Thursday, May 09, 2013

Leaving America

U.S. citizens ditch passports in record numbers - The Term Sheet: Fortune's deals blogTerm Sheet:

While our leadership wrestles with a large new Democrat voter increase program  (amnesty) -- converting undocumented Democrats to the documented kind, apparently a number of people on the "payment" side of the ledger are leaving.

Buried in this are some numbers:
More than 39,000 Americans have come forward in recent years to declare their secret accounts to the I.R.S. in exchange for reduced fines and penalties, but officials suspect that is a fraction of the total number of people either deliberately hiding or unwittingly not reporting their foreign accounts. I.R.S. data for 2012 shows just over two million tax returns filed in 2012 by overseas Americans, compared with an estimated six million Americans living or working abroad. Only a fraction of Americans with foreign bank accounts are also filing required disclosures known as Fbars, according to federal data.
"Fbars", love the name!

So 1% of 300M is 3M ... the raw numbers being reported here are in the range to give some idea of just how big a deal the attempts to "soak the rich" can be relative to destroying the tax revenue stream, and how rapidly it happens. It's amazing how many options -- legal, nearly legal, very nearly impossible to trace, etc someone who is worth merely $10M or so has. Health, money, intelligence, talent -- all those things provide options. The tendency of the financially successful is to use those options effectively. How surprising.

This is one where I think BO can claim a lot more credit than in killing Osama:
Expatriations first picked up pace in 2010, when more than 1,530 Americans dumped their passports. Sparking that uptick, tax lawyers say, was a deal by UBS
 the Swiss bank giant, the year before to disclose more than 4,000 American client names to the I.R.S. and pay a record $780 million for selling offshore services that violated U.S. tax laws. Liberty is a concept that "liberals" have a hard time understanding. As in many left countries, no doubt the first reaction from the left here is primarily one of the "how can we prevent them from doing this, or at least make sure their assets are held here, make it more painful for them to move assets offshore,  renounce their citizenship, etc". It is by no accident that the way of the left quickly becomes the way of walls around the country and the gulag to prevent the productive from escaping. First hold their assets, then hold them!

Left vs right is control vs chaos -- and the founders recognized that the primary danger was control, so they did their best to found a center-right nation where government was strongly limited so hold the control impulse in check. We largely destroyed that over the 20th century, but like all reactions, it is a "catalyst" that kicks off the final phase.

Even the first election of BO was a gigantic sign that the control impulse was running wild and thwarting, or  showing the door to the brightest and best that we needed to get back on track, while at the same timporting the least capable to insure the political power of the of the takers. At this point it is obvious, and to a great degree irreversible, at least in the next few decades.

Tax what you want less of, subsidize what you want more of. It always works, and usually in the very short run.

I had heard that BO had considered applying for Amnesty assuming they can get it through, once he left office, but in consultation with Al Gore, he has decided that the tax rates here are too high!

'via Blog this'

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