The “Sir” David Beckham Controversy: Knighthood, Tax Evasion, What Canada Should Do?


This story is of great interest to me because it covers many areas which I feel passionate about. Taxes, Sports, Canada, and Social Media.

In this case, David Beckham, the former Manchester United and Real Madrid star, and husband to former Spice Girl Victoria was denied knighthood for his involvement in a tax avoidance scheme, however the presence of some leaked emails have really stirred the pot recently and caused damage to the Beckham brand.

A Unicef goodwill ambassador since 2005 – Beckham is furious that the leaked emails appear to show him as cynically using his charity work to curry favour with the honours committee and identifies his frustration with having to kiss up to the Queen in order to achieve his knighthood.

He is also furious that they depict him as demanding money from the United Nations children’s charity to pay for flights and hotels to visit its projects with children in places such as the Philippines and in one email he apparently complained about being asked to match the highest bidders at a Unicef auction in New York, stating: “Chloe asked me an outright which I was p***** . . . I don’t want to do it and won’t do it with my own money.”

He comes across as a petulant child.

The hacked emails were obtained by website Football Leaks which had, up to now, focused on exposing players’ contracts and third-party ownership arrangements considered illegal by FIFA.

Beckham and his advisors knew about the existence of these emails last year, and had obtained an injunction preventing a major British newspaper and others from publishing the information. Beckham was also the subject of blackmail, with the perpetrator asking for $1-million dollars from “Becks” in order to prevent the emails from becoming public.

The email hack is believed that have been executed on a server associated with Simon Oliveira – Beckham’s communications spokesperson – in 2015. The 2 had worked together for more than a decade.

Oliveira was also the spokesperson for another tax cheat, former Tennis player Boris Becker, which might be a coincidence, or might not.

In 2002, Becker became a convicted criminal after judges found him guilty of tax evasion. Becker was given a stiff punishment: a two-year prison sentence, suspended for three years, a 500,000 euro (£315,000) fine, and the entire cost of his trial after he pleaded guilty to evading about 1.7m euros tax by claiming to live in the “offshore” haven of Monte Carlo at a time when his main residence was really in Munich.

Beckham was nominated for knighthood by the head of the London 2012 Olympic Organizing Committee, Lord Sebastian Coe, however UK Tax authorities, HM Revenue and Customs, flagged Beckham’s involvement during a screening process and it seems that it was enough to block the proposal.

The couple got caught up in a £434million tax avoidance dispute.

Over a decade ago the Beckhams joined Inside Track Productions LLP, set up by notorious investment firm Ingenious.

David went on to invest in two further Ingenious tax schemes in 2005 and 2006. Along with 140 other Inside Track Productions investors, the couple have been hit with tax demands by HMRC.

Ingenious invested hundreds of millions of pounds through schemes aimed at backing the British film industry.

But the company claimed £1.6billion in losses – and clients, who were made partners of limited liability partnerships, were lawfully able to write off any losses from the schemes against their other income. Companies House records show Victoria and David are still listed as members of the LLP.

After a tax tribunal ruling last year, investors in Ingenious schemes have faced a bill for £434million in unpaid tax plus interest. Ingenious, of course, denies HMRC’s allegations and the sides are still in a legal dispute.

HMRC boss Jennie Granger said: “The schemes involved people claiming far more in tax than they invested.”

So what should Canada do, and how does this impact us?

Well, if the UK offers knighthood to their top political donators, and famous people around the world and it is viewed as an honour, its’ about time for Canada to step up to the plate and recognize our elites and respected Canadians.

Since “Sir” is already taken, we should consider another honour, maybe adding “Eh?” after someone’s name. So once the tax matters are resolved, someone like David Beckham could become David Beckham, eh?  That’s 100% Canadian!  And… If he gets his tax problems resolved, and his knighthood, he could become Sir David Beckham, eh?

Pretty awesome!

 

The moral of the story is this:

Pay your taxes, don’t slag people in emails, and be kind to everyone, all the time!

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Cap-and-trade will cost Ontarians $8B in first years with minimal greenhouse gas reductions: auditor.


