Jefferson D. Tomas:

Hypocracy. Center for Freedom and Prosperity Foundation condemns a reverse FATCA requirement (reporting US bank interest payments to non-residents.)

Originally posted on The Isaac Brock Society:

( Washington , D.C. , Tuesday, February 21, 2012) The Center for Freedom and Prosperity Foundation, joined by 23 of the country’s most influential free market and taxpayer rights organizations, sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner urging withdrawal of an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulation that would discourage capital from the U.S. economy and weaken the American financial system.

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Notice to Swiss Authorities: Canada resists US extraterritorial tax policies, Switzerland must too

NOTICE

 

ADDRESSED TO:

  1. info@gs-efd.admin.ch (Swiss Federal Department of Finance) — sent 1353 CET 15.02.2012
  2. info@eda.admin.ch  (Swiss Federal Foreign Ministry) — sent 1353 CET 15.02.2012
  3. By email submitted through web interface (within the limits imposed by such) at : http://www.ejpd.admin.ch/content/ejpd/fr/misc/conform.html?contactid=0005&backpagepath=/content/ejpd/fr/home (Swiss Federal Department of Justice and Police) – submitted via aforesaid web interface 1358 CET 15.02.2012
  4. Webmaster of the Swiss Federal Chancellery webmaster@admin.ch — sent 1353 CET 15.02.2012

 

 

COPY TO:

  1. Isaac Brock Society (www.isaacbrocksociety.com) – posted ~1405 CET 15.02.2012

 

Email subject= “Canada resists US extraterritorial tax policies, Switzerland must too”.

 

TEXT TRANSMITTED:

 

Suisse Romande, 15 February 2012

 

Dear Sir or Madam, Swiss Federal Counselors, Swiss Federal Administrative Officials:

I would like to draw to your attention recent discussions on a Canadian website concerned with the fair and just treatment of US persons living abroad.  These discussions are germane to the current negotiations between the US and Switzerland.   Such negotiations, if not conducted in a  conscientious fashion by the Confederation, may have catastrophic effects on the lives of US persons living legally in Switzerland (and even CH-US dual nationals) and their non-US (potentially Swiss) family members.  If Switzerland and other nations do not oppose US policy, the US may in the future increasingly intrude into the sovereign matters of all nations and all persons regardless of their status of citizenship or green card vis-à-vis the USA.  Remember the old English adage which has equivalents in many languages “If you give ‘em an inch, they’ll take a mile”.

Canada, like Switzerland, seems to be high on the US government’s list for its efforts to seek to enforce its extraterritorial (even imperialistic) tax policies.  Nonetheless, Canada appears to be putting up significant resistance in order to protect its citizens and residents according to its own charter of rights and democratic principles of fairness and justice.  The continuing Canadian experience in this struggle ought to serve as a model for Switzerland’s necessary attempts to do the same.   Some evidence of the Canadian experience in this matter follows:

  1. It would appear that by signing the OECD treaty on “Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters”, Canada has reserved its right not to collect US taxes from Canadian residents and citizens:   http://isaacbrocksociety.com/2012/02/13/3200/    This is an excellent start, however unilateral declarations of the inadmissibility and injustice of US extraterritorial double taxation needs to be forthcoming in the near future from Canada, from Switzerland, and all other nations on Earth.
  2. Letter from Canadian Finance Minister to a Canadian resident: http://isaacbrocksociety.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/hon_jim_flaherty_new1.pdf
    1. Particularly significant in this letter is the text on page 2, middle and end of paragraph 4:  “…Canada-United States Income Tax Convention… this does not apply to penalties imposed under laws that impose only a reporting requirement [e.g. FBAR] Furthermore, the CRA [Canada Revenue Agency] does not and will not collect the U.S. tax liability of a Canadian citizen if the individual was a Canadian citizen at the time the liability arose (whether or not the individual was also a U.S. citizen at that time).”–Brackets “[ ]” and triple periods “…” mine.
    2. Here is the link to the Isaac Brock discussion of the Flaherty letter: http://isaacbrocksociety.com/2012/01/27/reply-letter-from-minister-of-finance-hon-jim-flaherty/ 
    3. It appears that the US has even condemned the use of a “Diaspora tax” by means of UN Security Council Resolution in the matter of Eritrean extraterritorial taxation of Eritrean nationals.  (Please do search for “Diaspora tax” on the page given by the link in 2b above, please read the text and follow the links.)  Such US international policy is inconsistent with the manifest US policy of attempting to subject US persons abroad to double taxation.  Indeed, the double taxation attempted by the US is in violation of one of its core revolutionary principles of “No Taxation without Representation”.

