Panama Papers

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Re: Panama Papers

Postby JackRiddler » Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm

seemslikeadream » Tue Apr 05, 2016 5:35 pm wrote:That might explain why as yet no US, EU, IMF or World Bank officials appear in the leaks


Just to be correct about this, we don't know what appears "in the leaks" at all. We know what the press stories have said so far. We know what they claim are the aggregate numbers such as in the graphic that shows 441 clients with 3,072 companies served by MF in the United States. Indeed, I don't think any of those have been mentioned yet and I do think this is the product of a decision to protect them. (Even if they go after them, they will do their research more thoroughly than with "Putin," which involves no threshold for them whatsoever.)

So whether or not the leak itself are unredacted/complete, the dozen newspapers/400 gatekeepers are deciding. According to them, they have a full haul of MF documents going back 40 years. Whether it's genuine and they are intending to mine it for all real stories, or if they're going to suppress key stories about US/EU/IMF, at this stage either scenario would look like it does right now. This is like in the first weeks of the Wikileaks State Department cables releases, when many people on this board were similarly convinced (before it had unfolded) that both the leak and the coverage were nothing but psyops directed from afar (by one or another of the usual suspects). Recall:

The Wikileaks Question
http://www.rigorousintuition.ca/board2/ ... =8&t=30362
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby JackRiddler » Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:00 pm

Meanwhile, what, do you think the consortium has negotiated/informed/coordinated with all of the thousands of money launderers, banksters and gangsters in the leaks? You can be certain that plenty of them are quaking and considering response strategies right about now. This is why I'm cautiously optimistic about this. Could be wrong. So what? A bunch of you call me arrogant, and my style may be -- though I'd call it exasperated -- but my point is how much we don't know and why we shouldn't (arrogantly, in my opinion) pretend certainty about any of this yet.

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Re: Panama Papers

Postby tapitsbo » Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:02 pm

Fair enough JackRiddler, but the lack of a threshold tells me that the psy-ops as you call them are being marketed as "leaks" regardless of their connection to actual leaks. I'm curious what will be revealed in terms of the wider information conflict seemingly going on between the US and EU among other parties (as with Snowden, etc.)
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:14 pm

JackRiddler wrote:...I'm cautiously optimistic about this. Could be wrong. So what?


I remain confidently pessimistic, Jack. It's just due diligence. Or else I have to suddenly start believing that the editors-in-chief of the Süddeutsche (!) and the Guardian (!!!) are going to go out of their way to seriously inconvenience the world's richest and most powerful and best-connected capitalists. Why on earth would they bother?

The new FIFA president appears to be in a bit of trouble, though. Maybe JK Rowling will indeed be next, or Justin Bieber or someone. (Bono? Nooooo!)
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby JackRiddler » Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:21 pm

Panama Papers: Links revealed to spies and Iran-Contra affair
Documents show ex-CIA gun-runners, contractors use offshore firms for personal gain
about 5 hours ago
Will Fitzgibbon


http://www.irishtimes.com/business/pana ... -1.2599083

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Re: Panama Papers

Postby seemslikeadream » Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:35 pm

Panama Papers: Why Aren’t There More American Names?
BY JOHN CASSIDY

After eleven million documents were leaked from the law firm Mossack Fonseca, observers are wondering why the company’s roster of tax dodgers and money launderers does not seem to include more American citizens.
After eleven million documents were leaked from the law firm Mossack Fonseca, observers are wondering why the company’s roster of tax dodgers and money launderers does not seem to include more American citizens.
CREDIT PHOTOGRAPH BY RODRIGO ARANGUA / AFP / GETTY
Who is the odd person out from this list: Ayad Allawi, King Salman bin Abdulaziz, Bashar al-Assad, David Cameron, Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, Mauricio Macri, Lionel Messi, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan, Marianna Olszewski, Petro Poroshenko, Vladimir Putin?

If you picked Olszewski, you’re right. In the initial wave of stories about Mossack Fonseca, the Panamanian law firm whose internal documents—2.6 terabytes’ worth—were leaked by an anonymous source to the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, she was about the only American citizen I saw mentioned. The leaked documents, which Süddeutsche Zeitung shared with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (I.C.I.J.), a New York-based public-interest organization, reveal that family members, associates, and financial advisers of some of the world’s most powerful people enlisted Mossack Fonseca’s services to set up offshore shell companies, which can be used to hide money and assets from the prying eyes of tax inspectors and other government agencies.

