Saturday 10 December 2016

Thomas Molloy: Tax not the only source of grief for struggling families

Published 13/12/2011 | 05:00

INCOME tax, the Universal Social Charge, VAT -- all of these taxes are taking a bigger chunk out of our pay packets, but for many people the real wealth destroyers have come from salary cuts, shorter working hours and unemployment.

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The effects of taxation are well documented and easy to understand, but the pain endured by salary reductions for the self-employed or workers in vulnerable industries is far harder to graph. For this reason, that pain is often forgotten as we all whinge about taxes instead.

After all, it is much easier to complain publicly about a government-inspired tax hike. Everybody knows what you are talking about and everybody has experienced something similar. A pay cut still sounds like you were singled out because you weren't up to scratch. Perhaps you were not? Who knows. Best not to talk about it, even among friends.

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