Spiegel International Online has an article that discusses the possibility of Switzerland giving up a major portion of its banking secrecy laws under political pressure from the US and Germany. Although the purpose of the article is to discuss the degree of importance (or lack) of the Swiss’ status as a tax haven to the Swiss economy, the discussion raises another question, immediately germane to our own economic condition, about tax havens generally.
Should we care if Switzerland remains a tax haven or gives that up? If our own tax code weren’t so Byzantine, with such high rates, and with so many excused from taxes altogether (whether from the aggregate of subsidies, credits, exemptions, pick-a-loophole, or just from belonging to a protected class), Americans would have no need of tax havens.
If privacy is our concern, still we should be looking here at home, and reining in an overreaching government. Sort of the kind of thing elections are for.