Letter: An honourable addition to tax

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The Independent Online
Sir: 'Honours system to face the test of meritocracy' (22 December) fails to address the frequent problem of those already generously rewarded in financial terms receiving the most prestigious accolades. Perhaps it would be more equitable if those accepting knighthoods and peerages were to enjoy the honour of an additional tax of perhaps an extra 10 per cent on top of the higher rate.

In this way those who received an honour but were paid relatively little would not be affected, while well-rewarded civil servants, judges and so on would have to decide whether they were prepared to bear the additional cost of having an honorary title. Not only would this iron out an inequality in the present system but it might generate substantial income for a hard-pressed Treasury. Surely this is market forces at their best?

Yours faithfully,

JAMES BROOKE-TURNER

London, SW2

22 December

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