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Guest Post: iTaxes Vs. Uncle Sam's Friends And Family Plan

Tyler Durden's picture





 

Submitted by Simon Black of Sovereign Man blog,

Yesterday, news broke that the US government has awarded a whopping $104 million to convicted felon and former inmate Bradley Birkenfeld.

It was a big headline and you likely saw the news… but it’s worth a deeper look. Because if there is one story that neatly summarizes what is wrong with the US these days, it is the case of Mr. Birkenfeld.

Birkenfeld, as you may recall, is a former private banker at UBS. For several years, his job at the bank was to help clients evade taxes, including one now famous instance in which he snuck diamonds hidden in a tube of toothpaste into the United States on behalf of one of his clients.

It turns out that Uncle Sam had his eye on Birkenfeld. Big time. And when the government started leaning on him, Birkenfeld sung like a canary… confessing not only his own transgressions, but also those of his clients.

Birkenfeld was subsequently convicted and sentenced to 40 months. And based on the volume of information he provided, a number of his former clients were also charged, imprisoned, and forced to pay steep penalties to the government.

Look, just to be crystal clear, tax evasion is not OK. I’ve been writing this for years– not paying taxes is stupid. Whether you have the moral or legal justification is irrelevant. When the guy holding the gun gets to make the decision, you lose. It’s simple.

That being said, Birkenfeld violated just about every professional ethic imaginable when he turned on his clients. It’s not like he had a change of heart and suddenly wanted to ‘do the right thing’; this is a guy who used to advise his clients about how to hide their money, and then ratted them out to save his own ass.

Now the government is rewarding this behavior. It’s extraordinary when you think about it– Birkenfeld actively assisted people evading taxes. He helped make the money disappear to begin with. Now he gets a piece of the pie?

This is like driving the getaway car in a bank robbery, then getting a cut of the recovered funds after you dime out your accomplices.

It’s despicable to see such actions rewarded while people who work hard for an honest living struggle to get by. Another triumph of justice, it seems.

Naturally, US politicians are supportive, saying that Mr. Birkenfeld’s reward sends a warning message to tax cheats and dodgy bankers around the world.

Yeah, maybe. It also send a message to every bitter ex-wife, disgruntled employee, and suspicious neighbor out there: you too can become unimaginably wealthy by ratting out your friends, family, clients, and co-workers.

It’s really unfortunate, though not terribly surprising, that Uncle Sam would seek inspiration from Nazi Germany when it comes to taxes. Frankly, I think Singapore serves as a much more powerful example.

Taxes in Singapore are low. Compliance is simple. The laws are easy to understand. The tax code itself is short. They make it so easy, it’s not worth anyone’s while to evade taxes. Amazingly enough, the country is swimming in cash. Shocker.

When he launched the iTunes store several years ago, Steve Jobs fundamentally believed that most people would be willing to pay for music (instead of illegally downloading songs) if they were presented with an easy, inexpensive, legal alternative.

He was right. The iTunes store went on to be a big success for Apple, the record companies, and consumers. There’s no reason why taxes can’t be the same way. It’s certainly a better option than having a nation of weasels.

 


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Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:34 | Link to Comment hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

 

 

By chance have you ever lived or worked in the USA?  And Simon Black...is that your real name?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:40 | Link to Comment Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

This technique worked for the Nazi's - everyone becomes a state informant!

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:47 | Link to Comment hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

 

 

 

"It was almost normal for people over thirty to be frightened of their own children. And with good reason, for hardly a week passed in which The Times did not carry a paragraph describing how some eavesdropping little sneak — 'child hero' was the phrase generally used — had overheard some compromising remark and denounced its parents to the Thought Police."

 

1984, by George Orwell
Chapter Two

 

Thank goodness none of our children would ever turn us in for $104 million dollars.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:47 | Link to Comment LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture

 

 

To Orwell's credit

snip

"Orwell's Socialism was literally knocked out of him by his appalling experiences in the Spanish Civil War. Going out to Catalonia to fight Franco's military revolt against the Spanish republic, he was shot through the throat by a sniper, and while recovering, was caught up in a bloody purge launched by Spain's increasingly Communist-controlled Republican Government.

