That old chestnut ...

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Wafflycathcsdir, Feb 17, 2003.

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  1. ... but really, the BBC should know better.

    See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/2729161.stm

    "London's congestion charges: Your reaction" Look down to the quote by one Chris Weston. Poor man
    needs to see a tax specialist. He, as do many, think he pays road tax. Indeed, the Beeb, in its
    quest for accuracy, have given his quote a special highlight on the page.

    Perhaps we should be writing in offering our services as tax advisers to Weston & the Beeb, pointing
    out that if he's been paying road tax, he should be seeking to recover what has been paid, as
    there's no such tax. If I were him, I'd be demanding my tax back from HM Tax Inspectorate ;-)

    Cheers, helen s

    ~~~~~~~~~~
    Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!

    Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd
    ~~~~~~~~~~
     
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  2. Alex Graham

    Alex Graham Guest

  3. >Dear-y-me. Such the dickead is that bloke.
    >

    And what gets me is the Beeb highlighting the road tax quote as if it is accurate!

    Cheers, helen s

    ~~~~~~~~~~
    Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!

    Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd
    ~~~~~~~~~~
     
  4. Alex Graham

    Alex Graham Guest

  5. "wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > >Dear-y-me. Such the dickead is that bloke.
    >
    > And what gets me is the Beeb highlighting the road tax quote as if it is accurate!

    Seeing that, I posted a response, to see if it would be included - needless to say, it wasn't.

    E
     
  6. Mark Davies

    Mark Davies Guest

    wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter wrote:
    > ... but really, the BBC should know better.
    >
    > See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/2729161.stm
    >
    > "London's congestion charges: Your reaction" Look down to the quote by one Chris Weston. Poor man
    > needs to see a tax specialist. He, as do many, think he pays road tax. Indeed, the Beeb, in its
    > quest for accuracy, have given his quote a special highlight on the page.

    So, is it "Vehicle Excise Duty" because the government says it is, or is it road/car tax because
    most people (who don't care what it's called really) call it that. Think back to the "Community
    Charge" aka Poll Tax. What did the government of the day insist on calling it, and what did the
    media and people in general call it?

    I opened one of those little brown reminder envelopes the DVLA send you to remind you to pay your
    "Vehicle Excise Duty" yesterday. [1] It has a section for declaring to them that the vehicle will be
    kept off-road, and not used on-road. [2]

    So, it seems you only have to pay "Vehicle Excise Duty" if you actually keep or use your vehicle on
    a public road. Doesn't that make it some sort of tax on road use, rather than vehicle ownership,
    since if I don't use the road with my vehicle, I do not pay the tax or duty for that? So, wouldn't
    "Road Tax" be a more honest and strightforard name for it? It's like calling a spade a spade.

    [1] With a car and two (motor)bikes, this is pretty handy. Remembering to remind the insurers (the
    ones you're actually insured with never remind you, it's the flood of junk mail from the ones
    you asked for a quote from last year that reminds you). MOTs have been forgotten before now...

    [2] I wish they'd do me the option of 9 months tax^H^H^Hduty so I can SORN the toy bike in winter,
    and the car in summer.
    --

    Mark
     
  7. [email protected] (wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter) writes:
    > ... but really, the BBC should know better.
    >
    > See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/2729161.stm
    >
    > "London's congestion charges: Your reaction" Look down to the quote by one Chris Weston. Poor man
    > needs to see a tax specialist. He, as do many, think he pays road tax.

    What he actually says is that everyone should be made to pay road tax. Since, as you say, there's no
    such thing at present, he must be suggesting a _new_ tax, because the congestion charge clearly
    isn't enough for him.
     
  8. Rory

    Rory Guest

    "Paul Smith" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    > On Tue, 18 Feb 2003 15:51:52 -0000, "Just zis Guy, you know?" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >>>> Fine. So do you have a rational explanation for the sudden loss of the road accident fatality
    > >>>> rate trend in the very early 90s?
    >
    > >>> As we have said many time *THAT TREND DOES NOT EXIST*.
    >
    > >>> It is an artificat of your mis-use of stats.
    >
    > >> False. Check for yourself. I've not given details (except source data earlier today), nor are
    > >> they on the web site, but the trend and its loss are real enough. I was working on it in
    > >> January when I was taken
    > >> ill.
    >
    > >Now prove, beyond reasonable doubt, that your alleged "trend reversal" is not caused by airbags.
    > >Or ABS. Or reductions in local authority road maintenance budgets. Or congestion. Or the colour
    > >of the curtains at
    10,
    > >Downing Street.
    >
    > You know very well that such proof is impossible. But we'll be well on the way with plausible
    > mechanisms, which I do intend to lay out in some detail.

