Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Peter Taylor: happy to pay more tax

Private equity tycoon Peter Taylor is happy to pay more tax. Mr Taylor is the boss of Duke Street Capital, and he is not at all bothered by the changes to capital gains tax that the Chancellor Alistair Darling announced yesterday.

But I know a man who isn't happy. I won't name him - not yet, but he is also a private equity tycoon. I spoke to him last night and he told me, 'I am very upset about this. I need all the money I can get my hands on - but not for selfish reasons. I am in the process of setting up a religious cult. Do you know how much money that takes? I will need at least two mansions in the countryside in which to house my devotees. I will also need a headquarters in the City. I am aiming to be bigger than Big Herb.'

Well, this man is deluded. Surely his devotees - if they are devoted enough - will stump up the money for the mansions. And how can he claim not to be selfish when he admits he is setting himself up as a god? And bigger than Big Herb? It won't happen. Big Herb is not going to be eclipsed by a johnny-come-lately money god who isn't even dead yet. You can't be a true money god and live in the material world at the same time, unless of course you're a charlatan. The only reason I haven't named this man is because his uncle is a good friend of mine. But I'm tempted to name him, really tempted. There is still time for him to abandon this idea of a cult.