TAXES | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

TAXES

May 13 15:15

Piece of the action

Piece of the Action Star Trek Episode.
The way things are going we wont have any action for Bela to get a piece of.

May 13 15:02

House GOP will consider whether to impeach IRS Commissioner Koskinen

House Republicans will start considering whether to impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen over accusations that he failed to comply with a subpoena and lied to Congress, multiple sources told POLITICO.

May 13 03:05

“Unconstitutional”: Federal Judge Rules Obamacare Illegally Funded Without Congress Authorization

This system encourages sick people, and creates loopholes for crony financiers to reap the profits. It is the people who must pay for it… say what you will, but there is little promise that it will be overturned:

On Thursday, [U.S. District Court Judge Rosemary Collyer] ruled the administration is violating a provision of the law by paying promised reimbursements to health insurers who provide coverage at reduced costs to low-income Americans.

“Paying [those] reimbursements without an appropriation thus violates the Constitution,” she wrote. “Congress is the only source for such an appropriation, and no public money can be spent without one.”

Read more at SHTFplan.com

May 12 09:07

Obamacare Rules Change Opens Door For State Bailouts

Under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), the government spent $2.4 billion creating 23 non-profit healthcare cooperatives which were intended to help drive down health insurance costs through competition with for-profit companies.

As we noted, insurance premiums have subsequently skyrocketed, 12 of the 23 co-ops lost so much money that they had to shut down, and the remaining 11 lost a combined $400 million last year. So far, so good on the Obamacare front.

Now we learn, courtesy of The Daily Signal, that the Obama administration is changing the rules midstream so that the remaining 11 co-ops can have state governments place officials on their boards of directors, and make it easier to attract outside investors.

Said otherwise, the moves ultimately make a state bailout possible.

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May 12 07:41

The Real Target of the Panama Papers

So this is the way the Panama Papers end. Not with a bang—as in “Putin hiding US$2 billion”; you all remember the original headlines. But with a whimper; everyone lining up to duly access a prosaic database and find out the names of nearly 320,000 entities/offshore companies/trusts/foundations engaged in beautifying the finances of the rich and powerful.

The Soros-financed International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has not exactly fulfilled its mandate of heaping dirt on selected BRICS nations and the odd enemy of imperial interests/values—based on a NSA-style hack of Mossack Fonseca.

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May 09 14:40

Illegals Dwarf American Households in Welfare: “Obama Seeking $17K For Every Illegal Minor”

A new study found that both illegal and legal immigrants, who typically work low wage jobs, receive more in government assistance each year than struggling American families do.

Illegal immigrant households receive an average of $5,692 in federal welfare benefits every year, far more than the average “native” American household, at $4,431…

And Obama wants more... just MORE.

Read more at SHTFplan.com

May 09 10:38

Claims tax havens ‘distorting’ global economy, and Britain controls one-third of them

Tax havens “serve no useful economic purpose,” a group of 300 leading economists has said in a letter urging world leaders to bolster financial transparency ahead of London’s anti-corruption summit this week.

The letter, coordinated by Oxfam, suggests the UK is “uniquely placed” to reduce global corruption because it has sovereignty over a third of the world’s tax havens.

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May 07 11:06

Pentagon Warns Mideast Wars Creating Precision Missiles Crisis

Senior Department of Defense officials have complained, according to US media reports, that the current wars waged by the United States and its allies in Iraq, Yemen and Syria have depleted US reserves of precision guided missiles.

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"RAISE TAXES! BUY MORE WEAPONS! STARVE THE PEOPLE!" -- Official White Horse Souse

May 07 08:18

The Case Against Hillary Clinton

A proven catastrophe is far worse than a merely possible catastrophe; so, if Hillary Clinton turns out to be the Democratic nominee, I shall vote for Donald Trump, and then just hope that the worst things that he had said regarding public policy were lies, and that the best things that he had said regarding public policy reflected his actual beliefs.

