OK, here’s an idea. EU needs money. EU can raise money using a tax. Why not tax something that so far has not been taxed? eCommunications! This is the solution to the EU’s budgetary future as proposed by Alain Lamassoure, MEP from Chirac’s UMP Party. Read the story about it in The Guardian here.
Lamassoure proposes putting a tax of Ã¢â€šÂ¬0.15 on SMS text messages and Ã¢â€šÂ¬0.00001 on every e-mail. There are so many difficulties with this I am not sure I can list all of them! At least a SMS tax could be administered by telecommunications firms, but an e-mail tax? Would I have to administer that for each and every e-mail sent and received on the servers I run? Then there’s the issue that young people send lots of SMS messages, and they are also more eurosceptic presently than older people. Then how would it work for messages sent to the rest of the world? And could people setting up addresses on servers in the USA be exempt? And then there’s the whole Lisbon strategy and the EU needing to be competititve when it comes to eCommunications.
This strikes me as a completely idiotic idea from Lamassoure, and middle aged politician very much out of touch. Let’s instead start a proper debate about a tax on airline fuel (kerosene) – that’s where the EU should be looking.