New York, Sanders, Clinton – And Panama.

By Jerry Alatalo

April6-1

 

Alphabet The entire world is talking about the “Panama Papers”. With 13-days between now and the New York state Democratic primary vote, it will rise to the top as an issue and become the difference resulting in a resounding victory for Sanders. The Sanders campaign was already rolling with momentum-building wins in 7 of the last 8 states – including Tuesday in Wisconsin – but when the people of Wyoming and New York learn the stances Clinton and Sanders took with regard to Panama in 2011, Clinton’s run for the White House quite possibly comes to an end.

April6-4Once the American people become aware of the profoundly different, “pro” and “anti” positions of Clinton and Sanders on the global tax haven industry, the gleeful smile and exuberance expressed by then Secretary Clinton in 2011 upon learning of the murder of Libya’s Gaddafi – and immediately after her uttering the infamously quoted “We came, we saw, he died!” – will likely transform into a deep depression. Hillary, even though her aspiration to become the 1st woman President of the United States ran into a “Panamanian Buzzsaw”, will consider herself fortunate she’s not living in Libya, at the very least.

The 2011 NATO bombing of Libya into the stone age was not about bringing freedom and democracy to the people of that nation. It was all about stopping a planned, ready to become reality, introduction of a new currency for the whole continent of Africa. Gaddafi was leading the initiative; one which, if it had come to pass, would have freed the people of Africa from the predatory actions of financial institutions and owners of the Federal Reserve, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, City of London among others. Corrupt leaders in Africa would have found themselves without any more dirty money to stash in Panama and the other 70-plus tax haven jurisdictions around the planet.

Nobody should expect Clinton to offer an honest, accurate description of the Panama Papers and what the expose’ means for ordinary Americans. One would probably win if betting she stays away from commenting on the topic of global tax evasion to the greatest extent possible. Unfortunately for Ms. Clinton, the story has become too large to avoid (it has record-size media “legs”), and coming forward with her views on the matter is now inescapable. The political tactic she used in refusing to show Americans the transcripts of her Goldman Sachs speeches – “I’ll offer my opinion on the Panama Papers when everyone else does” – is a prescription for failure.

While the “Goldman Sachs play” would fail, it’s difficult to perceive how choosing to comment on the global tax evasion industry could be any less problematic for Ms. Clinton. If she chooses silence, she loses. If she speaks to the issue, intensifying the impression in New York voters’ minds that Sanders fought tax evasion and she facilitated it, she loses.

Why should Ms. Clinton prepare for dealing with election defeat and depression? Because an unprecedented scenario combining the phenomenon of New York voting, Goldman Sachs speeches, Wall Street corruption, record planetary wealth inequality, austerity, Middle East war and peace, now massive tax evasion by the world’s wealthiest, most powerful people has emerged. Ms. Clinton, whose true record will become revealed to Americans in the next 13 days, has been on the wrong side of the world’s most important issues. The wrong side of history.

April6-2But “Don’t cry for me, America” after Hillary finally becomes exposed and loses the Democratic nomination to Bernie Sanders, because her and Bill will have all the time in the world to “hang” with their “people”, their multi-billionaire friends – such as the mega-rich international banking family the Rothschilds, or the Rockefellers, or the Waltons of WalMart. After all, the “idle rich” have all the time in the world for working on how to make Earth a better home for this and future generations.

April6-3Or, if the Clintons aren’t interested in world peace now, after she leaves politics they can join up with George W. Bush, Jeb and dad George H.W. Bush, CFR head David Rockefeller, Dick Cheney, Tony Blair, etc. and start a “Billionaire Art Society”, donating their paintings to charities like the Iraq, Libya, Syria or Yemen Relief Fund. If only George Carlin were alive today. Carlin would’ve received some long-overdue respect and admiration, perhaps a degree of personal satisfaction, as the “Club.. that you and I ain’t in…”, and how they’ve operated in secret for decades, becomes known by everyone on Earth.

Whether one describes the amazing events occurring as part of a political revolution, an evolutionary leap for humanity, or arrives at some other explanation, there are awesome and important transforming movements happening. It’s perhaps a great stretch to equate the Panama Papers with Revelations in the Bible, but for Hillary Clinton and her “peeps” it very likely feels that way.

(Thank you to The Young Turks at YouTube)

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“Panama Papers” Tax Evasion Expose’ Forces Presidential Response.

By Jerry Alatalo

(Image: Vocfm.co.za)
(Image: Vocfm.co.za)

Alphabet After the largest release of secret financial records of tax evasion in history, the “Panama Papers”, presidential candidates Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and John Kasich have no choice but to share their views with the American people and fully address the issue – like Bernie Sanders. Sanders alone among the remaining major-party presidential contenders has spoken to crowds across the nation about the global industry of tax havens/evasion.

Given the worldwide press coverage of the “Panama Papers”, the American people will surely be interested in what Clinton, Trump, Cruz and Kasich have to say on this major news bombshell – of historic dimension and consequence.