The experience of being hunted by the secret police and seeing his comrades arrested, tortured and killed by the Spanish Stalinists and their Russian bosses gave Orwell an abiding horror of Marxism, Soviet Communism and Stalin's many British apologists - including his own publisher, Victor Gollancz, who refused to publish Orwell's account of his Spanish experiences 'Homage to Catalonia' for fear of upsetting the Communists. Finally, Orwell saw what crimes could be committed in the name of 'socialism' and devoted the rest of his literary life to denouncing the perversion of the humane socialism he stood for.


Though dying of TB, Orwell lived long enough to transmute his horror of Communism into his twin masterpieces 'Animal Farm' and '1984' and at the dawn of the Cold War, drew up at the request of the British security services a list of 50 of his fellow writers whom he regarded as Communists or fellow-travellers."

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 17:31 | Link to Comment MeelionDollerBogus
MeelionDollerBogus's picture

Sadly Orwell was mistaken - these crimes can done in ANY name - capitalism, socialism, fascism, democracy - you name it. It's the Chain of Obedience that is the problem, not the name of the system

The Chain of Obedience - YouTube

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 19:02 | Link to Comment tip e. canoe
tip e. canoe's picture

comment from that link:

my parents lived in Fascist & Nazi Europe & the US looked no different to them when they first came here. People have these false images based upon movies. Life was not dramatic for everyday people in Germany or Italy. Just like it isn't here. People lost more? & more rights & accepted it. No different than here.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 06:36 | Link to Comment Slightly Insane
Slightly Insane's picture

If this "informant" was smart, he would head for the hills, as I bet there will be a heavy price put on his head.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:40 | Link to Comment Azannoth
Azannoth's picture

Is " hedgeless_horseman" your real name? and before you ask no Azannoth is not my birth name either

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:51 | Link to Comment hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

 

 

Just another patriot trying to hit it big as a $nitch.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:16 | Link to Comment Lohn Jocke
Lohn Jocke's picture

Welcome to the USSA, my friend.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:31 | Link to Comment AcidRastaHead
AcidRastaHead's picture

Nothing has really changed since Aesop was credited with,

"We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office."

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 19:31 | Link to Comment Grinder74
Grinder74's picture

It used to be Simon White, but then the first black president was elected.  Of course, now he realizes that the 44th white president was also elected, so he's a little conflicted.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:37 | Link to Comment Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

It's no worse then accepting a Nobel Peace Prize while knowing full well you were going to sends drones, agents, mercenaries, and the military off to kill thousands.

 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:55 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

He didn't hypocritically award himself that medal --- somebody else did that.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:40 | Link to Comment Blasé Faire
Blasé Faire's picture

The Norwegians.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 18:39 | Link to Comment toady
toady's picture

Damn Norwegians

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:50 | Link to Comment masterinchancery
masterinchancery's picture

He very hypocritically accepted it, like other socialist and fascist world "leaders". Gag.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:37 | Link to Comment saycheeeese
saycheeeese's picture

a fascist states rewards delation.....  and Mr. Mr. Birkenfeld  will probably not be able to travel abroad ...running the risk to be detained.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:15 | Link to Comment cifo
cifo's picture

$50 million goes to lawyers. $25 million goes to taxes. He is left with only $25 million.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:37 | Link to Comment The Navigator
The Navigator's picture

No, let me be crystal fucking clear. When the govt takes 60-70% of your earnings and wrecklessly spends it on friends, donators, and bullshit programs to buy votes, tax evasion is your patriotic duty, and to not pay taxes is smart.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:13 | Link to Comment LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Last time I checked the tax on earned income (people actually making real shit) was around 30% while paper-pushing, captial gains and dividend taxes were around 15%.  FAIL.

