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Lord Ashcroft was probably the most high-profile person exposed by the Paradise Papers, but his name has largely escaped public scrutiny. For this reason, it is important that the voices of the voiceless are amplified and their grievances addressed.
A clear example of what is wrong with our current state of affairs can be seen in the accounts of ‘Bite Back Publishing’. This publisher is owned by Iain Dale and Lord Ashcroft, and is best known for Ashcroft’s petty book ‘Call Me Dave’, which was essentially Ashcroft throwing his toys out of the pram because ‘Dave’ didn’t reward his legalised bribes to the Tory party with a job in his government.
Ignoring the petty behaviour of this ‘honourable’ gentleman, the interesting thing about this company is that it is actually a subsidiary of Political Holdings Ltd – which is also owned by Ashcroft and Iain Dale, and is completely reliant on financial support from Political Holdings Ltd.
In other words, Political Holdings Limited loans Bite Back Publishing money, which then repays the loan with interest to Political Holdings Limited – both of which are ultimately owned by Ashcroft. To the common man, this seems a tad odd? Why would anyone loan themselves money, and repay themselves interest on that loan?
The answer lies within a special type of Bond called a ‘Deep Discount Bond’. These are generally used to raise capital instead of taking out a loan because repayment of the interest of these loans is tax deductible. However, the party providing the monies must be domiciled in another jurisdiction (Ashcroft is a dual citizen of the UK and Belize). In other words, it seems as though Ashcroft is loaning himself money from a tax haven, and then repaying the loan back to himself, thereby transferring the profits and diverting what should be paid as UK tax into his unfathomably deep pockets instead.
Notice how repayment has been deferred? For anyone that has ever been forced to take out a payday loan just to be able to afford to live, and subsequently missed the scheduled repayment date, you are fully aware of what happens to the amount owed as the time between taking out the loan and repayment increased.
Once again, Ashcroft has proven himself to be a despicable stain on our democratic values.
While I put a lot of work into researching and writing about tax avoidance (see Walmart, Ashcroft), you have to ask yourself – if I, an undergraduate student with only a few months of journalistic experience under my belt can get all this information, surely those far more capable than I are purposefully avoiding reporting on these matters?
People in power and journalists are fully aware of all these corrupt, yet legal, dealings within the elite faction of our country, but those in power cannot address it because they are running similar tax avoidance schemes. Instead of reporting on these blatantly corrupt individuals, they coax the people into blaming all their problems on the most vulnerable in our society.
This is just the latest exposé of the elite circumventing the laws that the common man needs to obey, there will be many more to come, and I encourage everyone reading to subscribe to Evolve Politics who offer unbiased interpretations of current events.
In fact, this isn’t true, our biases lie with the people, and not wealthy donor wallets.
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