Hillary offers not only her lies but something real (a record that’s highly relevant to the office she’s seeking) — and it’s repulsive. Trump, by contrast, offers no relevant track-record at all on public-policy matters. That’s not a virtue on his part, it’s a lack of the worst possible vice (a vile record of actual policies while in public office), for a potential U.S. President.

Given a choice between a proven psychopath, versus merely a possible (or even a likely) psychopath, I’ll definitely opt for the latter. It’s the only intelligent thing to do. Anything else would be suckerdom.

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May 06 07:36

Taxman gouges car buyers for money never spent

New car sales are up nearly 10 per cent this year over last year, and last year broke sales records. Canadians are spending tens of billions, and federal and provincial governments are raking in a healthy chunk of every dollar spent — 13 per cent, for example, in Ontario.

What the federal government is respectfully declining to discuss is the fact that it's also taxing people on money they aren't even spending, and forcing car dealers to collect it.

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May 05 09:11

Politics: Trump releases seven-point health care reform plan . . . and it's excellent

My job is to write what I think about whatever happens on a given day. It's not to only write what I think will result in a certain outcome. So when I tell you that Donald Trump's new seven-point health care reform plan is excellent, some of you are going to say: Don't say that now! It'll help Trump! #NeverTrump!!!

But my job is not to care one way or the other about who it will help or hurt. It's to say what I honestly think. And what I honestly think is that the plan Trump released yesterday is as good as I've heard from anyone in the race - if not necessarily better - for how to replace ObamaCare. I'm going to excerpt the seven points entirely from Trump's web site:

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May 03 08:11

Obamacare To Unveil "Price Shock" One Week Before The Elections

The writing was on the wall long before the largest US insurer, UnitedHealth, decided to pull the plug on Obamacare in mid April. Then, just a week later, Aetna’s CEO said Thursday that his company expects to break even, but legislative fixes are needed to make the marketplace sustainable.

"I think a lot of insurance carriers expected red ink, but they didn’t expect this much red ink,” said Greg Scott, who oversees Deloitte’s health plans practice. "... A number of carriers need double-digit increases."

It gets better.

One week ago Marilyn Tavenner, who until January 2015 ran the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, aka the massive Federal agency that oversaw the rollout of Obamacare and the disastrous implementation of HealthCare.gov and who is now as an insurance lobbyist, said she sees big jumps in Obamacare insurance premiums.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

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May 02 06:53

Puerto Rico defaults on debt Monday, may trigger financial storm in U.S., some say

The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, an American Territory, is set to default on their debt Monday, when bondholders plan to lay claim to Credit Default Swaps.

May 01 08:56

Lies, Lies And Omg, More Lies

It's that time of year again. It's open enrollment for health plans at my employer. They are biggest employer in Philly and have the most leverage possible with the insurance companies. They have such good leverage that my premiums are going up "only" 9.8% this year for a basic HMO plan. Based on what I hear from others, I should be thankful for just a 9.8% increase.

This isn't a new development. Since I've been tracking all my expenditures using Quicken since 1991, I know exactly what my annual health insurance costs have been every year. Obamacare was passed in 2009 and began to be implemented in 2010. Obama declared that families could expect $2,500 of savings per year. I know for a fact my annual medical expenses were $2,000 higher in 2015 than they were in 2010.

Apr 30 07:36

Swedish Govt Spends Millions Telling Citizens To Eat Insects To End Global Warming

Vinnova, the Swedish government agency that distributes money for research and development, spending some 2.7 billion kronor (£230 million) a year has announced its latest tranche of funding for creating a greener, more sustainable future — by weaning Europe off meat. It is hoped people will want to eat a so-called “climate smart” diet instead, reports FriaTider. Green activists and the United Nations are behind such political initiatives as ‘Meat Free Mondays’ — a gateway to full vegetarianism — which are based on the premise that meat consumption is driving man-made climate change. Another method to reduce that so-called burden on the earth is replacing meat protein with that harvested from insects instead.