    Just as long as you are absolutely explicit in your analysis that (a) you cannot prove that the
    cause is your chosen bĂȘte-noir, (b) you equally cannot prove that it's not airbags or ABS, and
    therefore (c) you are just making it up.

    --
    Guy
    ===
    I wonder if you wouldn't mind piecing out our imperfections with your thoughts; and while you're
    about it perhaps you could think when we talk of bicycles, that you see them printing their proud
    wheels i' the receiving earth; thanks awfully.

    http://www.highwaycode.gov.uk/09.shtml#103 http://www.highwaycode.gov.uk/09.shtml#104
     
  9. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    A rather better one:

    "At the end of my road is a big red 'C' marking the start of the congestion charge area. I own both
    a car and a bicycle. I know that this five pound a day will stop me driving. I will become
    healthier, wealthier and will get to places twice as fast by cycling. I just needed the push as like
    most motorists, I am a lazy git. " - Jamie, Elephant and Castle, London

    That's more like it :)

    --
    Guy
    ===
    I wonder if you wouldn't mind piecing out our imperfections with your thoughts; and while you're
    about it perhaps you could think when we talk of bicycles, that you see them printing their proud
    wheels i' the receiving earth; thanks awfully.

    http://www.highwaycode.gov.uk/09.shtml#103 http://www.highwaycode.gov.uk/09.shtml#104
     
  10. Alex Graham

    Alex Graham Guest

  11. But vehicle excise duty *isn't* a road tax. The sense in which many a driver uses the term "road
    tax" is theat it is somehow seen as giving them the *right* to be on the road in a car - it doesn't
    - it's used as an excuse to do down any other road user under the "I pay my tax" crap they come out
    with. Roads are paid for out of general taxation by drivers and non-drivers alike.

    Cheers, helen s

    ~~~~~~~~~~
    Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!

    Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd
    ~~~~~~~~~~
     
  12. wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter wrote:
    > But vehicle excise duty *isn't* a road tax.

    But it was and it seems a bit harsh to me to expect Joe Public to understand the intricacies of
    government financing, particularly as history conspires to make the whole thing rather opaque. And I
    think you can only claim that roads are funded out of general taxation if you admit the fact that
    VED is a general tax.

    This tax has had a variety of names both popular and official. Some people call it road tax, others
    car tax. Even the Inland Revenue refers to it as Road Tax
    (http://www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk/cars/company_cars.htm) and I'm sure that a google search will
    produce dozens of other references by government agencies to road tax etc. Personally, I've never
    heard anyone refer to the thing behind the windscreen as a 'vehicle excise duty disc'. Most people I
    know call it a 'tax disc' and I guess they are abbreviating 'road tax disc'.

    Vehicle taxation based on horsepower was introduced by the Finance Act 1909-10 which stated that the
    revenue would be used for road improvements. The Road Fund Licence was introduced in 1910.
    Hypothecation of this tax stopped sometime in the Depression, I believe and the name was later
    changed to Vehicle Excise Duty in order to try and prevent the misconception that the tax actually
    goes to pay for roads. As I understand the situation VED actually raises considerably more tax
    revenue than the government spends on roads.

    I would guess that the government is not unhappy that drivers often believe that the VED goes to pay
    for roads. If they thought that it was paying for hospitals and schools etc they might be very
    unhappy and the motoring lobby is very strong. It's a rather easy tax to collect and has the
    additional benefit of helping ensure that cars are insured and have valid MOTs. Unfortunately, just
    like the lottery, it's a regressive tax that hits the poor more than the rich (somewhat reduced by
    the recent changes). (It's similar to tobacco tax that raises much more money than is spent treating
    smoking related diseases.)

    Please don't think that I disagree with your main point. The argument that motorists pay VED and
    therefore shouldn't pay congestion charges is a fallacy. One could equally argue that car-owning
    commuters who take the bus or train to work shouldn't pay fares because they have also paid VED. I
    think it's easiest to think of congestion charges as a form of rent for road space that, like
    property rents, rises as the space becomes scarcer. A flat rate like VED fails to charge road users
    the correct rent in congested areas, making congestion charges necessary. Why shouldn't cyclists pay
    congestion charges? Because it's better for society to avoid motorised transport and taxing
    something you're trying to encourage is counterproductive.

