1st, local authorities have
been told to take into care children of failed asylum
seekers who do not agree to leave the UK voluntarily. Heartwarming
Christmas stuff from that family loving, caring, sharing, Christian
values duo, Tony blind Blair and David good riddance
* You Are Being Lied To About Asylum Seekers is an
excellent leaflet pointing out the truths behind the lies that the
media & government feed the public about asylum seekers. If
you would like to order copies to distribute contact: BCM Box 7750,
London WC1N 3XX or email firstname.lastname@example.org
* Yesterday, law lords ruled that locking up foreigners without
trial under anti-terror legislation breaks European human rights
powers. A Home Office spokeswoman said it was now a matter for parliament
to decide whether detention without trial continues. www.news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4100481.stm
Tired of slappin on the nicotine patches every January? Well
why not make your New Years resolution to design and build your
own eco house? The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) are offering
lots of inspiring residential courses. All courses include accommodation
and meals at CAT where you can explore Europes leading eco
centre. To check out and book your place on courses like windpower,
solar water heating, self build, organic gardening and blacksmithing
tel. 01654 705981 email@example.com
Six anti-arms trade activists were fined £1,500 between them
this week at Brighton magistrates. Five more are up on trial in
Janurary for the same action at the EDO arms company last may. Smash
EDO! are having an xmas noise party at the company gates next Thursday
(23rd) at 4pm. Phone 07891 405923 or have a look at www.smashedo.bpec.org
Anti-water privatisation activist Matthews Ndlovu has been sentenced
to two years in prison or pay a R25000 (£2,300) fine. The
Gauteng Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) has appealed for funds to
secure his release.
In September 2003, residents of Phiri, Soweto, South Africa supported
by the APF, resisted the installation of pre-paid water meters in
the township by destroying the infrastructure that had been laid
to allow these meters to be installed. During this resistance, a
number of activists, including Matthews, were arrested. More and
more, Capitalist South Africa is failing to deliver. What were in
1994 considered to be basic rights now need to be earned.
The State call this blackmail good citizenship
do what we tell you and all will be fine. In the spirit of the initial
optimism of the dawn of the Rainbow Nation ten years
ago, Matthews and his comrades are openly defying the commodification
of lifes basics. The State are keen to crush this quickly
and quietly so an international show of solidarity, such as coming
up with his bail money, would sweat some brows in the South African
corridors of power.
Matthews is only £2,300 away from escaping a 2 years in prison,
and we in the rich world have a real chance to help. If a dozen
squats/social centres/bands do a benefit each, this guy could be
walking free. Donation details are on www.sa.indymedia.org
More information on the struggle against privatization and Matthews
progress can be found at www.apf.org.za
Before he resigned (wahey!) David Blunkett finally admitted that
the dangerous armed anarchists who were searched by
police under anti-terror legislation at RAF Fairford, last year
were not armed with cugels and swords but with a kite.
The idea that peace demonstrators had arrived at a demo tooled-up
with cudgels and swords seemed ridiculous to everyone except Blunkett
and the police.
Asked how many times stop and search powers were used by police
in the vicinity of Fairford during, Blunkett replied that 2,254
stop-searches had been conducted. Asked whether swords were found,
Blunkett replied that a range of items had been seized. Contrary
to my understanding at the time, I now understand that these did
not include swords. www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2004/12/302807.html
Nanotechnology is the science of building stuff atom by atom. Sounds
useful, but like all technology what it gets used for depends on
who has the money to fund it. Given the way that every other technological
advance gets used for profit and power, its not surprising
that there are already groups protesting against this new technology.