Apr 30 07:21

America’s Coming Tax Increase

The debt held by the public has approximately doubled since President Obama took office and is now equal to 74% of gross domestic product. It is true that with the right policy mix, economic growth—stuck at just over 2% during the Obama “recovery”—will help close federal deficits and pay down the debt. At the end of World War II, for example, the debt-to-GDP ratio was at 104% and shrank to a low of 23% by 1974. But letting growth or future belt-tightening close the gap is the exception, not the rule. More often, higher taxes are the result.

Apr 29 20:37

Paying income tax in America is Voluntary

Idiot Harry Reid maintains that paying income tax is voluntary in the U.S.. Harry Reid is the Majority Leader in the U.S. Senate. He's obviously not very bright. But then again... he is a politician.

Apr 28 20:38

Satanists are furious that Boehner compared Ted Cruz to the Dark Lord

On Wednesday night, former House Speaker John Boehner bluntly called GOP candidate Ted Cruz “Lucifer in the flesh.”

When asked for his opinion about the Texas senator, Boehner said, “I have Democrat friends and Republican friends. I get along with almost everyone, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life.”

It turns out that the Satanic Temple agrees with Boehner’s sentiments — but they said there’s no way Cruz is the living incarnate of Satan.

Apr 27 09:55

The Worst Law Most Americans Have Never Heard Of

The government has criminalized so many mundane activities that the average American unknowingly commits three felonies a day. That’s according to a study by Harry Silverglate, a civil liberties lawyer.

Apr 26 10:22

Ontario taxpayers subsidized buyers of $1.1 million Porsche 918 Spyder

The Ontario government gave taxpayer-funded rebates to five millionaires to buy one of the most expensive cars ever manufactured, the Porsche 918 Spyder.

CBC News has learned that five Ontario drivers received funding through the province's Electric Vehicle Incentive Program in 2015 for buying the Porsche 918, which retailed in Canada at about $1.1 million.

Apr 26 09:55

LuxLeaks Whistleblowers on Trial For Revealing Tax Avoidance Schemes

Infamous for exposing the multi-billion dollar tax avoidance scandal known as the Luxembourg Leaks, or LuxLeaks, two whistleblowers and a journalist began trial on Tuesday for allegedly violating trade secrets and other theft charges. Although Transparency International has called for a dismissal of their case, Luxembourg does not consider the defendants to be whistleblowers.

Apr 25 08:37

Obama’s Global Warming Plan Cost Poor Americans $44 Billion, Raises Taxes By 166%

President Obama’s global warming plan would cost America’s poorest families billions annually, according to a report published Thursday by the Manhattan Institute.

The study estimates that Obama’s global warming plan would increase the costs of living for the poorest American families an additional $19 billion per year, equivalent to increasing their taxes by 166 percent. The tax increase would also raise taxes on other poor families by an extra $25 billion, equal to a 33 percent tax increase. Living costs for the richest households would only increase by 4 percent.

Apr 25 07:53

The Tory plan to turn education into a tax avoidance scam

It seems a company running a state-funded academy trust responsible for free schools in London and the Southeast of England is based in a tax haven, according to the so-called “Panama papers”.

Bellevue Education, one of two firms behind Bellevue Place Education Trust (BPET), is part-owned by a company registered to the British Virgin Islands, set up by the Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca.

The Department for Education and BPET have denied that Bellevue Education has any power over the way the schools are run, but does that really matter?

Apr 24 11:33

Body found in Topeka motel room after federal agents shot

Country Club Motel destroyed in fire after shooting.

TOPEKA, Kan. —The FBI said a body has been found in a burned out room of a Topeka motel where an occupant fired shots at federal agents late Saturday.

As investigators approached Collins' room, someone from inside the room opened fire. Two deputy U.S. marshals and an FBI agent were injured. Police said those injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

Apr 21 15:43

Carbon tax will cost Alberta families at least $1,000, Wildrose says

Alberta's NDP government is hiding the true effects of the carbon tax, which could cost families at least $1,000 more each year, Wildrose Leader Brian Jean said Monday.

