Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Two grand extra to live in Scotland

Scots pay a higher average tax than the rest of the UK.  Nearly £2,000 a year more - each.

£1,890.38 more to be precise.  Here's how:

In 2011-12 Scotland paid £56.871 billion in taxes (9.9% of the UK tax take) - Figures from GERS, table 1.

The mid 2011 population estimate is 5,254,800 (latest figures available).

That means taxes of £10,822.68 for every person in Scotland - including tiny little baby-type people, toddlers and school pupils.

I haven't bothered finding another source for UK taxation revenue, I just made the calculation from GERS.  That gives UK taxation for 2011-12 of £574.455bn.

The census day estimate for the UK population in 2011 was 63.2 million.

That means taxes of £9,089.47 per person in the UK - including the younger people.

So Scots pay £1,733.21 more than the UK average but that's not quite the whole story:

Take the Scottish figures out of the UK figures and the population becomes 57.9452 million and the tax take £517.584 bn; taxes of £8,932.29 per person in the rest of the UK.

So Scots pay £1,890.38 more in tax than the 'rest of the UK' average - it's nearly a £2k premium to be a Scot.

£1,890.38 for the privilege of being in the UK, for the privilege of hosting the UK's nuclear weapons, for the privilege of having Scotland's budget cut by George Osborne, for the privilege of hearing Labour politicians say we can't afford decency and equality in our public services.  We pay extra just to be told we're too poor to be independent, we pay dearly for the pleasure of being told that we're too wee to survive in the big, bad world, we pay over the odds and we're told we could never survive without the rest of the UK.

I'm quite happy to pay my taxes but I'd rather see them spent in a nation where we value each other, protect the vulnerable, help people when they're down on their luck and out of work, let our pensioners live in decent circumstances, build houses fit for people to live in, build communities that act as a social safety net.  I want to live in a nation that doesn't think big businesses should get free labour from people who happen to be on benefits and bullied by the Government that should be protecting them, where medical care is delivered free at the point of need, where education is free at the point of delivery, where we don't harbour weapons of mass destruction, where our international relations are about making the world a better place rather than trying to make it come to us on bended knee.  I want my nation to be fair, socially just and forward-looking.

We'll pay our way in the world; we already do - don't insult us any longer.

Scottish Politics Twitter League

Here's a Scottish Politics Twitter League compiled earlier today - obviously not comprehensive but a bit of an interest in terms of who has most reach.  It may actually be a matter of who writes the most interesting stuff as much as anything else, but interesting nonetheless.

@AlexSalmond                       34,608

@NicolaSturgeon                    23,902

@theSNP                                19,164

@YesScotland                         13,340

@UK_Together                         8,746

@patrickharvie                           8,327

@JohnSwinney                           7,618

@scottishlabour                          7,372

@KennyMacAskill                     6,610

@Feorlean                                  6,420

@MorayMP                               6,020

@FionaHyslop                            4,897

@RichardLochhead                     4,534

@kdugdalemsp                           4,286

@AngusMacNeilMP                   4,190

@PeterMurrell                             3,890

@strathearnrose                           3,905

@AlexNeilSNP                            3,823

@RuthDavidsonMSP                   3,788

@JohannLamont                           3,782

@willie_rennie                               3,408

@scotgp                                       3,186

@AlynSmithMEP                          3,045

@ScotTories                                 2,959

@LindaFabianiSNP                      2,788

@scotlibdems                                2,759

@BlairJenkinsYes                          2,435

@blairmcdougall                            2,270

@KevinJPringle                            1,855

@paulbsinclair                                  743