Global Tax Thuggery
From the desk of Richard Rahn at the Brussels Journal
According to the OECD, the U.S. should be sharing tax information with all cooperating countries on its list - including those who are nondemocratic and/or corrupt. Worse yet, the Obama administration is supporting the OECD in this wholesale violation of basic rights.Do you think the Internal Revenue Service should have the right to share your tax information with foreign governments -- even ones run by thugs and those that engage in human rights abuses and/or suppress freedom in their countries?
A meeting was held in Mexico City last week under the auspices of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), whose implicit goal is to create a global high-tax cartel.
It claims to be in favor of "transparency" and "global economic growth." However, as with many domestic and international government organizations, the OECD's actions are often contrary to its words.
In order to create a global tax cartel, the OECD needs to have tax information shared among nations -- which means that the citizen of any country that signs on to this scheme may have his or her tax information shared with other member jurisdictions.
The Center for Freedom and Prosperity sent a delegation to the Mexico City meeting. It included my colleague Daniel J. Mitchell, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. Mr. Mitchell has written extensively on the importance of global tax competition, which is needed for economic growth, the preservation of human rights and civil societies.
Mr. Mitchell was there to provide intellectual support to smaller, low-tax jurisdictions, which were trying to protect their tax sovereignty, and also to report on the meeting.
The international bureaucrats who run the OECD's Fiscal Affairs Committee managed to persuade a hotel to cancel Mr. Mitchell's reservations and then tried to get him thrown out of the public lobby of the hotel where the meeting was held -- as he was quietly talking with delegations from lower-tax jurisdictions and the press. Fortunately, when Mr. Mitchell and members of the press objected to the bullying tactics of the OECD officials, he finally was allowed to stay.
The OECD has managed to get 87 jurisdictions to sign on to its global "tax standard." The high-tax countries are using the OECD to threaten low-tax jurisdictions to sign this agreement.
It is worth noting that the tax bullies at the OECD and at other international organizations, such as the United Nations, International Monetary Fund and World Bank, who demand that others pay higher taxes, enjoy tax-free personal income courtesy of the world's taxpayers.