Conservative fiascos

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The Conservatives do really know how to slip over tax avoidance banana skins.

First this morning they get Dave Hartnett of HMRC to tell Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister they have no intention of doing anything about tax avoidance, even though Clegg says they will.

Now the new Tory Treasurer – a former Guernsey tax exile not photographed in public for thirty years – has quit to spend more time with his businesses before even taking up his appointment.

And the Sir Philip Green saga runs and runs. As Michael White says in the Guardian:

[Green] is the coalition's first own goal. Tory newspapers were offended, City eyebrows raised and backbench Lib Dem MPs scandalised. Green is a brilliantly successful British entrepreneur, but his family tax arrangements are very complicated and he would not get elected to the kind of Tory club to which David Cameron once belonged.

Tax avoidance really does not pay.

I know I say that, often. But it also happens to be true.

When will they learn?