January 05, 2004

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Churchill once said: "...we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender."

Stirring stuff. Especially as it turns out he was talking about the taxman.

Winston Churchill waged a lifelong battle with the taxman that continued even at the height of World War II, government documents published for the first time last week reveal.

Inland Revenue files reveal that Britain's wartime prime minister and his financial advisers went to extraordinary lengths to minimise the liabilities on his earnings from his work as an author and journalist.

The papers, which cover a 20-year period, refer to Churchill's "latest attempt to minimise liability" and indicate that he used every lawful opportunity to avoid tax. At one stage he considered setting up an overseas company.

So if it's good enough for him, it's good enough for the rest of us. My respect for Churchill just went up a notch.

posted by Simon on 01.05.04 at 12:48 PM in the


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