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How to play with an oligarch

Foreign and domestic crises are linked

“It is really important that we do not lose sight of the fact that our domestic and foreign crises are inextricably linked. It all comes down to the fact that we have these corrupt global networks running through several countries that are mistreated, exploited by dictators, in many cases built by dictators, who seek to undermine democracy. They need facilitators in the West to help them do it. And these include lobbyists, lawyers, real estate professionals, accountants, that’s really so many people.

“Ten percent of the world’s GDP is held overseas: I want people to understand the massive scale of this problem. But it’s not just money: it’s also the loss of democracy, it’s the abuse of the courts, it’s our whole system. “

Corruption is elusive by design

“Americans are extremely upset with corruption, on both sides of the aisle, on all sides of the aisle: the extremes, the middle, everywhere. They intuitively sense that our system is corrupt. Now it is difficult for them to identify him. And that’s by design, right? I’ve been doing this for almost a decade, and I still can’t explain to you the exact manner of all these anonymous shell companies.

“The people who end up paying the price for this [corruption] working Americans and middle class Americans, just because there is no capacity [at the IRS] attack the rich and the corrupt. You would see a lot less if you abolished the secret courts.

It’s the secret of the courts, stupid

“America is one of the biggest secret jurisdictions in the world, just like the UK. They are not tax havens, they are secret jurisdictions. If these two jurisdictions have cleaned up their actions, you have eliminated 70% of the problem: All the 200 largest global law firms in the world are Anglo-American, each of them.

“If you only attack the minimum corporate tax rate, tax havens, you are missing the forest for the trees. Ireland may be the world’s largest corporate tax haven, but has virtually no role to play in the area of ​​secret jurisdiction. You have to attack both. “

“If you don’t attack both, what ends up happening is the jurisdiction of secrecy is used to obscure your ownership of things, move things around and essentially avoid the new tax codes that will come. You can build these chains of anonymous shell companies, hold 10 passports, walk through webs of financial darkness to make sure that you can never be held accountable for your crimes, that your taxes can never be found.

Where is Kazakhstan going, other dictators follow

“Kazakhstan, the Nazarbayev regime, pioneered many of the kleptocratic tactics we see in the world today. Hiring former Western civil servants, using Western courts to basically outsource any rule of law need, chasing people into oblivion just for lack of money. Kazakhstan was truly one of the earliest examples of modern dictatorship.

No one has more contempt for their own people than the kleptocrats: they don’t even want to live in the countries they rule! They want to be in Miami and they want to be on the Riviera, in the beautiful parts of London, and so on. One would have expected the Kazakh people to lose patience much sooner than them. They did not do so in large part because of the West’s complicity in hiding that money and covering up the crimes.

Sanction the oligarchs

“There is no country with greater wealth inequality than Russia. There are only billionaires, then the average Russian. The idea of ​​having a sort of middle class and upper middle class, it’s gone. ”

“The Russians hate corruption as much as anyone. When you look at what threatens Putin the most, it’s the revelations of his corruption, because it attacks the very core of his legitimacy, which is that ‘You need to I, you know, I am the only thing standing between you and the decadent West. In fact, all of your buddies live in the West, all of his wealth is in the West.

“My modest proposal is to sanction all the oligarchs. If you actually force these guys to live in the system that they created, they will ask for reform.


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