And then there were none: How the United States government is persecuting United States persons living abroad and what we can do about it.
Mach7 has taken the initiative to suggest that we need to get the word out to fight this FATCA/FBAR nonsense. I agreed with him. His initial suggestion, which he floated on the Expat forum, was a full page ad in the Globe and Mail. Such an ad would cost around $12-15,000.
In December, renounceuscitizenship suggested that I write a book, putting together the posts that I’ve written on the subject (book outline). So I went back to Mach7 and suggested that rather than doing a one and done advertisement in the Globe and Mail, perhaps he and others would like to fund a book that would put together various pieces of information, that newbies would spend weeks to find on their own. The purpose of the book would be to acquaint people to the subject and to rally them to the justice of our cause.
I would do such a book without funding if I could justify it. But I have a full time employee who is helping with another academic book project on the Acta Pauli which I need to finish. Any time I put into an Isaac Brock project would take away from my other commitment and I have to justify the expense of my assistant who I am paying out of pocket. I would need about $8000 for the project (two months, 1/2 time, two researchers, myself and my assistant). I would write the book section by section on the blog and get input from the rest of you. The alpha version I project in one month. Beta version in two months, and I stick it all together in to a PDF that can then be distributed to the public. In electronic format, we can continue to add, revise and improve the book.
One concern that Mach7 had was that he did not want to pull me off of my front line work here at the blog to write a book, as though I would be sequestered in some ivory tower somewhere immersed in papers writing. My view is that funding me to write such a project would thrust me to the front line more than ever, as I would be blogging on my research and putting parts of chapters up here on a daily basis. In addition, I foresee spin-offs of chapters being published in other media outlets–for example, there is a desperate need to have an article in the Globe & Mail to denounce the Canadian Bankers Association recent flier for clients! — It must explain how FATCA will violate privacy rights and the Human Rights code.
It is clear that none of us are so rich that we could pay for such a project out of pocket. The truly rich are either hiding somewhere or have already put themselves into compliance, being able to afford the lawyers and accountants. Thus, it would take a smaller amount of funding from a number of people.
In terms of payment, I could create a paypal account. But first, I’d be interested in getting concrete pledges from you. I would ask that anyone wanting to contribute contact me directly at email@example.com (or if you have my e-mail address use that one–this one has already been compromised with thousands of spam messages per month). Alternatively, you can leave a comment below and I will contact you directly with the details.
Petros, I am facing unknown as yet professional fees to deal with protecting my son for whom I hold an RDSP. However, I will pledge $500 for this critical advocacy. I would hope that such a publication would reach and convince US persons in Canada (and beyond) they cannot ignore this issue.
There are many who need to be reached, and many of whom this will be such a severe financial and emotional burden. They don’t know or can’t comprehend what the US IRS considers their responsibilities even if they have lived abroad or have been citizens of countries other than the USA for many years (many of whom thought they WERE NO LONGER US CITIZENS).
We can try to help, especially since it appears our government representatives are not prioritizing the issue (of course it would be a pleasant surprise if our government were working on something in the background for their “US person” constituents / we can’t wait for that possibility though!).
Thank you, Petros, and thank you, Mach7 — AND of course renounecitizenship.
I am moved by your commitment and personally touched by your situation. It makes me very angry and I am going to let this anger propel me forward. Peter
What about this as a possible starting point: there are approximately 14 authors/contributors to this blog – what about, following the leadership of Calgary411, a contribution of $500 each (exempting those who find it too onerous under current circumstances to pay). Just a suggestion as a possible starting point. I think this project needs to get going right away.
I don’t really think there has to be an outlay of money from anybody. Getting the site “bulked up” with lots of stories AND increasing the page ranking is probably much more effective long-term than paying for an advertisement.
Hello everyone….i TOO will pledge 500 dollars to move this forward. This is very very important and we have to get the message out with factual information for all. Lets do this!
Hi, can you contact me about this? Sorry, but I don’t see another way to contact you here. Btw, I just mentioned this in an article and will do so again when Americans meet 8 Feb. at a town hall meeting – I’ll be interviewing the ambassador to Switzerland. You’re at the end of this, but you’ll be mentioned higher up next time! http://genevalunch.com/blog/2012/02/02/data-and-privacy-issues-are-growing-focus-in-us-swiss-talks-taxes-visas-banking/
Count me in!
Has anyone heard back from Ellen Wallace on how the meeting with the US Ambassador to Switzerland went on Febuary 8th.
I would like to help write this book publication. I will do it for free.
You can count on me to help, not only in terms of time but also of money.
You & all the other IB contributors are doing WONDERFUL work!!! I’d like to just contribute a little bit to your operational costs, just to start with.
I’m in process of extracting myself from “Uncle’s” clutches – it (relinquishment) has NOT been an easy process for me.
@All, Count me in!
I hope that this project would not be only for Canadians, including all Americans Abroad. Also, the newspaper should he! a US newspaper because we want the support of the Americans living in the USA.
I don’t know how much I’ll be spending on fees and penalties, and I’m unemployed, but I could probably give $50. for now – to a book, or to the legal fund if any challenges were organized. I know it’s not much, but I’m between a rock and a hard place right now.