What Will Panama Do Now?

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The above is the title of a blog by Bob Bauman for the Sovereign Society.

For those who do not know the Sovereign Society is a right wing American organisation that is as a front for tax havens, and strongly promotes their use. It is closely associated with other organisations such as the Center for Freedom and Prosperity and the Cato Institute who campaign for tax havens.

Bauman says this of Panama, thinking each a positive attribute:

There are good and historic reasons for Panama's enviable tax haven standing:

1) a territorial tax system that levies only on earnings within the country;

2) constantly modernized asset protection laws, dating from the 1920s;

3) an array of useful statutory legal entities (trusts, corporations, private foundations);

4) a host of qualified offshore professionals and bankers; and

5) some of the strongest financial privacy laws anywhere -- plus having no tax information exchange treaties (TIEAs) with any other nation.

So what you might ask? Well , as TJN notes on its blog, the Center for Freedom and Prosperity is about to be involved in a European tour:

F.A.von Hayek Institut has put together a Road Show of various opinion formers on the extreme right, including Richard Rahn (former adviser to the Cayman Islands) now linked to the Discovery Institute, Dan Mitchell (CPF and Cato Institute), Prince Michael von und zu Liechtenstein, and others, to tour European countries to promote the benefits ofl aissez faire capitalism (and tax havens). Interestingly, the listed speakers include John Fund (Wall Street Journal) and Daniel Thorniley from The Economist, both newspapers taking an uncritically supportive editorial position on the role of tax havens, see here for example.

It’s disappointing to note the likes of the Economist and Wall Street journal associating with this because let’s be unambiguous: you can’t associate with the likes of Bauman and promote what he does and not carry the association with the promotion of criminality which are the raison d'?™tre of places like Panama. It’s inescapable to conclude that this is what the political Right is about.