TORONTO — Ontario’s cap-and-trade program will cost the province’s consumers and businesses $8 billion dollars in its first years of operation to get minimal greenhouse gas reductions, the auditor general said Wednesday. In her annual report, Bonnie Lysyk said households will pay an average of $156 next year in added costs on gasoline and natural…

via Cap-and-trade will cost Ontarians $8B in first years with minimal greenhouse gas reductions: auditor — National Post – Top Stories

 

I can’t just pick one part of the Auditor General’s report on the way the Ontario Liberal Government has been slowly destroying this province but I think this is the main one we’ll be talking about for years to come…

When will Ontarians wake up to the deceit and lies being fed to us by this government and care enough to not vote them back in power.

I’ll translate the headline further: The Ontario Liberal government will be getting $8 billion dollars from you, and me, from taxpayers, from businesses, from seniors… from everyone in Ontario for nothing.

This $8 billion dollar tax windfall will pay for broken contracts, wasteful spending, overruns on transit projects, union contract negotiation payouts disguised as pizza, and other perks.  It will result in businesses being forced to close, families going hungry and unemployment.

Much like the high hydro rates have resulted in people using less hydro, which then resulted in hydro having to increase rates to make more money.  It just doesn’t pass the smell test.

If it doesn’t look good, and it doesn’t smell good, it isn’t going to taste good and that’s because it’s rotten.

The Auditor General said it…

Will the Liberal Budget increase Capital Gains tax from 50% to 66.67% or 75%?


In the days before the Federal budget is revealed, rumours continue to swirl that the Liberals are going to raise taxes in a roundabout way, by reducing the tax break Canadians receive from capital gains.

In the 2007 Federal budget, the Conservatives increased the lifetime capital gains exemption 50% to $750,000, which means that the first $750,000 of the sale price of each shareholders company “Shares” will have a capital gain which is exempt from all income taxes.  The rate has changed over the years, so its’ not without reason to believe it might change again, especially in light of the money the Liberals promised to spend.

Currently, under the Income Tax Act, 50% of capital gains, on everything from property to stocks and mutual funds, are taxed.  The effective tax rate is therefore half of the marginal tax rate.  In some provinces, the current capital gains rate means tax of more than 25% on investments for high income investors.

Speculation is that the Liberals might move that taxable amount to 2/3’rds or 75% while they pay for all their election promises, and then eventually returning that to 50% near election time to encourage voter support.

With capital gains being taxed less heavily than dividends, there is little incentive for business owners to take cash out of their business and pay the taxes via dividends when they can just sell the company, pay the capital gain, and then start again.

The Liberals want to be more friendly to small business owners and the middle class, it will be interesting to see if they change this rate in the budget since they did not mention this in their election campaign.

A change of this magnitude might trigger an asset sale, or cool the real estate market for people who buy assets, then flip them within a short-term period of time, realizing a gain on the sale.

 

Ontarians Open Your Wallets… Wide! Liberal Budget 2016.


Nine years, Ontario has elected Liberal governments and for nine years, the taxpayers in this once mighty province are facing a budget whiledeeply in debt.

In fact, when the Ontario Liberals unveil their budget today, it’s going to include some really fancy talking and no mention of increasing taxes, yet it’s the only way they can eliminate the deficit and put a stop to the massive debt.

How massive is the debt?

Ontario has the largest debt of any sub-national government in the world!

The world!

Taxpayers pay an astounding $11-billion dollars a year on interest on the debt. Think about how many unions could be paid off with those funds, gas plants moved or documents shredded…

The Wynne Liberals will likely blame the Ontario Conservatives, or the Federal Conservatives, but they have already started to leak the “tax” increases coming down the pipe for Ontarians, including 4.3 cents to the price of a litre of gas plus an increase of $5/month to our natural gas bill – in order to protect the environment, no less…

Where the rest of the “savings” come from is unknown at this time, however, healthcare and education are likely to take a big hit.

Additionally, while it’s great that grocery stores are able to sell wine, the Liberals are likely to set a new minimum price for that bottle through this budget and add additional taxes on top of it.