According to a report by the BBC, Olszewski, a thirty-nine-year-old investment adviser and the author of the book “Live It, Love It, Earn It: A Woman’s Guide to Financial Freedom,” also had dealings with Mossack Fonseca. The BBC story alleges that the law firm created an elaborate scheme to help Olszewski retrieve $1.8 million that she had invested in an offshore vehicle, without revealing her identity to the bank that was holding the funds. (Mossack Fonseca told the BBC, “Your allegations that we provide structures supposedly designed to hide the identity of the real owners are completely unsupported and false.” Olszewski did not respond to the BBC’s requests for comment, or to mine.)

The BBC story illuminated the fact that much of the work done by firms like Mossack Fonseca involves people who aren’t particularly well known, and sums of money that aren’t huge. Moreover, the use of offshore accounts can be perfectly legal, and Olszewski’s financial affairs would appear to be of no great import to anyone but herself and the Internal Revenue Service. She doesn’t really belong on a list of prominent names associated with the leak, alongside the leaders of Argentina, Iceland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. But why weren’t more Americans named?

One possible explanation, which we can dismiss immediately, is the notion that this sort of thing couldn’t happen here. To the contrary, the United States is widely recognized as a leading source of offshore money: during the Union Bank of Switzerland tax-evasion scandal, it emerged that, at that bank alone, U.S. clients had almost twenty thousand Swiss-based accounts. In the hedge-fund industry, it is considered perfectly normal and entirely legitimate to domicile funds in tax havens like Grand Cayman or the British Virgin Islands. In addition, as Bloomberg’s Jesse Drucker reported earlier this year, America is also, thanks to its relatively lax disclosure laws, emerging as a major tax haven and destination for offshore funds. Anonymous money is moving in and out of the United States all the time, with American lawyers and financial intermediaries helping to facilitate the flow.

A more convincing explanation is that the journalists who are researching the leaks are still pursuing American clients of Mossack Fonseca. In fact, we now know this to be the case. On Monday, a piece published by Fusion, one of the U.S. media organizations that has access to the leaked material, said, “So far, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has only been able to identify 211 people with U.S. addresses who own companies in the data (not all of whom we’ve been able to investigate yet). We don’t know if those 211 people are necessarily U.S. citizens. And that figure covers only data from recent years available on a Mossack Fonseca internal database—not all 11.5 million files from the leak.”

In an article published on Monday evening, McClatchy, another news organization working with the I.C.I.J., identified more American citizens for whom Mossack Fonseca registered offshore companies. The people named didn’t include any politicians or other well-known figures. “Some appear to be American retirees purchasing real estate in places like Costa Rica and Panama,” the McClatchy report said. But it also mentioned at least four people who have been charged with serious financial crimes: Robert Miracle, of Bellevue, Washington, who was convicted of running a sixty-five-million-dollar Ponzi scheme; Benjamin Wey, the president of the New York Global Group, who was indicted last year on charges of securities fraud (his lawyer denied the charges in an e-mail to the Times); Igor Olenicoff, a Florida real-estate mogul, who was convicted of tax evasion in 2007; and John Michael (Red) Crim, a financial adviser from Pennsylvania, who was convicted in 2008 of plotting to help people evade taxes.

So much for individuals. What about U.S. banks, financial advisers, law firms, and other intermediaries? Data compiled by the I.C.I.J. consortium indicates that, of the roughly fourteen thousand intermediaries—banks, law firms, company-incorporation firms, and other middlemen—with which Mossack Fonseca worked over the years in order to set up companies, foundations, and trusts for its customers, six hundred and seventeen were based in the United States. That’s a lot.

On the other hand, other countries appear to have provided Mossack Fonseca, which has thirty-six offices on three continents, with much more business than America did. In the past, the firm had at least one office in the United States—in Las Vegas—but it doesn’t currently have any. According to charts published by the I.C.I.J., the United States isn’t among the ten countries for which Mossack Fonseca created shell companies. (Hong Kong, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom held the first three places). And no American banks appear among the list of the ten financial intermediaries that most often requested offshore companies for their clients.

There are several reasons why the United States might not have been a major source of clients for the Panamanian law firm, relatively speaking. Perhaps it deliberately avoided having a large presence in the United States, so as not to attract the attention of U.S. authorities. Or perhaps there was too much competition. An article published in The Economist in 2012 pointed out that the business of setting up shell companies in tax havens is competitive and includes a number of well-established firms, such as the Hong Kong-based Offshore Incorporations Ltd., the Isle of Man-based OCRA Worldwide, and Morgan & Morgan, of Panama. In other words, wealthy Americans have many options for structuring their offshore holdings.

