Sunday, June 26, 2011

Tax protest against U2 turns edgy

As I reported earlier, the threat to stage a protest against Bono & his group U2 at the Glastonbury Music Festival materialised yesterday, as the protest group Art Uncut raised a balloon emblazoned with  "U pay your tax 2", as a complaint about the group "moving its commercial operations to the Netherlands, where royalties on music incur virtually no tax".  An organizer of the protest stated that "We had contact with people from the festival earlier in the day, and had told them the protest wouldn't disrupt the set.  They said it was fine."

Tax cheats

However, the group was rushed by some ten security guards, using "heavy-handed tactics" to scuffle with the protestors & deflate & confiscate the banner.
Art Uncut issued a statement on its blog questioning the move. "If they can get away with it, the wealthy establishment tend to hire heavies to crush dissent," it read. "We wanted a dialogue with U2, on an issue that is crucial for international development.

"Instead we got heavy-handed security tactics; our highly visible expression of conscience was pulled down after just a few minutes – where are the festival's radical roots now, we ask?"
 U2 campaigns with high profile in the publicity arena, demanding that governments pay more attention (& money) to the poor of the world.  Yet they take issue with paying higher taxes.  If they instead see fit to use that money to donate to legitimate relief organisations, then that is the essence of Adam Smith's capitalism, & I salute it.  Somehow, I doubt that they do.

Meanwhile, we find that rival band Chumbawamba support the protestors.

The group also receives a 'mentioned in despatches' comment from the great Victor Davis Hanson, in his article "There are No Socialists".
But why then does multimillionaire John Kerry go to great lengths to avoid taxes on his yacht (why a luxury yacht when so many have so little?); why are redistributive overseers like Timothy Geithner, Eric Holder, Tom Daschle, Charles Rangel, and Hilda Solis either late or delinquent in paying the federal, state, or local governments what they owe? Were not high taxes on the upper incomes like themselves the point of it all? Should not they pay all they can to ensure that their brethren receive needed entitlements? I thought Bono would lead an international effort of multimillionaire rock stars to relocate to socialist states like Ireland or Greece, so that they might gladly pay 75% of their incomes (which at “some point” they had enough of) to help others closer to home. Why instead is he fleeing to low-tax nations? Did not such socialists have enough money by now without undermining the socialist state? [emphasis mine]

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