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Tax avoidance, Issue 1377
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Chancellor George Osborne promises to get tough on his tax-avoiding tech chums.
GEORGE OSBORNE has promised a blitz on offshore tax avoidance by firms such as Google and Facebook in his forthcoming autumn statement. “Some technology companies go to extraordinary lengths to pay little or no tax here,” he told the Conservative party conference as if this was some sudden, startling revelation. “If you abuse our tax system, you abuse the trust of the British people.”

Red carpet treatment
What he meant to say, surely, was: "If you abuse our system, you get the red carpet treatment from me, chums!” Or has the chancellor forgotten that it was he who helped recruit Google chairman Eric Schmidt to the prime minister’s council of business advisers; who presided at the opening of Google Campus in east London; and who hosted a party at 11 Downing Street in April 2013 for Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg to launch her book Lean In?

In his speech at the party for Sandberg, Osborne said some might wonder why an American citizen should have such a rare privilege. “The main reason,” the star-struck chancellor drooled, “is she is a fantastic woman.”

More top stories in the latest issue:

SQUEEZE AND FREEZE
Disabled campaigner catches the chancellor with his pants on fire over cuts.

ALL IN IT TOGETHER
How the Tories kept the rabble (aka party members) out of the VIP ‘Blue Room’ at conference.

PECULIAR PRAISE
Why is the Daily Mail suddenly so in love with formerly gaffe-prone Labour MP Alan Johnson.

RETHINKING POLICY
The shadow education secretary has a researcher from PricewaterhouseCoopers doing his homework for him.

ORDERLY KEW
Lib Dems and Tories try to take credit for botanical gardens reprieve – but science jobs are still being cut.

Plus... Gavel Basher on ex-MPs hoping for a comeback at the Lib Dem Conference.


To read all these stories in full, you can buy the latest edition of Private Eye - or subscribe here and have the magazine delivered to your home every fortnight.

Next issue on sale:
28th October 2014.
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Private Eye Issue 1377
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And also...

- Trial of the Century: Postscript: Rebekah Brooks withdraws her application for costs.
- Keeping the Lights On: Why the new Hinkley Point plant is wallet-bogglingly good news for EDF.
- Dead Reckoning: Sceptics v Psychics.
For all these stories you can buy the magazine or subscribe here and get delivery direct to your home every fortnight.
Next issue on sale: 28th October 2014.

Private Eye Issue 1376
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