The Robin Hood Tax campaign is facing a tough opponent – not just from the usual source of the financial sector and their allies, but from legislation currently going through the House of Lords, says Richard Carr, a Policy Adviser at Stamp Out Poverty. He highlights why the Lobbying Bill matters to anti-poverty campaigners, among many others.
In the Budget statement yesterday (20 March 2013), the Chancellor George Osborne reiterated how he was turning his back on a share of the £30-35bn a year which would come from a small Financial Transaction Tax. This is while other countries in Europe including France, Germany and Spain, benefit from it.
The Robin Hood Tax Campaign, to which Ekklesia is affiliated, works for the introduction of a Financial Transaction Tax. It also examines the difference an FTT could make in relation to poverty, the environment and challenges like the AIDS pandemic.
This rather dismissive term is used to refer to people who are neither employed nor actively seeking employment. They may be raising children, studying, caring for a sick relative, or just generally making the world a better place in their own unique way, but if they’re not a cog in the economic machine, they count for very little in the minds of many politicians and economists.
At the G20 Cannes Summit my colleague Tina Weller accused David Cameron of being cynical for hiding behind the likes of Barack Obama and Julia Gillard, by choosing only to support taxes on financial transactions as a nice idea in theory.
At the end of the G20, Nicolas Sarkozy’s frustration at the UK’s stance on a number of issues, including the financial transaction, or Robin Hood tax, was evident. During journalists’ questions at the final communiqué press conference, the BBC’s Paul Mason got short shrift from the French President.
What a difference a day makes. I sketched out some lines to write on the way to the G20 in Cannes, buoyed up rather by the appearance of Dr Rowan Williams on the front page of the Financial Times on Wednesday.