Although low- and middle-income Albertans will receive rebates on the tax when it starts Jan. 1, 2017, Jean said they still will pay up to $700 extra.

Apr 21 08:06

David Cameron will not be investigated over off-shore trust and tax affairs by parliamentary watchdog

Standards watchdogs will not investigate Prime Minister David Cameron over the off-shore controversy revealed by the Panama Papers data leak.

The Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, Kathryn Hudson, has decided not to probe the matter, but her office refused to explain the reasons for that decision.

Apr 20 15:30

Why I’m proud that my tax bill is ZERO

Apr 20 13:09

Confessions Of A Panama Papers Hit Man

Waking Times

The hard-earned tax dollars of the average US citizen finances the infrastructure and social services that benefit the very rich and their corporations while they shelter their incomes in tax havens.

Apr 20 09:04

Tax collectors SURPRISE FAMOUS FAST FOOD CHAIN: sent them 300 million EUR bill for unpaid tax

French tax authorities have sent to McDonalds'u bill for EUR 300 million of unpaid taxes, which, they believe, the restaurant chain pulled to a branch in Luxembourg, published business magazine L'Expansion.

As the newspaper writes, reports Reuters, the tax authorities have accused the US fast food chain that it has used a subsidiary in Luxembourg - McD Europe Franchising - to redirect profits to countries with lower taxes in a way that is has excessively charged the French part of the business for the use of the brand and other services.

McDonalds France declined to comment on the latest developments in the ongoing investigation by tax authorities in France, of which first became known in 2014.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And all of a sudden, that $15 an hour wage doesn't seem like such a big issue!

Apr 20 09:03

IRS Made 9.4 *Billion* Disclosures of Confidential Taxpayer Information to Federal and State Agencies in 2015

The report reveals that the IRS made 9.4 billion disclosures of tax return information to federal and state agencies. The recipients of the most confidential taxpayer information were the states (7.9 billion disclosures), Bureau of Census (1.4 billion), GAO (340 million), CBO (256 million), Congress (71 million), the Affordable Care Act (52 million), and child support enforcement agencies (11 million).

Apr 20 07:41

Taxation = Theft at Gunpoint

Apr 20 07:33

The Shocking Reason for FATCA… and What Comes Next

If you’ve never heard of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), you’re not alone.

Few people have, and even fewer fully grasp the terrible things it foreshadows.

FATCA is a U.S. law that forces every financial institution in the world to give the IRS information about its American clients. Complying with it is a huge financial and administrative burden, measured in hundreds of billions of dollars. It’s a paper shuffler’s dream come true.

FATCA is the reason the vast majority of banks, brokerages, and other financial institutions outside of the U.S. shun American clients.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is from the same Congress that created legal tax shelters for themselves and their money-junkie friends!

Apr 19 11:34

Andrew Jackson, Who Fought Central Bank, Removed from $20 As “Public Concern for Liberty” Erased

The War on Cash has many fronts.

The latest battle is for the face of the currency itself, and the leaders in America’s past who have fought against the stranglehold of the money makers.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is expected to announce this week that Alexander Hamilton’s face will remain on the front of the $10 bill and a woman will replace Andrew Jackson on the face of the $20 bill, a senior government source told CNN on Saturday.

[...]Andrew Jackson famously stated: “You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out, and by the eternal God, I will rout you out.” (Andrew Jackson, to a delegation of bankers discussing the recharter of the Second Bank of the United States, 1832)

Read more at SHTF

Apr 18 13:31

The Steep Cost of Tax Dodging

The old saying goes that there are two things certain in life: death and taxes. But do taxes actually apply to the rich and powerful?

