Details for Practical Politics No. 201 - December 2012

Practical Politics No. 201 - December 2012
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Name:Practical Politics No. 201 - December 2012
Description:MORALITY AND THE LAW – THE ONLY WAY TO GO IS ETHICS

There is nothing moral about paying taxes. There is, however, a legal 
obligation to pay taxes. It is an offence to evade paying. The legal 
requirement is enshrined in the law. However, there can be no obligation, 
legal or moral, to pay more than is demanded by the law. Fairness does not 
come into it. If the tax system is unfair, all that is needed is that Parliament 
change the law. Tax is a matter of meeting requirements enforceable through 
the courts of law. By contrast a donation made to charity may be considered 
a moral act precisely because it is not a response made under threat of 
prosecution but is action taken as the result of a donor's unfettered choice.
Note that a charitable gift need not be "fair", in that it can be held to be in 
support of an objective which some or many might regard as already 
adequately endowed or perhaps be intended for a dubiously worthy cause. 
Morality, the law, and fairness can be uncomfortable bedfellows.
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