Monthly Archives: August 2008

//August

The Biritsh Motto

By | 2008-08-26T08:16:01+00:00 August 26th, 2008|Life in England|

The French 'Devise' is well known to all those who have ever studied any aspect of French history. The three principles upon which the republic are founded are engraved into the very soul of the nation: liberté, égalité, fraternité (Freedom, Equality, Brotherhood). And these three principles are easy to see in action in everyday France: Freedom: The French will park wherever they like, let their dogs poop wherever they like and say whatever they like (which we British regard as quite simply rude!). Equality: Every Frenchman is born equal, more or less. i.e. there are no lords and ladies here. Brotherhood: How else would you explain French protectionism and the socialist model? The result is a country that has patriot citizens from the wind swept Brittany coast to the sun drenched Cote d'Azur, each and every man easily identifiable by his belief in the founding principles of republic. But what does Britain have? The Magna Carta. That's it. A crusty old document that says the King (of England) will mind his own business. Hardly a rallying point for the [...]

How much?!

By | 2008-08-14T12:25:30+00:00 August 14th, 2008|Uncategorized|

It is at this time of year that the French Tax directorate break the news to the general public as to how much tax they'll each have to pay over the coming year. While I am sure it is coincidence that everyone's annual tax bill lands on their doorstep right now, when they'll away on holiday, I feel the timing is generally a good thing. Firstly, because it is unlikely to spoil your holiday, as you probably won't read it until you return towards the end of August. Secondly, having no doubt already spent a fortune on holiday, the annual tax bill adds that extra bit of impetus to get back to work and knuckle down (travailller plus pour gagner plus) for the September 'rentrée'. That said, while the British seem to think that the French 'socialist' tax system is designed to squeeze as much out of the average tax payer as possible, I am happy to report that this is not the case. Take me for example - my little green bill indicates that I am required only [...]