But you are correct, that which cannot be sustained, won't be.  Long black markets and lots of economic activity out of the eye of Uncle Sam.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:16 | Link to Comment Gene Parmesan
Gene Parmesan's picture

Your point on formal "income tax" is taken, but how much of every dollar of your salary ends up being paid to a/the government in one way or another? I guarantee you it's not ~30%. I'm certain it's not less than 50%.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:33 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture
According to the Federal CAFR for the year ended 9/30/2010, the federal government actually spent $4,472,300,000,000.  This is the actual spending amount, not the budgeted amount.  The state and local governments spent another approximate $2.9 trillion in FY 2010.  So, for fiscal year 2010, governments spent approximately $7.4 trillion. According to the World Bank, U.S. GDP for 2010 was approximately $14.5 Trillion.  So, it takes half of GDP to run governments in the USA.  Hello, Sweden!
Taxes and fees income for 2010 for all U.S. governments was approximately $4.2 Trillion ($2.2 Trillion Federal plus $2 trillion for State and Local governments).  That leaves a $3+ Trillion deficit, or new taxpayer debt created by governments in just one year. 

How much do you suppose went for back-door bailouts to the banksters that the public has no clue about?
Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:44 | Link to Comment Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

30% Federal Income

plus 15% Social Security for anyone self employed

plus 12% for the priviledge of living in the republic of Kalifornia

plus Sales Tax, Gas Tax, Property Tax

Uncle Sam and his 51 evil underlings can easily demand a 60-70% cut if you refuse to be someone else`s wage serf and don`t have the means and motivation to afford a membership in the too rich to tax club.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 19:02 | Link to Comment The Navigator
The Navigator's picture

Yep, and that's where I'm at - 30% + 15% + 10.5% CA + 8.75% sales tax + $9,000 property tax + gas tax, +, +, +, to infinity and beyond.

Fuck the Empire and the Emperor too.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:55 | Link to Comment masterinchancery
masterinchancery's picture

39% federal, up to 13% state,10% city, plus sales taxes, real estate taxes, excise taxes, fuel taxes......You can easily be paying more than 60% of your income to various governments.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 08:29 | Link to Comment flyweight
flyweight's picture

.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 08:28 | Link to Comment flyweight
flyweight's picture

I don't know where you live, but is there no VAT in this country? VAT is 23% on most things you buy over here. Also, the price of fuel is about 70% tax, which drives up the cost of heating, transport and ... everything you buy basically.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:37 | Link to Comment larz
larz's picture

If you see something say something help big brother help you - I want to puke and then deny that am of the human species

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:41 | Link to Comment RSloane
RSloane's picture

I see the Federal Reserve and the Federal government systematically and steadily destroying this country. Who do I report them to?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 17:00 | Link to Comment drbill
drbill's picture

Tell your friends. Tell you family. Tell your neighbors. At first they look at you like you're from Mars. But eventually some of them start to listen.

It's not much, but it's the best we can do at this time.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 17:41 | Link to Comment Umh
Umh's picture

It seems to me that big brother is not human. Maybe I'm an optimist.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:42 | Link to Comment LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture

 

 

Remember the head of the UBS was obama's golfing buddy

 

For UBS, a Record of Averting Prosecution

 

 

We had to pay this pig $104 Million  way to go scumbag politicians

 

on another dirty note MF Global

 

Even Whistleblowing Doesn't Result In Prison Time

 

 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 21:00 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

Silly me! I thought they gave him such a big windfall so he could donate some more of it to the DNC and the get-Obama-reelected campaign.  That's how you redistribute taxpayer dollars!

sarc

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:41 | Link to Comment Atlantis Consigliore
Atlantis Consigliore's picture

Pie in the Face http://youtu.be/sT5TKTt5BeA

GAMESHOW GAMESHOW GAMESHOW!  Name that Crook!    MF Bubble, Fraudie Mae Fraudie Bac, Country Narrow; PFG Da Worst,  and hosted by the Regulators...