One Nanotech conference has already been disrupted by a group of
angels (the taking direct action kind rather than dancing on the
head of a pin kind) who presented representatives of nanotech industries
with a Can of Worms award. Over in France protestors
occupied the construction site for the - Minatec Nanotech centre
- set to be the largest centre for Nanotechnologies in Europe
Others at ETC group have written an alarming report about how unlabelled
nanotech is already finding its way into food. Down on the
Farm: The Impact of Nano-Scale Technologies on Food and Agriculture
Check it out at www.etcgroup.org
SchNEWS in brief
- Dont think the London bid for the Olympics is a
great idea? There are guided walks on East Londons Bow Backs
Rivers before the Olympics bulldozers arrive see the area
they plan to build on this Saturday (18th). For other dates and
info on the campaign to block the bid www.nolondon2012.org
- Only thousands dead as tanks and bombers bring Christmas
joy to town writes the Porkbolter. 100,000 Iraqis
dead since the beginning of the war on Iraq - the same number
as the population of Worthing. Read the towns excellent
Xmas edition on what an attack on Fallujah would mean to a town
in Britain. www.eco-action/porkbolter
- The Bristolian, Bristols fortnightly political
scandal sheet, has reached its 100th issue, copies can be found
in over 150 outlets in Bristol or by mail order - £10 for
20 issues from The Bristolian, Box 3, Greenleaf Bookshop, 82 Colston
Street, Bristol BS1 5BB.
- London Disarm DSEi meeting and Christmas drinks 7pm,
20th Dec, details email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- All adverts promoting jailed former Black Panther Mumia Abu
Jamal have been banned on Chicagos public transport.
A policeman was spotted tearing down an advert for Mumias
book We Want Freedom: A life in the Black Panther Party
- according to Viacom, who manage the advertising space the
Chicago Transit Authority can no longer accept any more advertisements
on this author www.southendpress.org/books/freedomPR4.shtml
- The New Squatters Handbook is out and is £2
including postage from Advisory Service for Squatters, 2 St Pauls
Road, London, N1 2QN.
- The Little Squatters Handbook is a great colour
story picture book for kids all about squatting. £4.40,
cheques payable to A. Wood, from Little Squatters Handbook, c/o
PO Box 2474, London, N8. Profits will go to the Advisory Service
- The ID Cards Bill is likely to receive its second reading
before Christmas, and the Defy ID Network is encouraging people
to get on to the streets around this time to raise awareness of
the issues. Sample leaflets can be downloaded from their website,
along with ideas for action. Theres also a planned day of
action on 28th January. www.defy-id.org.uk
You might think that spending $10 billion a year might get you
some results. Not if youre the US military! The first trial
of the Son of Star Wars missile defence system has failed.
The interceptor missile apparently failed to take off due to an
unknown anomaly. The record of the missile defence system
is pretty poor - only five out of eight target missiles have been
successfully intercepted in previous trials. This recent one had
to be postponed four times because of bad weather, and on one occasion
had to be stopped because of a radio transmitter failure.
George W Bush had wanted to see the system up and running by the
end of this year but he probably wont get to see the system
running in his presidency.
SchNEWS reckons that if the system does ever get the go-ahead then
the US military will be praying no-one launches a missile at the
US in bad weather and has phoned up in advance to make sure all
their radio transmitters are working. Then theyll have roughly
50% chance of shooting it down.
Never forget the true meaning of Christmas is all about
giving said the Minister for Humbug yesterday. He added: If
you work in the retail sector this means giving up your holiday
and, for the rest of you, it means giving as much of your dosh to
shops as possible. As for me, I simply dont give a festive
fig. (Stolen from this months Porkbolter).
OUT NOW!!! 'SCHNEWS
AT TEN' - A Decade of Party & Protest- £9 inc p&p
- Peace de
Resistance - issues 351-401. £7 inc p&p
- SchNEWS of
the World - isues 300 - 250. £4
- SchNEWS and
SQUALLs YEARBOOK 2001. £4
- The SchQUALL
book Sold out - Sorry
- SchNEWS Survival
Guide issues 151 - 200 and a whole lot more £2.00 inc. p&p
- SchNEWS Annual
issues 101 - 150 and a whole lot more £2.00 inc. p&p
- SchNEWS Round
Sold out - Sorry
In the UK you
can get SchNEWS Annual, Survival Handbook, Yearbook 2001 and SchNEWS
of the World for just £15 inc p&p.
£6.00 for individual books, £13 for above offer).
In addition to
50 issues of SchNEWS, each book contains articles, photos, cartoons,
subverts, a yellow pages list of contacts, comedy etc.
to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9 issues)
or donations (payable to Justice?). Or £15 for a year's subscription,
or the SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for "originals"
if you plan to copy and distribute. SchNEWS is post-free to prisoners.