"There are some people who seem to believe that not paying their fair share of tax is a lifestyle choice that is socially acceptable... Just like the benefit cheat, they take resources from those who need them most. Tax avoidance and evasion are unacceptable in the best of times but in today's circumstances it is morally indefensible."Thus spoke Danny Alexander at the Liberal Democrat conference a few days ago and I entirely agree with him. So what are we to make of the revelation that Lord Cashcroft was - quite legally - avoiding £3.4 million of tax? Is his behaviour morally indefensible?
Tax is the price we pay for membership of society and I agree with Chris Mullin's article in the Independent when he argued that parties have failed to be honest with the electorate over it. Labour never made enough of a case for the need to pay for the state services that we enjoy. In contrast, the Conservatives hold out an equally improbable future where low tax will still maintain front line services to the standards that we have experienced in recent years.
So, Danny - is Lord Ashcroft 'morally indefensible?'