Zonk,  you get the pie in the kisser if your guessed:   

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:42 | Link to Comment Rainman
Rainman's picture

Keep dreaming, Simon. There are 40,000 registered lobbyists in D.C. I'll bet half are devoted to keeping the tax code complicated and riddled with special interest loopholes. That's why every tax simplification idea in the past 50 years tacked on 400 more pages to the tax code. 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:15 | Link to Comment Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

Federal tax code is very simple.  I spent the past 13 months going through the 73,608 pages of federal tax code  I understand EVERY FUCKING WORD OF IT.  Ignorance is no excuse when it comes to the law son.  /sarc

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 21:03 | Link to Comment tip e. canoe
tip e. canoe's picture

haha, how many times did the word voluntary appear?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:42 | Link to Comment spastic_colon
spastic_colon's picture

I dont think you understand the name of your own blog

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:42 | Link to Comment ljag
ljag's picture

Now the government is rewarding this behavior. It’s extraordinary when you think about it

 

Actually itsnot! Uncle been doing it for a loooooooooooong time.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:44 | Link to Comment KidHorn
KidHorn's picture

He'll get his $100 million, but I would guess the feds are going to keep a close eye on him. If he does anything wrong, they'll nab him and make his life hell. $100 million would be ice, but not if you spend the rest of your life constantly looking over your shoulder.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:57 | Link to Comment hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

You are a moron an symptomatic of whats wrong in the corrupt banking and political system; words cannot express how sickened I am by your analogy.

Do you even know if he has to spend his $100m in the USA? Of course, the CIA can kill people anywhere in the world, maybe you think that is the God given right of the US Government.

Doing the right thing in the first place (not helping frausters evade taxes) the second place by losing just a few years from consecutive individual 20 year sentences under RICO for racketeering (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racketeer_Influenced_and_Corrupt_Organizations_Act) or the third place to NOT be rewarded under the pitiful pleas bargaining system that encourages corruption (rather than corrupt Treasury officals gizzing in their pants to please Geithner). 

I suggest you go to Church an restrict your abuses to innocent altar boys.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 18:48 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

No need to look over your shoulder if you spend the rest of your post-incarceration life sitting on the beach, sipping Mai Tais and keeping out of business and other trouble. Heck, make ole Timmy happy.  Buy a bunch of long-term coupon Treasuries and live off of the tax-free interest.  No need to get involved in any shady investment scams.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:45 | Link to Comment jag
jag's picture

He shouldn't have been eligible as a "whistleblower" in the first place. He participated in a crime and, it would seem under normal circumstances, that the best he could have done was to get a plea deal. Who's idea was it to award him these monies under such circumstances? I have no problem with anyone who, for any reason, lets authorities know a crime is being committed.

However, no one should profit from participating in a crime. Give him a plea deal? Sure, part of the bigger picture. Give him a vast fortune instead? How does that pass the smell test of common reasoning?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:52 | Link to Comment Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

Smells like entrapment to me.

That fits with rewarding him.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:15 | Link to Comment LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Correct, what happened to the government I grew up with, you know, the "talk or we kill you" kind, oh wait...

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:26 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

"Who's idea was it to award him these monies under such circumstances?"

It is pretty obvious:

http://fundrace.huffingtonpost.com/neighbors.php/neighbors.php?type=name...

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 23:09 | Link to Comment andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

I understand he approached the IRS first, and it wasn't part of a plea deal. They prosecuted him when he was caught holding something back. But they still needed to reward their rat, because it is good 4 business.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:45 | Link to Comment Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

he should now be able to come in and buy alot of depressed and foreclosed families houses

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:47 | Link to Comment mkhs
mkhs's picture

  It also send a message to every bitter ex-wife, disgruntled employee, and suspicious neighbor out there: you too can become unimaginably wealthy by ratting out your friends, family, clients, and co-workers.

 

Who says Simon is simple?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:47 | Link to Comment Sleepless Knight
Sleepless Knight's picture

Yesterdays philosophy was your only guilty if caught, todays philosophy is your only guilty if convicted. All else is fine.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:17 | Link to Comment LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

exactly, and when was the last time someone was convicted?  < crickets >

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:48 | Link to Comment TrustWho
TrustWho's picture

This is so sick on many levels. Everyone in line of command above Birkenfeld should have jail time, because they financially benefitted from his actions and his actions were driven by their objectives. We know the CEO knew and jailtime is the only way I know to hold these people accountable.

