Representation without taxation
On 5 May, the Guardian published a story about the need for corporate tax reform in America, to pay for public services and infrastructure. According to the mayor of Cupertino, Barry Chang, cash-rich Apple Computer is unwilling to pay a dime towards fixing the town’s traffic problem.
Of course, this is not just an issue for North America. In Great Britain, Google’s Demis Hassabis is a commissioner with the ‘independent’ National Infrastructure Commission, chaired by Andrew Adonis. The National Infrastructure Commission is recommending billions of pounds of public expenditure, on things like London Crossrail 2. Yet Google pays almost no tax in Great Britain.
Should a tax-avoiding multinational be represented on the National Infrastructure Commission? There are questions to be asked about what the Commission does, how it does it, and who is represented on it.