Current US policy with regard to US persons living abroad results in unjust and unconstitutional double taxation, especially in view of the structural differences between US and Swiss  (and other) domestic taxation systems, and the effects are further exacerbated by the current currency exchange-rate situation.   US policy impedes the economic activity of lawful Swiss residents who pay Swiss taxes and contribute to the Swiss economy.  The middle class is especially disadvantaged, but the issues can affect laborers in like fashion (e.g. Swiss mandatory 2nd pillar and optional 3rd pillar retirement savings are apparently considered as accounts that must be declared and taxes on therein-earned interest and capital gains paid to the US).  The economic activities of the upper classes that may also drive innovation and contribute to the Swiss economy are hampered by US policy in a similar manner.  Those that comply with US requirements (especially those in the labor and middle classes) may find themselves in a situation where they cannot pay their bills and cannot meet the high cost of living in Switzerland and/or find that their retirement savings yield a negative or substandard return.

Clearly, we are not speaking here of rich Americans living in the US who were actively solicited and  tempted by some unscrupulous bankers to park their funds in Switzerland in order to avoid paying US income tax on the principal balance earned in the US, or on the interest earned in Switzerland thereupon.  We are speaking of ordinary people who work for Swiss employers, establish innovative businesses, pay Swiss taxes, and raise their families.  We must not allow the US to persecute honest and hardworking people because the IRS caught US-resident millionaire tax cheats using Swiss banks.

US persons and dual nationals, Swiss offspring of dual nationals, or people born in the US that did not stay in the US beyond childhood or young-adulthood (and may now ignore the fact that the US considers them their nationals) are being increasingly shut out of banking services in Switzerland (in violation of Art. 261bis, Swiss Penal Code) and subjected to “Excessive Fines” in violation of the 8th Amendment to the US Constitution (up to 300% of assets in the worst case, with penalties of 27.5-50% in the “Voluntary Disclosure Programme”  [5% in some limited situations that are very difficult for the affected person to prove]) for failure to file information returns to the US as to their Swiss accounts (even if such accounts contain funds legally earned in Switzerland that were subjected to Swiss income tax).   

This atrocious treatment also affects family members of the concerned US persons.  All of this looms despite the fact that, in past years, Swiss banks, and some employees and/or functionaries of Cantonal tax authorities have told people (especially Swiss citizens and Swiss legal residents) not to declare Swiss accounts to the US and not to declare to the US any revenues already taxed in Switzerland.   Personally, I had been told in the past by Swiss bank and tax officials that “Double taxation is forbidden”.

Swiss citizens and legal residents of Switzerland have the right to privacy, protection of the Confederation, equal treatment, and equal economic opportunity just as anyone else living under the authority of the Swiss Federal Constitution and the Confederation.   They must not, under any circumstances, pay additional taxes to the US that result in higher tax burdens than those to which their neighbors living in the same Swiss Commune with similar Swiss-earned salaries/revenues and deductions are subjected to.   They must not be subjected to invasions of their privacy that violate Swiss constitutional protections (and inter alia the 4th and 5th and 8th Amendments to the US Constitution).

The increasingly intrusive policies of the US will only go further (and with time affect even non-US residents of Switzerland and all Swiss citizens) if the Confederation does not firmly plant its foot down and insist upon the principles of fair and just treatment for everyone which are essential to our core Swiss democratic values.

I urge you to consult with your colleagues and to analyze how the lessons from the current Canadian experience of resistance to the US policy and efforts to protect Canadian residents are useful to the Confederation in its current negotiations with the US.  I further urge you to protect the liberty and rights of the people and safeguard the independence and security of Switzerland (Art. 2, Swiss Federal Constitution) especially as to the unjust efforts of the USA to violate and/or abridge the same.

Please feel free to consult any other information on the Isaac Brock site that may be of interest to you.  I cannot guarantee the 100% accuracy of anything in this present communication, or of information on Isaac Brock or any website, especially because the exact situation and nuances in the issues may frequently vary. 