Here is a recap of the “highlights” of the budget:

  • Ontario’s net debt will hit $308 billion in 2016-17.
  • Ontario’s debt is the largest of any sub-national jurisdiction in the world
  • Ontario taxpayers are paying $11.8 billion in interest payments per year
  • Interest on Ontario’s debt is going to increase to $13.1 billion by 2018-19
  • University and college tuition will be free for students from families with incomes of $50,000 or less.
  • More than half of students from families with incomes under $83,000 will receive non-repayable grants (which exceed the cost of an average tuition).
  • A carton if cigarettes will increase by $3.00, effective at 12:01 a.m. Friday.
  • Taxes on tobacco rise at the rate of inflation each year over the next five years.
  • The minimum price for a bottle of wine rises to $7.95.
  • The LCBO will be increasing their mark-up on wine to compensate for the fact consumers can purchase them at grocery stores, so in June there will be a 2% hike, followed by 2% hikes in 2017 and 2018 with a 1% hike in 2019.
  • There will also be annual increases of about 10 cents in the tax on wine sold in private retail outlets, increasing from 16.1 cents to 20.1 cents over four years
  • The $30 fee for Drive Clean vehicle emissions tests will be eliminated in 2017-18 – not the test – just the out of pocket cost which taxpayers will be paying to the tune of $60 million/year.
  • Hospitals will get their first funding increase in five years, up $345 million, plus $12 billion over 10 years in capital grants for about three dozen major hospital projects
  • The threshold for seniors to be eligible for cheaper drugs rises from $16,018 to $19,300.
  • The Liberals have committed $333 million over five years to redesign and improve autism services.

 

So as the Liberals promised, the Liberals shall deliver.  Spend, spend, debt, deficit, spend…  To the highest debt in the world.

The Conservatives are going to have a huge headache cleaning this mess up in 3 years!

Liberal Majority Government! Stephen Harper Resigns. I Hope the Tax Increase Was Worth It!


Well, Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party of Canada are forming the next government of Canada – a Majority government, no less.

I cannot help but feel deep down inside that there was so much hatred directed at the Prime Minister and that people voted to remove him from office and chose the Liberals over the NDP to do so.

Unfortunately, the electing of the Liberal Party also brings with massive debt and after the spending spree the Liberals intend to go on, the deficit is going to increase at a rapid rate, and as we all know, the Liberals need money to pay for their promises and that money comes from you and I, the taxpayers of Canada.

UGH.

I hope the desire to remove Harper is worth the headaches we’ll be suffering with Justin in command, and I’m not just talking about their out-of-control spending.

Here are some great Justin oops which hopefully will not be occurring as leader of the country;

Unlike Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne who has made MANY mistakes but covered them up with flat denial, avoidance and threats of lawsuits, Justin Trudeau has not appeared to understand the importance of thinking before he speaks.

During the controversy surrounding Bill C-51 – a bill where by the Canadian Security and Intelligence Service (CSIS), and 17 other government agencies are granted the authority to combat threats to Canada’s national security, preferably without infringing on Canadians’ Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Liberal leader who voted for the Bill, has now admitted that his support for the Conservatives Bill might have been a mistake…

During the Maclean’s Magazine leaders debate, Trudeau responded to the conversation around the Liberals’ support of C-51, with these four words: “Perhaps it was naive.”

Here is how he voted on the Bill;

https://openmedia.ca/blog/whos-our-side-heres-how-your-mps-voted-bill-c-51

To give Trudeau the benefit of doubt, it was a tough decision to make, I’m sure. I heard him stumble and bumble over the easy questions about which shampoo he uses and which Avenger was his favourite, so maybe this way just a difficult question for him to answer.

He does like to go (vote) with the crowd… He knows legalizing pot is popular with the kiddies.  Personally, I believe pot should be legalized and taxed because the government can use the revenue to counter the health care costs associated with medical issues stemming from drug use.  Heck, they should legalize it and then increase EI funding and the length of time EI benefits are in effect to accommodate all the happy people…

He knows taxing the “rich” or the “1%” is popular with the other 99% of Canadians, and he knows that increasing spending to get stuff done is super-popular.  What he will soon realize is that whatever tax increase he throws towards the “1%” is not going to be enough to offset their massive spending increase which is coming down the pipe.

Oh, and the 1%… Who are these awful rich people who get all the tax breaks according to Trudeau?!? In Canada the highest Federal tax paid is 29% for those making over $138K per year. Add that to the provincial rate, and in Ontario, for example, someone making over $138K can pay over 42% of their income in tax. (http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tx/ndvdls/fq/txrts-eng.html). Are these the people he will be targeting? Or, is Justin going after the REALLY rich people who based on very basic mathematics make the most money, but also pay the most back in taxes!

