On Saturday, Jeffrey Sachs, who spoke at the 2011 Task Force on Financial Integrity and Economic Development Conference earlier this month, made an impassioned impromptu speech at Zuccoti Park. The speech covered a range of topics, but at 8:01, he addressed tax havens:
“Its not because we think wealth is bad.
Its because we think you cheat.
Its because you don’t follow the law.
Its because you don’t pay your taxes.
And then you say we have no money in this country,
To educate our children.
We have the money.
Its your money in the Cayman Islands.
Its Your money in the Swiss bank accounts.
And if you don’t bring it home,
We’re going to bring it home.
Because this is a country of laws.
Because this is a democracy.
And we are the 99%.
We have the votes.”
Few have moved more than Sachs in realising his earlier errors on neoliberalism. In the face of the evidence he has changed his mind. Others need to do the same.