You may think that the fuss about the revelations of offshore funds, tax havens and money laundering have nothing to do with you. (That is assuming you are not one of the people named. If you are, the risks are different).
I can detect two areas in which the present obsession with David Cameron’s finances can affect all of us, regardless of the rights and wrongs of his actions.
- Firstly, the focus by the media and politicians on this issue risks becoming a distraction from other issues which really do affect us all, including:
- The steel industry
- The junior doctors strikes
- The refugee crisis
Any of those issues could affect you and me far more than whatever the Prime Minister does with his money.
Linked with this is the risk that people will allow their opinion of David Cameron and therefore their decision on the EU Referendum. Should our future in or out of Europe be determined by our views on tax avoidance?
- Secondly, the obsession with the Prime Minister and other world leaders and celebrities risks drawing attention away from the fact that some of the revelations indicate that big-time tax evasion was going on, and that there was even more serious criminal activity, such as laundering the proceeds of the Brinx Matt robbery and other crimes. We should be far more concerned about the implications for all of us.
Let us focus on the issues which really affect all of us in the short and long terms, and not be carried away by the current hysteria over one issue, not that anything I have said justifies the PM or anyone else if they have behaved dishonestly, but I am still concerned about the risks I have mentioned.