1] Tax avoidance
The New York Times hits the nail on the head
Yes, the I.R.S. may have been worse than clumsy in considering an avalanche of applications for nonprofit status under the tax code, and that deserves scrutiny whether or not the agency’s employees were spurred by partisan motives
But it would be a travesty if the misdeeds here undermined the important work that must now be done to foster greater transparency, and to bolster confidence that the I.R.S. is in fact scrutinizing politically active groups across the board, regardless of their ideological bent.Add to that the scandal of tax avoidance by the corporations
Angel Gurría, secretary-general of the OECD, has called on governments to make reforms, saying “we cannot blame business for using the rules that policy makers themselves have put in place”.Add to that the nonsense of off-shoring into fiscal bottomless pits [tax havens]
The Guardian has brought yet more news about the widespread use of tax havens by some of the world's largest multinationals operating in developing countries. From ActionAid's own investigations we know that these tax havens can all too often provide vehicles for tax avoidance that hits the world's poorest hardest.This desperate need both by individuals and corporations to funnel the wealth of nations in the name of greed thus avoiding any responsibility to the nations that made them wealthy in the first place. This puts the burden on the normal law abiding tax payer, and in turn hurts the economy.
In the case of just one FTSE100 multinational we recently investigated – Associated British Foods, maker of Ryvita and Silver Spoon sugar – we found the company had used tax haven conduit companies to legally avoid enough Zambian tax to put 48,000 children in school. Zambia is a nation where almost half of children fail to complete their education.
2] Climate change.
World Leaders Lack Political Will to Make Progress at ClimateHow bad does it have to get before the the political will is there, the drowning of whole nations, mass exoduses, war and famine?
As countries debate the way forward on the climate treaty regime, the climate itself continues to react to actual emissions into the atmosphere. The damages caused by the wave of extreme events around the world demonstrate that the costs of continued inaction will be substantial indeed. In Copenhagen in 2009, world leaders committed to keep the increase in global temperatures below 2 degrees Celsius, but there is a growing gap between what nations collectively need to do to meet this goal and what they have actually put on the table in terms of commitments out to 2020.
3] Subsiding already profitable corporations.
Worldwide, government subsidies to chosen industries and favored companies are out of control, bankrupting treasuries, breeding cronyism, misdirecting and deterring private investment, distorting market signals, and undermining support for capitalism and free trade. Always demanding more, domestic subsidy recipients cite foreign subsidies as grounds for yet more largesse, and the cycle continues. How will this global subsidies race end? “Very badly,” according to experts who argue that policymakers must find a way to rein in this economically and politically corrosive process.Fooling yourself that this makes products cheaper and creates jobs is just another pile of baloney, your taxes pay for the subsidies, so even if you don't actually buy their products you still buy a virtual share in their products without the benefit of being to sell that share on.
Long the disclaimer of those bearing bad news, the phrase “don’t shoot the messenger” may soon become a rallying cry of the American public.Government transparency is a myth
Under an ostensibly liberal, Democratic president, government prosecutors have ushered in a new era of targeting whistleblowers. Prosecuting those responsible for the wrongdoings, meanwhile, has been made no such priority. The recent sentencing of former CIA officer John Kiriakou represents the latest example in the crackdown on leaks to the media and public.
The transparency administration's legacy is being erased by an out-of-control national security bureaucracy..
5] The AP scandal
Just another result of the panic filled legislation that was passed after 9-11 which everyone in DC seems so reticent to repeal.