State heavies from the Inland Revenue Department have begun ploughing into the taxi industry in an effort to clamp down on what they claim as ‘GST non-compliance.’ Libertarianz Finance Spokesman Stephen Berry expressed his horror at the IRD initiative saying, “this may result in the ruination of many taxi drivers.” His remarks echo those made by Gold & Black Taxis manager Ian Gaskin, who says that, since the beginning of the audit, he has received four resignations. Gaskin estimates that half of Wellington’s 1800 drivers were failing to pay their GST because they thought they could get away with it.
Inland Revenue has said that it can prosecute where there was evidence of deliberate non-compliance, as the judiciary had sent a clear message that tax evasion was ‘stealing from the community.’ The IRD’s Wellington manager, Mike Hewetson, says, “We don’t believe that the public – either individual taxpayers or other business taxpayers – condones anyone evading their legal tax obligations.”
Berry has some news for Mr. Hewetson: “I don’t just condone tax evasion, I actively support and encourage everyone to evade taxes. It is a disgrace for people to have their own property forcibly taken from them for the funding of parasitical leeches and services not being used by that taxpayer. The judiciary is absolutely wrong in its view of tax evasion as being theft from the community. The community has no right to a single cent out of the pockets of others. To label keeping your own money as being theft from the community is nothing short of outrageous.”
Berry expresses strong sympathy for several hundred taxi drivers who will soon have to run from the IRD. “You have done absolutely nothing wrong and have nothing to be ashamed of. You have every reason to be furious as the IRD searches through your records and seeks to bankrupt you. Normally the law would protect you from theft, but this time it is the law that perpetrates it.”
Libertarianz Finance Spokesman