There is something quintessentially American about chasing the whale. While FATCA harpooners rove the globe, their keen steel promises to take out countless ordinary fool “U.S. persons” as collateral damage. Grotesque governmental pursuit flounders through more dimensions than a bad science fiction novel.
Concepts of “residence” and “taxation” will never be the same again. Impacted individuals may amount to little more than froth on the tsunami. Even if their own wrecked lives inevitably stand front and center in their own perspectives.
The so-called sharing economy could be on the verge of dwarfing clunky old corporate inversions as a threat that zeroes in on plodding and entitled behemoths like the U.S.A. If nothing else, watching techno-payback inflicted on a failing state may offer at least the respite of schadenfreude.
In the five years since these businesses [Airbnb, Uber, etc.] began their spiraling growth, some cities and states around the globe have fought hard to make them play by the same rules as traditional hotels or taxis and collect various local taxes — often as not, they’ve lost. As the new breed of companies moves toward profitability, transforming larger chunks of the economy, policy experts say the battle is likely to shift to the national level, where billions of dollars a year in corporate taxes could be at risk. … “These companies are the future,” says Stephen Shay, a former top international tax lawyer at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, now teaching at Harvard. “The nature of their business and the structure of the companies can allow them to essentially keep all of their profits out of the U.S.”
You can read the online version of the rest of Bloomberg Businessweek’s article:
Sharing Everything But the Wealth (April 11-24,2016) 29-30.