Taxation and political priorities


Sir, – Brian Kelleher in his letter in relation to the above,(November 21st) seems to be under the illusion that self-employed people can claim any expense that they wish against their income. Let me enlighten him that legislation provides that for any expense to be allowed as a deduction, it must be “wholly, necessarily and exclusively laid out for the purpose of the business”.

As a practising accountant for more than 40 years, I can inform him the Revenue officials are very proficient at enforcing the above provision as are tax advisers.

There is no justification for the blatant institutional discrimination against self-employed persons in terms of the denial of the PAYE tax credit and the charging of additional USC.

The fact is the great majority of self-employed are PAYE taxpayers through employment with their own companies. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 14.

Sir, – For a while it seemed that Leo Varadkar was moving in the direction of Berlin but with his promise to ‘”significantly accelerate the rate of tax cuts in the coming years” (News, November 19th) he is steering his party towards Boston .

With his populist catchphrase “making work pay”, he is promoting a self-interested individualistic society rather the creation of a just society based on equality of care for all in our communities, especially the marginalised. – Yours, etc,



Co Dublin.

A chara, – Leo Varadkar has committed Fine Gael to raise the entry level to the top rate of tax to €50,000 over five years. This would amount to a cost of €600 million a year (“Varadkar sets out his stall”, Editorial , November 20th).

This equates to the value of 3,000 social houses per year or 15,000 homes for families over the five-year period promised. While the temptation for every worker to achieve an extra few bob in our pockets exists, surely it is time to prioritise?

We cannot walk past our fellow citizens sleeping in doorways to the ATM machine of election promises with an easy conscience. – Is mise,



Sir, – If this Government really wanted to implement tax cuts to benefit all the citizens, it should start by cutting VAT. Lowering VAT would most certainly give more people, not just a certain section in our society, more money in their pockets. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 22.