Comedian Mark Thomas, together with about 50 activists, took to Apple's retail store on Regent Street in London to protest Apple's penchant for tax avoidance. Of course, all taxpayers -- both corporations and individuals -- do all they can to minimize their tax liability within the confines of the law, so it's not as if Apple is doing anything illegal, or for that matter, even unusual. Then again, who really wants logic to get in the way of a fun protest?
Thomas explained the reasoning behind the protest:
Apple has this amazing situation where they pay no tax on one of their companies registered in Ireland, and so in essence, they're using Ireland as a offshore tax haven. So what we've decided is that Apple on Regent Street should therefore become Irish territory. So we're going to create Irish territory on Regent Street. Hopefully we'll do it without getting busted, hopefully do it with a sense of fun. You can hear the band, they're absolutely fantastic!
Naturally, there's video of the protest.
The Guardian further reports that members of the group held up banners which read, "Take a tax holiday in Ireland." What's more, some members took to Apple's displayed notebooks and iMacs and wrote messages advising customers that they can purchase the "SAME products at the SAME prices at John Lewis around the corner...".
And all the while, the protest was accompanied by some melodic and traditional Irish music.
As far as protests go, this one seemed pretty tame. Indeed, with the live Irish music, it seems like they really added some excitement to what may have otherwise been another ho-hum day at Apple retail.
Upon leaving the store, Thomas took a more serious note, explaining that he would scream and shout until Apple pays the taxes it owes.
The Guardian adds:
Thomas is scheduled to appear at this year's Edinburgh Fringe festival with a new show entitled 100 Acts of Minor Dissent, which will catalogue his attempt to achieve just that in the space of a year.
Something tells me Thomas won't be championing the Apple tax cause for long.