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The men and women at the Tax Justice Network have worked relentlessly for many years reporting on the worldwide tax evasion industry, now estimated to cost $1 trillion in lost tax revenues for national governments. The group issued a press release today on their website:

Press Release:  Tax Justice Network

The Enablers Of Financial Secrecy Know  What They Are Doing

For immediate release

Contact: John Christensen, Director of the Tax Justice Network +44 7979 868302

Law firms like Mossack Fonseca know exactly what they are doing when they set up secret offshore companies. Lawyers operate in a privileged environment. Although they have a duty of confidentiality to their clients, that duty does not override their obligation to uphold the law. This means performing adequate due diligence on their clients and informing the relevant authorities when they come across suspicious activity.

However, far too many offshore lawyers, accountants and bankers see it as their role to shield their clients from financial regulations designed to prevent money laundering, tax evasion and corruption.

The Tax Justice Network has for many years highlighted the role Panama has played in the global offshore industry. Our Financial Secrecy Index, the benchmark for assessing the secrecy of financial centres, assigns Panama with one of the highest secrecy scores in the world.

The kind of financial secrecy practised by Panama is designed specifically to avoid global regulations requiring the disclosure of assets. In many cases this secrecy is established for the sole purpose of hiding criminal or corrupt transactions.

For years we have called on governments around the world to implement the policies required to stamp out tax evasion, corruption and criminality, yet we have seen little progress. We note that today’s latest leak from the ICIJ highlights yet again how financial secrecy permeates the global political and business elite; many of whom are responsible for designing the rules on the global economy.

What is needed now is a commitment to end financial secrecy, tax havens and the offshore financial system. We are unaware of any legitimate reason as to why individuals need to incorporate companies in secrecy jurisdictions. It is now time for that practice to end.

Commenting specifically on today’s allegations,

John Christensen, Director of the Tax Justice Network said:

“Mossack Fonseca has been one of the giants of the offshore world for decades. They had a reputation for extreme secrecy and discretion on their clients’ behalf, which needless to say was attractive to many clients engaged in tax evasion, fraud, hiding conflicts of interest, and other white collar crimes.

It is important to recognise that offshore law firms like Mossack Fonseca do not operate in isolation; they rely on intermediaries, often other law firms or banks, to pass on clients and to provide support for the sophisticated cross-border structures needed by politically exposed clients or other members of the global financial elite who want to hide their corrupt and criminal activities”

Alex Cobham, Director of Research for the TJN said:

“The Tax Justice Network’s Financial Secrecy Index has for a long time listed Panama as one of the most secretive jurisdictions in the world. In the most recent index we identified Panama as a jurisdiction of ‘extreme concern’. But the international community, despite talking a good game, has done little to compel improvements either from Panama or the many other jurisdictions working to promote secrecy, including the British tax haven network.

This global inaction has allowed places like Panama to cause huge damage to the global economy, facilitating tax avoidance and evasion that not only eliminates government revenues to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars a year, but also the corruption that undermines democratic government and elite accountability.”

Nicholas Shaxson, author of Treasure Islands, a book about tax havens, said:

 “While the focus is currently on Panama, one of the world’s sleaziest tax havens, it is important not to forget that it is just part of a bigger global system. The United States is a big player in the game, hosting vast sums in foreign-owned assets in conditions of strong secrecy. The United Kingdom runs a global network of Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies that includes some of the world’s biggest tax havens — including Cayman, the British Virgin Islands, Bermuda and Jersey.

In a little over two months’ time UK Prime Minister David Cameron will hold a global anti-corruption summit in London. If the UK government is serious about taking on corruption and money laundering, then it needs to take action on the British territories, many of which are used by companies such as Mossack Fonseca to hide their clients’ wealth.”

Notes

  1. The Tax Justice Network’s Financial Secrecy Index can be accessed here: http://www.financialsecrecyindex.com/introduction/fsi-2015-results. Panama receives a secrecy score of 72 out of 100 on the index.
  2. The Financial Secrecy Index narrative report on Panama can be found here: http://www.financialsecrecyindex.com/PDF/Panama.pdf
  3. We recently wrote on how Panama’s history as a tax haven. Which can be accessed here: http://www.taxjustice.net/2016/03/30/panama-the-making-of-a-tax-haven-and-rogue-state/
  4. The Tax Justice Network is a research organisation focusing on the offshore economy – To find out more about the TJN, visit taxjustice.net

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Along with TJN’s website, those interested in learning more about the issue of tax havens and tax evasion can visit Tax Justice Network’s YouTube channel and listen to dozens of archived, highly informative, fact-filled podcasts:

https://www.youtube.com/user/TackleTaxHavens

The presidential campaign of Bernie Sanders should receive a tremendous surge of support after the release of the “Panama Papers”, especially when Americans learn he’s been the only candidate of the two major parties addressing the extremely important issue of massive, global tax evasion.