US corporations enjoy US infrastructure, talent and other resources, but they're not giving back financially. Over the last 50 years, the corporate share of federal revenues has dropped from a high of almost 40 percent in 1943 to less than 9 percent today. And while corporations pay less, ordinary Americans are called upon to make up the difference. Individual income taxes will account for nearly 49 percent of all federal revenues in 2016. If you add payroll taxes, individual taxes will make up more than 80 percent of US government revenues this year.

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Apr 18 12:55

IRS Agents Says : $50,000 reward to show a law requiring to pay federal Income tax

Apr 18 10:44

Janet Yellen Meets With Obama In Emergency Meetings As Crises Erupt Worldwide

Apr 18 10:09

Goldman Sachs Prospers at Taxpayers' Expense

If prudent investors can make only 0.5% on short-term assets, how does Goldman Sachs prosper?

Robert Rubin was a very powerful man. After 26 years and rising to the level of co-senior partner, he left Goldman Sachs in 1994 to become Treasury Secretary in the Clinton administration. His first major undertaking was during the Mexican bailout of 1995.

... Rubin drew criticism in Congress for using a Treasury Department account under his personal control to distribute $20 billion to bail out Mexican bonds, of which Goldman was a key holder.

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Apr 18 09:06

Panama and the Criminalization of the Global Finance System

Within a week the 11 million documents called the Panama papers, published by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, has become a household name. The documents are connected to the Panama law firm Mossack Fonsesca that helped establish offshore accounts for some of the wealthiest and most powerful leaders to launder money and evade taxes.

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Apr 18 08:49

Tax day is annoying for Americans, and hell for Palestinians

Tax Day can be aggravating for those of us who file and pay taxes without benefit of lawyers, accountants, family foundations or secret offshore accounts. For opponents of illegal Israeli settlements, apartheid and population removal generally, it is also a day of outrage. Palestinians may legitimately feel terror and despair at what this day signifies for them.

For Tax Day is the day that pro-Zionist Americans get to take off their 2015 contributions to any of the US pro-Israel charities that everyone, including the US Treasury, knows are funneling money to establish and support illegal Jewish settlements and consequently the terror inflicted upon Palestinians by armed and violent settlers. (Of course, it is also the day that each of us contributes our tax dollars to funding the weapons used to enforce Israel’s occupation.)

Apr 18 08:47

The Long Sordid Tale of the American Income Tax

It's the time of year again when most Americans will be filing their income taxes. As if that's not painful enough all by itself, here's a little more salt for your wounds.
First, some history: In 1913 the U.S. federal individual income tax was enacted following the passage of the 16th Amendment, which granted Washington the authority to take a piece of citizens' paychecks. According to the Tax Foundation, the top tax rate that year (adjusted for inflation) was 7 percent on income above $11.5 million; the lowest rate was 1 percent on income under $463,826.

Apr 18 06:59

Obama paid just 18% tax and got $22k refund as IRS deadline looms

US President Barack Obama and his spouse Michelle had an adjusted gross income of $436,065, nearly 9 percent less than the year before, which could mean they are no longer part of "The One Percent".

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The White House published the first couple’s tax return as an inspiration to those who prefer to wait until the 11th hour, or pay the penalty for being late.

Their “Form 1040” shows they paid $81,472 in federal taxes for the year, entitling them to a refund of $22,859 and an effective tax rate of just 18.8 percent. This is down from 19.6 percent in 2014.

Apr 18 06:46

WHAT THE PANAMA PAPERS DID FOR FRANCE

This short clip outlines what the Panama Papers did for France, and provides context throughout..

Apr 17 15:46

Personal Income Tax is Actually Illegal (former IRS Agent Explains)

Apr 17 11:11

Tony Blair used secret fund to manage multi-million pound fortune

Tony Blair used a secret trust to manage his multi-million pound fortune, it emerged on Friday.

The former Prime Minister used an interest-in-possession (IIP) trust, which he has not previously disclosed, to receive payments for his consultancy projects, including his work with controversial regimes.

