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Internet trade tax avoidance shock horror protest

The tax avoidance industry has been spawning a tax avoidance protest industry, with the Guardian in the lead. It focusses on the non-crimes committed by firms such as Google, Amazon and Apple, who have de-localised their activities so that it is impossible to establish exactly where they are trading. The Guardian has run a whole series of features this week about the online trading company Amazon.

Amazon occupies premises in the UK and no doubt pays rent and UBR for the privilege. So the obvious conclusion would be to forget trying to collect corporation tax and raise the bulk of revenue from a tax on fixed property instead. But this obvious conclusion is not one that the Guardian journals have drawn, nor is it to be found amongst those that are shocked by the terrible revelation that these companies are exploiting the loopholes in the tax laws.