Paying a criminal for his crime is just wrong! Only in America...so said!

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:49 | Link to Comment Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

the Chinese do not believe in jail

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:59 | Link to Comment hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

Agreed, see comment to KidHorn below. This is racketeering. The best he shoul have got his s slight commutation of consecutive 20 year prison terms for each offence.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racketeer_Influenced_and_Corrupt_Organizations_Act

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:48 | Link to Comment Swarmee
Swarmee's picture

So my question aout this reward policy is what information was not being disclosed at say, a $10 million reward, that 10x that amount had to be tendered? How much in unpaid taxes and penalties did the government recover before forking over the ridiculous sum of $104 million? Was being SET FOR LIFE at 10, 20, or 30 million not sufficient? The reward going to one person could have funded payments to ten other snitches, but instead it was all wasted on one felon.

And why did he get any money at all? Presumably giving up his clients was done in exchange for a lessor sentence for his own crimes, so why should he benefit twice? He should have been compensated via reduced sentence OR a cash bounty, but not both! The analogy of a getaway driver getting a cut of the recovered bank robbery funds seems apt. One should not monetarily benefit from one's crimes as a sanctioned state action, and certainly not to the point where one never has to work again because of the windfall.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:58 | Link to Comment AetosAeros
AetosAeros's picture

I think like everything else we hear about, until someone offers up 'real' proof (whistleblower), or someone gets a hold of a harddrive with incriminating evidence on it, we are only left with 'indicators' that point in the direction we are supposed to be looking towards, not where the real crime is/has been committed.

Your right about the amounts and such. My question would be: Which client did this guy have that the US Government wants to entice strongly enough that they are willing to announce an obviously ludicrous amount of money as payout in order to get them to come out of hiding? It's a serious enough question when you look at the whole issue.  This guy faced a long, long sentence. His ass was about to be the recepticle for a lot of guys who would name him 'Bitch' to rhyme with their code on how to deal with a 'Snitch'. $1 Million should have been enough to get him a reduced sentence and off on his own.

So what info does he have that they can't recover or pull from him? What skeletons are closed up in closets where the street address resides not just in this guys little balck book, but enough other balck books that they can't find them all and shut him up? Seriuosly, in the USSA today we don't put up with blackmail, you simply get renditioned. So what is the overall goal here? To entice others to snitch, or to draw out a player that the gov needs to either squash or control may be their goal. It may even have to do with drug money, not to stop the drugs, but maybe to cut out the .gov competition.

I say look deep into this, because your right about this being a windfall.... sounds too good to be true, and there's too many unanswered questions here. This guy would have sold his mother for 2 days less in a slammer, so why the 'icing' on the cake?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 19:30 | Link to Comment smiler03
smiler03's picture

+1 @ Swarmee 

"Under a 2006 law, the Internal Revenue Service can pay whistleblower awards of up to 30% of the collected proceeds."

Note that it says "up to". My feelings are life imprisonment and confiscation of all his wealth would have been fairer.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444017504577645412614237708.html


Wed, 09/12/2012 - 23:05 | Link to Comment andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

The Government made many tens of billions off this rat. And that is just the cash we know about. Breaking UBS blew the whole Swiss thing wide open. There is probably a lot more to come. Throwing a mere $1E8 bone to him is worthwhile when the Gub'mint made $1E11.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:49 | Link to Comment Janice
Janice's picture

Good luck with that. There is no reason, absolutely no reason to simplify the tax code. Turbo Tax would be out of business. Politicians would have no "favors" to dole out. Corporation may actually have to pay some tax. There are whole industries created from burdensome IRS Regulation, like payroll services and temporary employment services. Get real. The only one who receives benefit from a streamlined tax code is the taxpayer. Since when was anything done for the benefit of the taxpayer?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:02 | Link to Comment LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture

 

+1 Janice can you imagine if they actually closed bailout queen warren buffet's tax loophole and he actually had to put his (our bailout) money where his big mouth is.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:54 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

Agreed!  I am sick and tired of these morons saying that our taxes need to be raised.  There is no law preventing them from donating some of their billions to the Treasury.

