Government switches from fun to intimidation over self assessment

The Government has switched from fun reminders featuring cartoons and Moira Stewart in cupboards to outright intimidation. The millions of mid to top ranking professionals who are obligated to fill in one of the most poorly designed forms known to man are now being stared at by all seeing eyes:



Remember: tax does have to be taxing. It’s tax.


  1. “It is impossible for a large modern country to exist without income tax” – counter examples such as the United States before 1913 are not real (they are just made up by the “Koch Brothers”).

    As for the totalitarian presentation of the government campaign – of course, very apt.



  2. I liked the old “tax does not have to be taxing” campaign – because it was so absurd, “to tax” meaning “to burden”.

    They might as well have had a big campaign saying “water does not have to be wet”.



  3. The current UK income tax processing system was modelled on the United States’ IRS, in the mid 1990s a tax inspector from the Inland Revenue told me, an Offiicer of the same doing refunds (no great job satisfaction exists) of a trip she had made to the USA, to an IRS tax office, which was a Fordian production line, with tax returns being passed down the line for each operative specialising in a particular aspect of the code to process or pass on the returns.

    As it happens, I phoned HMRC today to update my tax affairs, after speaking in my details and with a computer identifying me and my type of query, I got through after 40 minutes on hold to a real person, and sorted my issue (an underpayment of £240) after helping the Revenue Officer with the maths on what % of £X = £240, it was all sorted, this from the office that had cocked up my tax 3 years in a row leading to modest refunds.



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