Trudeau hates small businesses, and this should become very evident in the Liberals first budget.  Trudeau believes small business owners create businesses as a vehicle to hide their massive incomes.  Doesn’t every 1%’er want to have to deal with the Canada Revenue Agency on a daily basis, be responsible for the income of their employees and paying taxes to keep the economy ticking so the Liberals can come in to power, increase taxes and call them frauds… Don’t think so.  I predict he’ll stop the small business tax decrease that the Conservatives brought in.  Even though the Liberals and the NDP have agreed to keep it, if elected, it’s a certain no go in my opinion.

I believe in discussing facts, so I went to the Liberal Party of Canada’s website, to the link for “My platform”, to make sure I presented his promises in a fair and reasonable manner. Unfortunately, because I was unwilling to click that I would be / or might be voting for Justin, I was not able to get in to the secret Liberals playground. Instead, I had the option to use a search option to add what I want from the Liberal Party.

I entered this; “Fiscal responsibility, Responsible spending, Respectful spending, Respect for Taxpayers money, Lower taxes, Do not raise taxes, accountability for words and actions.”

The search engine was not able to find a match for any of these items in the Liberal’s platform!

Oh my.

Deep down inside, I feel that the Liberals and their leader know that only in Ontario will citizens tolerate out of control spending and corruption by continuously voting in the same government which increased taxes, delisted services and has caused absolute chaos with teachers and soon doctors.

I believe there really is a left-wing media bias in Canada and sadly, I even predict that in their first (or second budget) the Liberals will even restore funding to the CBC, but not extend any funding to any other media outlets, especially to any who do not share their rosey view of the world.

When Trudeau said, “The budget will balance itself”, he believed it.

He also has very poor judgement. He accepted Conservative hand-off Eve Adams, who was being dropped by the Conservative party, and who then lost her nomination bid to Marco Mendicino. Where were the questions surrounding his judgement as has happened to Stephen Harper regarding his appointment of Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin to the Senate.

Trudeau also publicly mistook Russia’s opposition leader Boris Nemtsov (who was shot dead in Russia) with former Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov (whom he had met with), in a press release.

Or when he called a Conservative member a “Piece of Shit”, then went on a potty mouthed tirade where you can see that he actually enjoyed it without thinking for a moment about the implications down the road (http://operationmaple.ca/laugh-out-loud/justin-trudeau-swears-house-of-commons.html)

So much like his Dad…

Or, when being interviewed on Les francs-tireurs, Trudeau said, “Canada isn’t doing well right now because it’s Albertans who control our community and socio-democratic agenda.”

He also said Canada would be better served if there were more Quebecers than Albertans in charge.

Trudeau did apologize, and then tried to explain away his thoughtlessness by saying he didn’t hate Albertans but that his comments were directed the Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, who rose to power as an MP from Calgary, which he really thinks makes it all okay…

But he doesn’t just hate Alberta… He hates all of Canada, except Quebec. As a MP, Trudeau told Radio Canada; “I always say, if there came a point where I thought Canada really was Stephen Harper’s Canada … maybe I’d consider making Quebec a country. Oh yes. Absolutely. I know my values very well even if I no longer recognized Canada.”

(http://www.torontosun.com/2012/02/14/trudeau-says-hell-help-quebec-separate-if-harper-gets-his-way)

There is even a story – recently removed from the Internet – where Justin Trudeau declared that if aliens came from outer space, they would have the same rights as human beings, and would be granted Canadian citizenship…

Now I’m sure that the puppeteers pulling the strings of Trudeau are in full spin control, teaching Justin how to correct his oops and explain that clearly each and every comment has been taken out of context or manipulated by the evil Right-Wing media in Canada – wait, we don’t have that option so much anymore – then it must be Stephen Harper’s fault for forcing Justin to speak this way.

He’s young… ish.

He’s hip… ish.

He’s trying to keep up with the success of Ben Mulroney, but he’s just going to promise himself into a corner and ask every Canadian to Ben Dover.

On October 19th the Canadian public have made a choice, and I have a few words for voters in Canada… Caveat Emptor. Let the buyer beware!

I hope PM Trudeau v2.0 doesn’t embarrass the country, because after all the selfies have been taken, he still has to do the right thing.  Having former PM Stephane Dion as his Minister of Foreign Affairs is laughable and quite frankly frightening…

Time will tell.  Wait until his first budget and we’ll see how these predictions stand up!