Can the Isle of Man afford to complain?

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I was amused to read responses from the Isle of Man to Alastair darling's appropriate comments about the place before the Treasury Select Committee on Monday. The Isle of Man says:

rather than being a refuge for those wishing to avoid paying UK tax, it has looked to provide just regulation and a competitive commercial environment, as well as play its part in the fight against money laundering and tax evasion.

That is pure bunkum. Read Carl Levin's report on the place. It's a place where professionals turn a blind eye, as I describe in Creating Turmoil and Finding the Secrecy World.


Isle of Man chief minister Tony Brown described Darling's comments as "unfortunate", adding the UK has a "constitutional responsibility" to represent it internationally.

and added

"We have a good relationship with the UK and are a major contributor, via the City of London, to their economy."

Not half as good a contributor as we are to the Isle of Man though, given that the UK literally gifts the Isle of Man government more than half its annual income each year, a subsidy we provide so that it can operate as a tax haven.

Now that is very good reason why we should re-examine our relationship with the place. We could sink it by simply withdrawing our support. Maybe that's one for the Pre-Budget Report in these cash strapped times?