The Great Debate UK

Nothing is certain but death and taxes

-Rachel Mason is public relations manager at Fair Investment Company. The opinions expressed are her own.-

If there is one thing in this life you can be sure about it is that you are going to be taxed a lot. You can’t escape it.
You are taxed on your income, then you are taxed on the money from your income that you have already been taxed on when it becomes savings, then you are taxed on your pension, which is made up of cash that you have already been taxed on, and then there’s road tax, car tax, council tax, VAT, stamp duty….the list goes on.

And then of course, just when you thought you couldn’t be taxed anymore, you get taxed on any profit you make when you sell any assets – assets bought with money that’s already been taxed! I am talking of course about the tax that’s the talk of the moment – capital gains tax.

The new coalition government is planning to increase capital gains tax from its current rate of 18 per cent to 40 per cent or possibly even 50 per cent, a move that aims to stop ‘fat cats’ from taking their income as capital gains (the 18 per cent capital gains tax rate is lower than their 40 percent income tax rate) and that is all very well, apart from the fact that it is going to hit millions more, the vast majority of whom are certainly not fat cats.

Coalition government alarms British Muslims

-Javaid Rehman is a professor of law at Brunel University. The opinions expressed are his own.-

For British Muslims, the new coalition government of the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats represents an alliance of strange and awkward bedfellows.

A dangerous indulgence in post-electoral optimism

-Laurence Copeland is a professor of finance at Cardiff University Business School and a co-author of “Verdict on the Crash” published by the Institute of Economic Affairs. The opinions expressed are his own. -

It really is hard to resist the temptation to take a hopeful view of Britain’s new government.

UK high-flyers should brace for bad news

– Neil Collins is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –

Election first, manifesto afterwards. While there may be a Conservative prime minister in Downing Street, quite a few among the millions who voted for David Cameron will have a shock when they see the price they are paying for his pact with the more left-leaning Liberal Democrats.

New UK coalition deserves 7 out of 10

– Hugo Dixon is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –

The new UK coalition deserves 7 out of 10. The pact between the Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties, led by David Cameron as the new prime minister, seems determined to address the country’s most important problem — the deficit. This is vital given that the euro zone debt crisis could still prove contagious. It should also be positive for sterling.

Cameron tasked with changing Brits’ expectations

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– Mark Kobayashi-Hillary is the author of several books, including ‘Who Moved my Job?’ and ‘Global Services: Moving to a Level Playing Field’. The opinions expressed are his own –

After thirteen years, it’s all over. The New Labour project is dead. Or is it? Tony Blair brought British politics to the centre-ground and ensured that a single party could support free-market economic policies as well as social justice.

Cliff-hanged

- Professor Christopher Harvie is a historian, teacher, political writer and SNP MSP for Mid-Scotland and Fife. He is the author of “Broonland: The Last Days of Gordon Brown.” The opinions expressed are his own. -

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Outside 10 Downing Street at 7.29 on Tuesday evening, Gordon Brown announced his resignation as UK premier. Off to the Palace, where he would ask Her Majesty to send for David Cameron, ending five cliff-hanging days – or inaugurating many, many more?

Tory-LibDem pact looks good for UK, but is unlikely

-Ian Campbell is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.-

The UK’s third political party faces an ugly dilemma. Which way it turns will be critical for the British economy.

Oratorical skills proxy for leadership skills in debates

- Timothy Clark and David Greatbatch are professors at Durham Business School. The opinions expressed are their own.-

The three televised party leader debates in the UK show that live oratory is still a powerful tool and remains an important source of the public’s perception of a politician’s image and abilities.

Leaders’ debates highlight need for Scottish independence

- Paul Henderson Scott has written numerous books on Scottish history, literature and affairs, including ‘A 20th Century Life’ and its sequel, ‘The New Scotland’. He has been Rector of Dundee University, President of the Saltire Society and of Scottish PEN and a Vice-President of the Scottish National Party. The opinions expressed are his own -

The television coverage of the forthcoming election has hardly mentioned Scottish issues and Alex Salmond, the leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP), which forms the Scottish government, has not been included in the televised leaders’ debates.

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