Amazon Google, Starbucks etc etc
Amazon along with others have taken national and EU governments for a ride for far too long a period, indeed they are implicit in a mass fraud of the EU citizen in what they are doing by defrauding states and the very EU institution itself.
As a Farmer I have been involved with the EU regulatory system for many years and find it very complex and unequal to individuals , as all National States interpret all the legislation slightly different and the consequence is that the final Amounts of help that gets delivered to the consumer varies considerably between states.
The “Amazon debacle”, only highlights what is fundamentally wrong with the Tax systems throughout the EU and indeed globally as well. The problem is that the Tax system based on centuries old laws and methodology has been tweaked to make it ever more complex and distorted. An now today we have a system which reacts to events and mishaps , with no real overall objective in mind , except that of solving the immediate problem , without looking at the global picture.
I feel that the EU has an excellent opportunity to recommend much more in ether way of employing Smart methods and technologies that would provide for a Tax system that would be fair and equal to all EU citizens. Indeed as you suggest in your work this is surely the aim of the EU, if not the IMF and World Bank.
Change from all present taxes based on personal, goods and inheritance. Change to one that is based on respect for the use of all Natural resources, by this I mean we need to replace all existing taxes with one single tax on all natural resources levied dependant on the environmental damage they cause to the environment; this would be collected at a rate determined by the states for meeting their own individual tax revenue requirements from as near source as possible.
The Benefits from this would be many especially in these times of austerity.
· Huge reduction in overall taxes
· All would pay taxes equally
· Change in all citizens mindset to real protection of the environment
· Huge reduction in the tax collection function, by individuals and businesses. No, VAT. No corporation tax, no personal tax etc.
· Reduction in Bureaucracy at all levels
As an ordinary citizen of the EU, and finding the EU in turmoil over so many issues, it seems to me we need to go back to grass roots, to reinvent “SMART simplicity”, in the governing and ruling function of the governing of states and individuals. We need to find new ways of empowering the individual, so they can control their own personal affairs, have a real sense of environmental stewardship, by the very purchasing power each individual and business has. This unfortunately will put many noses out of joint, but any change does that, it is just a question of whose noses they are.
It is easy to tax the poor; they say nothing back, that is the old way of taxing, the new smart way, is to tax all equally and fairly with equal rigour. Treat all individuals, businesses equally and all with the same opportunity, No grants and subsidies, far better to reduce taxation altogether and let the consumer decide what to buy based on the goods and services inherent environmental credentials
Note , A similar change will need to occur in the welfare and benefits systems around Europe , empowering the individual in self determination in health, welfare, education and work provision,