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Sale of Auto Trader shares to Fund Guardian losses – Will Danny Alexander start a boycott over tax avoidance?

Tom Winnifrith
Tuesday 4 December 2012

The Guardian has announced that it is to sell the 50% of AutoTrader that it does not own for £600 million. This is the part of the group where revenues are growing, which makes profits, which people want to read and which could be described as the “family silver” as opposed to the newspaper itself where sales are falling , losses are made, where Polly Toynbee et al produce unreadable piffle and which can be described as “offensive crap.”

The Guardian is, as you know, very keen on evil capitalists, scumbag rich people, Tories and other untermenschen paying more and more tax. It also takes great steps to ensure that it pays as little tax as possible. So on this windfall gain of £600 million what rate of tax do you reckon the Grauniad will pay? Perhaps we should run a sweepstake? Bags I get 0%.

What the Guardian does to dodge tax is legal so perhaps the politicians should follow the Starbucks principle and encourage the Guardian to “donate” 23% of the £600 million to the taxman.

If he is to be consistent Lib Dem minister Danny Alexander should publically announce that he is stopping buying the Guardian and encourage his fellow deluded lefties to follow suit until it coughs up 23% of the £600 million as a “tax donation.”

Of course it will not happen. Starbucks are wicked American capitalists. The Guardian is…the sister paper of the BBC and thus beyond reproach.

So where does this leave the evil rag itself? Sadly probably it will be sitting on £800 million of cash. Circulation is – like that of all papers – falling although this is partly offset by growing online revenues. But still – and despite some cost cuts – the paper is happily losing £50-60 million a year. While it keeps the print edition going that will not change. And so sadly we probably still have another 13 years before the great day when this awful publication finally bites the dust. But as the cash pile dwindles the paper’s highly paid bosses might well decide to sacrifice the print edition. That at least would be something to celebrate.

So, Danny Alexander: have you started your boycott yet?

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About Tom Winnifrith
Tom Winnifrith is the editor of When he is not harvesting olives in Greece, he is (planning to) raise goats in Wales.
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