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Subject: Re: UKNM: Re: 324 tax on digital TV?
From: Ray Taylor
Date: Wed, 11 Aug 1999 14:22:40 +0100

Phil Gyford <philatgyford [dot] com> said:

>I'd say the license fee as it stands is incredibly unfair and should be
>means-tested in some practical way,

I don't think there is anything wrong with the licence fee as it stands,
other than perhaps a need to reduce it by at least 50% for blind and deaf TV
owners. But I can't see why there should be this bizarre, medieval
assumption that all new inventions (in this case digital TV broadcast)
should be allotted to a government-protected monopoly, or in this case for
the monopoly to be given a 56-per-customer helping hand.

How come it's okay to subsidise "public-service TV" (whatever that means)
when British coal mining, for instance, is destroyed rather than cushion a
short-term price depression? Come the next oil crisis or nuclear reactor
disaster I'd rather have a thriving fossil fuel industry, than an army of
state-sponsored TV executives.

Of course, the coal industry did not have access to unlimited free TV
advertising to fight it's corner in the 80s, unlike the BBC, which certainly
spares no expense to tell us what good use it makes of our money.

The licence fee should now be frozen, and eventually phased out (perhaps).
The BBC should learn from its competitors and reserve a part of its massive
income for investment in new technologies.

By what right does a British government impose such a charge anyway? Rupert
Murdoch may well be an ugly rich bastard, but is that any reason to impose a
commercial fine of 24 per customer on Sky Digital? And why can't I have 24
for everyone who opens a freeserve account? I would be happy to provide
minority web content as part of the deal.

The question of whether you like BBC programmes better than ITV or not is
irrelevant. TV is now such a huge market that there really is no need for
the taxpayer / licence fee payer to pay any more for it.

And Phil, I was only kidding when I said the BBC and the Royal family should
be stuffed. I'm afraid I never bothered to learn the smiley code, and I
don't think there is a smiley that properly represents my twisted sense of
humour anyway.

Ray Taylor
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  Re: UKNM: Re: 324 tax on digital TV?, Phil Gyford
  Re: UKNM: Re: 324 tax on digital TV?, Tim Ireland
  Re: UKNM: Re: 324 tax on digital TV?, Steve Mynott

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