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Global Tax Body: An Idea Whose Time Has Come


#1

Global Tax Body: An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Thalif Deen, IPS News

UNITED NATIONS/ADDIS ABABA - When the four-day-long international conference on Financing for Development (FfD) concludes in the Ethiopian capital next week, one of the lingering questions in the minds of departing delegates may well be: did we really achieve anything concrete after years of negotiations?

As Oxfam International rightly points out, 2015 is a big year for major global conferences – on combating poverty, inequality, environmental degradation and climate change.


#2

Any global governing body will have to deal with a few major concerns. First there has to be a separation of church and state and freedom of expression. Churches will have to be taxed as for profit institution. They must pay their share. Further, laws must be made using civil rights, not holy books.

Then they will have to talk openly about overpopulation, sex education and resource limitations.

You can't tax commodities that do not exist. As climate change continues to destroy habitat and resources, you can't just legislate profit into existence for everyone to share. As the population continue to grow at exponential rates, a governing body will have to address slowing that growth using birth control and education about sex.

A mix of capitalism and socialism will have to established, disregarding the dogma and extremists on both sides, to face the realities of commodities, markets and taxation for the social good.


#4

And it only gets worse from there.

UN is a captured body. To give the security council a chance to manipulate global tx rates and extract even more wealth for the rich? Might be the dumbest idea I've ever heard. And that's a pretty high bar.

I get that many of these nations are desperate for revenue--so is everyone else now that the global system is totally extractive for the very top--, but there can be no solution without a just international order in place to enforce this kind of system. And we're a very long way from that goal.


#5

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#6

Here is how I see this.

In response, corporations will raise prices. Which means the advanced economy consumer will be funding less advanced economy development.

I am all for corporations paying their fair share of taxes, which I certainly know they do not. But it is not my job to fund development elsewhere. Geeminy crickets, the damn corporations have already shipped all of our jobs overseas. isn't that enough?


#7

I would support all actions to provide a safety net for the world's weak and poor. But how would you prevent it being misused by corporations and corrupt rulers.


#8

Don't be fooled, a global tax body will simply be diverted and used to promote extended FUD campaign basically to prevent any action being taken at all for decades.
The law change for tax is very simple, all tax records for offshore product or service should be provided detailing profits generated from the sale of that product at the point of export and only the actual cost at source for producing and exporting the product to be used as a tax deduction against revenue earned at the point of income.
All profits from any product or service should be taxed at the point of revenue. If details for the actual costs and actual profits are not provided for imported product or services, that that product or service pays tax on the full revenue less local expenses only.
No global tax body required, let alone decades of discussion whilst nothing at all is done about problems right now.


#9

This is a joke. The UN is captive to US and European interests and would simply use such a program to advance the Western capitalist global agenda. That is, such countries as would structure their economies to "free market" norms would get tax relief, while others more suspicious of "Western values" would be shunned. As rtb61 implies above, an international protocol outlawing offshore tax havens would be a far better idea, but in order for that to happen, most of the world's major governments would have to be overturned.


#10

Well, the US and the other four in the security council have plenty of representation anyway...

But I you read the article, it has nothing to do with new taxes imposed by anyone - only enforcing existing poor-country's taxes.


#11

If you read the article, the UN tax body would not collect taxes, only provide enforcement of poor county's existing tax laws for which exploitative corporations are ignoring.

The US-centric ignorance if some of the comments her is breathtaking.


#12

Only the security council is captive to US and European Interests. The General Assembly for which the agencies report to, has a lot of autonomy. And if you read the article, it has nothing to do with taxes and tax relief - only going after tax scofflaws of poor countries presumably notably mining and oil corporations who exploit then avoid paying their taxes.


#13

Your comment is way off-topic. but a few comments:

What if the church operates as a non-profit - as most do?

And population is not growing at "exponential rates" - the growth is slowing substantially - with some countries encountering problems with population decline fertility crashes.

And everyone around the world already has access to birth control, and they know what the hell sex is. The condescending racism and classicism simmers just below the surface of that remark.

