Can’t Have That

The European Commission, the bloc’s antitrust watchdog, in January ordered Belgium to recoup about €700 million ($765 million) from some 35 companies after concluding that a Belgian tax-discount plan for multinationals was distorting competition within the EU’s single market.

Distorting, sure. Because competition existed in a manner that didn’t suit the Know Betters who are the Commission. The “scheme” in question, alleged to be an excess profits scheme, was marketed by Belgium as Only in Belgium. This was another terrible affront to the Commission, which doesn’t like market differentiation that it hasn’t approved. Worse, it

allowed certain corporations to reduce their tax base by between 50% and 90%, the EU said.

Because leaving money in the hands of those who earned it means Know Betters can’t control the money’s disposition according to their own august whims.

Competition is bad. It puts customers—individuals—rather than Know Betters in charge of their affairs.

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