The Panama Papers: Explained

It’s being described as the biggest leak of data in history, bigger than both Wikileaks in 2010 and Edward Snowden’s big leak in 2013, so what’s the biggie with the so called Panama Papers?

Sugar Tax in the UK: Good or Bad?

 

The UK government has announced it will introduce a new tax on the sugary drinks industry. The idea is to tackle child obesity. Conservative governments don’t usually have much of a sweet tooth for raising taxes on anything, so they must have a pretty good reason for flirting with this sugar tax, right? That’s for you to decide, once you’ve got the facts inside you.

Tampon Tax Explained

 

The Tampon Tax Story

Sanitary towels and tampons are taxed in the UK at 5% due to European regulations on Value Added Tax. People are angry and kind of amused about it. There are campaigns to end this tax on women all over the world.

2015 Green Party Manifesto Explained in 6 Minutes

The Green Party have just released their manifesto for 2015. So what do you need to know?

In a nutshell: out with the old and in with the Green.

That means: Heal the planet, have a more equal and just society, and definitely a more democratic government.

Sound interesting? Read on…

 

GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – HELP THE PLANET: ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES

  • Invest in an £85billion public programme of renewable electricity generation, flood defences and building insulation. They mean business. Renewable business. Why? Because of Climate Change of course!
  • Cut emissions by providing cheaper public transport and encouraging cycling and walking. That means a 10% cut in ticket prices for public transport.
  • And all rail to be owned by the public too.
  • Reduce. Re-use. Recycle. Reduce. Re-use. Recycle. Get it?
  • Organic lovers: Greens will majorly reduce the use of pesticides and prioritise non-chemical farming methods. How? Education, education, education! Oh and new legislation, schemes and general support for organic farming.
  • Aim to have everyone living a 5 minute walk away from a green open space.

 

GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – DR DOLITTLE MOMENT: ANIMAL RIGHTS

  • Factories will have to label their meat and dairy products to show the method of production and slaughter, and stop the overuse of antibiotics in animal farming. Oh and mandatory CCTV in slaughterhouses – does this mean more vegetarians? Maybe.
  • Eating Foie Gras is out. Lucky duckies.
  • Honey honey: Help bees, yes, bees, by reducing pesticide use and help preserve and create bee habitats. Bees will be a priority species. Those bees be lucky.
  • You can no longer clone farm animals – did anyone know that you could!?
  • All you people with primates as household pets, you can’t have them any more. Soz.
  • Good time to be a dog: ban on dog fighting, all breeders will have to be properly licensed, an end to puppy farming, and no more horrible training aids like electric shock collars – that can’t be fun.
  • No more animals in the circus and a full review of horse racing and jockeys can’t use whips any more.
  • Ban all hunting of animals whether it be sport or for pleasure and generally work for the protection of all endangered animals locally and internationally, especially whales and dolphins coz they’re just great.

 

GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – LET LOVE BE YOUR ENERGY

  • Insulation programme: insulate 9 million homes and take at least 2 million homes out of fuel poverty where households cannot afford to heat their homes due to current costs. This will cost £45billion over the five year Parliament and create 100,000 jobs.
  • Tenants will have the right to make landlords implement the same improvements to the energy performance of their home.
  • Always, ALWAYS say no to fracking.
  • Solar panels: everywhere.

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – HEALTHCARE: NHS

  • No privatisation whatsoever, seriously, none.
  • Immediately increase the NHS budget by £12billion a year.
  • Increase the investment on mental health and make it as important as physical health: totally equal.
  • Free social care and proper funding for the elderly, and also combat the loneliness of the elderly – tinder?
  • Treat drug addiction as a health problem rather than a crime.
  • Introduce presumed consent for organ donors, giving relatives the opportunity and respect to then refuse it and introduce assisted suicide under strict, carefully thought through and well-monitored circumstances.

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – EDUCATION: PREACHING TEACHING

  • End SATs (Standard Assessment Tests), no more league tables and no more academies.
  • End university tuition fees for undergraduates and cancel student debt. That’s right: cancel student debt. Wowzers.
  • Encourage children to be involved with growing and cooking food – very Jamie Oliver. The Greens also want to introduce lessons on HIV, sex and relationships but let’s hope all these lessons won’t be together.
  • Have class sizes of 20, costing £1.5billion over 5 year Parliament.
  • Compulsory education begins at 7 years old – not 5 years old as it stands.
  • Private schools are not charities! Remove charitable status and ensure no schools are run for profit.
  • Phase out public funding for religious schools and restore Education Maintenance Allowance for those 16-19 year olds in sixth form, college and further education who need the financial help in order to attend.

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – HOUSING: WHERE DO WE LIVE?

  • 500,000 new social homes for rent over next five years, control excessive rents and have some stability with house prices.
  • Scrap the Conservative’s Help To Buy scheme that is meant to help people buy their first home by lowering the initial deposit.
  • Abolish the bedroom tax and keep housing benefit for under 25s.

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – ECONOMICS: MONEYS

  • Make the minimum wage a living wage of £10 per hour by 2020, and the highest wage in any organisation no more than ten times the lowest wage.
  • Public spending will account for almost half of the national income.
  • With all the changes in the Green manifesto, over 1 million jobs will be created.
  • Double child benefit.

