Don’t tell me tax campaigning doesn’t work: if Goldman’s are worried by it then it does

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As the Guardian reports this morning:

Goldman Sachs is kickstarting the controversial City bonus season by considering whether to defer bonuses into the new tax year in April — when the top rate of income tax falls to 45% from 50%.

A number of banks are known to have considered whether to make the move, which would save their top employees thousands of pounds. But City sources believe many of them have rejected the idea to avoid any negative publicity in the wake of the row surrounding corporation tax paid by Starbucks in the UK.

Now don't tell me campaigning doesn't work.

And at the same time don't tell me a comprehensive General Anti-Tax Avoidance Principle wouldn't work either.

And that country-by-country reporting wouldn't deter tax haven usage.

The risk of exposure, the risk of reprisal from a hostile public and the risk of penalty are in combination the most powerful weapons we have to beat tax cheats. And to build a fairer business environment and society at the same time.

We haven't got there yet. But we are making progress. Goldman's is clearly testing the water. I suspect it will find it too hot and back down. But if not we know where it stands.