Bridport & West Dorset News, Views, Videos & Curiosities

Exclusive: Billy Bragg hands over his taxes – and a fine

THE SINGER and politicial activist Billy Bragg has conceded defeat in his campaign to make the Chancellor of the Exchequer curb bonus payments to investment bankers at the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). 

Back in mid-January, Billy Bragg announced that he was going to withhold paying his taxes in protest at the Chancelor’s inaction.

More than 30,000 people joined a pressure group called nobonus4rbs aimed at capping payouts to RBS bankers at £25,000.

But on Facebook Billy Bragg has now posted a message saying: “I paid my taxes today, as well as the first fine for withholding them for the past two months. Our window of opportunity to put pressure on the Chancellor has passed and I have no wish to become a martyr. With the general election campaign just days away, I’d be interested to hear your ideas about where we go from here.”

Four responses so far on Facebook included this from Chris Bromley: “My view is that this whole stance needs the backing of people who are comfortably off, as well as the ‘converted’. We have to appeal to their innate sense of fairness and justice, without threatening/jeopardising their right to just financial reward and lifestyle.” 

In an article for The Guardian in January, Mr Bragg, who lives in the West Dorset village of Burton Bradstock, near Bridport, asked: “What if everybody did this? Perhaps some form of anarchy would ensue. But if we are going to bring “what ifs” into the debate, then what if we lived in a society that heaped financial rewards on teachers and nurses and soldiers rather than bankers? What if we had a financial system that encouraged fairness rather than greed?

2 Responses to “Exclusive: Billy Bragg hands over his taxes – and a fine”

  1. Banjo

    Good to see the Daily Telegraph has followed up your story today.

  2. Leon Edwards

    Nice one Billy. We could make it a wider issue if you stood as an Independent in west Dorset. I’ll be your agent…!

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