While Clinton Backed 2011 Trade Deal, Sanders Foresaw Panama Papers Fiasco

Published on Tuesday, April 05, 2016 by Common Dreams

While Clinton Backed 2011 Trade Deal, Sanders Foresaw Panama Papers Fiasco

‘Panama is a world leader when it comes to allowing wealthy Americans and large corporations to evade US taxes,’ Sanders told Congress in 2011.

Sen. Bernie Sanders

Sen. Bernie Sanders

by Lauren McCauley, staff writer

Who could have predicted that the global tax evasion by the world’s ultra-rich, made public this week with the release of the Panama Papers, was ushered in with the help of a free trade agreement?   Turns out, Sen. Bernie Sanders did.

In fiery speech before the U.S. Senate in 2011, Bernie Sanders declared his “strong opposition” to the “unfettered free trade agreements” with Korea, Columbia, and Panama—agreements that were being pushed for by both President Barack Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Sanders’ current rival for the Democratic nomination.

“Panama is a world leader when it comes to allowing wealthy Americans and large corporations to evade U.S. taxes by stashing their cash in off-shore tax havens,” Sanders stated. “And, the Panama Free Trade Agreement would make this bad situation much worse.”  

Watch Sanders’ entire speech below:   [READ MORE]


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  • Clyde Duncan  On 04/07/2016 at 1:16 am

    There is a significant difference between “tax evasion” and “tax avoidance” – and it has to do with jail time.

  • cjustinepierre  On 04/07/2016 at 2:03 am

    Dear Sir, Thank you for all your articles,you are a very good researcher, Keep up the good work

    Kind regards Justine Pierre

  • Clyde Duncan  On 04/08/2016 at 7:03 am

    “tax avoidance” is an investment strategy and legal, pure and simple as that.

  • Albert  On 04/08/2016 at 1:48 pm

    Politicians, including Sanders don’t inform the public accurately on these trade deals because they have a vested political interest. The bottom line is that the US is not a competitive trading country. That’s why we are accumulating massive deficits with trading countries…..15 trillion with China, 58 billion with Mexico etc

    If we do not have trade agreements China will with these countries and we will suffer greatly in the long run. Its suffer now with these trading partners or suffer more without them in the years ahead.

    The hope is that we will in the future produce advanced commodities with which we have a competitive advantage.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 04/09/2016 at 11:51 am

    “Panama Papers Fiasco” is another political scandal as opposed to a legal matter.

    I suppose some of you may want to mask your disappointment – no one is going to jail – Of course, I heard the “Greatest Boxer” say it when his court case pertaining to refusing military duty was resolved – ‘they don’t jail money – none of these inmates got a million dollars – I got a million dollars!’, or something like dat.

  • walter  On 09/10/2017 at 6:23 pm

    Hope they jail the Liberals for this utter nonsense….

    We probably shouldn’t expect stricter rules regarding offshore banking anytime soon. The latest leak from the ICIJ details 175,000 Bahamian companies registered between 1990 and 2016. There’s thousands of Canadians linked to companies there, but one stood out – Francis Morneau William.
    The name probably doesn’t ring a bell, but Bill Morneau is the same guy in charge of overseeing our banking regulations. To be clear, he’s not doing anything illegal (that we know of at least). This just highlights how normal it is for Canadians to do business in offshore tax havens.
    The Leak
    The leak shows that Morneau was a director at Morneau Shepell (Bahamas) Ltd. from Feb 24, 2014, and doesn’t specify if and when he resigned. Although he did declare he resigned from Morneau Shepell and all of its subsidiaries. So I’m going to assume he did and the paperwork is just not up to date.
    Morneau is one of the people that actually do have legitimate businesses there. Morneau-Shepell set up the Bahamas subsidiary in 2014 to consolidate the pension consulting they do in the Caribbean. It’s just a happy coincidence that the Canadian firm gets to reduce taxes by setting up a Bahamas branch.
    Conflict of Interest
    If you’re worried about conflicts of interests, don’t. His Chief of Staff has been appointed as a screen to prevent any. This employee of Bill is in charge preventing him from accessing information that might be of conflict. It’s a foolproof system apparently, like hiring someone to tell you to stop eating cake. How could it fail?
    Don’t Hate The Player, Hate The Game
    This isn’t about Morneau, he’s just one of the many people taking advantage of a system we’ve created. For the past 40 years, we’ve been turning Canada into a country to ease offshore banking. People that use these measures are legally moving the tax burden from themselves, to middle class Canadians.
    It does suck however to have the watchdog for our financial industry engaging in offshore business. If we can’t convince a member of Parliament that he shouldn’t be sending funds offshore, who can we convince? I’m not sure if Canadians approve of this, or just don’t know. However, it does need to be a bigger discussion.


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