Eoin Higgins, a writer from Massachusetts, suggested another possible factor as well: the diplomatic relationship between Washington and Panama. In many cases, the entire point of setting up a shell company is to hide things. But, in 2010, the United States and Panama signed a trade-promotion agreement that, among other things, obliged Panama to provide to the U.S. authorities, on request, “information regarding the ownership of companies, partnerships, trusts, foundations, and other persons, including . . . . ownership information on all such persons in an ownership chain.” Higgins pointed out, “If Panama had ever been an attractive destination for American offshore storage of funds, this agreement shut the door on that possibility.”

Going forward, more Americans may well be named in stories arising from the leak. In the meantime, at least one observer, Craig Murray, a former British diplomat, has suggested that the journalists investigating the leak may be overemphasizing the role of non-Western figures, such as Putin and Assad. “What if they did Mossack Fonseca searches on every listed company in the western stock exchanges, and on every western millionaire they could trace?” Murray wrote in a blog post on Monday. “That would be much more interesting. I know Russia and China are corrupt, you don’t have to tell me that.”

Murray’s last point is well taken. But crony capitalism and tax evasion are huge problems for poor and middle-income countries: according to the International Monetary Fund, it costs them hundreds of billions of dollars in tax revenues each year. In detailing how this process works, the Panama Papers stories that have been released thus far have already performed an important public service. And the journalists have already netted some Western figures, including Gunnlaugsson, the Icelandic Prime Minister, and Ian Cameron, the late father of David Cameron, the British Prime Minister. Gunnlaugsson resigned on Tuesday, while 10 Downing Street is refusing to say whether the Cameron family still has any money in offshore tax havens.

In response to speculation about the dearth of American names, Stefan Plöchinger, an editor at Süddeutsche Zeitung, said in a tweet on Monday, “Just wait for what is coming next.” After other reporters picked up on this message, Plöchinger clarified that he wasn’t referring specifically to the United States. “No, it just means: relax,” he said. “What’s in the files will be published without fear or favor.”
All of this misogyny is making me nostalgic for treason
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby seemslikeadream » Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:41 pm

Hillary Clinton Ties Emerge In Panama Papers

CHUCK ROSS
Reporter
1:59 PM 04/05/2016

A billionaire and a Russia-controlled bank named in the Panama Papers have links to Hillary Clinton through two separate lobbying efforts — one through a Clinton-connected lobbying firm and another through Sidney Blumenthal.

Clinton is linked to Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, through Podesta Group, a lobbying firm co-founded by Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta and his brother, Tony Podesta, a major Clinton bundler.

According to the Washington Free Beacon, which first reported the connection, Sberbank registered with the Podesta Group last month to lobby on issues related to economic sanctions against Russia and on stock and bond trading for its U.S. clients.

Bidzina Ivanishvili, a Georgian billionaire and former prime minister of the Caucasus state, is also named in the Panama Papers, which is believed to be the largest leaks of financial documents in history. A close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ivanishvili appeared in the Hillary Clinton email dump through her longtime friend Sidney Blumenthal.

Blumenthal, who played a middle-man role for Clinton, passed along a memo from Ivanishvili ahead of the 2012 Georgian elections. Ivanishvili was head of the Georgian Dream party, which successfully ousted then-Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, a U.S. ally.

Ivanishvili served as prime minister from Oct. 2012 through Nov. 2013.

Clinton is not implicated in the Panama Papers, which pertain to offshore bank accounts set up by the Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca. But the Democratic presidential candidate’s connections to two subjects named in the leaked documents show the vastness and depth of her international relationships. The revelation also comes as Clinton continues to receive criticism for her financial relationships with shady businessmen through her family charity, the Clinton Foundation.

As the Free Beacon notes, Sberbank is named in a report from the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), which was provided access to documents from the Panama Papers leak.

Sberbank and a related company called Troika Dialog are linked to companies that members of Putin’s inner circle use to hide assets. Troika Dialog, which is based in the Cayman Islands, is listed with Sberbank on its lobbying registration form with the Podesta Group.

Ivanishvili is named in a separate report on the Panama Papers published by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project.

