John Robson: Apple tax decision shows that Britain was right to leave the EU
John Robson | September 6, 2016 7:45 PM ET
Remember Robert Conquest’s Third Law of Politics? “The simplest way to explain the behaviour of any bureaucratic organization is to assume that it is controlled by a cabal of its enemies.” Case in point: the European Union recently ordered Ireland to collect €13 billion ($18.72 billion) in taxes that Apple doesn’t even owe.
There’s an interesting side issue that’s perhaps not obvious in North America, where it seems that Apple invents things and everybody else plays catch-up with, or dies trying. (Yes, I have a Windows phone. Sigh.) But while iOS has a smartphone market share of more than 40 per cent in the U.S., and reasonably similar numbers in Canada, Australia, Japan and the U.K., it is under 20 per cent in the other big European economies and China. In Latin America, it’s under 10 per cent.
With the EU also after McDonald’s and Amazon, there’s a strong scent of stale Euro anti-Americanism in the air. Especially given the eurocrats’ open, scornful hostility to the “Anglo-Saxon” model of liberty and entrepreneurship, rather than wise elite state guidance. Hence the stubborn insistence that the EU will continue to champion over-governed, overly bureaucratic, unaccountable big government as though nothing had happened on June 23. (Brexit? What Brexit?)