Why I don’t support the Robin Hood Tax…

I was tempted to title this post ‘how to loose friends and alienate people’.

I strongly suspect that I’m not going to find many advocates among my friends, but noticed this was doing the rounds (a rebranding of the Tobin Tax), and felt the need to look a little closer. and… there were a few things which raised alarm bells with me.

Now.. before I set off too many people let me state a few things I do believe in.

1. The banks should be taxed, and taxed significantly (especially over the next few years) given the bail out they have been given.

2. Bankers bonus should be curtailed significantly and directly linked to long-term performance.

3. Taxing the banks on behaviors we don’t want, rather than taxing behavior we do want.

But introducing a blanket tax on investment of 0.05% is potentially counter-productive to developmental aid and is just not targeted toward poor practice. The tag line of the campaign is “Not Complicated, just Brilliant”, I beg to differ, a better tag line might be “Not complicated, just simplistic and opportunistic.”

For a more informed view from a seasoned economist, working in a development context, go here.

[EDIT 11.09.10] Owen has, very helpfully. articulated further here…


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