Worth an estimated $4.8 billion, Ivanishvili was required under Georgian law to disclose all of his financial assets as prime minister. But he kept his control of an entity called Lynden Management off of those disclosures. According to documents reviewed by OCCRP, Ivanishvili stalled for nearly four years to respond to Mossack Fonseca’s request that he provide his passport to verify his address.

Ivanishvili is also at the center of a lobbying effort aimed at Clinton.

As the website Gawker reported last year, on Sept. 3, 2012, Blumenthal emailed his friend Hillary Clinton memos written by Ivanishvili and John Kornblum, an attorney who served as Bill Clinton’s ambassador to Germany.

According to Blumenthal’s email, Kornblum was “working with the political party in Georgia opposing Saakashvili.”

Kornblum made the case that the U.S. should consider distancing itself from Saakashvili. He also asserted that the regime was cracking down on opposition parties, such as the Ivanishvili-controlled Georgian Dream coalition.

“There is a real chance Saakashvili could lose,” Kornblum wrote. “He is doing everything possible to avoid that indignity, including harassing Georgian Dream in ways described in the letters.”

“If Saakshvili clearly steals the election, there could be public discontent, violence and maybe a ‘wag the dog’ scenario with Russia,” he added.

In a memo passed to Blumenthal through Kornblum, Ivanishvili urged Clinton to support Georgian Dream.

“The first step back to the path of democracy must be an open and fair election that offers the hope of a peaceful transfer of power,” Ivanishvili wrote. “Recent polls suggest that Georgian Dream can make this happen, if the authorities give democracy a chance.”

It is unclear if Blumenthal was paid for connecting Kornblum and Ivanishvili to Clinton. It is also unclear whether Ivanishvili directed Kornblum or Blumenthal to reach out to Clinton. Additionally, it is unclear how Clinton responded to the memos.
But as Gawker reported, attorneys with expertise in the Foreign Agents Registration Act, which governs foreign lobbying, say that Blumenthal and Kornblum should have registered as lobbyists.

Blumenthal frequently emailed Clinton with items ranging from political gossip to in-depth intelligence briefings gleaned from his deep reservoir of intelligence community sources. He lobbied heavily on behalf of a company called Osprey Global Solutions, which sought contracts in post-Gaddafi Libya.
All of this misogyny is making me nostalgic for treason
on trump/russia
"Colluded" is only a word confused people use
The word and crime is conspiracy
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby justdrew » Tue Apr 05, 2016 8:00 pm

so, I'm provisionally calling bullshit on this whole thing.

Just look at the Iceland thing, it really seems remarkably trivial and hardly worth a resignation over, as there is ZERO actual allegation of any wrong-doing, merely a disclosure fuckup regarding an ownership interest in the countries only Toyota importer... big fucking deal, has anyone suggested he did anything to help that company? No.

Finally, the data is not really leaked. I have zero ability to run a search against it. Nor do we know ANYTHING about the format this "data" is in. Even saying there is "data" is purely speculative. How has the authenticity of this vast trove been verified? A few samples of it, at best, have been authenticated.

I steadfastly refuse to be in any way influenced by this hypothetical "event" and I'd advise others to be very cautious what new "conventional wisdom" percolates up from this mire.

It seems all too likely that the "who benefits" here is clearly the US, in it's apparent bid to become the new home of banking secrecy in the world. This may well be the cherry on top of the already baked cake.
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby tapitsbo » Tue Apr 05, 2016 9:33 pm

The results of the event reveal contours of certain parties' capacities of mobilization, and I personally will be taking a closer look at this.
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby justdrew » Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:44 pm

well, look here...

China warns ‘powerful forces’ behind Panama Papers — suggests US to blame
Agence France-Presse | 05 Apr 2016 at 12:07 ET

Hostile Western forces are behind the “Panama Papers”, a state-run Chinese newspaper alleged Tuesday, as media avoided reporting revelations about Communist leaders and it emerged that the law firm involved has eight offices in the country.

The scandal erupted on Sunday when media groups began revealing the results of a year-long investigation into a trove of 11.5 million documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca, which specialises in creating offshore shell companies.

At least eight current or former members of China’s Politburo Standing Committee, the ruling party’s most powerful body, have been implicated, according to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), which co-ordinated the reports.

Mossack Fonseca has offices in eight Chinese cities including Hong Kong, its website showed Tuesday, more than any other country.

