@Isaac Brock Society @Calgary411
Posting here thanks to the kind email from JC regarding my survey. It is a new survey which went live on 5 December 2014. I anticipate it remaining open until mid-January 2015. I am hoping to have a large number of responses in order to really put some nuance and depth – based on research data – into the discussions of citizenship renunciation. Most articles seem to be based on relatively few targeted interviews. I’m hoping to uncover more of the nuance in the situation. The survey is relatively short and asks for some basic demographic data, reasons for moving out of the US, what countries respondents live in now, and asks about citizenship renunciation intentions. I intend to publish academic articles from this, but can also share key findings, likely in February. You may be familiar with my recent book, Migrants or Expatriates? Americans in Europe. I’d be grateful if you could respond to the survey, and also share widely. I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Take the survey: The United States and You – A Survey for US Citizens and Former US Citizens
The United States and You – A Survey for US Citizens and Former US Citizens
There has been a great deal in the news recently about US citizens giving up their US passports, but these reports are largely based on anecdotal evidence and not on systematic research. This survey seeks to fill that gap, and explore, from a research perspective, what factors are playing a role in US overseas citizens’ thought processes on maintaining or renouncing US citizenship.
This survey explores that question, as well as asking a few questions more broadly about interactions with the US. The survey thus seeks to contribute to a deeper, research-based understanding of the interactions of Americans living abroad and the US, including renunciation.
The survey, which should take about 15 minutes, is completely anonymous – you will not be able to be identified. IP addresses are not being collected. You may skip or refuse to answer any question, and you may stop participating in the survey at any point. I take anonymity and the protection of data very seriously – and I appreciate your willingness to participate in this research!
If you have any questions, either now or later, you may contact me, Dr. Amanda Klekowski von Koppenfels, at email@example.com . I am myself American, and teach and research at the University of Kent, Brussels (www.kent.ac.uk/brussels) and it is in the context of my employment there that I am coordinating this study.
Thank you so much for your participation!
From OAP, who has just completed this latest survey.
I completed the von Koppenfels survey last night and was very impressed. I’ve started many surveys, completed them 1/2 way through, and stopped because it became apparent there was an ‘agenda’; the survey was superficial; or the survey didn’t really want to know the real issues. That’s not the case with this survey.
As explained in her post above, the survey really does offer the opportunity to delve into the nuances. It’s a much more scholarly approach and gives one the chance to go much deeper into an individuals relationship with America, and if the relationship has broken down, a chance to define the detail (both practical and emotional) as to why that has happened. Don’t look to be ‘led’ by the survey. There aren’t the obvious “it’s because of the tax reporting or FATCA stupid” type questions.
It doesn’t take long, but don’t do it in a rush. Through its opportunities to define your issues, it should be far more incisive than the Democrats Abroad survey could ever be. With the right analysis, (and judging from the composition of the survey, I have faith it will be) a much more in depth and informative result will be reached. It could go well beyond the ‘sound bites’ we employ to try to make others understand the issues, and journey into the real crisis some of us face. I look forward to the summary.
I, too, will take the time for this important survey today. Hope many other Brockers join me.
Thanks for all of your work, Dr. Klekowski von Koppenfels!
I endorse every word you have just written, and hope @Anne Frank, @ Allison Christians (and anyone else who might be able to make a difference and help) are listening!
How about any legal grounds of class action suit by nonUS citizen family members against US government for policies that compromise family financial security?
I filled out this survey as well. It seems to be a serious undertaking and will have some clout in the end.
@My last two posts:
Allison Christians @taxpolblog 22h22 hours ago
@JCDoubleTaxed I agree, there are a number of issues. Whether they are legally protected or not is a question for the courts.
Onward legal action!
The US is not only alienating and angering current and former citizens, greencard holders, those living in the US with pre-existing accts from their country of origin, but also our non-US families, friends, employers, and non-US countrymen. We have discussed at various times here the amount and pervasiveness of anti-US feeling and expression that exists outside the US. And now the US has alienated even those ‘abroad’ who might have mitigated that somewhat. No more. Now our spouses and children and friends and acquaintances are treated to detailed evidence of US arrogance and predation at firsthand – and those speaking of it so are current or former US citizens. The Snowden revelations and the report of CIA torture and renditions, along with other similar information only makes it ever clearer what the US really is up to – it lies and it turns the NSA against its own people as well as the rest of the world.
The US has might, and dominates the world in many respects, but that may not always be so. It continues to be utterly careless of the value of the goodwill of its diaspora, and of its neighbours in Canada, and that of the rest of the globe. It demands that under CBT, FBAR and FATCA, our home country laws and rights and freedoms are to be subservient to US domestic law and might. It demands obesiance and obedience from our local government and institutions. It disrespects the sovereignty and autonomy of other nations as well as international law. It is the height of hubris and folly to be tormenting those ‘abroad’ in the American diaspora to such an extent that even the US IRS Taxpayers Advocate comments on it – and uses the word ‘torment’ to describe it publicly.
We see what the US is willing to do to people ‘abroad’ who it claims as part of its society (the US extraterritorial tax apologists like to fancy that up by calling us part of the ‘polity’ – and hence seeks to legitimate deeming us liable for Club US membership fees extorted under duress) as well as what it does to US residents. And if the US is willing to treat its citizens this way, then what won’t it do to non-citizens?
