*edit, November 30, 2013 – Well, Here I am at work on my away from home laptop, which, lo and behold, allows me to access, for now, the Toronto Star’s website. I grabbed Linda’s article (see below) and pasted it to my WordPerfect. I’ll also add a quote from it for you at the bottom of my post.
An excerpt from the above linked-to article by Zach Dubinsky, Nicole Reinert, Sophia Harris, and Harvey Cashore follows:
The chair of the Royal Canadian Mint, who also served as an adviser on international taxation to the federal Finance Department, helped engineer the transfer of millions of dollars of a prominent Canadian family through offshore tax havens in what others involved characterized as a “tax avoidance scheme,” documents obtained by CBC News show…
Love, a close friend of Finance Minister Jim Flaherty who was appointed to the Mint’s board in 2006, was also a trustee for most of the last decade of the Arthur Meighen Trust, an entity set up by the former Conservative PM in 1949 to distribute his wealth to his family. Before taking on that formal role, documents show Love had been an adviser and “close” friend to several Meighen family members.
It was in that advisory role that Love, in the mid-1990s, informed the managers of the Meighen Trust that they could get “Canadian tax relief on the income from about 40 per cent of the [trust] assets” if they moved the money offshore, Meighen’s great-granddaughters say in their statement of claim.
My disappeared online response to the above linked-to article follows:
At least I could read this article. The Toronto Star, some of whose writers (they let slip once) feel strongly that they write and readers read and commenting shouldn’t be allowed, doesn’t allow ‘any’ free online reading of it’s article now. If the Toronto Star can get me a raise from the company I work for (a large security organization), I will pay up to read it’s paper online, even though it’s mostly propaganda, like the other major (corporate owned) dailies, a good journo or two notwithstanding.
Readers here could not do worse than check into Canadians For Tax Fairness. Linda McQuaig, who foolishly sought to represent the NDP (and ‘the people’?) recently in an electoral wrestling match with much more colorful and popular contestants, belongs to it. She also wrote “Harper government’s fraudulent attempt to look tough on tax havens” which I can’t get to (again) through my bookmarked link: http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2013/04/09/harper_governments_fraudulent_attempt_to_look_tough_on_tax_havens_mcquaig.html. CBC staff will be able to though.
That should have been “could do worse than.”
From “Harper government’s fraudulent attempt to look tough on tax havens,” the following:
Tax havens have grown explosively in the last few decades, but last week’s spectacular leak of tax haven documents could mean the jig is about to be up…
With 450 Canadians identified — and estimates of an annual revenue loss of $8 billion from tax havens, according to Canadians for Tax Fairness — even the Harper government could be obliged to overcome its reluctance to go after wealthy cheats…
And back in 2007, the Harper government launched a campaign to push tax haven countries to sign bilateral tax treaties with Canada, ostensibly to force them to divulge information about offshore accounts held by Canadians.
In reality, the treaty rules were so poorly designed they’ve been virtually useless in making it harder for Canadians to hide money offshore.
On the contrary, they’ve actually opened the floodgates to tax haven use. That’s because, once a tax haven country has signed one of these (largely useless) bilateral treaties, it qualifies for special treatment under the new Harper rules, allowing multinational corporations to route their profits through the tax haven, thereby avoiding Canadian corporate tax.
For the Harperites to claim they’re clamping down on tax havens would be like claiming a clampdown on bank robberies by setting up a turn-in-a-robber snitch line, while at the same time providing robbers with instruction manuals on cracking safes.
If the Harper government had any genuine interest in tackling tax havens, it would get behind growing global efforts to shut them down. Even the U.S. Congress passed a sweeping law, to take effect next year, requiring foreign banks to report all assets held by their U.S. clients to U.S. tax authorities.