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What is tax for?

It could be time to boost the money we earn from the land

By Philip Collins   July 2014

Tax collectors have not always been portrayed favourably

The most important piece of legislation this year was not contained in the Queen’s Speech. It was passed on 5th April when the application for a mandate to renew income tax was raised in parliament. Income tax, which was first levied in 1799 to raise funds for the Napoleonic Wars, is, strictly speaking, temporary to this day. The government has to pass an annual Finance Act to make income tax legal again.

This oddity contains a message. Tax will never be popular…

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