If I were President, I would implement a "declaration" tax.  Anyone that publicly declares that taxes should be raised would automatically have their income tax rate raised to 50% and all deductions and tax-exempt exclusions eliminated.  Or you may call it the Warren Buffet tax.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:38 | Link to Comment mofreedom
mofreedom's picture

Term limts or succession.  Amen.

 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:51 | Link to Comment ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

This article smacks of paranoia.  Simon Black is probably hoping that nobody in his elite Black Alpaca Guard betrays him.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:56 | Link to Comment SmittyinLA
SmittyinLA's picture

We need to impose capital controls on money flowing INTO the United States and then have a "fire sale" of national and state assets, and if you want to repatriate some US Dollars and spend them here too, we'll do it for 50%....to start, (the rate may go up depending on asset inflation). 

Burn the absconders & tax cheats, grifters, mafia and shield American savers and investors, that should be public policy.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:46 | Link to Comment mofreedom
mofreedom's picture

We shiuld jusr give California to the Chinese so we don't have to hear from the commies that live there.  Willing to sacrifice the conservatives who obviously aren't smart enough to leave there for a better U S of A.  Amen.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 15:56 | Link to Comment Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

 

"Birkenfeld violated just about every professional ethic imaginable when he turned on his clients"

 

 

 WTF? He helped them steal for cripes sakes! And he is a bnker to top it off,..,,,He has no professional ethic.

 

 

 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:01 | Link to Comment hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

It is racketeering. Plain and simple. See comments below and to KidHorn at 2787110.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racketeer_Influenced_and_Corrupt_Organizations_Act

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:18 | Link to Comment RSloane
RSloane's picture

He meant 'pretend' ethics. You know, when you pretend to agree to a code of ethics of your profession then proceed to violate those ethics.

I think the article was referring to the 'Honor Among Thieves' code of ethics.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:24 | Link to Comment Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Oh he meant pretend……

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:04 | Link to Comment saycheeeese
saycheeeese's picture

pssst.. to whom do we report the account of the Ladens, Bushes and Cheneys...

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:11 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

It's a new get-rich scheme.  Hang out your shingle.  Actively court unethical clients.  Advise and help them to do illegal things.  Keep a good audit trail.  Once a large number of shady transactions have occurred, turn them in as long as the government promises to give you the award.  Go to Club Fed jail for 3 to 4 years and catch up on reading, join a prison-wellness program and/or learn to play an instrument (http://www.forbes.com/2006/04/17/best-prisons-federal_cx_lr_06slate_0418...).  Retire rich and fit when you come out.  

I believe in a different deterrent, like throwing them into a high-security prison for a long time and confiscating ALL of their wealth and possessions and their passports so that, when they get out, they can get a job flipping hamburgers in order to afford a studio apartment on the bad side of town and bus fare to their job, and are not allowed to travel outside the U.S. for at least another 10 years.  Let them start over again from scratch like so many of the people whose savings and retirements they destroyed!   

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:13 | Link to Comment ejmoosa
ejmoosa's picture

For a government that hates the rich, you have to wonder why their rewards are so damn large.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:20 | Link to Comment RSloane
RSloane's picture

What makes you think this government hates the rich other than vapid campaign rhetoric?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 20:54 | Link to Comment mofreedom
mofreedom's picture

If you love abortion, you hate humanity.  If you put up obstacles for the individual to one day be rich, you hate the rich.  You can be alive and rich and wish no one else was of either.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 18:46 | Link to Comment californiagirl
californiagirl's picture

You can't believe the hate-the-rich rhetoric that comes from a politician's mouth.  Since most politicians go into politics to become rich or further enrich themselves and their cronies, and sheeple are stupid enough to continue to elect them, this is what you get.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:21 | Link to Comment 10mm
10mm's picture

Same as a politico out of jail walking back into the doors of govt as a lobbyist.You will be rewarded,just do your time and a keepa your a face a shutta.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:26 | Link to Comment chum bucket
chum bucket's picture

They want people to rat on everyone else, that's the ideal police state, its unbelievable that this shill got 100,000,000 dollors. What's next....