The present communication is a simple petition (not an initiative or referendum) respectfully submitted according to the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution and Art. 33, Section 1 of the Swiss Federal Constitution.  In accordance therewith, I shall not be subjected to any prejudice for having submitted the present petition to the authorities, nor for submitting any other such communication, past or future.  Acknowledgement by the authorities required under Art. 33, Section 2 may be done by press release to Swiss media (if subsequently actually published) and/or by posting to public discussion sites related to the issues (such as Isaac Brock Society).  I am not a legal representative of Isaac Brock Society.  I am neither a lawyer nor a chartered accountant and nothing herein shall be construed as professional legal or fiduciary advice.  I shall remain anonymous. 

Signed,

Jefferson D. Tomas (nom de plume)

cc: Isaac Brock Society public website (www.isaacbrocksociety.com)

Jefferson D. Tomas:

Citizens as property of government

Originally posted on The Isaac Brock Society:

Cross posted from RenounceUScitizenship

Warning! The following video contains language that may offend some of you. To articulate the obvious:

1. The language in the video irrelevant to the purpose and message of the post.

2. If I need to say this: obviously I do NOT share Mr. Fischer’s bigoted views.

To be forewarned is to be forearmed!

“None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

-        Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

“The notion of “dual loyalties” may seem old-fashioned to some – a throwback to the days of Cold War spy-sniffing. But the concept is hardly obsolete, for the same reason that monogamy isn’t obsolete (for most of us, anyway): No one can serve two masters at once.

The above interview of Bobby Fischer after his release from prison in Japan contains some interesting comments about U.S. citizenship. Why did the U.S. government…

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Jefferson D. Tomas:

Five Decades of Abuse: Enough is Enough!!

Originally posted on The Isaac Brock Society:

“ENOUGH IS ENOUGH”

AFTER FIVE DECADES OF ABUSE

IT’S TIME FOR A CHANGE

  

THIS COMING OCTOBER WE WILL MOURN

THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY

OF THE DEATH OF

A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD

FOR OVERSEAS AMERICANS

AND NOW IT’S TIME TO GET IT BACK

 

Reproduced by permission of Andy Sundberg, Fellow and Secretary, the Overseas American Academy , Geneva , Switzerland , 16 January 2012. Email contact:  andy at sundberg dot com

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Swiss Hebdo Article on US Persons Quitting US Nationality

http://www.hebdo.ch/pourchasses_des_americains_rendent_leur_passeport_146769_.html

Sorry folks, I don’t have time to translate anything (except the headline)  if you don’t understand French, you can use Google translator.  What I think is most telling is the use of “war machine” in the article .  I feel that the US is waging a sort of economic warfare on its own people, and even on the whole world.
QUOTE:
“RENONCIATIONS. Pour traquer les fraudeurs du fisc, Washington a mis en place une machine de guerre bureaucratique. Au point de dégoûter bon nombre de ses citoyens établis à l’étranger.    Renunciation [of nationality]:  In order to trace tax cheats, Washington has put in place a bureaucratique war machine.  This disgusts a lot of US citizens abroad.
Denise* est exaspérée. En tant qu’Américaine mariée à un Suisse et établie dans le canton de Vaud, cette binationale est prête à rendre son passeport américain. «Mon fils l’a déjà fait, car il vient de fonder son entreprise ici et aurait dû remplir une ribambelle de formulaires chaque année pour l’IRS (Internal Revenue Service, ndlr), alors qu’il n’a jamais vécu aux Etats-Unis. Mon époux doit déclarer tous ses comptes et tous ses avoirs à Washington, alors qu’il est Suisse et paie ses impôts ici. Cela devient invivable.»

Le sujet fait jaser dans les milieux d’expats américains. «Il y a trois ou quatre ans, renoncer à sa nationalité était considéré comme antipatriotique et tabou, mais aujourd’hui, tout le monde en parle, observe Jackie Bugnion, membre du comité de l’association American Citizens Abroad, dont le siège mondial se trouve à Genève. La pression monte et perturbe énormément mes concitoyens établis à l’étranger. En Suisse, les banques ne veulent plus de clients Américains: nous sommes devenus toxiques.»

END QUOTE

Jefferson D. Tomas:

New Debate on Swiss TV

Originally posted on The Isaac Brock Society:

Again for those of you that understand French or that do not mind making sense of translation tool outputs, please find here a link for tomorrow night’s live debate on Swiss bank secrecy and US attempts to weaken it:  http://www.infrarouge.ch/ir/1887-banquiers-suisses-tricheurs   The debate will be available for view on the tsr.ch website by at least Wednesday night.  Please feel free to enroll on the site and post your comments straightaway, (even in English— I have seen at least one comment in English accepted and displayed on the site). 

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