Under President Xi Jinping, Beijing has launched a much-publicised anti-corruption drive but has not instituted systemic reforms such as public declarations of assets.

Among those named in the Panama Papers are close associates of Russian leader Vladimir Putin and President Xi’s brother-in-law, who was previously identified in a New York Times investigation into the wealth accumulated by Xi’s family.

Chinese media have largely avoided reporting on the leaks and social media have been scrubbed of references to them, with foreign news broadcasters such as the BBC blacked out when they report on the issue.

As well as Xi Jinping’s brother-in-law, the documents also contained the names of family members of two current Politburo Standing Committee members, Zhang Gaoli and Liu Yunshan, reported the BBC, which took part in the investigation.

Chinese journalists were ordered to delete “all content related to the ‘Panama Papers’ leak case”, according to instructions seen by AFP.

Users on microblogging web site Weibo tried to circumvent restrictions by circulating pictures of Chinese-language articles describing the allegations.

In an editorial the Global Times, a newspaper with close links to the ruling Communist Party, implied the leaks were part of a “disinformation” campaign by Western forces.

It did not mention any of the Chinese revelations, focusing instead on the allegations involving Putin — as did the Shanghai Daily, which is linked to the government of the commercial hub.

“The documents revealed do have basic political targets,” the Global Times said, adding that “Washington has demonstrated particular influence” in previous leaks of sensitive information to the media.

– ‘Strike a blow’ –

Such actions were “a new means for the ideology-allied Western nations to strike a blow to non-Western political elites and key organisations”, it added.

Asked whether China would investigate those named in the reports, foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said: “For such groundless accusations, I have no comment.”

Corrupt Chinese officials have moved more than $120 billion overseas, according to a 2011 report by the People’s Bank of China.

Offshore companies are not illegal and can be used for legitimate business needs. But they commonly feature in corruption cases, when they are used to secretly move ill-gotten gains abroad.

Britain’s Guardian newspaper said an internal Mossack Fonseca survey found the biggest proportion of its offshore company owners came from mainland China, followed by Hong Kong.

Hong Kong also housed the greatest number of intermediaries, banks and law firms, among others, that set up offshore corporations on clients’ behalf.

Mossack Fonseca’s office locations in China include the major financial centres of Shanghai and Shenzhen, as well as port cities Qingdao and Dalian, and lesser-known provincial capitals such as Shandong’s Jinan and Hangzhou in Zhejiang, along with Ningbo, also in the eastern province.

Fallen political star Bo Xilai was once the mayor of Dalian, and at least 48 officials from Shandong have been caught up in Beijing’s anti-graft campaign according to information maintained by the Asia Society on its Chinafile website.

The Panama Papers document trove was anonymously leaked to German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung and shared with more than 100 media groups by ICIJ.

In a statement, Mossack Fonseca denied any wrongdoing and said it has always complied with relevant laws and regulations.


Sooooo, I guess the prediction now is: big leak of Imperial Corruption data inbound in 3... 2...

Meanwhile back in 2011, re Panama...

Panama Trade Deal Would Undercut Efforts To Get Rich Americans To Pay Taxes
08/09/2011 03:57 pm ET | Updated 7 hours ago
{ I wonder what the update 7 hours ago changed? }

During a Monday press conference addressing Standard & Poor’s downgrade of U.S. debt, President Barack Obama reaffirmed his commitment to raising taxes on the wealthy. But as he pushes to get the rich to pay more into federal coffers, Obama is also urging Congress to approve a trade agreement that would cement a key tax avoidance tactic deployed by some of the richest Americans.

“What we need to do now is combine those spending cuts with two additional steps: tax reform that will ask those who can afford it to pay their fair share and modest adjustments to health care programs like Medicare,” Obama said during the address, referring to steps the U.S. should take in addition the cuts agreed to to raise the federal debt ceiling.

Just two days before, during his Saturday radio address, Obama urged Congress approve three trade deals, including one with Panama that would permit Americans to easily stash assets in the Central American country, a notorious tax haven for the wealthy and American corporations.

“It’s time Congress finally passed a set of trade deals that would help displaced workers looking for new jobs,” Obama said, “and that would allow our businesses to sell more products in countries in Asia and South America — products stamped with three words: Made in America.”

But Panama’s entire annual economic output is around $26.7 billion a year, according to The World Bank — only about two-tenths of one percent of the U.S. economy — making the effect on jobs minuscule at best. Some economists expect other agreements with South Korea and Colombia to create net job losses in the U.S., as corporations ship American jobs overseas to take advantage of cheaper labor.

