‘I see the tax system as a game’

Erasmus School of Economics

Jan Stoop, associate professor of Applied Economics at Erasmus School of Economics, was interviewed by BNR Nieuwsradio, following the Paradise Papers. The Paradise Papers are the millions of documents that shed more light on constructions via tax havens. Stoop is quite astonished about the commotion that has arisen as a result of the Paradise Papers. ‘I see the tax system as a game, which has the goal to pay as little as possible. And if someone does that by following the rules, I do not see why it is so unethical or why there is so much fuss about.’

According to Stoop, it makes more sense for the rich to look at how they can pay less taxes, because for them it relatively more effective than for poor people. Stoop revers to his field research, for which he disguised himself as a mail deliverer and send envelopes containing money to rich and poor people, but which showed that they were send to the wrong receiver. His research showed that richer people send this money back more often, which can be explained by the fact that for poor people this small amount of money (20 euros) is worth much more.

More information

Click here for the entire fragment of the Dutch radio station BNR Nieuwsradio, 6 November 2017.