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 22:59 | Link to Comment andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

The idea is to make every wannabee rat's mouth water with greed. It will work.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:27 | Link to Comment geewhiz
geewhiz's picture

"Look, just to be crystal clear, tax evasion is not OK. I’ve been writing this for years– not paying taxes is stupid. Whether you have the moral or legal justification is irrelevant. When the guy holding the gun gets to make the decision, you lose. It’s simple."

Apparently not everyone agrees with this otherwise perhaps 60% of many countries economy would not be underground. It's a matter of personal risk/reward tolerance and government thieves are not quite the same thing as an armed robber willing to pull the trigger in an alley. Some could construe the metaphore as a bit of a straw man argument.

Simon Black is very consistent in being careful to publicly state that avoidance should be used and not evasion to protect as much of your property as possible from government theives. No one can ever accuse him of fomenting "lawbreaking" and connect him with a conspiracy case. So he covers his ass and toes the line, but who really knows what his private sentiments really are.

I guess those who engage in evasion think that the risk is worth the reward and sleep well at night with the knowledge that they have kept thier property out of the hands of thieves. To them what they do is only illegal if they get caught. It's purely a matter of personal risk tolerance.

It's easy enought to see why from a moral standpoint any game is fair play if you can stand the heat. After all, the best examples are set by the actions of the rulemaker hypocrites at the top in that flim flam organization called government.

Otherwise, as usual, everything else Simon sez, is just fine with me.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 16:45 | Link to Comment Blasé Faire
Blasé Faire's picture

Unbelievable.  But it is really?

And where is this sort of deal in other plea bargains?  You don't hear judges saying "if you confess, you'll be given the entirety of legal fees and a portion taxation saved that this process has avoided."

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 17:03 | Link to Comment Heyoka Bianco
Heyoka Bianco's picture

Who actually feels anything for his "clients"? There is no honor among thieves, so fuck 'em.

What really matters are his unindicted co-conspiratorrs who kept all their profits and faced no prison time whatsoever. A hundred mill is a rounding error on their payouts, so this is actually an excellent distraction from the real crimes.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 17:07 | Link to Comment JR
JR's picture

Is America devolving already into Third World status?

Just like Third World tin-pot potentates, Congress has absolutely no compunction about taking millions from taxpayers and handing it over to a thuggish criminal as down payment on collecting even more billions for their nefarious projects. Principle and justice no longer matter at DC fascist headquarters.

As was said by Sen. Chuck Grassley, one of the people’s representatives and staunch defender of whistle-blowers, the award was well worth it for taxpayers – unless, of course, you’re Julian Assange blowing the whistle on Washington, or a taxpayer.

Congress already has a Third World mentality regarding confiscation of other people’s property; unfortunately, they want what can’t be had, and that is to enjoy themselves and have someone else pay for it.

The U.S. is striving for collapse and failure on all fronts. You can’t do something for nothing.

Let the Third World in and give each man a vote and you’ll have Third World politics sure as the dawn. Third World countries operate a little differently from James Madison’s concept, of course; they have fun, no middle class, corruption, massive injustice, disease, poverty, political instability, slavery, perversion, gangs, violence, murder and a nasty little dictator… as a way of life.  You know, like Chicago.

And if that’s what this country wants, that’s what it’s going to get. If America becomes just one big L.A. County, who’s going to pay for it? There won’t even be enough money to pay enough police to take care of the gangs.

Bernanke's immoral handling and corruption of the currency, of course, was a big part of the catalyst for the failure that is coming.

