Socialism for the Rich: Ryanair, state subsidies, tax avoidance – and Guinness at 12 Euros a pint

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Tax Justice Network: Socialism for the Rich (part three): Ryanair, state subsidies, and tax.

Tax Justice Network notes that Ryanair's fabled free market enterprise is based wholly on subsidies from the state. It is the favourite way of making money those days. Watch out for much more of it if the Tories come anywhere near power.

But it also reminded me of a joke I heard recently which went something like this at the expense of Michael O'Leary of Ryanair. He went into a pub and asked for pint of Guiness. He was told it would cost 1 euro.

"That's cheap" O'Leary said

"You'd be wanting a glass with it though Mr O'Leary? That's another 2 euro"

Michael offered the money and went to put the pint on the bar. The barman stopped him.

"You didn't bring your own pre-printed bar mat with you Mr O'Leary? That'll be a euro then please"

Michael offered to cough up and moved towards a table. The barman called him back.

"Have you not paid a priority table booking fee Mr O'Leary? Well, that'll be another 2 euro please."

Michael finally went to sit down, and went to put his bag on the floor.

"Hang on Mr O'Leary" called the barman. "If that bag doesn't fit in an overhead locker then that's 4 euro please"

"But there aren't any overhead lockers" stormed O'Leary.

"That's your problem not mine Mr O'Leary" said the Barman. "Pay or stand holding your bag"

"Oh, by the way," he added "You've offered me cash. Unless you pay with a Mastercard issued by the Lancashire Bank we have a 2 euro payment handling fee. So that will be 12 euro please."

"But that's outrageous" said O'Leary.

"Now you know the feeling" said the barman.