Monday, March 21, 2011

Links Mar 21

Financial weapons of mass destruction still primed to detonate Tribune Magazine
Mar 18 - Prem Sikka's article argues that the next financial crisis is inevitable. It argues that the proposed reforms have failed to address the fundamental issues and that the finance theories, which drive much of the speculative trade, are incapable of being reformed due to Britain's captive state.

Kenya losing billions to tax exemptions Daily Nation

Mar 17 - The article appears ahead of a Revenue Mobilisation in Sub Saharan Africa conference held in Nairobi this week. Policies on the widening of the tax base should put more emphasis on the wealthy by removing unnecessary incentives and (re)introducing those taxes that target the rich such as capital gain taxes and property tax - hat tip Alvin Mosioma.

Envoys should help us get back billions stolen from Kenyans Daily Nation

Mar 12 - Referring to the Swiss Federal Act on the Restitution of Assets of Politically Exposed Persons obtained by Unlawful Means - "Perhaps it is time we asked all ambassadors posted to Kenya to work overtime and help the country bring back the stolen wealth. They must learn to walk the talk, not just talking down at out leaders and portraying them as irresponsible when they, too, share the blame in equal measure." See previous TJN blog Hypocrisy and High Corruption.

Revealed: Where the despots of the Middle East hide their money in London London Evening Standard

Mar 18 - The revolutions in North Africa and the Arab world have, once again, focused attention on London as a 'potentate's paradise' - with layering to hide ownership of assets, through secrecy jurisdictions including the British Virgin Islands, Cayman, Cyprus, Switzerland. Hat tip The Cynical Tendency.

Girls, yachts and disturbing links between two billionaire brothers and the Icelandic banks crash that devastated British savers Daily Mail

Mar 18 - The UK's Serious Fraud Office investigates "one of the most explosive fraud inquiries ever attempted in Britain" - involving the failed Icelandic bank Kaupthing, a former Conservative party Treasurer, and the billionaire Tchenguiz brothers. "Keeping track of exactly what the brothers did or did not lose during the crash is virtually impossible. They operate through a web of interconnected companies domiciled — mainly for tax reasons — in a number of jurisdictions, and no one outside their close-knit network knows the true extent of their worth".

Sorry, Newt. You Never Balanced the Budget Citizens for Tax Justice

Mar 18 - An op-ed by CTJ director Bob McIntyre that ran in several newspapers last week refutes Newt Gingrich's recent claim that the U.S. government shutdown of 1995 led to a balanced budget.

Congresswoman Schakowsky proposes millionaires tax as alternative to cutting education, health and other programs Citizens for Tax Justice

Mar 18 - In the U.S.A., millionaires make up about 0.2 percent (that's the richest one fifth of one percent) of taxpayers, and yet they received about 17.6 percent of the income tax cuts that were extended at the end of last year. Within proposed new legislation, a rate of 45 percent would apply to taxable income starting at $1 million and rates would increase up to 49 percent for taxable incomes over $1 billion - CTJ found that the bill would raise at least $78.9 billion if enacted for 2011. See also: What should be America's top tax rate: 25% or 49% TaxProf
Mar 17.

UK: Police support for protesters as government cuts start to bite The Guardian

Mar 20 - UK Uncut will be joining thousands of other protesters on Mar 26. The head of the police union has said that officers patrolling next weekend's demonstrations against austerity measures would have "a lot of sympathy" with the protesters.

Northern Ireland to have corporate tax responsibility

18 - Northern Ireland looks set to receive responsibility for its corporation tax as UK ministers look at "really radical" measures to help make the private sector flourish and attract new investment. Recent reports suggest that Northern Ireland's rate could be lowered in order to provide more effective competition with the Republic of Ireland, for which there has been sustained criticism from eurozone governments. Race to the bottom.


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