 

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 06:06 | Link to Comment hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

Kind of makes you wonder why the giving of $100 million isnt an illegal act...this cant be a new crime, why doesnt someone bring a private law suit on behalf of tax payers...you know like a poltician...and why isnt this racketeering, punishable under RICO, so the low sentence in the first place of forty months is an illegal act, perpetrated by corrupt government officials?

this banking mobster is as guilty as al capone was guilty. each time he committed an evasion should be liable to a 20 year sentence...each crime..not one..each..so if he abetted 5,000 criminals, his children and extended family should go to jail and all his friends.

i would really like to see a list of the punishments inflicted on those who participated in the tax fraud and money laundering. do they even get jail time? how much of a bonus are the trasury officials on to collect on this fraud, presumably their collective bonuses are way in excess of $100m over a few years. this is so corrupted and unethical on so many levels it beggars belief.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 21:50 | Link to Comment Milestones
Milestones's picture

I gave you a greenie--but the correct term for B.B. etal is not "immoral" as it implies a actual code of conduct by he and the rest of the $$ crooks. The proper term is "ammoral" and a total lack thereof.      Milestones

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 17:54 | Link to Comment Mike in GA
Mike in GA's picture

When you consider the stained and sullied hands of the government which issued this staggering (and borrowed!) sum for which we Taxpayers are on the hook;  it seems more of a bonus, if you will, a Lifetime Achievement Award for one of their own.  Job well done, Son. 

After all, aren't they in the same business? 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 18:18 | Link to Comment SunBlaster
SunBlaster's picture

Who knows if he really got that $104 million, he is in prison now, they could of worked out any deal, and that could of included supposed millions he received. It's all for show at this point as far as I can tell.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 18:46 | Link to Comment goldfreak
goldfreak's picture

uncle Sham?

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 19:46 | Link to Comment tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

"It’s really unfortunate, though not terribly surprising, that Uncle Sam would seek inspiration from Nazi Germany "

so true - operation paperclip brought nazis to the usa to lead bureaucracies and to hold influential positions because they were funded initially by wall street and the bush crime syndicate.....in fact the bush clan were found funding nazis and only saved their hides becasue they threatened fdr to cut off funding for the war....but wall street established the 3d reich and supported it all throughout the war....(of course at that time, the bushs were only attaches for the harrimans, rockefellers, and other evil scum who brought about that war....

so saving the nazis was the least they could do for their friends.....the banksters supported nazism then and do so today....they established the ussr and fascist italy - these were all big business operations....

the 4th reich is alive and powerful in the usa....although i doubt that it will last 1000 years, it will be crushed by he who will reign for 1000 years in glory and without challenge - he whose yoke is light....

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 22:20 | Link to Comment JuicedGamma
JuicedGamma's picture

Since whistleblower money is taxable and our Congress adores loopholes, special treatment, etc., I suggest a special tax of 99.99% on this perversion.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 22:28 | Link to Comment Tunga
Tunga's picture

"...not paying taxes is stupid. Whether you have the moral or legal justification is irrelevant." - sovereign man.

Retard says what? 

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 22:40 | Link to Comment brokenspoke
brokenspoke's picture

It was a pay off to keep his mouth shut. after all how many of his clients who are elected officials got ratted out.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 22:54 | Link to Comment andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

Isn't this exactly what Congress intended when it enacted the whistleblower rewards program in the IRS? They want rats everywhere. Rats galore. Anyone you know might be a rat. So, never share any illegal activity with anyone. They might be a rat.

"Yeah, maybe. It also send a message to every bitter ex-wife, disgruntled employee, and suspicious neighbor out there: you too can become unimaginably wealthy by ratting out your friends, family, clients, and co-workers."

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 03:19 | Link to Comment qussl3
qussl3's picture

Singapore is a silly example, a fat chunk of revenue comes for indirect taxes and tariffs collected at source.

Income taxes are a silver of revenue.

Thu, 09/13/2012 - 06:16 | Link to Comment hooligan2009
hooligan2009's picture

ponders how many players in this play should be labelled traitors and if they are all traitors, then maybe its me,

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