August 17, 2009

There should also be a list of countries where the tax-payers are allowed to use safe-havens.

Sir you request “Closing the havens” August 17, because citizens should pay their taxes. Quite right! But from a global perspective, the question of whether the non-paid taxes that have escaped to safe havens have been put to better use than the taxes that were paid lingers on.

In some places that is not the case, in some places, sadly, the most patriotic thing to do seems not to pay the taxes; and safeguard the resources so as they can be used in better times, with different governments, and, for those countries, the existence of tax-havens are a blessing and they should be kept open.

So perhaps countries should be indexed on a how good use the government makes of the taxes and other revenues, and any citizen from the 100 worst should have the right to access a safe haven, for at least ten years. Of course, this exclusion privilege should be renounced by anyone in public service.

There are though many criminals using the safe-haven facilities and that should be stopped and so what could be needed is for the banks requiring from the citizen that qualify for entrance to a safe-haven, to evidence that the funds indeed originate from tax evasion.

If the Financial Times wants to live up to its motto of “Without fear and without favour” then it should not forget the citizens so easily and so automatically side with the tax man… (that is, of course, unless it has some own dirty laundry to hide). If there is an argument for tax-evaders losing sleep, the same argument should be used for tax-wasters.

So, Sir, help us put a little pressure on Governments and prepare that list of countries where tax evasion should be permissible… I mean aren’t we all for better accountability? Constitutions are written to guarantee that the citizen is not abused by those in power, and given ever more intense globalization it would seem like we are in need of a global constitution, before those in power team up against us small fry.