It may not have a large economy, but Panama does have some of the most stringent bank secrecy laws in the world, making it extremely easy and inexpensive for U.S. citizens to set up offshore corporations and bank accounts. Establishing the corporation and bank account costs less than $2,000, and any money that Americans stash in these entities is not taxed. Bank secrecy laws and extremely lax corporate registration standards make it very difficult for the Internal Revenue Service to track transactions transferring funds to these Panamanian destinations from the United States. Small surprise, then, that Panama is home to nearly 400,000 offshore corporations, more than any other nation except Hong Kong.

“A tax haven . . . has one of three characteristics: It has no income tax or a very low-rate income tax; it has bank secrecy laws; and it has a history of noncooperation with other countries on exchanging information about tax matters,” said Rebecca Wilkins, senior counsel with Citizens for Tax Justice, a nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to improving U.S. tax policy. “Panama has all three of those. ... They’re probably the worst.”

The trade agreement with Panama would effectively bar the U.S. from cracking down on this activity. The U.S. would not be allowed to treat Panamanian financial services transactions differently from transactions in nations that are not tax havens. It would also be unable to pursue some standard anti-money laundering techniques in Panama. Combating tax haven abuse in Panama would be a violation of the trade agreement, exposing the U.S. to fines from international authorities.

“It directly undermines Obama’s putative domestic agenda of job creation, cracking down on tax havens and collecting revenue from tax-dodging corporations,” said Lori Wallach, Director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch. “The [free trade agreement] would forbid future use of existing policy tools to combat financial crime.”

The deal with Panama was first negotiated by President George W. Bush in 2007, but in April, Obama met with Panama President Ricardo Martinelli to announce the signing of a new information sharing agreement as part of the broader deal to help facilitate tax enforcement.

“Thanks to the leadership of President Martinelli, there have been a range of significant reforms in banking and taxation in Panama,” Obama said. “And we are confident now that a free trade agreement would be good for our country, would create jobs here in the United States.”

But the tax enforcement agreement amounts to little more than a gesture, relying on a decades out-of-date framework that is not very effective at recovering lost tax revenue. Thanks to the TIEA, American tax officials can now obtain tax information on U.S. citizens stashing money in Panama. That’s great — if they already know which citizens are using Panama-based schemes to dodge U.S. taxes. But, of course, the IRS doesn’t actually know who is doing this — if it did, it wouldn’t need to gather bank account information in the first place.

“The Tax [information] Exchange Agreement that we’ve executed with Panama is really weak,” said Wilkins. “There’s just a lot of reasons why it’s not going to be very effective.”

The U.S. has negotiated much more helpful TIEAs with other countries in the past. The IRS, for instance, is automatically notified whenever U.S. taxpayers deposit money in a Canadian bank, making it effectively impossible for a U.S. citizen to hide money in Canada.

Raising taxes on wealthy Americans, of course, will have little effect if those same citizens can simply hide funds from the IRS in Panama.

While the IRS is starved for information on U.S. individuals hiding money in Panama, it has the opposite problem among U.S. corporations. In 2008, the Government Accountability Office issued a report noting that 17 of the 100 largest American companies were operating a total of 42 subsidiaries in Panama, suggesting that these subsidiaries could be used to help firms skimp on their U.S. tax bills.

But while the IRS knows that firms are operating in Panama, it doesn’t have the resources to investigate or prove that the offshore activities of U.S. companies are devoid of economic substance other than tax-dodging. While 17 of the 100 largest corporations were operating Panamanian subsidiaries, a total of 83 were operating sub-companies in nations the GAO labeled as tax havens, with some corporations using dozens of different subsidiaries.

According to the Bureau of National Affairs’ Daily Tax Report, IRS official Samuel Maruca told an audience at a National Association for Business Economics conference that his agency didn’t have enough funding to chase cases of “transfer pricing” abuse — a technique in which U.S. corporations sell their own goods to foreign subsidiaries at bizarre prices in order to reduce their tax bills.

“To put it bluntly, we can’t afford to pursue every case — even cases that may have considerable merit,” the official said. “We have to be strategic about where we are willing to invest our resources.”

