Thursday, May 28, 2009

Telegraph letters page - the tax side of MPs' expenses

The MPs' expenses scandal is no laughing matter. I have written a number of pieces about the tax issues on the TaxBuzz blog.

But this blog is a place for laughs so here is a selection of some of the more amusing letters taken from The Telegraph's letter pages:

Cabinet members may not know how to complete a self-assessment tax form but they certainly know how to complete an expenses claim
- Pat Lamb, Exeter

Alistair Darling needs an accountant to ensure he pays the correct tax. Doesn't he know HMRC will do the calculation free of charge if the form is submitted by October 31?
- Dr Malclom Parsloe, Battle, East Sussex

John Wick, the whistleblower, should henceforth be known as 'Deep Moat'
- Robert Humm, Stamford. Lincolnshire

The word 'professional' claimed by some politicians is, after all, only a synonym for 'mercenary'
- Rev Philip Foster. Hemmingford Abbots, Cambridgeshire

If Alistair Darling and his colleagues are unable to complete their tax returns without employing professional help, then either the tax returns are too complicated or Cabinet members are too simple.
- Trevor Mudd, Addlestone, Surrey

If Mr Darling did his own tax return he might appreciate what a shambolic system he presides over.
- Stuart Derwent, Brighton, East Sussex

How is it that Mr Darling, whose income must be twice mine, only pays his accountant half what I have to?
- A R Fontes, Wrexham, Clwyd

Having learned that they employ accountants to help them complete their tax returns, I suppose the next thing we shall learn is that Cabinet ministers claim back their tax bill on expenses. Or haven't they thought of that wheeze?
- Roger Hoare, Salisbury, Wiltshire

When the bin tax is introduced will MPs be able to claim it on expenses too?
- David Monk, Rainford, Merseyside

Some years ago I had a bumper stick on my car which read "Don't steal - the Government hates competition". Was I before my time?
- Andy Hawkins, Brie-sous-Mortagne, France

I note that MPs caught out in the investigation of their allowances, and who will be spending more time with their families following the next election, will be eligible for £37,281 as a "winding up allowance". Is this a pun?
- Ruth Rees, Cowbridge, South Glamorgan

I hope the man advising so many ministers on tax has liability insurance.
- Mac Fearnehough, Dronfield, Derbyshire

Surely, it is a historic moment when the taxman becomes more popular than the politician.
- Juliet Henderson, South Warnborough, Hampshire
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