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Why You Should Be Angry About The Panama Papers

Updated on April 6, 2016

The human need for more has propelled our species to the top of the food chain. The way we must enhance, explore and expand from what we already have has led to some of our biggest breakthroughs. But why do we take this amazing trait and shit all over it by connecting it to greed and money? Why do the rich always need even more, what could they possibly spend it all on? So, here’s another reason why the rich and powerful on this planet are seemingly just not very good people.

Many people may still be wondering what the Panama Paper scandal is, or why people are making a big deal of it. Well, hopefully this article will help you to not only understand it, but also feel as though the ones caught up in this net are hung out to dry.

First, what is the leak?
11.5 million documents from the law firm Mossack Fonseca, a company that is based in Panama, have been made available to the public via a leak. The company itself can help people to create businesses, or relocate money, to the small island. You see, this particular place has no tax. People perhaps underestimate tax. Every transaction is taxed. You buy a car, there’s a tax charge. Grab yourself up a new coat, that’s taxed. Scratch your arse, that’s taxable. And that tax money ends up in the government’s wallet and is spent on country matters, like new school equipment, hospital devices and things for expenses scandals for UK MPs and so on.

Why is this a big deal, because here’s the thing. What some people have done is not, to an extent, illegal because they’re essentially using loopholes. It’s just highly immoral and should be illegal. And some of what the clients of Mossack Fonseca are doing is illegal.

So, what’s the fuss? Why should we be angry?
The easiest reason is that on the books of this company are some, let’s say, less than reputable characters. Known criminals, criminal organizations and people who have been financially embargoed in some countries for dealing with the likes of North Korea and other naughty nations. So this company helps hide their cash from the authorities, so the first point is an easy one to see why this company isn’t pleasant. It hides the money of bad people.

Going on to the next point and it’s aimed at some of the most wealthiest and influential people in the world.

Mossack Fonseca clients include people from over 200 countries who are connected to, or who themselves are, some of the most powerful leaders, rulers and superstars in the world. 61 family members from ruling politicians/royalty are connected to this company.

These people are effectively stealing from you. From your schools, hospitals, parks, libraries, public services and everything else that you pay for with your taxes. These people are creating paper businesses in Panama, aka a name on a piece of paper with nothing behind it, and putting all their money in that “company’s account” so a government can’t tax that cash. Billions of dollars of taxable money gone. So if you earn a billion dollars and pop it in Panama whilst living the high life in London you don’t pay any taxes on the money you hide away in Panama. They’re basically dodging taxes on their full earnings, whether they earned this money legally or not.

People are also using this Panama trick to transfer money and make business deals. When you make a large transaction there’s a tax bill. The bigger the deal, loan or exchange of money, the bigger the tax bill. So a big corporation moves a lot of cash the government of their homeland should receive money and spend on their country. However, if you use a company from Panama you pay $1 US dollar. That’s it. A single dollar. You couldn’t even buy a bottle of cola for a single citizen.

I understand the moans and groans of normal people in regards to tax. 20% tax on your earnings, road tax, the TV license and so on. Yet the people pay it and carry on. Yet you get the super rich clinging on to every penny whilst accumulating more and not paying their equal share. Tax, in theory, is useful because the more tax collected the better things your country should have. So imagine if the rich bothered to pay their fair share? Ah, but yet again I’m asking for too much equality.

I say we should all open up an account in a tax heaven like Panama, the British Virgin Islands or Switzerland. I wonder how long it would take the rich and the politicians to see that it isn’t the right or honest thing to do and everyone, rich or poor, should pull their weight equally and fairly.
How can the likes of the UK cut cash to important areas of social services like the NHS, benefits and pensions when it is home to so many billionaires? The financial inequality is horrendous and hideous.

Oh, and how did some mainstream media sources report the findings of the rich and famous who have been doing this? The Daily Mail ran with the story of how a kind of nut can reduce disease next to a picture of Amanda Holden. What? Seriously? One of, if not THE, biggest data leak ever and this rag reports on the use of a nut.

You know, I wish countries could all be like Iceland. A country which financially melted in 2009, following the big short, and people lost most of their savings, taken from their bank accounts. What did they do after that? They kept their heads up, jailed the bankers and those responsible and kicked out the government who had let this all happen for too long. These Panama Papers have embroiled their PM in the scandal. What did the people do? Protested and forced his resignation. They have their heads screwed on! Jail those responsible, kick out the corrupt and be in it together. Iceland is also the 4th happiest country, has a 99% literacy rate, has virtually no violent crime and is mainly atheist.

Sod this, I’m moving to Iceland.

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    • Rob Wayne profile image
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      Rob Wayne 16 months ago from Taiwan

      Thanks for the kind comment! Yeah I did a piece on the Panama Papers too, it's just unbelievable that the general public just take it. However you just need to look at who owns the media companies to understand why.

      I hope at some point in the future people will rise up and put a stop to it, but I think that's called Utopia, and therefore unreachable. But the longer this stews the more difficult and violent the change will be.

      Bring in the Robin Hood tax at least! But no, these people would sell their own grandmothers if they could make a profit in the next financial year.

      So who's to blame? Ronald Reagan? Individual bankers? Greed? Human nature? Probably all of the above and more.

    • profile image

      Howard Schneider 16 months ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

      The Panama Papers illustrate and illuminate perfectly how the wealthy and corporations hide their wealth from taxes to help ordinary citizens to survive the greed of these criminals. This situation and these practices have been accelerating since the 1980's and it is pure theft and greed. Hopefully action will be taken but i doubt it. Excellent Hub, Rob.