And you gotta love the capitalism-loving new-athiest Malthusians.. Commodification and markets are human contrivances pursuant to wealth concentration - not "realities"


#14

The complete corruption of worldwide domination has to be cleaned up before any one organization is given such authority. Legalization of corruption and tax evasion, moving profits offshore must be removed. The people holding the power must be marginalized and a new structures and regulations set up. It has been proven over and over again that without laws and regulations man cannot be trusted to remain ethical and morally working for someone other than their own selfish motives. I've always believed that those that create and take risks should be rewarded but it has gotten out of control.


#15

Ideas are not lacking in the body politic. What is lacking is the ability to recognize (critical thinking) a viable avenue that will achieve those ideas. No democracy - no progress.


#18

The "liberalization of markets" corresponds to "political freedom"? Really?

Like when Monsanto's share of markets become liberalized in a particular country then the "political freedom" of say farmers goes up? You might ask some family members of farmers in India who committed suicide after Monsanto's market was liberalized how their deceased were responding to that increased "political freedom" prior to their desperate act to free themselves.

As to "supranational redistribution of wealth". Isn't that a constant of the "free market" orthodoxy? You know, the multinational corporate thugs that are busily crafting and codifying "free trade agreements" like TISA, TPP, TIPP?

As to the proponents of "international financial aid" like the World Bank, and the IMF. Yes it is true that that corporate profit driven scam against developing countries as a force of "market liberalization" certainly is not beneficial to them, the population of those developing countries.


#20

I had almost forgotten how awful of a person you are in spite of your otherwise respectable politics. Oh well, being right doesn't always mean being good, yes?

In any event, your personal attack was unwarranted, and you're largely splitting hairs here (shocking, I know). In taxation, enforcement is collection. Further. the assertion that a UN body should be developed that would "renegotiate international tax" rules is essentially creating a new form of tax collection. All collection essentially is is the promulgation of a payment rule and then the legal authority and mechanism to enforce that rule.

I hope that one day, you'll roll out of the bed without the passive-aggressive tendency to look for fights with people you should be cultivating as allies. But then., I guess that's why you still make middle class income as a servant of the state. You're perfectly comfortable with hypocrisy.

Please don't address me further. I will not communicate back.


#21

I presume "an unholy alliance of the state and corporations" according to your perspective would be any regulatory framework that would limit what corporations A-Z might want to do.

That is such a bogus argument that is made by "free marketers" – that any act of a central government regulating capitalism is itself what leads to corruption, that "unholy alliance".

Balderdash. It is the taking over of regulatory agencies by corporate governance that makes an absolute mockery of neoliberal economics. What is neoliberal economics without corporate takeover of governance? Without redistribution of public assets to maximize privatized profits?

Your feigned ignorance relative to large corporations getting all manner of assistance from their corporate sponsors in whatever government is laughable. What, you aren't aware of such assistance by the central government of the US to these corporations? Are you kidding me? So much for my argument being merely a "straw man".

Large corporations complain about taxation (which at this point hardly exists) while at the same time they are quite happy to receive the services of the State Dept helping them "liberalize markets", the US military protecting their assets or helping round up death squads in developing countries, the public funded courts to protect their intellectual property rights, the publicly funded highway system and other infrastructure that maximizes their market potential, and of course their bought off politicians who turn a blind eye to every manner of corrupt behavior by these super wealthy powerful individuals that don't give a flying cluck about the freedom of anyone else when it comes to externalizing their costs on the public.

Save your neoliberal think tank arguments for someone more naive.


#22

And I am all for tax collection. Aren't you? What is wrong with making big corporation pay their taxes to the countries they are raping?

Are you opposed to global action against climate catastrophe? That is going to require global collective action too - and a big part of that is going to be taxes.

And if you mean by "allies" the Tea Party or the so-called "libertarians" any true leftist knows that we have nothing in common with them.


#24

??? Reducing barriers to capital flow helped de-stabilize and undermine many countries, as in Asia, setting them up for a substantial takeover by the IMF/World Bank, etc.

Perfectly flowing capital often increases instability, sometimes in response to totally false rumors.


#26

Seriously I'm done with your so-called "Voice of Reason". How could you possibly claim that I made that argument?

I made exactly the opposite argument.

I am not going to bother with any further discourse with someone so intellectually dishonest.