Here's a simple question. What is the government's attitude to tax avoidance?
If we listen to Treasury ministers it is very clear that they don't like it, and that dislike frequently extends even to quite mundane and small scale examples.
So what are we to make ' in particular ' of the knighthood bestowed upon Philip Green in the Birthday Honours list?
First we need to agree on some basic facts. We can assume that it is a polite fiction that it is the sovereign who makes the decisions and that the executive arm of the government has nothing to do with it. One can suppose that these arrangements have survives from the feudal system out of simple inertia, or even (heaven forbid!) because Prime Ministers find it useful, but in my innocence I have assumed that the point of the honours system is '...