    Sorry, I had an hour with nothing to do this evening. I know I have a reputation for a poor sense of
    humour - I only hope I haven't missed a joke somewhere ;-)
    --
    Michael MacClancy
     
  13. wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter wrote:
    >> (http://www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk/cars/company_cars.htm)
    >
    > gets
    >
    > "The page you want either no longer exists, or has been moved."
    >
    > Cheers, helen s
    >
    > ~~~~~~~~~~
    > Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!
    >
    > Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd ~~~~~~~~~~

    Strange, doesn't happen when I click on the link. Anyway, here is the relevant passage.

    Other sources of information

    a.. The Government has also announced changes to Vehicle Excise Duty (road tax). The amount
    charged will again be linked to the car's exhaust emissions. Further details can be found at the
    Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency website www.dvla.gov.uk/newved.htm. This includes a facility to
    calculate your Vehicle Excise Duty based on the car's CO2 emissions figure.

    --
    Michael MacClancy
     
  14. Marc

    Marc Guest

    Michael MacClancy <[email protected]> wrote:

    > > But vehicle excise duty *isn't* a road tax.
    >
    > But it was and it seems a bit harsh to me to expect Joe Public to understand

    ...after only 60+ years!
     
  15. Marc wrote:
    > Michael MacClancy <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>> But vehicle excise duty *isn't* a road tax.
    >>
    >> But it was and it seems a bit harsh to me to expect Joe Public to understand
    >
    > ...after only 60+ years!

    As I tried to explain, my belief is that it's been in the government's interest to allow this
    misconception to continue for a long time. (Just as they'd have you think that National Insurance is
    insurance and not just another tax.) The change in name from Road Fund Licence to Vehicle Excise
    Duty is very recent and done, I believe, only when people started to realise that the government
    wasn't spending the road tax on roads!
    --
    Michael MacClancy
     
  16. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On 19 Feb 2003 18:31:29 GMT someone who may be [email protected]
    (wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter) wrote this:-

    >The roads are paid out of general taxation.

    And that was largely the case even when there was a Road Fund. At the most it paid half the cost of
    *improvements* to "roads of national importance".

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  17. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Wed, 19 Feb 2003 18:33:32 -0000 someone who may be "Michael MacClancy"
    <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >Strange, doesn't happen when I click on the link. Anyway, here is the relevant passage.
    >
    >Other sources of information
    >
    > a.. The Government has also announced changes to Vehicle Excise Duty (road tax). The amount
    > charged will again be linked to the car's exhaust emissions. Further details can be found at
    > the Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency website www.dvla.gov.uk/newved.htm. This includes a
    > facility to calculate your Vehicle Excise Duty based on the car's CO2 emissions figure.

    You have demonstrated that your claim is wrong. In this excerpt the Inland Revenue bunch do indeed
    call Vehicle Excise Duty, Vehicle Excise Duty and not Road Tax as you claimed.

    However, for the intellectually challenged they do once refer to it as road tax. Personally I
    wouldn't bother doing so, but I gain no points for political correctness.

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  18. Marc

    Marc Guest

    David Hansen <[email protected]> wrote:

    > The change in name from Road Fund Licence to Vehicle Excise
    > >Duty is very recent
    >
    > You think that the 1930s is very recent?

    I seem to remember the name changing in the 70's, "only " 30 years ago.
     
  19. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Wed, 19 Feb 2003 21:04:52 -0000 someone who may be "Michael MacClancy"
    <[email protected]> wrote this:-

    >The change in name from Road Fund Licence to Vehicle Excise Duty is very recent

    You think that the 1930s is very recent?

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  20. David Hansen wrote:
    > On Wed, 19 Feb 2003 21:04:52 -0000 someone who may be "Michael MacClancy"
    > <[email protected]> wrote this:-
    >
    >> The change in name from Road Fund Licence to Vehicle Excise Duty is very recent
    >
    > You think that the 1930s is very recent?

    No, I don't. I've done a bit of googling and see that you're a bit of an authority on the subject so
    have to bow to your superior knowledge. Isn't it amazing, though, how a phrase can become so firmly
    embedded in language that it can't be displaced over more than 60 years.
    --
    Michael MacClancy
     
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