Bush, Clinton Destroyed Iraq And Libya: Can You Say ‘President Bernie Sanders’?

by Jerry Alatalo

aaa-37Alphabet While today every news organization is abuzz about Hillary Clinton’s announcement she is running for president, the nation of Libya is in a chaotic state. Every man or woman who’s been paying attention will not forget, after Muammar Gaddafi became assassinated in the aftermath of the NATO bombing campaign in 2011, her on-camera, disturbingly gleeful exclamation, “We came, we saw, he died!” The Libyan people, before their country was literally destroyed militarily based on lies similar to those told by the George W. Bush administration leading to the Iraq War, enjoyed the highest standard of living of any nation on the African continent.

Gaddafi’s “crime” was proposing a new financial infrastructure for the African continent, independent of the Rothschild-dominated international banking cartel.

As the right-leaning news networks like FOX interview Jeb Bush, along with announced GOP candidates Ted Cruz/Rand Paul, and ask him to comment on Hillary’s announcement, the nation of Iraq is, like Libya, in a chaotic state. Major battles are ongoing in that country to regain land and cities overtaken by ISIS, a ruthless and brutal, killing-machine, mercenary mafia whose members have been totally absent from media appearances to discuss the “superior” merits of their political ideology. ISIS’ so-called “leader” – al-Baghdadi – is nowhere to be found or heard after one address on the internet delivered in the summer of 2014. What happened to ISIS leader al-Baghdadi?

Many believe that Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, Israel and western nations led by the U.S. have facilitated ISIS’ atrocities to diminish or stop regional, citizen-energized efforts to change the balance of power in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia, now in the midst of an air-bombing campaign against Yemen’s Houthis, without consent from the United Nations Security Council and therefore illegal under international law, has been conspicuously absent in the war against ISIS. UN observers warn of an impending humanitarian catastrophe in Yemen if the violence continues, while Yemenis pre-Saudi bombing campaign were already living in one of the poorest nations on Earth.

Jeb’s brother George lied to the world about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction and connection to the events in New York City on September 11, 2001, leading to what many informed observers and analysts believe was the United States’ greatest foreign policy catastrophe – the Iraq War. Before 2003 and the start of that catastrophic, extremely negative-consequence war, Saddam Hussein, although not anywhere near a “nice guy”, had eliminated terrorism from Iraq. Hussein’s crime was selling Iraq’s massive oil resources on the global market for euros instead of dollars.

For that crime, the Iraqi people became subject to a massive U.S. military assault leading to hundreds of thousands perishing, while Jeb’s brother George, Tony Blair, Dick Cheney and others continue to live lives of impunity. The international community has yet to muster the necessary moral and legal courage to prosecute clear war criminals at the International Criminal Court, unless they be the token black, African continent mass murderer.

Recently, Senator Bernie Sanders’ office issued a press release calling for the kingdom of Saudi Arabia to finally become involved in the war against ISIS. Some analysts/experts point out that there is a major power transition occurring in the Middle East, based on societal perceptions of monarchical, wealth-concentrating power holders’ accountability for the historic war, violence and destruction in the region. This explains Saudi, Qatari, Israeli, Turk, and western support for ISIS, a mercenary mafia created to prevent increasing calls by the citizens of the Middle East for fair, just, equitable, democratic forms of government.

The Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush candidacies do not offer prospects for greater coöperation and real peace between the United States and the rest of the world’s people, and these presidential hopefuls have histories and relationships which strongly suggests either’s propensity toward military – not negotiated peace through dialogue – solutions in the arena of foreign policy if elected president. In this period of human history where communication between people around the Earth has become instantaneous, if a worldwide referendum were held today probably 99.9% of humanity would vote for an end to war.

Unless Clinton, Bush, Cruz, Paul and those soon announcing their candidacy for President of the United States experience a spiritual epiphany and tell – with great specificity and integrity – the American people their main goal as the most powerful leader in the free world is ending war forever, all of those candidates persist in lining up on the wrong side of history and the nearly unanimous opinions of civilization.

Related to the wishes of people everywhere on Earth for the end of war and militarism, candidates for the office of President of the United States will need to adequately – with great specificity and integrity – address the global issue of historic, record wealth inequality.

Senator Bernie Sanders comes closest of those who’ve announced – and those believed soon to announce – their presidential candidacies in the context of straight-talk, specific and integrity-fuelled discussion and debate on the major American and international issues of our time.

The world has become weary of leaders who are less than 100% transparent and honest with their people.

For that reason, men and women concerned about the health, well-being and futures of their families, friends, co-workers, and all humanity would do well to consider undertaking unified efforts which dramatically increase the number of American voters entirely comfortable with – and clearly encouraged by – the sound of “President Bernie Sanders”.  

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(Thank you to Bernie Sanders at YouTube)