Having been derided for his lack of "green" credentials by the various loonies on the Left (the Tories and the LibDems mainly) for his minor adjustments to petrol and flight tax, it seems that Gordo really is green. Because, you see, we all know that computers use lots of power (there are, after all, so many of them); but, let's face it, if people didn't write software for the damn things and if other people didn't go around selfishly supporting and fixing them, then we wouldn't use computers so much. Thus we would save money and damage the planet rather less, wouldn't we?
A commenter pointed me towards this story which shows The Gobblin' King's true concern for green issues. In order to make it more expensive to use computers in general, our Cyclopean Chancellor has very generously decided to tax them even more! Are you surprised? I know that I am. Not.
The biggest shake-up to contracting since controversial tax rule IR35 was introduced has been unveiled by Gordon Brown.
Delivering his tenth pre-Budget Report, the chancellor yesterday tabled new laws to dictate freelance IT contractors will pay the same tax and NICs as employees.
What. The. Fuck? I do wonder what Allan would make of all this: he was never the biggest fan of IR35, and he points out why this is inherently unfair.
The handsome pay was fair compensation for no job security and for giving up many rights that employees so often take for granted. I had no holiday pay, no sick pay, no employer pension rights and as director of a limited company, no right to unemployment benefit if the work dried up.
From April 2007, draft legislation will strip away the "unfair competitive [tax] advantage" for hundreds of thousands of contractors who today use managed service or composite companies.
Unlike limited company owners, these workers are "not in business on their own" and the underlying nature of the contracts "is one of employment," the government decided yesterday.
Therefore, these workers, many of whom occupy the IT, Construction and Engineering industries, must pay employment taxes.
So, even though they are freelancers, with all of the penalties that that brings with it—no paid holidays, irregularity of work, having to pay an accountant to do the tax, etc.—they must pay taxes as though they were actually receiving the benefits of being proper employees (and receiving paid holidays, regular work and not being burdened with the massive self-assessment form—and the accompanying 56 page, 60,000 word explanatory booklet—every year).
In the "vast majority of cases," the government added, MSCs break IR35, designed to ensure the right tax treatment is applied, meaning workers get away with reducing their tax and national insurance payments.
How dare those workers get to keep some of their money! How fucking dare they!
For fuck's sake, who's advising the Gobblin' King these days: Richard "you have no money but what belongs to the government" Murphy?
HMRC compliance officers also report that managed service companies have been paying travel and food expenses free of tax and NIC - even when no relief is due.
As a result, workers who use managed service companies will, in the future, be exempt from the Intermediaries Legislation (IR35), but face more stringent rules that will be "less resource-intensive" for HM Revenue & Customs.
Ah, yes; those poor civil servants are feeling the strain and really, really need a rest.
A consultation document published alongside the pre-Budget Report says defining a managed service company under the incoming law is not "straightforward."
Well, it never bloody is with the Gobblin' King, is it? That is why Tolley's (the Tax Guide for accountants) has doubled in length since Gordo took over.
What a devious cunt that man is.