 

Facts About Child Benefit

As it stands: Facts about child benefit. The Green Party plans to double this amount.

 

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – EQUALITY

  • Equality and diversity lessons in all schools from first year of primary school.
  • Enforce penalties against employers who continue to implement unequal pay, and basically make equal pay for men and women a reality.
  • It will be illegal to ask mothers to stop breastfeeding in public.
  • Increase the budget for people living with disabilities by around £1billion a year.
  • Increase Carer’s Allowance by 50% – currently £62.10 a week.

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – YOUNG PEEPS: LISTEN UP

  • 16 and 17 year olds you have the vote!
  • Age of criminal responsibility will be 14 not 10 years old.
  • Free local public transport for young people.
  • End exploitation of interns, so you don’t work for free for longer than 4 weeks.
  • Provide emergency shelter for up to 200,000 young people every year.

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – GOVERNMENT

  • Introduce a written constitution – so people know where they stand, know their rights and it’s all written down and legit.
  • Introducing: Proportional Representation. A different voting system to the one we use at the moment called First Past The Post. Funnily enough, P.R means the number of votes a party receives will be directly proportionate to the number of seats a party gains. Countries such as Israel use P.R.
  • Introduce an elected House of Lords.

OH AND ALSO…

  • Increase government arts spending by £500million a year.
  • Abolish the TV license. Watch Scenes of Reason instead.

 

TV License is £145.50 Per Year

As it stands: TV license – The Green Party plans to abolish the BBC’s enforced TV license.

 

 

THE GREEN PARTY MANIFESTO – HOW?

  • Increase taxes on alcohol and tobacco.
  • No more tax avoiders/evaders. How many times can Barlow and Carr be warned?
  • Higher council tax for more expensive homes.
  • Introduce a wealth tax of 2% a year on the top 1% in society. Damn it.
  • Have a Robin Hood Tax of 0.05% on the banks and their financial transactions such as stocks, bonds, foreign currencies. It even has its own website.
  • Increase corporation tax from 20% to 30%
  • Raise top rate of tax to 60% for people earning over £150,000 – it’s currently 45%.

 

Current Tax Rates UK

As it stands: Tax – The Green Party plans to raise tax for the rich significantly.

 

 

Nice thoughts. Great sentiment. Achievable?

YOU DECIDE

THURSDAY 7th MAY

IT’S JUST AROUND THE CORNER

#BeforeYou’reDecidedGetDecoded

For the full Green Party manifesto click here.

 

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What else do you feel the Greens aren’t quite covering? Let us know in the comment box below.

NON-DOM, DOM-NON, NOM NOM – DON’T KNOW.

What’s the difference between a Dom and Non-Dom?

Domicile and Non-domicile is a matter of status. You have a domicile status in a place where you permanently live and/or have originated from, you have a non-domicile status in a place where you might be currently living but wouldn’t consider your permanent home or origination.

I want a status, where do I get one?

You tend to be born with one. Where you are born however, does not necessarily determine your domicile status. You tend to inherit your status from your father (and sometimes your grandfather).

E.g. you might be born in the UK but your father spent most of his life in Spain and would consider Spain his permanent home. You are therefore granted a non-dom status even if you continue to live in the UK.

You do also have a domicile choice…if you have a domicile status in the UK and decide to emigrate to another country you can actively change your status. If you decide that France is the place for you and decide to live there indefinitely, should you return to the UK you will now have acquired a non-dom status.

What’s all the fuss?

If you have a non-dom status you don’t have to pay UK tax on foreign income until you’ve been living in the UK for seven years.

FOREIGN INCOME IS? Money made abroad. You might live in the UK but your business might reside in another country, or you could be making money off of the property you own abroad, or you might have relatives abroad giving you money.

With your non-dom status you don’t have to pay UK tax on this foreign income for seven years as long as it is under £2,000 or not transferred to the UK.

After seven years, then what?

You pay a fee to keep your non-dom status. This is also known as a remittance and costs £30,000 per year if you’ve been resident of the UK for at least seven of the previous 9 tax years (this rises to £50,000 once you’ve been here 12 of the previous 14 years).

Again, WHAT IS THE FUSS?

Wealthy individuals from all over the world have been coming to live in the UK and using their non-dom status to avoid paying a lot of tax. Similarly, several UK citizens through domicile choice have been able to acquire a non-dom status and benefit from the same scheme.

SHOULD WE BLAME THEM? HOW CAN WE, THE UK HAS MADE IT LEGAL.

Players: Enticing these wealthy individuals to live in our country brings us investment and money from the UK taxes that they have to pay.
Haters: Our country is out of pocket 100’s of millions of £ worth because of it.

If you hadn’t guessed already, the Tories are the players and Labour are the haters…

Ed Miliband announced that if he gets voted in the GE15, he’d like to scrap the non-dom status once and for all. Cameron says, you won’t need to, these wealthy individuals won’t stick around long enough to see you scrap it.

Who knows…and yet we’re meant to decide.

#Getdecoded