#FATCA: will Europe pay the price for one-sided U.S. financial information demands? http://t.co/Dc2BL0z34U via @New_Europe
— U.S. Citizen Abroad (@USCitizenAbroad) August 15, 2013
A new post from Jim Jatras
It seems that “automatic exchange of information” (AEOI) is all the fashion at the European Commission as a means to combat “revenue losses incurred due to tax fraudsters and evaders.” To that end, a recently proposed Council Directive would base an AEOI “pilot action” on model intergovernmental agreements (IGAs) drafted pursuant to a “joint statement” last year by the U.S. Treasury Department and five EU governments for “reciprocal” implementation of the U.S. “Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act” (FATCA).
As an American, I cannot tell Europeans they should not base their tax policy on AEOI or the FATCA model. But if the Commission or EU Member States believe that the U.S. will actually provide “reciprocity” for the kind of information they are committing to deliver to Washington, they should reconsider their assumptions.
Under the FATCA IGAs, European governments commit to require their domestic financial institutions to report the assets of all “U.S. Persons,” first to that government’s own tax service, and then to transfer it to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS). For example, under a law recently approved by the parliament of the United Kingdom (the first country to sign an IGA), HM Revenue & Customs commits explicitly to impose the American FATCA law on British institutions. The costs of regulatory implementation by HMRC would fall on British taxpayers. In turn, UK financial institutions (and their customers) would bear hundreds of millions of pounds in costs for collecting the information for transfer to the IRS. The direct revenue benefit to the Exchequer? Zero. The same will take place in each non-U.S. “FATCA partner” country, as the 2012 “joint statement” euphemistically calls them. (Worldwide, estimated FATCA compliance costs run to $1 to 2 trillion in order to “recover” revenues of less than $1 billion per year – enough to fund the U.S. federal government for about two hours.)
What is the U.S. obligated to provide in return? Nothing, as it happens. The IGAs, which are nowhere authorized or even mentioned in FATCA, have no clear status in American law. They are not simple treaty-based “interpretive” agreements, nor are they treaty amendments submitted to the U.S. Senate for advice or consent, or to the full Congress for enactment in American domestic law. In essence, this means the IGA has the force of law for the non-U.S. “partner” but not for the U.S. I have first-hand knowledge of at least one government that specifically told Treasury they would consider an IGA only if it took the form of a treaty protocol, with Senate approval, so they could be sure it would bind the U.S. as well. Treasury flatly refused.
You can read the complete article here.
Actually Ayn hated libertarians
Nevertheless, it was the label that the angry little man gave me.
But the sad thing about it is that I’m not anti-government. I’m just against the actions of the US Government. I have no desire to tear down the US Government, nor do I want to join with other groups that do. To me, that is just stupid and pointless. I only want to divorce from the US government so that I can live in peace. However, I suppose that kind of talk is just ‘anti-government’ to those with such a limited view.
I especially liked this part in the link that you’ve posted….
Q: What do you think of the libertarian movement?
AR: All kinds of people today call themselves “libertarians,” especially something calling itself the New Right, which consists of hippies who are anarchists instead of leftist collectivists; but anarchists are collectivists. Capitalism is the one system that requires absolute objective law, yet libertarians combine capitalism and anarchism. That’s worse than anything the New Left has proposed. It’s a mockery of philosophy and ideology. They sling slogans and try to ride on two bandwagons. They want to be hippies, but don’t want to preach collectivism because those jobs are already taken. But anarchism is a logical outgrowth of the anti-intellectual side of collectivism. I could deal with a Marxist with a greater chance of reaching some kind of understanding, and with much greater respect. Anarchists are the scum of the intellectual world of the Left, which has given them up. So the Right picks up another leftist discard. That’s the libertarian movement. [FHF 71]
Especially the part about the right picking up a leftist discard. I always thought that neo-conservatism is mostly social conservatism mixed in with aspects of socialism (big state, deficit spending, plus corporate welfare) and authoritarianism, due to it’s roots being based on disaffected Democrats that won’t let go of all that is left wing socialism. They just graft on some God, guns, and a whole lot of flagwaving in the rhetoric, while they displace all of the old conservatives.
KalC : I applied to Vancouver consulate for my first appointment last November when there were still open spots. Now apparently there are none, due to panic over FATCA and other things, but they only show appointment dates for a couple months or so ahead of time and if you check every day you might find an open spot in the most distant day
@mjh, I have always held that others come to their belief system as honestly as I came to mine and respect their choices. Says the “socialist liberal” Labels are just labels and rarely define a whole person though.
Indeed, and for the record, I really hate labels! Life is hard enough without political left wing right wing nonsense, and dealing with closed minded fools that resort to labels and epithets, rather than attempt a cognitive thought.