Apr 17 11:10

If politicians want to be trusted, they should stop lying to us

Had I not been in France last week – a country where several hundred thousand people legally avoid tax by living in the United Kingdom – I should have sought to ease the Prime Minister’s embarrassment by writing a column militantly in favour of tax avoidance. I have long believed it is the duty of every citizen to ensure the state does not take from him or her so much as a penny in taxation that can be legally withheld. Contrary to a fashionable view among certain of the super-rich – George Osborne, for example – this is not “immoral”. It is entirely moral to strive to keep what one has earned, and to stop the government from wasting it on, for example, disgraceful overseas “aid” projects.

Apr 17 08:49

What to Expect on April 19, 2016, by Anna von Reitz

I expect the UN Corp doing business as the IMF (which is merely doing-business-as the “UNITED STATES” and as the “United States Treasury”) to try to stick us with all their debts, because they are crooks and they naturally don’t want to pay their own debts out of their own profits. They are basically trying to stage a repeat of what FDR did back in the 1930’s when he got the clueless Americans to assume and pay the debts of the “United States of America, Inc.” — a bankrupt privately owned and operated governmental services corporation – under conditions of constructive fraud and semantic deceit.

Apr 16 09:55

You Don't Represent Me Any More

Apr 16 09:48

Tax Day Means It's Time for U.S. Taxpayers to Pay for Israel's Weapons

It's that time of year again. You know -- the time when we file our taxes and pay for the weapons Israel uses to oppress Palestinians.

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Apr 16 09:17

The Little-Known D.C. Holiday That’s Giving You More Time To File Your Taxes

Although most Americans know that April 15 is Tax Day, they may not realize it’s not a firm deadline this year. Your taxes aren’t actually due until next week — thanks to a little-known D.C. law that is invigorating the nation’s capital to push for more independence.

This year, the deadline for filing taxes is being pushed back to Monday, April 18 to accommodate Emancipation Day, a holiday celebrated in Washington, D.C. that commemorates the anniversary of the abolition of slavery in the city.

Emancipation Day is usually celebrated on April 16, which is the date that President Abraham Lincoln freed about 3,100 slaves in D.C. back in 1862. But that date falls on a Saturday this year. Emancipation Day is instead being marked on Friday, April 15 — which prompted the IRS to move back the official tax-filing deadline.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, to celebrate emancipation, the modern slaves get a few more days to polish their slave chains.

Apr 16 09:01

Clinton's Pro-Free Trade Policies Lead to Wider Illegal Money Laundering in Panama

In 2011, President Obama and Hillary Clinton, then Secretary of State, sold the U.S./Panama Free Trade Agreement as a fix for Panama's secret tax haven and money laundering operations. Obama asserted at the time: "Thanks to the leadership of President Martinelli, there have been a range of significant reforms in banking and taxation in Panama. And we are confident now that a free trade agreement would be good for our country."

Last week, President Obama appeared to be singing a different tune. Obama said that activities like those exposed by the release of the eleven million plus Panama Papers were a result of poorly designed laws. However, some analysts say that the relevant regulations were not exactly poorly designed, but were skillfully concocted to facilitate certain privileged interests.

Apr 16 08:21

Did Tony Blair get special treatment from the taxman? Calls for an inquiry over claims HMRC chiefs' advice helped former PM set up a secret trust to run his multi-million pound business empire 

Tony Blair is facing calls for an inquiry into allegations he got special treatment from Britain's top taxman and senior staff when setting up a secret trust to run his multi-million business empire.

Former Home Secretary David Davis called for the probe after the man who set up the former Prime Minster's business affairs claimed head of HMRC Dave Hartnett was approached for advice.

Two of Blair's advisers claimed they had access to senior HMRC staff when setting up his trust before he left office, and were able to ask how they would be treated for tax purposes.

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Apr 15 12:18

Former IRS Agent Admits: “Personal Income Tax is Actually Illegal”

It is tax day again... and worth pointing out once again the many ways in which the federal tax scheme in the United States is illegal.

