Home Business The Fair Tax Foundation Has Gone Entirely Insane

The Fair Tax Foundation Has Gone Entirely Insane



So, over in India – and the only reason this is getting airplay is because Sunak’s in-laws are involved – there’s a company that sells through Amazon.in. India has a strange set of laws. The retail system is grossly, vilely, inefficient to the cost of all of India’s consumers. However, that very inefficiency means there’s a large constituency for continuing the inefficiencies because that’s how tens of millions make their living.

So, Amazon is not allowed to sell direct. Only third party sellers may use the platform. One of these is very large and efficient and so it does lots of business.

Hmm, OK. At which point the Fair Tax Foundation:

An analysis of Cloudtail’s accounts conducted for the Guardian by the Fair Tax Foundation also found that “corporation tax contributions are meagre”, with £830,000 paid in tax per annum compared with £798m of revenue when averaged over the past four years. In its last financial year, Cloudtail paid around £3.4m in cash taxes on revenues of £1.1bn.

Paul Monaghan, chief executive of the Fair Tax Foundation, added: “Cloudtail’s business model would seem to be the same as Amazon’s across the globe, but on steroids. We are seeing the usual rapid growth in revenue, but the profit margins are wafer-thin at 0.3% over the last four years – it’s practically being operated at cost. How on earth can anyone else compete locally, especially when Cloudtail is essentially a box for Amazon’s trillion-dollar machine?”

D’ye get that? Operating a business which doesn’t take a slice in profits is now a terrible thing. Because it means that you’re not offering the government a slice in profits on those taxes.

Of course, if you were being rapaciously capitalist and taking a slice for yourself then you’d be shouted at for being a rapacious capitalist.

But really, get what Monaghan is saying there. Taking in the money and reinvesting it into more services, growing the company, creating jobs, this is bad. Because it means you don’t pay tax.

Not that Monaghan is a hypocrite, not at all. Clearly not, impossible:

The Fair Tax Mark is published by Fair Tax Foundation Limited, a not-for-profit Community Benefit Society registered under the Industrial and Provident Societies Act (Registration: 32308R).

No, entirely not.



  1. On average revenue of 798,000,000GBP, the FTF claims Cloudtail make an average margin of 0.3% – simple arithmetic tells us that’s a margin of 2,394,000GBP. With average annual taxes paid of 830,000GBP, Cloudtail is paying taxes at a rate of 34.67%
    I’d think they were eligible for a Fair Tax Mark!

  2. First thing that jumps out is they lead off with revenue and taxes paid, not profits. That gives away the game.

    BTW, years back I had a client that was a supermarket chain operating in Puerto Rico and they were not permitted to be open on Sundays. This was to help support all the Mom and Pop businesses that were too expensive to compete. Milton Friedman’s point about teaspoons just doesn’t resonate with some people.


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