May 23, 2013

FTT is no longer a “Robin Hood tax”, now just another “King John tax”, to be collected by another Sheriff of Nottingham

Sir, Alex Barker and Philip Stafford report that “Brussels looks at incentives to ease collection of ‘Robin Hood’ levy” May 23, and I do think some clarification is in order. 

There was a time, many years ago, when some thought that the financial transaction tax was going to be used to redistribute wealth from the richest to the poorest countries. And so those days, branding FTT as a “Robin Hood” tax made some sense. Not any more, now it is a quite ordinary and traditional “King John” tax to be collected by a Sheriff of Nottingham. 

I do not mind the distribution from the rich to the poor… what I do mind is that in the collection and distribution process, most funds transferred end up in pockets other than those of the poor.