Read more at SHTFplan.com

Apr 15 11:48

Revenue minister to face questions over CRA's secret deal with KPMG

The federal revenue minister has been called to appear before a parliamentary committee to explain a controversial deal between the Canada Revenue Agency and clients of the financial firm KPMG.

The House of Commons Finance Committee passed a motion Thursday calling on Revenue Minister Diane Lebouthillier to appear before the committee along with CRA officials sometime before May 20.

CRA offered amnesty to wealthy KPMG clients in offshore tax 'sham'

KPMG offshore 'sham' deceived tax authorities, CRA alleges

KPMG tax 'sham' used by at least 25 wealthy Canadians

Opposition MPs on the committee want to know why the CRA offered an amnesty to KPMG clients who took part in an offshore tax scheme in the Isle of Man, which the agency itself labelled a "sham."

Apr 15 08:47

A Tax on Income Attacks Life Itself

Apr 15 08:26

'A Heavy Penalty...for Making Money' - 50th Anniversary of the Beatles Classic 'Taxman'

2016 marks the 50th anniversary of "Taxman," the classic Beatles song protesting high taxes.

The song was written by George Harrison and released in 1966 on the album "Revolver." In "The Beatles Anthology" documentary, Harrison explains the origin of the song: “In those days we paid 19 shillings and sixpence [96p] out of every pound, and with supertax and surtax and tax-tax it was ridiculous - a heavy penalty to pay for making money. That was a big turn-off for Britain. Anybody who ever made any money moved to America or somewhere else.”

Apr 15 07:09

HMRC only investigates 35 wealthy individuals each year

The Government's tax man only investigates 35 wealthy individuals for tax evasion each year.

HMRC told the Public Accounts Committee it did not know how many people it had successfully prosecuted.

The Parliamentary report also found that HMRC has made only limited progress in reducing the level of tax lost, which has remained relatively consistent over the past five years.

It concluded that the department's failure to prosecute those evading tax "creates the impression that the rich can get away with tax fraud".

Apr 15 06:20

Surprise! Tech giants dominate global tax-dodging list of shame

Apple is the number one tax dodger, keeping a staggering $181bn in three tax haven subsidiaries so it doesn't have to pay US taxes. Third comes Microsoft with $108bn in five special subsidiaries.

The top ten are then rounded out by IBM in fifth position ($61bn in 15 locations), Cisco in eighth ($53bn in 59 subsidiaries) and Google in tenth ($47bn in two subsidiaries).

Half of the top 10 tax dodgers are tech firms and they account for $451bn in money held offshore. On average, those five have paid 21.9 per cent tax, meaning that their offshore holdings are keeping $99bn out of the US tax system – the equivalent of $310 for every man, woman and child in America.

In comparison to the tech giants' 21.9 per cent tax rate, the statutory tax rate in the US is 35 per cent and the average US worker pays 31.5 per cent in taxes.

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Apr 14 14:02

Panama Papers Offer More Evidence That Free Trade Isn't Really Free

Maybe the Panama Papers won't reveal further offshore skullduggery by American business. But the fact is, we're already in it up to our necks. Go back to our long history with Panama, pulling it away from Colombia to dig the canal and advance the interests of corporate America.

Bring that history right up to 2011. George W. Bush and Dick Cheney had pushed for, and Obama as president and Hillary Clinton as secretary of state consummated -- as one of their first priorities when they came to power -- the Panama free trade agreement, an early investment in further corporate support and further evidence that both parties are too often in league as agents of corporate interests.

And guess who was at the pivot? The other fellow in that Martha's Vineyard foursome, Ron Kirk. As US Trade Representative, he was key to those Panama negotiations when Obama became president.

Apr 14 13:19

Closing Panama Tax Haven Will Require Fighting the Most Powerful Lobby In the World

Economist Michael Hudson says oil and mining industries and the State Department created Panama and Liberia for the express purpose of tax evasion

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