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable, two lobbying groups pushing hard to approve the Panama deal, declined to comment for this article.


also of note: "Panama is home to nearly 400,000 offshore corporations" - so, 11.x million "documents" is a drop in the ocean of the number of documents that exist re these Panamanian companies.
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby JackRiddler » Wed Apr 06, 2016 12:39 am

It really is deja vu all over again. Same stuff being said without corroboration as with the Wikileaks release of the SIPRNET cables back in what, early 2011? Now, ironically, Assange himself is talking the trash, and the fact is the SIPRNET cables only went full-out and searcheable because Nick Davies fucked up and published the password in his fucking book!

All this could be true, sure - "dark forces" says China. Last time if I remember it was Russia claiming "dark forces" behind Assange. No I'm getting it the wrong way around - it was Brzezinski claiming it must be an intel agency, suggesting the Russians as the suspects if I remember.

And this bit about "only a drop in the bucket." It's just like the complaints about how the SIPRNET cables didn't have CIA stuff in them, or the proof of 9/11 as inside job. They were only a drop in the bucket, etc. etc. Never mind that they illuminated how the system actually worked (and undermined it). Never mind that they indicated much more than they show, just as the MF files will if enough of them is brought out.

This is a networked universe and plenty of the biggest and worst players won't just be making use of only one offshore shell-fixing company. If HSBC, UBS and Societe are getting exposed by this, it won't end up being only for whatever they did with MF, that will indeed be only one of several entities they use for managing thousands of shells... let's wait and see! You won't necessarily have to rely on a government to haul in the miscreants - if they are exposed as juggling too much to bear, "the markets" will respond. There is no honor among bankers, people. Only one of these entities has to implode to resume the suspended 2007-09 crash.

You could all be right! Rather than going by faith or pattern recognition, wait until you can show evidence for it, you may be able to. Enjoy the possibility you might be wrong. Look at what stories do or do not come out in the next days.

And why are you looking down your noses at the Iceland thing? Again, I'll say it, If I was an Icelander, I would have been out there with the Pirates and other comrades to bring down the restoration government today. They responded immediately, wasted no time - why do you think that is?! You think it was just the story that generated that kind of opposition, from scratch? Or do you think people were grateful to have this spark?

.
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby smiths » Wed Apr 06, 2016 4:56 am

A few thoughts for what they're worth,

Firstly, this is not the biggest leak of data ever until the whole thing is openly available for anyone to look at, until then it's just Fitzmas again

Secondly, the source of the leak and the selections from the data demonstrate beyond any doubt that this is a play in the information war and there are specific targets

Thirdly, it pains me to say that the Guardian has finally and fatally blown its credibility with this - it really did have a better run than most mainstream newspapers over the last decade or two

Fourthly, 80% of this thread is dominated by a handful of fuckheads that are totally wasting everybody's time and bandwidth – grow the fuck up
Last edited by smiths on Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby kool maudit » Wed Apr 06, 2016 5:10 am

The Guardian's failure in this instance mirrors the broader failure of the center-left to pay heed to its antiwar base, a locus of immense moral power whose Bush-era gains were allowed to dissipate in the Obama era to the point of near-parody.
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Apr 06, 2016 10:29 am

fuckhead here Image

when did you decide we were all fuckheads ....was that before or after you read this thread...or did you decided that without reading the thread at all?

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All of this misogyny is making me nostalgic for treason
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Re: Panama Papers

Postby semper occultus » Wed Apr 06, 2016 10:32 am

....soryy to other members for clogging up the thread with :catfight: but....

JackRiddler » 05 Apr 2016 18:45 wrote:I wouldn't call it inane, since you always seem to think Mossad! It also fits your pattern that you think Mossad but don't indicate you have noticed that the old Mossack, the founder of MF, was a German SS veteran.....

...sure I noticed it....its called irony...OK so I'm not exactly Oscar Wilde but there ya go... :choke:

JackRiddler » 05 Apr 2016 18:45 wrote:You seem to have missed the 2013 Icelandic elections, in which reconstituted elements of the old, pre-crisis order returned to power.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Icelandic ... 13#Results

These are not the guys who jailed the bankers!


.....not really relevant to my point though....such as it was....how many of the average joes out there skimming stories & headlines are in any way acquainted with the granular detail of Icelandic electoral politics ....Level 1 psy-op bad-jacketing one of the very few remaining sovereign, democratic independent western nations as a bunch of financial spivs...the support band put up in the stocks alongside the "headline act" - nefarious moustache-twiddling pantomime villian Putin....
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