The right-wing often makes the – often true observation – that the rich simply use lawyers etc. to get out of taxes – and, in fact, some popular rock bands have simply left the country (The Rolling Stones being one.). In fact, the Beatles song “Tax Man” was probably just them bitching about having to pay their “fair share”.
Anyway, how can the left possibly claim their views as the best way – when they cannot force the rich to comply – the very people they want to tax the most?
In the ‘70s and ’80s many rockers, at least temporarily, encamped to tax havens around the world. David Bowie and Marc Bolan moved to Switzerland; Cat Stevens to Brazil; and Rod Stewart and Bad Company to California. Ringo Starr moved to Monte Carlo in 1975; in an interview, he told Howard Stern he pays “zero taxes.”Even the Police‘s frontman Sting, who sang, “I don’t wanna be no tax exile” in 1978’s “Dead End Job,” left for Ireland two years later.
Today, musicians set up their bands as corporations in tax havens like the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the British Virgin Islands. “They hire financial advisers to find pathways through the international tax system to escape tax,” says Shaxson. “At the end of the day, it’s usually about finding loopholes.”