It is to the point that it behooves non-US citizens to think twice before giving birth in the US while studying or working or visiting. It behooves non-US people to think twice before marrying a US citizen ‘abroad’, having children with one, adopting one, or going into business with one, or even employing one in any position where they have co-signatory powers on non-US accounts. All those circumstances have serious US extraterritorial tax and potential layers of penalty liability and pitfalls. For example; who would agree to have children born outside the US – with the US taxable status for life that entails if they understand fully how the child will be extraterritorially taxed by the US on their local education savings – and is ordered by the US to fill out an annual reporting to a Financial Crimes agency as a potential criminal?
There is no choice but to seriously consider renouncing if that offers the only lasting relief from US extraterritorial predations and threats. And that is what it is. The US is preying on us, and our families outside its borders and jurisdiction. There is also no living with realizing that you are defined as property of the US government – not citizens in any true sense – without any true representation or recourse. Without a voice, without respect. Only taxation without representation. And attempts to control our movement and travel – by mandating that we can only use the US passport if deemed a US citizen by the US, but then prevented from relinquishing if we comply and use the US passport we were forced to obtain – under duress. The US is entrapping people outside its borders. And the message to those ‘abroad’ has been consistently threatening and punitive. That’s when the message isn’t “and don’t let the door hit you on the ass on the way out” – and “no loss, there are plenty more where you came from – look how many will do anything to come to the US” as well as ” if you exercise your right to renounce, we’ll never let you enter and see your US family again”.
Have you seen US politicians champion the plight of those deemed US citizens outside the US? Or speak up about the disenfranchisement from voting, or representation? Or the denial of ordinary banking where people live outside the US? Or move to limit or repeal the FBAR? NO. The silence is deafening.
And our interactions with the US? Disrespect and threats. US Consular officials who state that they have no intention of assisting those who seek to renounce in Canada to do so in any reasonable waiting time – which has now ballooned to Sept 2015. They state that renunciations are of low priority, and that that will not change and no resources will be dedicated to address the backlog – though it is US law that citizens have the right to renounce. They increase the renunciation fees from zero to 450. to 2350. with very little notice. Thus effectively denying the right to renounce to many – as well as the pre-existing denial of the ability to renounce for minors and for those deemed legally incompetent. IRS demands ‘compliance’ but cancelled any information sessions at the Canadian consulates and embassies – since at least 2011 – coinciding with the increase in enforcement and threatening public statements. The US threatens the wellbeing of our families, our legal local post-tax savings, our family home, our children’s education, the savings and resources of those with disabilities, our employment if in conflict with FBAR, business partnerships if in conflict with US tax laws, etc.
The US is destroying the lives and livelihoods and viability of those it deems as US citizens and ‘US taxable persons’ outside its borders.
That is the relationship we have with the US. Even those of us like myself who have renounced/relinquished are scarred by the relationship – as are our non-US families.
Badger Wow, so well said. You have covered so much. I would dearly love to see this published to reach a wider audience.
“And if the US is willing to treat its citizens this way, then what won’t it do to non-citizens?” This should bother everyone. Word is getting out, it remains to be seen how this will all play out.
Excellent job elaborating on why many of us feel that the single biggest threat to Americans abroad is the US government itself.
@Badger, You’ve been rather quiet lately. Its good to see you back in full force, and stirring up the newer Brockers in the way that only Badger knows how to do. 🙂
@Badger Well said
You might strengthen with contrast:
Why has US citizenship become a burden and threat when it should be about liberty and an enabler to pursue one’s dreams?
The second half of the sentence is perhaps more in line with the perception of homelanders.
You are in fine form tonight. I think Dr. KvK could go straight to your comment and have 90% of what she needs to understand our “thought processes”.
Amen! You have managed to express clearly so much of what has enraged and oppressed me. Thank you, and may your words reach far and wide. Ongoing, regular and active support for ADCS is our best weapon.
The US still lives in the “Dark Ages”.
The US remains exception in all things… including torture.
All sorts of empires, tyrants, dictatorships and totalitarian states have used torture.
However, the US earns exceptional recognition as the only government that outsourced its torture program to clinical psychologists… and paid them more than $80 million… at the same time it was running up $15 trillion in public debt.
Badger: Yes! I hope you sent/send your entire comment to Amanda. It sums up our issue absolutely. Fabulous!
So well said, badger.
Where are all the donations we need to fight this in Canada, those whose families are affected? We must continue to stand up to the alienation and the betrayal. To do so is, as well, good for what we refer to as the *homeland* and even for our family members still there.
I, too have completed the survey In summing up my feelings, I directed her to the “I am Canada, Hear Me Roar” @ Forbes and let he know that I had written it.
@Badger I liked your post. I sent to Expat WSJ. I got an e-mail today from them asking who is Badger. I sent them a reply saying that you were a member of The Isaac Brock Society and if they wanted to try and contact you to do so on the media comment page using @Badger. I hope they print what you wrote. I referenced the original post here.
Victoria highlights on her blog Dr. Amanda Klekowski von Koppenfels’ survey : http://thefranco-americanflophouse.blogspot.fr/2015/01/the-united-states-and-you-new-americans.html so a good time to also remind of it again here.
All who complete the survey will be helping a very important survey and I can tell you that you will feel glad you did. Your words will be in good hands for getting our story passed on further!! Please take the 15 minutes it will take to help out there as well.